HOMILIES OF
ST. JOHN CHRYSOSTOM
ON THE FIRST EPISTLE OF
ST. PAUL THE APOSTLE TO TIMOTHY
HOMILIES VIII TO XIII (CHAPTERS 2 TO 5)

HOMILY VIII.

1 TIMOTHY ii. 8-10.

"I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broidered hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works."

"WHEN thou prayest," saith Christ, "thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are; for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father, which is in secret; and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly." (Matt. vi. 5, 6.) What then says Paul? "I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting." This is not contrary to the other, God forbid, but quite in harmony with it. But how, and in what way? We must first consider what means, "enter into thy closet, and why Christ commands this, if we are to pray in every place? or whether we may not pray in the church, nor in any other part of the house, but the closet? What then means that saying? Christ is recommending us to avoid ostentation, when He bids us offer our prayers not only privately, but secretly. For, when He says, "Let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth" (Matt. vi. 3), it is not the hands that He. considers, but He is bidding them use the utmost caution against ostentation: and He is doing the like here; He did not limit prayer to one place, but required one thing alone, the absence of vainglory. The object of Paul is to distinguish the Christian from the Jewish prayers, therefore observe what he says: "In every place lifting up holy hands," which was not permitted the Jews, for they were not allowed to approach God, to sacrifice and perform their services, elsewhere, but assembling from all parts of the world in one place, they were bound to perform all their worship(2) in the temple. In opposition to this he introduces his precept, and freeing them from this necessity, he says in effect, Our ways are not like the Jewish; for as Christ commanded us to pray for all men because He died for all men, and I preach these things for all men, so it is good to "pray everywhere." Henceforth the consideration is not of the place but of the manner of the prayer; "pray everywhere," but "everywhere lift up holy hands." That is the thing required. And what is "holy"?(1) Pure. And what is pure? Not washed with water, but free from covetousness, murder, rapacity, violence, "without wrath and doubting." What means this? Who is angry when he prays? It means, without bearing malice. Let the mind of him that prays be pure, freed from all passion. Let no one approach God in enmity, or in an unamiable temper, or with "doubting." What is "without doubting"? Let us hear. It implies that we should have no misgiving but that we shall be heard. For it is said, "whatever ye ask believing ye shall receive." (Matt. xxi. 22.) And again, "when ye stand praying forgive, if ye have aught against any one." (Mark xi. 25.) This is to pray without wrath and doubting. But how can I believe that I shall obtain my request? By asking nothing opposed to that which He is ready to grant, nothing unworthy of the great King, nothing worldly, but all spiritual blessings; if you approach Him "without wrath," having pure hands, "holy hands": hands employed in almsgiving are holy. Approach Him thus, and you will certainly obtain your request. "For if ye being evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Father which is in Heaven give good things to them that ask Him?" (Matt. vii. II.) By doubting he means misgiving. In like manner he says, I will that women approach God without wrath and doubting, lifting up holy hands: that they should not follow their own desires, nor be covetous or rapacious. For what if a woman does not rob or steal herself, but does it through means of her husband? Paul however requires something more of women, that they adorn themselves "in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broidered hair or gold or pearls or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works." But what is this "modest apparel"? Such attire as covers them completely, and decently, not with superfluous ornaments, for the one is becoming, the other is not.

MORAL. What? Dost thou approach God to pray, with broidered hair and ornaments of gold? Art thou come to a dance? to a marriage? to a gay procession? There such a broidery, such costly garments, had been seasonable, here not one of them is wanted. Thou art come to pray, to supplicate for pardon of thy sins, to plead for thine offenses, beseeching the Lord, and hoping to render Him propitious to thee. Why dost thou adorn thyself? This is not the dress of a suppliant. How canst thou groan? How canst thou weep? How pray with fervency, when thus attired? Shouldest thou weep, thy tears will be the ridicule of the beholders. She that weeps ought not to be wearing gold. It were but acting, and hypocrisy. For is it not acting to pour forth tears from a soul so overgrown with extravagance and ambition? Away with such hypocrisy! God is not mocked! This is the attire of actors and dancers, that live upon the stage. Nothing of this sort becomes a modest woman, who should be adorned "with shamefacedness and sobriety."

Imitate not therefore the courtesans. For by such a dress they allure their many lovers; and hence many have incurred a disgraceful suspicion, and, instead of gaining any advantage from their ornaments, have injured many(2) by bearing this character. For as the adulteress, though she may have a character for modesty, derives no benefit from that character, in the Day, when He who judges the secrets of men shall make all things manifest; so the modest woman, if she contrive by this dress to pass for an adulteress, will lose the advantage of her chastity. For many have suffered harm by this opinion. "What can I do," thou sayest, "if another suspects me?" But thou givest the occasion by thy dress, thy looks, thy gestures. It is for this reason that Paul discourses much of dress and much of modesty. And if be would remove those things which are only the indications of wealth, as gold, and pearls, and costly array; how much more those things which imply studied ornament, as painting, coloring the eyes, a mincing gait, the affected voice, a languishing and wanton look; the exquisite care in putting on the cloak and bodice, the nicely wrought girdle, and the closely-fitted shoes? For he glances at all these things, in speaking of "modest apparel" and "shamefacedness." For such things are shameless and indecent.

Bear with me, I beseech you, for it is not my aim by this plain reproof to wound or pain you, but to remove from my flock all that is unbecoming to them. But if these prohibitions are addressed to those who have husbands, who are rich, and live luxuriously; much more to those who have professed virginity. But what virgin, you say, wears gold, or broidered hair? Yet there may be such a studied nicety in a simple dress, as that these are nothing to it. You may study appearance in a common garment more than those who wear gold. For when a very dark colored robe is drawn closely round the breast with the girdle(as dancers on the stage are attired), with such nicety that it may neither spread into breadth nor shrink into scantiness, but be between both; and when the bosom is set off with many folds, is not this more alluring than any silken robes? and when the shoe, shining through its blackness, ends in a sharp point, and imitates the elegance of painting, so that even the breadth of the sole is scarce visible--or when, though you do not indeed paint the face, you spend much time and pains on washing it, and spread a veil across the forehead,(1) whiter than the face itself--and above that put on a hood,(2) of which the blackness may set off the white by contrast--is there not in all this the vanity of dress? What can one say to the perpetual rolling of the eyes? to the putting on of the stomacher; so artfully as sometimes to conceal, sometimes to disclose, the fastening? For this too they sometimes expose, so as to show the exquisiteness of the cincture, winding the hood entirely round the head. Then like the players, they wear gloves so closely fitted, that they seem to grow upon the hands: and we might speak of their walk, and other artifices more alluring than any ornament of gold. Let us fear, beloved, lest we also hear what the Prophet said to the Hebrew women who were so studious of outward ornament; "Instead of a girdle, thou shalt be girded with a halter, instead of well-set hair, baldness." (Isa. iii. 24, Sept.) These things and many others, invented only to be seen and to attract beholders, are more alluring than golden ornaments. These are no trifling faults, but displeasing to God, and enough to mar all the self-denial of virginity.

Thou hast Christ for thy Bridegroom, O virgin, why dost thou seek to attract human lovers? He will judge thee as an adulteress. Why dost thou not wear the ornament that is pleasing to Him; modesty, chastity, orderliness, and sober apparel? This is meretricious, and disgraceful. We can no longer distinguish harlots and virgins, to such indecency have they advanced. A virgin's dress should not be studied, but plain, and without labor; but now they have many artifices to make their dress conspicuous. O woman, cease from this folly. Transfer this care to thy soul, to the inward adorning. For the outward ornament that invests thee, suffers not that within to become beautiful. He that is concerned for that which is without, despises that which is within, even as he that is unconcerned about the exterior, bestows all his care upon the interior. Say not, "Alas! I wear a threadbare garment, mean shoes, a worthless veil; what is there of ornament in these?" Do not deceive thyself. It is impossible, as I said, to study appearance more by these than by costlier dresses; especially when they are close-fitted to the body, fashioned to an immodest show, and of shining neatness.(3) Thou excusest thyself to me, but what canst thou say to God, who knows the heart and the spirit with which thou doest these things? "It is not done for fornication!" Perhaps not, but for admiration; and dost thou not blush for shame to be admired for such things? But thou sayest, "It is but chance I am so dressed, and for no motive of this kind." God knoweth what thou sayest to me: is it to me thou must give account? Nay, it is to Him who is present at thy actions, and will one day require into them, to whom all things are naked and open. It is on this account that we now urge these things, that we may not let you be amenable to those severe judgments. Let us fear, therefore, lest He reprove you in the words of the Prophet to the Jewish women. "They come to be seen of me wantoning and mincing as they go, and making a tinkling with their feet." (Isa. iii. 16.)

Ye have taken upon you a great contest, where wrestling, not ornament is required; where the battle awaits you, not sloth and ease. Observe the combatants and wrestlers in the games. Do they concern themselves about their walk or their dress? No, but scorning all these, and throwing about them a garment(4) dripping with oil, they look only to one thing, to wound, and not be wounded. The devil stands grinding his teeth, watching to destroy thee every way, and thou remainest unconcerned, or concerned only about this satanic ornament. I say nothing about the voice, though much affectation is shown in this also, nor about perfumes, and other such luxuries. It is for these things we are ridiculed by the women of the world. The respect for virginity is lost. No one honors a virgin as she ought to be honored. They have given occasion to their own dishonor. Ought not they to be looked up to in the Church of God, as women coming from heaven? but now they are despised, and deservedly, though not those among them who are discreet. But when one who has a husband and children, and presides over a household, sees thee, who ought to be crucified to the world, more devoted to the world than herself, will she not ridicule and despise thee? See what care! what pains! In thy humble dress, thou exceedest her who wears the costliest ornament, and art more studious of appearance than she who is arrayed in gold. What is becoming to thee thou seekest not; that which misbecomes thee thou pursuest, when thou oughtest to be occupied in good works. On this account virgins are less honored than women of the world. For they do not perform works worthy of their virgin profession. This is not said to all; or rather it is said to all; to those who are in fault, that they may learn modesty; to those who are free from blame, that they may teach modesty to others. But beware lest this rebuke be verified in deed. For we have not said these things that we may grieve, but that we may correct you, that we may glory in you. And may we all do those things which are acceptable to God, and live to His glory, that we may obtain the blessings promised by the grace and lovingkindness of our Lord Jesus Christ, with whom, &c.

HOMILY IX.

1 TIMOTHY ii. 11-15.

"Let the women learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in [through the] child-bearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety."

GREAT modesty and great propriety does the blessed Paul require of women, and that not only with respect to their dress and appearance: he proceeds even to regulate their speech. And what says he? "Let the woman learn in silence"; that is, let her not speak at all in the church; which rule he has also given in his Epistle to the Corinthians, where he says," It is a shame for women to speak in the church" (1 Cor. xiv. 35); and the reason is, that the law has made them subject to men. And again elsewhere, "And if they will learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home." (Ibid.) Then indeed the women, from such teaching, kept silence; but now there is apt to be great noise among them, much clamor and talking, and nowhere so much as in this place. They may all be seen here talking more than in the market, or at the bath. For, as if they came hither for recreation, they are all engaged in conversing upon unprofitable subjects. Thus all is confusion, and they seem not to understand, that unless they are quiet, they cannot learn anything that is useful. For when our discourse strains against the talking, and no one minds what is said, what good can it do to them? To such a degree should women be silent, that they are not allowed to speak not only about worldly matters, but not even about spiritual things, in the church. This is order, this is modesty, this will adorn her more than any garments. Thus clothed, she will be able to offer her prayers in the manner most becoming.

"But I suffer not a woman to teach." "I do not suffer," he says. What place has this command here? The fittest. He was speaking of quietness, of propriety, of modesty, so having said that he wished them not to speak in the church, to cut off all occasion of conversation, he says, let them not teach, but occupy the station of learners. For thus they will show submission by their silence. For the sex is naturally somewhat talkative: and for this reason he restrains them on all sides. "For Adam," says he, "was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression."

If it be asked, what has this to do with women of the present day? it shows that the male sex enjoyed the higher honor. Man was first formed; and elsewhere he shows their superiority. "Neither was the man created for the woman, but the woman for the man." (1 Cor. xi. 9.) Why then does he say this? He wishes the man to have the preeminence in every way; both for the reason given above, he means, let him have precedence, and on account of what occurred afterwards. For the woman taught the man once, and made him guilty of disobedience, and wrought our ruin. Therefore because she made a bad use of her power over the man, or rather her equality with him, God made her subject to her husband. "Thy desire shall be to thy husband?" (Gen. iii. 16.) This had not been said to her before.

But how was Adam not deceived? If he was not deceived, he did not then transgress? Attend carefully. The woman said, "The serpent beguiled me." But the man did not say, The woman deceived me, but, "she gave me of the tree, and I did eat." Now it is not the same thing to be deceived by a fellow-creature, one of the same kind, as by an inferior and subordinate animal. This is truly to be deceived. Compared therefore with the woman, he is spoken of as "not deceived." For she was beguiled by an inferior and subject, he by an equal. Again, it is not said of the man, that he "saw the tree was good for food," but of the woman, and that she "did eat, and gave it to her husband": so that he transgressed, not captivated by appetite, but merely from the persuasion of his wife. The woman taught once, and ruined all. On this account therefore he saith, let her not teach. But what is it to other women, that she suffered this? It certainly concerns them; for the sex is weak and fickle, and he is speaking of the sex collectively. For he says not Eve, but "the woman," which is the common name of the whole sex, not her proper name. Was then the whole sex included in the transgression for her fault? As he said of Adam, "After the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of Him that was to come" (Rom. v. 14); so here the female sex transgressed, and not the male. Shall not women then be saved? Yes, by means of children. For it is not of Eve that he says, "If they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety." What faith? what charity? what holiness with sobriety? It is as if he had said, "Ye women, be not cast down, because your sex has incurred blame. God has granted you another opportunity of salvation, by the bringing up of children, so that you are saved, not only by yourselves, but by others." See how many questions are involved in this matter. "The woman," he says, "being deceived was in the transgression." What woman? Eve. Shall she then be saved by child-bearing? He does not say that, but, the race of women shall be saved. Was not it then involved in transgression? Yes, it was, still Eve transgressed, but the whole sex shall be saved, notwithstanding, "by childbearing." And why not by their own personal virtue? For has she excluded others from this salvation? And what will be the case with virgins, with the barren, with widows who have lost their husbands, before they had children? will they perish? is there no hope for them? yet virgins are held in the highest estimation. What then does he mean to say?

Some interpret his meaning thus. As what happened to the first woman occasioned the subjection of the whole sex, (for since Eve was formed second and made subject, he says, let the rest of the sex be in subjection,) so because she transgressed, the rest of the sex are also in transgression. But this is not fair reasoning; for at the creation all was the gift of God, but in this case, it is the consequence of the woman's sin. But this is the amount of what he says. As all men died through one, because that one sinned, so the whole female race transgressed, because the woman was in the transgression. Let her not however grieve. God hath given her no small consolation, that of childbearing. And if it be said that this is of nature, so is that(1) also of nature; for not only that which is of nature has been granted, but also the bringing up of children. "If they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety"; that is, if after childbearing, they keep them(2) in charity and purity. By these means they will have no small reward on their account, because they have trained up wrestlers for the service of Christ. By holiness he means good life, modesty, and sobriety.

Chap. iii. ver. 1. "This is a faithful saying."

This relates to the present subject, not to what follows, respecting the office of a Bishop. For as it was doubted, he affirms it to be a true saying, that fathers may be benefited by the virtue of their children, and mothers also, when they have brought them up well. But what if she be herself addicted to wickedness and vice? Will she then be benefited by the bringing up of children? Is it not probable that she will bring them up to be like herself? It is not therefore of any woman, but of the virtuous woman, that it is said she shall receive a great recompense for this also.

MORAL. Hear this, ye fathers and mothers, that your bringing up of children shall not lose its reward. This also he says, as he proceeds, "Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up children." (1 Tim. v. 10.) Among other commendations he reckons this one, for it is no light praise to devote to God those children which are given them of God. For if the basis, the foundation which they lay be good, great will be their reward; as great, if they neglect it, will be their punishment. It was on account of his children that Eli perished. For he ought to have admonished them, and indeed he did admonish them, but not as he ought; but from his unwillingness to give them pain he destroyed both himself and them. Hear this, ye fathers, bring your children up with great care "in the nurture and admonition of the Lord." (Eph. vi. 4.) Youth is wild, and requires many governors, teachers, directors, attendants, and tutors; and after all these, it is a happiness if it be restrained. For as a horse not broken in, or a wild beast untamed, such is youth. But if from the beginning, from the earliest age, we fix it in good rules, much pains will not be required afterwards; for good habits formed will be to them as a law. Let us not suffer them to do anything which is agreeable, but injurious; nor let us indulge them, as forsooth but children. Especially let us train them in chastity, for there is the very bane of youth. For this many struggles, much attention will be necessary. Let us take wives for them early, so that their brides may receive their bodies pure and unpolluted, so their loves will be more ardent. He that is chaste before marriage, much more will he be chaste after it; and he that practiced fornication before, will practice it after marriage. "All bread," it is said, "is sweet to the fornicator." (Ecclus. xxiii. 17.) Garlands are wont to be worn on the heads of bridegrooms, as a symbol of victory, betokening that they approach the marriage bed unconquered by pleasure. But if captivated by pleasure he has given himself up to harlots, why does he wear the garland, since he has been subdued?

Let us admonish them of these things. Let us employ sometimes advice, sometimes warnings, sometimes threatening. In children we have a great charge committed to us. Let us bestow great care upon them, and do everything that the Evil One may not rob us of them. But now our practice is the very reverse of this. We take all care indeed to have our farm in good order, and to commit it to a faithful manager, we look out for it an ass-driver, and muleteer, and bailiff, and a clever accomptant. But we do not look out for what is much more important, for a person to whom we may commit our son as the guardian of his morals, though this is a possession much more valuable than all others. It is for him indeed that we take such care of our estate. We take care of our possessions for our children, but of the children themselves we take no care at all. What an absurdity is this! Form the soul of thy son aright, and all the rest will be added hereafter. If that is not good, he will derive no advantage from his wealth, and if it is formed to goodness he will suffer no harm from poverty. Wouldest thou leave him rich? teach him to be good: for so he will be able to acquire wealth, or if not, he will not fare worse than they who possess it. But if he be wicked, though you leave him boundless wealth, you leave him no one to take care of it, and you render him worse than those who are reduced to extreme poverty. For poverty is better than riches for those children who are not well-disposed. For it retains them in some degree of virtue even against their will. Whereas money does not suffer those who would be sober to continue so, it leads them away, ruins them, and plunges them into infinite dangers.

Mothers, be specially careful to regulate your daughters well; for the management of them is easy. Be watchful over them, that they may be keepers at home. Above all, instruct them to be pious, modest, despisers of wealth, indifferent to ornament. In this way dispose of them in marriage. For if you form them in this way, you will save not only them, but the husband who is destined to marry them, and not the husband only, but the children, not the children only, but the grandchildren. For the root being made good, good branches will shoot forth, and still become better, and for all these you will receive a reward. Let us do all things therefore, as benefiting not only one soul, but many through that one. For they ought to go from their father's house to marriage, as combatants from the school of exercise, furnished with all necessary knowledge, and to be as leaven able to transform the whole lump to its own virtue. And let your sons be so modest, as to be distinguished for their steadiness and sobriety, that they may receive great praise both from God and men. Let them learn to govern their appetites, to avoid extravagance, to be good economists, affectionate, and submissive to rule. For so they will be able to secure a good reward to their parents, so all things will be done to the glory of God, and to our salvation, through Christ Jesus our Lord, with whom, &c.

HOMILY X.

1 TIMOTHY iii. 1-4

"If a man desire the office of a Bishop, he desireth a good work. A Bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behavior, given to hospitality, apt to teach; not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; one that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity."

As now proceeding to discourse of the Episcopal office, he sets out with showing what sort of a person a Bishop ought to be. And here he does not do it as in the course of his exhortation to Timothy, but addresses all, and instructs others through him. And what says he? "If a man desire the office of a Bishop," I do not blame him, for it is a work of protection. If any one has this desire, so that he does not covet the dominion and authority, but wishes to protect the Church, I blame him not. "For he desireth a good work." Even Moses desired the office, though not the power, and his desire exposed him to that taunt, "Who made thee a ruler and a judge over us?" (Acts vii. 27 Ex. ii. 14.) If any one, then, desire it in this way, let him desire it. For the Episcopate is so called from having the oversight of all.

"A Bishop then," he says, "must be blameless, the husband of one wife." This he does not lay down as a rule, as if he must not be without one, but as prohibiting his having more than one.(1) For even the Jews were allowed to contract second marriages, and even to have two wives at one time. For "marriage is honorable," (Heb. xiii. 4.) Some however say, that this is said that he should be the husband of one wife.(2) "Blameless." Every virtue is implied in this word; so that if any one be conscious to himself of any sins, he doth not well to desire an office for which his own actions have disqualified him. For such an one ought to be ruled, and not to rule others. For he who bears rule should be brighter than any luminary; his life should be unspotted, so that all should look up to him, and make his life the model of their own. But in employing this exhortation, he had no common object in view. For he too(3) was about to appoint Bishops, (which also he exhorts Titus to do in his Epistle to him,) and as it was probable that many would desire that office, therefore he urges these admonitions. "Vigilant," he says, that is, circumspect, having a thousand eyes about him, quicksighted, not having the eyes of his mind dimmed. For many things occur which permit not a man to see clearly, to see things as they are. For care and troubles, and a load of business on all sides press upon him. He must therefore be vigilant, not only over his own concerns, but over those of others. He must be well awake, he must be fervent in spirit, and, as it were, breathe fire he must labor and attend upon his duty by day and by night, even more than a general upon his army; he must be careful and concerned for all. "Sober, of good behavior, given to hospitality." Because these qualities are possessed by most of those who are under their rule, (for in these respects they ought to be equal to those who rule over them,) he, to show what is peculiar to the Bishops, adds, "apt to teach." For this is not required of him that is ruled, but is most essential to him who has this rule committed to him.[4]

"Not given to wine": here he does not so much mean intemperate, as insolent and impudent. "No striker": this too does not mean a striker with the hands. What means then "no striker"? Because there are some who unseasonably smite the consciences of their brethren, it seems to be said with reference to them. "Not greedy of filthy lucre, but patient: not a brawler, not covetous; one that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity." If then "he who is married cares for the things of the world" (1 Cor. vii. 33), and a Bishop ought not to care for the things of the world, why does he say the husband of one wife? Some indeed think that he says this with reference to one who remains free(5) from a wife. But if otherwise, he that hath a wife may be as though he had none. (1 Cor. vii. 29.) For that liberty was then properly granted, as suited to the nature of the circumstances then existing. And it is very possible, if a man will, so to regulate his conduct. For as riches make it difficult to enter into the kingdom of Heaven, yet rich men have often entered in, so it is with marriage. But why does he say, speaking of a Bishop, that he should be "not given to wine, hospitable," when he should name greater things? Why said he not that he should be an Angel, not subject to human passions? Where are those great qualities of which Christ speaks, which even those under their rule ought to possess? To be crucified to the world, to be always ready to lay down their lives, as Christ said. "The good Shepherd giveth his life for the sheep" (John x. 11); and again, "He that taketh not his cross and followeth after me, is not worthy of me." (Matt. x. 38.) But "not given to wine," he says; a good prospect indeed, if such are the things of which a Bishop is to be admonished! Why has he not said that he ought to be already raised above the world? But dost thou demand less of the Bishop, than even of those in the world? For to these he saith, "Mortify your members which are upon the earth" (Col. iii. 5), and "He that is dead, is freed from sin." (Rom. vi. 7.) "They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh"; and Christ again says, "Whosoever forsaketh not all that he hath, he is not worthy of Me." (Luke xv. 33.) Why are not these things required by Paul? Plainly because few could be found of such a character, and there was need of many Bishops, that one might preside in every city.

But because the Churches were to be exposed to attacks,(6) he requires not that superior and highly exalted virtue, but a moderate degree of it; for to be sober, of good behavior, and temperate, were qualities common to many. "Having his children in subjection with all gravity." This is necessary, that an example might be exhibited in his own house. For who would believe that he who had not his own son in subjection, would keep a stranger under command? "One that ruleth well his own house." Even those who are without say this, that he who is a good manager of a house will be a good statesman. For the Church is, as it were, a small household, and as in a house there are children and wife and domestics, and the man has rule over them all; just so in the Church there are women, children, servants. And if he that presides in the Church has partners in his power, so hath the man a partner, that is, his wife. Ought the Church to provide for her widows and virgins? so there are in a family servants, and daughters, to be provided for. And, in fact, it is easier to rule the house; therefore he asks, "if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the Church of God?"

Ver. 6. "Not a novice."(2) He does not say, not a young man, but not a new convert. For he had said, "I have planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase." (1 Cor. iii. 6.) Wishing them to point out such an one, he used this word. For, otherwise, what hindered him from saying, "Not a young man"? For if youth only was an objection, why did he himself appoint Timothy, a young man? (and this he proves by saying to him, "Let no man despise thy youth.") (1 Tim. iv. 12.) Because(3) he was aware of his great virtue, and his great strictness of life. Knowing which he writes, "From a child thou hast learned the holy Scriptures." (2 Tim. iii. 15.) And that he practiced intense fasting is proved by the words, "Use a little wine for thine often infirmities"; which he wrote to him amongst other things, as, if he had not known of such good works of his, he would not have written, nor given any such charge to his disciple. But as there were many then who came over from the Heathen, and were baptized, he says, "Do not immediately advance to a station of dignity a novice, that is, one of these new converts." For, if before he had well been a disciple, he should at once be made a Teacher, he would be lifted up into insolence. If before he had learnt to be under rule, he should be appointed one of the rulers, he would be puffed up: therefore he adds, "Lest being lifted up with pride, he fall into the condemnation of the devil," that is, into the same condemnation which Satan incurred by his pride.

Ver. 7. "Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; test he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil."

This is rightly said, as he was certain to be reproached by them, and for the same reason perhaps he said, "the husband of one wife," though elsewhere he says, "I would that all men were even as I myself!" (1 Cor. vii. 7), that is, practicing continency. That he may not therefore confine them within too narrow a limit, by requiring an over-strict conversation, he is satisfied to prescribe moderate virtue. For it was necessary to appoint one to preside in every city, as he writes to Titus, "That thou shouldest ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee." (Tit. i. 5.) But what if he should have a good report, and fair reputation, and not be worthy of it? In the first place this would not easily happen. It is much for good men to obtain a good report among their enemies. But, in fact, he has not left this to stand by itself; a good report "also," he says, that is, besides other qualities. What then, if they should speak evil of him without a cause from envy, especially as they were Heathens? This was not to be expected. For even they will reverence a man of blameless life. Why then does he say, speaking of himself, "Through evil: report and good report"? (2 Cor. vi. 6.) Because it was not his life that they assailed, but his preaching. Therefore he says, "through evil report." They were slandered as deceivers and impostors, on account of their preaching, and this because they could not attack their moral characters and lives. For why did no one say of the Apostles, that they were fornicators, unclean, or covetous persons, but that they were deceivers, which relates to their preaching only? Must it not be that their lives were irreproachable? It is manitest.

Therefore so let us too live, and no enemy, no unbeliever, will be able to speak evil of us. For he whose life is virtuous, is revered even by them. For truth stops the months even of enemies.

But how does he "fall into a snare"? By falling often into the same sins, as those who are without. For if he be such a character, the evil one soon lays another snare for him, and they soon effect his destruction. But if he should have a good report from his enemies, much more will he have it from his friends. For that it is not likely that he, whose life is blameless, should be ill-reported of, we may infer from the words of Christ; "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in Heaven." (Matt. v. 16. ) But what if one be falsely accused, and from peculiar circumstances be slandered? Well this is a possible case; but even such an one ought not to be promoted. For the result is much to be feared. Therefore it is said he should have "a good report," for your good works are to shine. As therefore no one will say that the sun is dark, not even the blind, (for he will be ashamed to oppose the opinion of all,) so him that is of remarkable goodness no one will blame. And though, on account of his doctrines, the Heathen will often slander him, yet they will not attack his virtuous life, but will join with others in admiring and revering it.

MORAL. Let us then so live, that the name of God be not blasphemed. Let us not, on the one hand, look to human reputation; nor on the other, subject ourselves to an evil report, but on both sides let us observe moderation; as he saith, "Among whom ye shine as lights in the world." (Phil. ii. 15.) For on this account He left us here, that we may be as luminaries. that we may be appointed Teachers of others, that we may be as leaven; that we may converse as angels among men, as men with children, as spiritual with natural men, that they may profit by us, that we may be as seed, and may bring forth much fruit. There were no need of words, if we so shone forth in our lives, there were no need of Teachers, did we but exhibit works. There would be no Heathen, if we were such Christians as we ought to be. If we kept the commandments of Christ, if we suffered injury, if we allowed advantage to be taken of us, if being reviled we blessed, if being ill-treated we did good (1 Cor. iv. 12); if this were the general practice among us, no one would be so brutal as not to become a convert to godliness. And to show this; Paul was but one man, yet how many did he draw after him? If we were all such as he, how many worlds might we not have drawn to us? Behold, Christians are more numerous than Heathens. And in other arts, one man can teach a hundred boys together; but here, where there are many more teachers, and many more than the learners, no one is brought over. For those who are taught, look to the virtue of their teachers: and when they see us manifesting the same desires, pursuing the same objects, power and honor, how can they admire Christianity? They see our lives open to reproach, our souls worldly. We admire wealth equally with them, and even more. We have the same horror of death, the same dread of poverty, the same impatience of disease, we are equally fond of glory and of rule. We harass ourselves to death from our love of money, and serve the time. How then can they believe? From miracles? But these are no longer wrought. From our conversation? It has become corrupt. From charity? Not a trace of it is anywhere to be seen. Therefore we shall have to give an account not only of our own sins, but of the injury done by them to others.

Let us then return to a sound mind; let us watch, and show forth a heavenly conversation upon earth. Let us say, "Our conversation is in heaven" (Phil. iii. 20), and let us upon earth maintain the contest. There have been great men, it may be said, amongst us, but "how," says the Greek, "shall I believe it? for I do not see anything like it in your conduct. If this is to be said, we too have had our philosophers, men admirable for their lives." "But show me another Paul, or a John: you cannot." Would he not then laugh at us for reasoning in this manner? Would he not continue to sit still in ignorance, seeing that the wisdom we profess is in words, not in works? For now for a single halfpenny ye are ready to slay or be slain! For a handful of earth thou raisest lawsuit after lawsuit! For the death of a child thou turnest all upside down: I omit other things that might make us weep; your auguries, your omens, your superstitious observances, your casting of nativities, your signs, your amulets, your divinations, your incantations, your magic arts. These are crying sins, enough to provoke the anger of God; that after He has sent His own Son, you should venture on such things as these.

What then can we do but weep? For hardly is a small portion of the world in the way of salvation, and they who are perishing hear it, and rejoice that they are not destined to suffer alone, but in company with numbers. But what cause is this for joy? That very joy will subject them to punishment. For do not think that it is there as here, that to have companions in suffering affords consolation. And whence is this manifest? I will make it clear. Suppose that a man were commanded to be burnt, and that he saw his own son burning with him, and that the smell of his scorched flesh rose to his nostrils; would it not be of itself death to him? No doubt. And I will tell you how it is. If those who are not suffering, yet seeing those things are benumbed and faint with terror, much more will they be so affected, who are themselves sufferers. Wonder not at this. Hear a certain wise one saying, "Art thou become weak as we? art thou become like unto us?" (Isa. xiv. 10.) For human nature is disposed to sympathy, and the affections of others move us to pity. Will then a father seeing His son in the same condemnation, or a husband his wife, or a man his fellow-man, receive consolation, and not rather an aggravation of his sufferings? Are not we in such case the more overcome? But there, you say, there are no such feelings. I know there are not; but there are others much more wretched. For there will be wailing inconsolable, all witnessing each other's torments. Do they who are furnishing derive comfort in their distress from the participation of others? It is no consolation surely to see a son, a father, a wife, or grandchildren, suffering the same punishment. If one sees friends in such a case, is it any comfort? None! None! It rather adds to the intensity of our own sufferings! Besides, there are evils, which by reason of their severity cannot be mitigated by being common. If two men were together thrown into the fire, would they comfort one another? Tell me; if we have ever been attacked by a violent fever, have we not found that all consolation has failed us? for there are calamities, so overwhelming as to leave no room for comfort in the soul. When a wife has lost her husband, is it a lessening of her grief to number up the many who have suffered the like loss? Let us not therefore be supported by any such hope, rather let us find our sole consolation in repenting of our sins, in pursuing the good path that leads to Heaven, that we may obtain the kingdom of Heaven, by the grace and lovingkindness of Jesus Christ our Lord, with whom, &c.

HOMILY XI.

1 TIMOTHY iii. 8--10.

"Likewise must the Deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given much to wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience. And let these also first be proved: then let them use the office of a Deacon, being found blameless."

DISCOURSING of Bishops, and having described their character, and the qualities which they ought to possess, and having passed over the order of Presbyters, he proceeds to that of Deacons. The reason of this omission was, that between Presbyters and Bishops there was no great difference. Both had undertaken the office of Teachers and Presidents in the Church, and what he has said concerning Bishops is applicable to Presbyters. For they are only superior in having the power of ordination, and seem to have no other advantage over Presbyters.

"Likewise the Deacons." That is, they should have the same qualities as Bishops. And what are these same? To be blameless, sober, hospitable, patient, not brawlers, not covetous. And that he means this when he says "likewise," is evident from what he says in addition, "grave, not doubletongued"; that is, not hollow or deceitful. For nothing so debases a man as deceit, nothing is so pernicious in the Church as insincerity. "Not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience." Thus he explains what he means by "blameless." And here he requires, though in other words, that he be "not a novice," where he says, "Let these also first be proved," where the conjunction "also" is added, as connecting this with what had been said before of Bishops, for nothing intervenes between. And there is the same reason(1) for the "not a novice" in that case. For would it not be absurd, that when a newly purchased slave is not entrusted with anything in a house, till he has by long trial given proofs of his character, yet that one should enter into the Church of God from a state of heathenism, and be at once placed in a station of preeminence?

Ver. 11. "Even so must the women(2) be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things."

Some have thought that this is said of women generally, but it is not so, for why should he introduce anything about women to interfere with his subject? He is speaking of those who hold the rank of Deaconesses.

Ver. 12. "Let the Deacons be husbands of one wife."

This[3] must be understood therefore to relate to Deaconesses. For that order is necessary and useful and honorable in the Church. Observe how he requires the same virtue from the Deacons, as from the Bishops, for though they were not of equal rank, they must equally be blameless; equally pure.

"Ruling their children and their own houses well."

Ver. 13. "For they that have used the office of a Deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and much boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus."

Everywhere they are required to rule their children well, that others may not be scandalized by their misconduct.

"They that use the office of a Deacon well, purchase to themselves a good degree," that is, advancement, "and much boldness in the faith of Jesus Christ"; as if he would say, that those who have been found vigilant in the lower degree(1) will soon ascend to the higher.

Ver. 14, 15. "These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly. But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."

That he may not plunge Timothy into dejection by giving him orders about such matters, he says, I write thus not as though I were not coming, but I will indeed come, still in case I should be delayed, that thou mayest not be distressed. And this he writes to him to prevent his being dejected, but to others in order to rouse them to greater earnestness. For his presence, though only promised, would have great effect. Nor let it seem strange that, though foreseeing everything through the Spirit, he was yet ignorant of this, and only says, I hope to come, but if I tarry, which implies uncertainty. For since he was led by the Spirit, and did not act from his own inclination, he was naturally uncertain about this matter.

"That thou mayest know," he says, "how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth." Not like that Jewish house. For it is this that maintains the faith and the preaching of the Word. For the truth is the pillar and the ground of the Church.(2)

Ver. 16. "And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; God [He who](3) was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit."

Here he speaks of the Dispensation in our behalf. Tell me not of the bells, nor of the holy of holies, nor of the high priest. The Church is the pillar of the world. Consider this mystery, and thou mayest be struck with awe: for it is indeed "a great mystery," and "a mystery of godliness," and that "without controversy" or question, for it is beyond all doubt. Since in his directions to the Priests he had required nothing like what is found in Leviticus he refers the whole matter to Another, saying, "God was manifest in the flesh." The Creator was seen incarnate. "He was justified in the Spirit." As it is said, "Wisdom is justified of her children," or because He practiced no guile, as the Prophet says, "Because he had done no violence, neither was guile found in his mouth." (Isa. liii. 9; 1 Pet. ii. 22.) "Seen of Angels." So that Angels together with us saw the Son of God, not having before seen Him. Great, truly great, was this mystery! "Preached unto the Gentiles, believed on m the world." He was heard of and believed in through all parts of the world, as the Prophet foreshowed, saying, "Their sound is gone out into all the world." (Ps. xix. 4.) Think not that these things are mere words, for they are not, but full of hidden realities. "Received up into glory." He ascended upon clouds. "This Jesus," it is said, "Who is taken up from you, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven." (Acts i. 11.)

The discretion of the blessed Paul is observable. When he would exhort the Deacons to avoid excess in wine, he does not say, "Be not drunken," but "not" even "given to much wine." A proper caution; for if those who served in the Temple did not taste wine at all, much more should not these, For wine produces disorder of mind, and where it does not cause drunkenness, it destroys the energies and relaxes the firmness of the soul.

The dispensation in our behalf he calls a "mystery," and well may it be so called, since it is not manifest to all, nay, it was not manifest to the Angels, for how could it, when it was "made known by the Church"? (Eph. iii. 10.) Therefore he says, "without controversy great is the mystery." Great indeed was it. For God became Man, and Man became God. A Man was seen without sin! A Man was received up, was preached in the world! Together with us the Angels saw Him. This is indeed a mystery! Let us not then expose(4) this mystery. Let us not lay it forth everywhere, but let us live in a manner worthy of the mystery. They to whom a mystery is intrusted are great persons. We account it a mark of favor, if a king intrusts a secret to us. But God has committed His mystery to us, yet are we ungrateful to our Benefactor, as if we had not received the greatest benefits. Our insensibility to such a kindness should strike us with horror. And how is that a mystery which all know? In the first place all do not know it, and before then too they knew it not, but now it is made manifest.(5)

MORAL. In keeping this mystery, then, let us be faithful to our trust. So great a mystery has He intrusted to us, and we do not trust Him even with our money, though He has bid us lay up our wealth with Him, where none can take it away, neither can moth nor thief waste it. And He promises to pay us a hundred-fold, yet we obey Him not. Yet here if we intrust any with a deposit, we receive nothing back in addition, but are thankful if that is restored which we deposited. If a thief steals it there, He saith, set that to My account; I say not to thee, a thief has taken it, or moth devoured it. He repays a hundred-fold here, and eternal life is superadded hereafter, yet do we not lay up our treasure there! "But," you say, "He repays slowly." Well this too is a proof of the greatness of His gift, that He does not repay here in this mortal life; or rather He does repay even here a hundred-fold. For did not Paul leave here his tools,(1) Peter his rod and hook, and Matthew his seat of custom? and was not the whole world opened to them more than to kings? Were not all things laid at their feet? Were they not appointed rulers,(2) and lords? Did not men commit their lives into their hands? suspend themselves wholly upon their counsel, and enlist in their service? And do we not see many similar occurrences even now? Many men of poor and humble means, who did but handle the spade, and had hardly a sufficiency of necessary food, having but the character of monks, have been celebrated above all men, and honored of kings.

Are these things inconsiderable? Well, consider that these are but additions, the principal sum is stored up for the life to come. Despise riches, if thou wouldest have riches. If thou wouldest be truly rich, become poor. For such are the paradoxes of God. He would not have thee rich from thy own care, but from His grace. Leave these things to Me, He says; make spiritual things thy concern, that thou mayest know My power. Flee from that yoke of slavery, which riches impose. As long as thou cleavest to them, thou art poor. When thou despisest them, thou art doubly rich, in that such things shall flow in upon thee from every side, and in that thou shall want none of those things, which the multitude want. For not to possess much, but to need little, is to be rich indeed. The king, so long as he wants aught, differs not from the poor man. For this is poverty, to stand in need of others; and by this argument the king is poor, in so far as he stands in need of his subjects. But he that is crucified, to the world is not so; he wants for nothing; for his hands are sufficient for his subsistence, as Paul said, "These hands have ministered to my necessities, and to them that were with me."(Acts xx. 34.) These are his words who says, "As having nothing, yet possessing all things." (2 Cor. vi. 20.) This is he who was thought a God by the inhabitants of Lystra. If thou wouldest obtain worldly things, seek Heaven; if you wouldest enjoy things here, despise them. For, "Seek ye first the kingdom of God," He saith, "and all these things shall be added unto you." (Matt. vi. 33.)

Why dost thou admire these trifles? Why long for things of no real worth? How long is one poor?(3) how long a beggar? Raise thine eyes to heaven, think of the riches there, and smile at gold; think of how little use it is; that the enjoyment of it lasts but for the present life, and that compared with eternity, the present life is as a grain of sand, or as a drop of water to the boundless ocean. This wealth is not a possession, it is not property, it is a loan for use. For when thou diest, willingly or unwillingly, all that thou hast goes to others, and they again give it up to others, and they again to others. For we are all sojourners; and the tenant of the house is more truly perchance the owner of it, for the owner dies, and the tenant lives, and still enjoys the house. And if the latter hires it, the other might be said to hire it too: for he built it, and was at pains with it, and fitted it up. Property, in fact, is but a word: we are all owners in fact but of other men's possessions. Those things only are our own, which we have sent before us to the other world. Our goods here are not our own; we have only a life interest in them; or rather they fail us during our lives. Only the virtues of the soul are properly our own, as alms-giving and charity. Worldly goods, even by those without, were called external things, because they are without us. But let us make them internal. For we cannot take our wealth with us, when we depart hence, but we can take our charities. But let us rather send them before us, that they may prepare for us an abode in the eternal mansions. (Luke xvi. 9.)

Goods(4) are named from use,(5) not from lordship, and are not our own, and possessions are not a property but a loan. For how many masters has every estate had, and how many will it have! There is a sensible proverb, (and popular proverbs, when they contain any wisdom, are not to be despised,) "O field, how many men's hast thou been, and how many men's wilt thou be?" This we should say to our houses and all our goods. Virtue alone is able to depart with us, and to accompany us to the world above. Let us then give up and extinguish that love of wealth, that we may kindle m us an affection for heavenly things. These two affections cannot possess one soul. For it is said, "Either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other." (Matt. vi. 24.) Seest thou a man with a long train of attendants, clearing a way(6) along the streets, clothed in silken garments, riding aloft, and stiffening his neck? Be not overawed, but smile. As we laugh when we see children playing at kings, so laugh at his state, for it is no better than theirs, nor indeed so pleasant, for there is not the same innocence and simplicity as with children. With them it is laughter and pleasure, here is a man made ridiculous and contemptible.

Glorify God, Who has kept thee free from this theatrical ostentation. For, if thou wilt, humble as thy station is, thou mayest be higher than he who is exalted in his chariot. And why? because, though his body is a little raised from the earth, his soul is fixed upon it, for "My strength," he saith, "cleaveth to my flesh" (Ps. cii. 6), but thou in thy spirit walkest in heaven. What though he has many attendants clearing his way? is he more honored by this than his horse? and what an absurdity is it, to drive men before one to clear the way for a beast to pass! Then what sort of honor is it to bestride a horse? an honor shared by his slaves Yet some are so vain of this, that they have it led after them even though they do not want it. What greater folly can there be? To wish to be distinguished by their horses, by the costliness of their garments, by their retinue! What can be more contemptible than glory which consists in horses, and servants? Art thou virtuous? use not such distinctions. Have ornaments in thyself. Be not indebted for thy glory to the presence of others. To such honor the most wicked, corrupt, and base of men may attain; all indeed who are rich. Actors and dancers may ride on horseback with a servant running before them, yet are they but actors and dancers still. Their horses and attendants procure them no respect. For when the graces of the soul are wanting to such persons, the addition of these external things is superfluous and vain. And as when a wall is weak, or a body disordered, whatever you put upon it, it still remains unsound and decayed; so in this case; the soul continues the same, and receives no advantage from things without, not though the man wear a thousand ornaments of gold. Let us not therefore be anxious for such things. Let us withdraw ourselves from temporal things, and pursue greater, even spiritual distinctions, which will render us truly objects of veneration, that we also may obtain the blessings of futurity, through the grace and lovingkindness of our Lord Jesus Christ, with whom, &c.

HOMILY XII.

1 TIMOTHY iv. 1--3.

"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of demons; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth."

As those who adhere to the faith are fixed on a safe anchor, so those who fall from the faith can nowhere rest; but after many wanderings to and fro, they are borne at last into the very gulf of perdition. And this he had shown before, saying, that some had "already made shipwreck concerning the faith," and now he says, "Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits." This is said of the Manichaeans, the Encratites,(1) and the Marcionites, and the whole of their tribe,(2) that they should hereafter depart from the faith. Seest thou that this departure from the faith is the cause of all the evils that follow!

But what is "expressly"? Plainly, clearly, and beyond doubt. Marvel not, he says, if some having departed from the faith still adhere to Judaism. There will be a time, when even those who have partaken of the faith will fall into a worse error, not only with respect to meats, but to marriages, and other such things, introducing the most pernicious notions. This refers not to the Jews, (for "the latter times," and a "departure from the faith," is not applicable to them;) but to the Manichees, and the founders of these sects. And he calls them very justly, "seducing spirits," since it was by these they were actuated in speaking such things. "Speaking lies in hypocrisy." This implies that they utter not these falsehoods through ignorance and unknowingly, but as acting a part, knowing the truth, but "having their conscience seared," that is, being men of evil lives.

But why does he speak only of these heretics? Christ had before said, "Offenses must need come" (Matt. xviii. 7), and he had predicted the same in his parable of the sower, and of the springing up of the tares. But here admire with me the prophetic gift of Paul, who, before the times in which they were to appear, specifies the time itself. As if he had said, Do not wonder, if, at the commencement of the faith, some endeavor to bring in these pernicious doctrines; since, after it has been established for a length of time, many shall depart from the faith. "Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats." Why then has he mentioned no other heresies? Though not particularized, they are implied by the expressions of "seducing spirits and doctrines of demons." But he did not wish to instill these things into the minds of men before the time; but that which had already commenced, the case of meats, he specifies. "Which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth." Why did he not say, by the unbelievers too? How by the unbelievers, when they exclude themselves from them by their own rules? But is not luxury forbidden? Certainly it is. But why? if good things are created to be received. Because He created bread, and yet too much is forbidden; and wine also, and yet excess is forbidden; and we are not commanded to avoid dainties as if they were unclean in themselves, but as they corrupt the soul by excess.

Ver. 4. "For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving."

If it be the creature of God, it is good. For "all things," it is said, "were very good." (Gen. i. 31.) By speaking thus of things eatable, he by anticipation impugns the heresy of those who introduce an uncreated matter, and assert that these things proceed from it. But if it is good, why is it "sanctified by the word of God and prayers"? For it must be unclean, if it is to be sanctified? Not so, here he is speaking to those who thought that some of these things were common; therefore he lays down two positions: first, that no creature of God is unclean: secondly, that if it were become so, you have a remedy, seal it,(1) give thanks, and glorify God, and all the uncleanness passes away. Can we then so cleanse that which is offered to an idol? If you know not that it was so offered. But if, knowing this, you partake of it, you will be unclean; not because it was offered to an idol, but because contrary to an express command, you thereby communicate with devils. So that it is not unclean by nature, but becomes so through your wilful disobedience. What then, is not swine's flesh unclean? By no means, when it is received with thanksgiving, and with the seal; nor is anything else. It is your unthankful disposition to God that is unclean.

Ver. 6. "If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shall be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained."

What are the things here meant? The same which he had before mentioned, that "great is the mystery"; that to abstain from meats is the doctrine of devils, that they are "cleansed by the word of God and prayer."

Ver. 7. "But refuse profane and old wives' fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness."

"Putting them in remembrance," he says; here you observe no authority; but all is condescension: he does not say "commanding" or "enjoining," but reminding them: that is, suggest these things as matter of advice, and so enter into discourses with them concerning the faith, "being nourished up," he says, meaning to imply constancy in application to these things.

For as we set before us day by day this bodily nourishment, so he means, let us be continually receiving discourses concerning the faith, and ever be nourished with them. What is this, "being nourished up"? Ruminating upon them; attending ever to the same things, and practicing ever the same, for it is no common nourishment that they supply.

"But refuse profane and old wives' fables." By these are meant Jewish traditions, and he calls them "fables," either because of their falsehood or their unseasonableness. For what is seasonable is useful, but what is unseasonable is not only useless but injurious. Suppose a man of adult age to be suckled by a nurse, would he not be ridiculous, because it is unseasonable? "Profane and old wives' fables," he calls them, partly because of their obsoleteness, and partly because they are impediments to faith. For to bring souls under fear, that are raised above these things, is an impious commandment. "Exercise thyself unto godliness." That is, unto a pure faith and a moral life; for this is godliness. So then we need "exercise." Ver. 8. "For bodily exercise(2) profiteth little." This has by some been referred to fasting; but away with such a notion! for that is not a bodily but a spiritual exercise. If it were bodily it would nourish the body, whereas it wastes and makes it lean, so that it is not bodily. Hence he is not speaking of the discipline(3) of the body. What we need, therefore, is the exercise(4) of the soul. For the exercise of the body hath no profit, but may benefit the body a little, but the exercise(5) of godliness yields fruit and advantage both here and hereafter.

"This is a faithful saying," that is, it is true that godliness is profitable both here and hereafter. Observe how everywhere he brings in this, he needs no demonstration, but simply declares it, for he was addressing Timothy.

So then even here, we have good hopes? For he who is conscious to himself of no evil, and who has been fruitful in good, rejoices even here: as the wicked man on the other hand is punished here as well as hereafter. He lives in perpetual fear, he can look no one in the face with confidence, he is pale, trembling, and full of anxiety. Is it not so with the fraudulent, and with thieves, who have no satisfaction even in what they possess? Is not the life of murderers and adulterers most wretched, who look upon the sun itself with suspicion? Is this to be called life? No; rather a horrid death!

Ver. 10. "For therefore we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of them that believe."

This in effect is to say, wherefore do we mortify ourselves, unless we expect future blessings? Have we endured so many evils, submitted to so many reproaches, suffered such insults and calumnies, and such numerous calamities in vain? For if we did not trust in the living God, on what account did we submit to these things? But if God is here the Saviour(1) of the unbelieving, much more is He of the faithful hereafter. What salvation does he speak of? That to come?(2) "Who is the Saviour," he says, "of all men, specially of them that believe." At present he is speaking of that which is here. But how is He the Saviour of the faithful? Had he not been so, they must long since have been destroyed, for all men have made war upon them. He calls him here to endure perils, that having God for his Saviour he may not faint nor need any aid from others, but willingly and with fortitude endure all things. Even those who eagerly grasp at worldly advantages, supported by the hope of gain, cheerfully undertake laborious enterprises.

It is then the last time. For "in the latter times," he says, "some shall depart from the faith." "Forbidding to marry." And do not we forbid to marry? God forbid. We do not forbid those who wish to marry, but those who do not wish to marry, we exhort to virginity. It is one thing to forbid, and another to leave one to his own free choice. He that forbids, does it once for all, but he who recommends virginity as a higher state, does not forbid marriage, because he prefers virginity.

"Forbidding to marry," he says, "and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth." It is well said, "who know the truth." The former things then were a type. For nothing is unclean by nature, but it becomes so through the conscience of him that partakes of it. And what was the object of the prohibition of so many meats? To restrain excessive luxury. But had it been said, "eat not for the sake of luxury," it would not have been borne. They were therefore shut up under the necessity of the law, that they might abstain from the stronger principle of fear. The fish was not forbidden, though it was manifestly more unclean than the swine. But they might have learned how pernicious luxury was from that saying of Moses, "Jeshurun waxed fat, and kicked." (Deut. xxxii. 15.) Another cause of these prohibitions might be, that being straitened for other food, they might be reduced to slaughter sheep and oxen; he therefore restrained them from other things, on account of Apis and the calf, which was an abomination, ungrateful, polluted, and profane.(3)

"Put them in remembrance of these things, meditate upon(4) these things," for by the expression, "nourished up in the words of faith and sound doctrine," is implied that he should not only recommend these things to others, but himself practice them. For he says, "Nourished up in the words of faith, and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained. But refuse profane and old wives' fables." Why does he not say, abstain from them, but "refuse"? He thus intimates that they should be utterly rejected. His meaning is, that he should not enter into any disputation with the teachers of them, but recommend to his own people the things prescribed above. For nothing is to be gained by contending with perverse men, unless where it might have an injurious effect, if we were supposed from weakness to decline arguing with them.

"But exercise thyself unto godliness," that is, unto a pure life, and the most virtuous conversation. He that exerciseth himself, even when it is not the season of contest, acts always as if he were contending, practices abstinence, endures all toils, is always anxious, endures much labor. "Exercise thyself," he saith, "unto godliness; for bodily exercise profiteth little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having the promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come." And why, says one, does he mention this bodily exercise? To show by comparison the superiority of the other, in that the former is of no solid advantage, though it is attended with many toils, whilst the latter has a lasting and abundant good. As when he bids women "adorn themselves, not with broidered hair, or gold, or costly array: but which becometh women possessing godliness; with good works." (1 Tim. ii. 9, 10.)

MORAL. "This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation. For therefore we both labor and suffer reproach." Did Paul then suffer reproach, and art thou impatient? Did Paul labor, and wouldest thou live luxuriously? But had he lived luxuriously, he would never have attained such great blessings. For if worldly goods, which are uncertain and perishable, are never gained by men without labor and pains, much less are spiritual. Well, saith one, but some inherit them. Yet even when inherited they are not guarded and preserved without labor, and care, and trouble, no less than those have that have gained them. And I need not say that many who have toiled and endured hardships have been disappointed at the very entrance of the harbor, and an adverse wind has caused the wreck of their hopes, when they were upon the point of possession. But with us there is nothing like this. For it is God who promised, and that "hope maketh not ashamed." (Rom. v. 5.) Ye who are conversant with worldly affairs, know ye not how many men, after infinite toils, have not enjoyed the fruit of their labors, either being previously cut off by death, or overtaken by misfortune, or assailed by disease, or ruined by false accusers, or some other cause, which amidst the variety of human casualties, has forced them to go with empty hands?

But do you not see the lucky men, says one, who with little labor acquire the good things of life? What good things? Money, houses, so many acres of land, trains of servants, heaps of gold and silver? Can you call these good things, and not hide your head for shame? A man called to the pursuit of heavenly wisdom, and gaping after worldly things, and calling them "goods," which are of no value! If these things are good, then the possessors of them must be called good. For is not he good, who is the possessor of what is good? But when the possessors of these things are guilty of fraud and rapine, shall we call them good? For if wealth is a good, but is increased by grasping, the more it is increased, the more will its possessor be considered to be good. Is the grasping man then good? But if wealth is good, and increases by grasping, the more a man grasps, the better he must be. Is not this plainly a contradiction? But suppose the wealth is not gained wrongfully. And how is this possible? So destructive a passion is avarice, that to grow rich without injustice is impossible. This Christ declared, saying, "Make to yourselves friends of the Mammon of unrighteousness." (Luke xvi. 19.) But what if he succeeded to his father's inheritance? Then he received what had been gathered by injustice. For it was not from Adam that his ancestor inherited riches, but, of the many that were before him, some one must probably have unjustly taken and enjoyed the goods of others. What then? he says, did Abraham hold unrighteous wealth; and Job, that blameless, righteous, and faithful man, who "feared God and eschewed evil"? Theirs was a wealth that consisted not in gold and silver, nor in houses, but in cattle. Besides this, he was enriched by God.(1) And the author of that book, relating what happened to that blessed man, mentions the loss of his camels, his mares and asses, but does not speak of treasures of gold or silver being taken away. The riches of Abraham too were his domestics. What then? Did he not buy them? No, for to this very point the Scripture says, that the three hundred and eighteen were born in his house. (Gen. xix. 14.) He had also sheep and oxen. Whence then did he send gold to Rebekah? (Gen. xxiv. 22; xii. 16.) From the gifts which he received from Egypt without violence or wrong.

Tell me, then, whence art thou rich? From whom didst thou receive it, and from whom he who transmitted it to thee? From his father and his grandfather. But canst thou, ascending through many generations, show the acquisition just? It cannot be. The root and origin of it must have been injustice. Why? Because God in the beginning made not one man rich, and another poor. Nor did He afterwards take and show to one treasures of gold, and deny to the other the right of searching for it: but He left the earth free to all alike. Why then, if it is common, have you so many acres of land, while your neighbor has not a portion of it? It was transmitted to me by my father. And by whom to him? By his forefathers. But you must go back and find the original owner. Jacob had wealth, but it was earned as the hire of his labors.

But I will not urge this argument too closely. Let your riches be justly gained, and without rapine. For you are not responsible for the covetous acts of your father. Your wealth may be derived from rapine; but you were not the plunderer. Or granting that he did not obtain it by robbery, that his gold was cast up somewhere out of the earth. What then? Is wealth therefore good? By no means. At the same time it is not bad, he says, if its possessor be not covetous; it is not bad, if it be distributed to the poor, otherwise it is bad, it is ensnaring. "But if he does not evil, though he does no good, it is not bad," he argues. True. But is not this an evil, that you alone should have the Lord's property, that you alone should enjoy what is common? Is not "the earth God's, and the fullness thereof"? If then our possessions belong to one common Lord, they belong also to our fellow-servants. The possessions of one Lord are all common. Do we not see this the settled rule in great houses? To all is given an equal portion of provisions, for it proceeds from the treasures of their Lord. And the house of the master is opened to all. The king's possessions are all common, as cities, market-places, and public walks. We all share them equally.

Mark the wise dispensation of God. That He might put mankind to shame, He hath made certain things common, as the sun, air, earth, and water, the heaven, the sea, the light, the stars; whose benefits are dispensed equally to all as brethren. We are all formed with the same eyes, the same body, the same soul, the same structure in all respects,(1) all things from the earth, all men from one man, and all in the same habitation. But these are not enough to shame us. Other things then (as we have said) He hath made common, as baths, cities, market-places, walks. And observe, that concerning things that are common there is no contention, but all is peaceable. But when one attempts to possess himself of anything, to make it his own, then contention is introduced, as if nature herself were indignant, that when God brings us together in every way, we are eager to divide and separate ourselves by appropriating things, and by using those cold words "mine and thine." Then there is contention and uneasiness. But where this is not, no strife or contention is bred. This state therefore is rather our inheritance, and more agreeable to nature. Why is it, that there is never a dispute about a market-place? Is it not because it is common to all? But about a house, and about property, men are always disputing. Things necessary are set before us in common; but even in the least things we do not observe a community. Yet those greater things He hath opened freely to all, that we might thence be instructed to have these inferior things in common. Yet for all this, we are not instructed.

But as I said, how can he, who is rich, be a good man? When he distributes his riches, he is good, so that he is good when he has ceased to have it, when he gives it to others; but whilst he keeps it himself, he is not good. How then is that a good which being retained renders men evil, being parted with makes them good? Not therefore to have wealth, but to have it not, makes one appear to be good. Wealth therefore is not a good. But if, when you can receive it, you receive it not, again you are good.

If then we are good, when having it, we distribute it to others; or when offered to us we refuse it, and if we are not good, when we receive or gain it, how can it be a good thing in itself? Call it not therefore a good. You possess it not, because you think it a good, because you are anxious to possess it. Cleanse thy mind, and rectify thy judgment, and then thou wilt be good. Learn what are really goods. What are they? Virtue and benevolence. These and not that, are truly good. According to this rule, the more charitable thou art, the more good thou wilt be considered. But if thou art rich, thou art no longer good. Let us therefore become thus good, that we may be really good, and may obtain the good things to come in Jesus Christ, with whom, &c.

HOMILY XIII.

1 TIMOTHY iv. 11--14.

"These things command and teach. Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity. Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery."

IN some cases it is necessary to command, in others to teach; if therefore you command in those cases where teaching is required, you will become ridiculous. Again, if you teach where you ought to command, you are exposed to the same reproach. For instance, it is not proper to teach a man not to be wicked, but to command; to forbid it with all authority. Not to profess Judaism, should be a command, but teaching is required, when you would lead men to part with their possessions, to profess virginity, or when you would discourse of faith. Therefore Paul mentions both: "Command and teach." When a man uses amulets, or does anything of that kind, knowing it to be wrong, he requires only a command; but he who does it ignorantly, is to be taught his error. "Let no one despise thy youth."

Observe that it becomes a priest to command and to speak authoritatively, and not always to teach. But because, from a common prejudice, youth is apt to be despised, therefore he says, "Let no man despise thy youth." For a teacher ought not to be exposed to contempt. But if he is not to be despised, what room is there for meekness and moderation? Indeed the contempt that he fails into personally he ought to bear; for teaching is commended by longsuffering. But not so, where others are concerned; for this is not meekness, but coldness. If a man revenge insults, and ill language, and injuries offered to himself, you justly blame him. But where the salvation of others is concerned, command, and interpose with authority. This is not a case for moderation, but for authority, lest the public good suffer. He enjoins one or the other as the case may require. Let no one despise thee on account of thy youth. For as long as thy life is a counterpoise, thou wilt not be despised for thy youth, but even the more admired: therefore he proceeds to say,

"But be thou an example of the believers in word, in conversation, in charity, in faith, in purity." In all things showing thyself an example of good works: that is, be thyself a pattern of a Christian life, as a model set before others, as a living law, as a rule and standard of good living, for such ought a teacher to be. "In word," that he may speak with facility, "in conversation, in charity, in faith, in "true "purity, in temperance."

"Till I come give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine."

Even Timothy is commanded to apply to reading. Let us then be instructed not to neglect the study of the sacred writings. Again, observe, he says, "Till I come." Mark how he consoles him, for being as it were an orphan, when separated from him, it was natural that he should require such comfort. "Till I come," he says, give attendance to reading the divine writings, to exhortation of one another, to teaching of all.

"Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy."

Here he calls teaching prophecy.(1)

"With the laying on of the hands of the presbytery." He speaks not here of Presbyters, but of Bishops. For Presbyters cannot be supposed to have ordained a Bishop.

Ver. 15. "Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them."

Observe how often he gives him counsel concerning the same things, thus showing that a teacher ought above all things to be attentive to these points.

Ver. 16. "Take heed," he says, "unto thyself, and unto the doctrine: continue in them." That is, take heed to thyself, and teach others also.

"For in so doing thou shalt both save thyself and them that hear thee."

It is well said, "Thou shalt save thyself." For he that is "nourished up in the words of sound doctrine," first receives the benefit of it himself. From admonishing others, he is touched with compunction himself. For these things are not said to Timothy only, but to all. And if such advice is addressed to him, who raised the dead, what shall be said to us? Christ also shows the duty of teachers, when He says, "The kingdom of heaven is like unto an householder, who bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old." ( Matt. xiii. 52.) And the blessed. Paul gives the same advice, that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope." (Rom. xv. 4.) This he practiced above all men, being brought up in the law of his fathers, at the feet of Gamaliel, whence he would afterwards naturally apply to reading: for he who exhorted others would himself first follow the advice he gave. Hence we find him continually appealing to the testimony of the prophets, and searching into their writings. Paul then applies to reading, for it is no slight advantage that is to be reaped from the Scriptures. But we are indolent, and we hear with carelessness and indifference. What punishment do we not deserve!

"That thy profiting may appear," he says, "to all."

Thus he would have him appear great and admirable in this respect also, showing that this was still necessary for him, for he wished that his "profiting should appear" not only in his life, but in the word of doctrine.

Chap. v. ver. 1. "Rebuke not an elder."

Is he now speaking of the order? I think not, but of any elderly man. What then if he should need correction? Do not rebuke him, but address him as you would a father offending.

Ver. 1. "The elder women as mothers, the younger men as brethren; the younger women as sisters, with all purity."

Rebuke is in its own nature offensive, particularly when it is addressed to an old man, and when it proceeds from a young man too, there is a threefold show of forwardness. By the manner and the mildness of it, therefore, he would soften it. For it is possible to reprove without offense, if one will only make a point of this: it requires great discretion, but it may be done.

"The younger men as brethren." Why does he recommend this too here? With a view to the high spirit natural to young men, whence it is proper to soften reproof to them also with moderation.

"The younger women as sisters"; he adds, "with all purity." Tell me not, he means, of merely avoiding sinful intercourse with them There should not be even a suspicion. For since intimacy with young women is always suspicious, and yet a Bishop cannot always avoid it, he shows by adding these words, that "all purity" is required in such intimacy. But does Paul give this advice to Timothy? Yes, he says, for I am speaking to the world through him. But if Timothy was thus advised, let others consider what sort of conduct is required of them, that they should give no ground for suspicion, no shadow of pretext, to those who wish to calumniate.

Ver. 3. "Honor widows, that are widows indeed."

Why does he say nothing of virginity, nor command us to honor virgins? Perhaps there were not yet any professing that state, or they might have fallen from it. "For some," he says, "are already turned aside after Satan." (1 Tim. v. 15.) For a woman may have lost her husband, and yet not be truly a widow. As in order to be a virgin, it is not enough to be a stranger to marriage, but many other things are necessary, as blamelessness and perseverance; so the loss of a husband does not constitute a widow, but patience, with chastity and separation from all men. Such widows he justly bids us honor, or rather support. For they need support, being left desolate, and having no husband to stand up for them. Their state appears to the multitude despicable and inauspicious. Therefore he wishes them to receive the greater honor from the Priest, and the more so, because they are worthy of it.

Ver. 4. "But if any widow have children or grandchildren, let them learn first to show piety at home, and to requite their parents."

Observe the discretion of Paul; how often he urges men from human considerations. For he does not here lay down any great and lofty motive, but one that is easy to be understood: "to requite their parents." How? For bringing them up and educating them. As if he should say, Thou has received from them great care. They are departed. Thou canst not requite them. For thou didst not bring them forth, nor nourish them. Requite them(1) in their descendants, repay the debt through the children. "Let them learn first to show piety at home." Here he more simply exhorts them to acts of kindness; then to excite them the more, he adds,

"For that is good and acceptable before God." And as he had spoken of those "who are widows indeed," he declares who is indeed a widow.

Ver. 5. "Now she that is a widow indeed, and desolate, trusteth in God, and continueth in supplications and prayers night and day. But she that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth."

She who being a widow has not made choice of a worldly life, is a widow indeed; she who trusts in God as she ought, and continues instant in prayer night and day, is a widow indeed. Not that she, who has children, is not a widow indeed. For he commends her who brings up children as she ought. But if any one has not children, he means, she is desolate, and her he consoles, saying, that she is most truly a widow, who has lost not only the consolation of a husband, but that arising from children, yet she has God in the place of all. She is not the worse for not having children, but He fills up her need with consolation, in that she is without children. What he says amounts to this. Grieve not, when it is said that a widow ought to bring up children, as if, because thou hast no children thy worth were on that account inferior. Thou art a widow indeed, whereas she who liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth.

But since many who have children choose(1) the state of widowhood, not to cut off the occasions of a worldly life, but rather to enhance them, that they may do what they will with the greater license, and indulge the more freely in worldly lusts: therefore he says, "She that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth." Ought not a widow then to live in pleasure? Surely not. If then when nature and age is weak, a life of pleasure is not allowable, but leads to death, eternal death; what have men to say, who live a life of pleasure? But he says with reason, "She that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth." But that thou mayest see this, let us now see what is the state of the dead, and what of the living, and in which shall we place such an one? The living perform the works of life, of that future life, which is truly life. And Christ has declared what are the works of that future life, with which we ought always to be occupied. "Come, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat. I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink." (Matt. xxv. 34, 35.) The living differ from the dead, not only in that they behold the sun, and breathe the air, but in that they are doing some good. For if this be wanting, the living are not better than the dead. That you may learn this, hear how it is possible that even the dead should live. For it is said, "God is not the God of the dead, but of the living." (Matt. xxii. 32.) But this again you say is a riddle. Let us therefore solve them both. A man who liveth in pleasure, is dead whilst he liveth. For he liveth only to his belly. In his other senses he lives not. He sees not what he ought to see, he hears not what he ought to hear, he speaks not what he ought to speak. Nor does he perform the actions of the living. But as he who is stretched upon a bed, with his eyes closed, and his eyelids fast, perceives nothing that is passing; so it is with this man, or rather not so, but worse. For the one is equally insensible to things good and evil, but the latter is sensible to things evil only, but as insensible as the former to things good. Thus he is dead. For nothing relating to the life to come moves or affects him. For intemperance, taking him into her own bosom, as into some dark and dismal cavern, full of all uncleanness, causes him to dwell altogether in darkness, like the dead. For when all his time is spent between feasting and drunkenness, is he not dead, and buried in darkness? Even in the morning when he seems to be sober, he is not sober in reality, since he has not yet rid and cleansed himself of yesterday's excess and is still longing for a repetition, and in that his evening and noon he passes in revels, and all the night, and most of the morning in deep sleep.

Is he then to be numbered with the living? Who can describe that storm that comes of luxury, that assails his soul and body? For as a sky continually clouded admits not the sunbeams to shine through it, so the fumes of luxury and wine enveloping his brain, as if it were some rock, and casting over it a thick mist, suffer not reason to exert itself, but overspread the drunken man with profound darkness. With him who is thus affected, how great must be the storm within, how violent the tumult. As when a flood of water has risen, and has surmounted the entrances of the workshops,(1) we see all the inmates in confusion, and using tubs and pitchers and sponges, and many other contrivances to bale it out, that it may not both undermine the building, and spoil all that is contained in it: so it is when luxury overwhelms the soul; its reasonings within are disturbed. What is already collected, cannot be discharged, and by the introduction of more, a violent storm is raised. For look not at the cheerful and merry countenance, but examine the interior, and you will see it full of deep dejection. If it were possible to bring the soul into view, and to behold it with our bodily eyes, that of the luxurious would seem depressed, mournful, miserable, and wasted with leanness; for the more the body grows sleek and gross, the more lean and weakly is the soul; and the more one is pampered,(8) the more is the other hampered.(4) As, when the pupil of the eye has the external coats over it too thick, it cannot put forth the power of vision,(5) and look out, because the light is excluded by the thick covering, and darkness often ensues; so when the body is constantly full fed, the soul must be invested with grossness. But the dead rot, and are corrupted, you say; and an unwholesome moisture distills from them. So in her "that liveth in pleasure," may be seen rheums, and phlegm, catarrh, hiccough, vomitings, eructations, and the like, which, as too unseemly, I forbear to name, For such is the dominion of luxury, that it makes one endure things, which we do not even think proper to mention.

But you still ask, how is the body dissolved whilst it yet eats and drinks? Surely this is no sign of human life, since creatures without reason too eat and drink. Where the soul lies dead, what do eating and drinking avail? The dead body, that is invested with a flowery garment, is not benefited by it, and when a blooming body invests a dead soul, the soul is not benefited. For when its whole discourse is of cooks, and caterers, and confectioners, and it utters nothing pious,(1) is it not dead? For let us consider what is man? The Heathens say that he is a rational animal, mortal, capable of intelligence and knowledge. But let us not take our definition from them, but whence? From the sacred writings. Where then has the Scripture given a definition of man? Hear its words. "There was a man perfect and upright, one that feared God, and eschewed evil." (Job i. 2.) This was indeed a man! Again, another says, "Man is great, and the merciful man is precious." (Prov. xx. 6, Sept.) Those who answer not to this description, though they partake of mind, and are never so capable of knowledge, the Scripture refuses to acknowledge them as men, but calls them dogs, and horses, and serpents, and foxes, and wolves, and if there be any animals more contemptible. If such then is man, he that liveth in pleasure is not a man; for how can he be, who never thinks of anything that he ought? Luxury and sobriety cannot exist together: they are destructive of one another. Even the Heathens say,

"A heavy paunch bears not a subtle mind."(2) Such as these the Scripture calls men without souls. "My Spirit (it is said) shall not always abide in these men, because they are flesh." (Gen. vi. 3, Sept.) Yet they had a soul, but because it was dead in them, He calls them flesh. For as in the case of the virtuous, though they have a body, we say, "he is all soul, he is all spirit," so the reverse is said of those who are otherwise. So Paul also said of those, who did not fulfill the works of the flesh, "Ye are not in the flesh." (Rom. viii. 9.) Thus those who live in luxury are not in the soul or in the spirit.

MORAL. "She that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth." Hear this, ye women, that pass your time in revels and intemperance, and who neglect the poor, pining and perishing with hunger, whilst you are destroying yourself with continual luxury. Thus you are the causes of two deaths, of those who are dying of want, and of your own, both through ill measure. But if out of your fullness you tempered their want, you would save two lives. Why do you thus gorge your own body with excess, and waste that of the poor with want; why pamper this above measure, and stint that too beyond measure? Consider what comes of food, into what it is changed. Are you not disgusted at its being named? Why then be eager for such accumulations? The increase of luxury is but the multiplication of dung! For nature has her limits, and what is beyond these is not nourishment, but injury, and the increase of ordure. Nourish the body, but do not destroy it. Food is called nourishment, to show that its design is not to injure the body, but to nourish it. For this reason perhaps food passes into excrement, that we may not be lovers of luxury. For if it were not so, if it were not useless and injurious to the body, we should not cease from devouring one another. If the belly received as much as it pleased, digested it, and conveyed it to the body, we should see wars and battles innumerable. Even now when part of our food passes into ordure, part into blood, part into spurious and useless phlegm, we are nevertheless so addicted to luxury, that we spend perhaps whole estates on a meal. What should we not do, if this were not the end of luxury? The more luxuriously we live, the more noisome are the odors with which we are filled. The body is like a swollen bottle, running out every way. The eructations are such as to pain the head of a bystander. From the heat of fermentation within, vapors are sent forth, as from a furnace, if bystanders are pained, what, think you, is the brain within continually suffering, assailed by these fumes? to say nothing of the channels of the heated and obstructed blood, of those reservoirs, the liver and the spleen, and of the canals by which the faeces are discharged. The drains in our streets we take care to keep unobstructed. We cleanse our sewers with poles and drags, that they may not be stopped, or overflow, but the canals of our bodies we do not keep clear, but obstruct and choke them up, and when the filth rises to the very throne of the king, I mean the brain, we do not regard it, treating it not like a worthy king, but like an unclean brute. God hath purposely removed to a distance those unclean members, that we might not receive offense from them. But we suffer it not to be so, and spoil all by our excess. And other evils might be mentioned. To obstruct the sewers is to breed a pestilence; but if a stench from without is pestilential, that which is pent up within the body, and cannot find a vent, what disorders must it not produce both to body and soul? Some have strangely complained, wondering why God has ordained that we should bear a load of ordure with us. But they themselves increase the load. God designed thus to detach us from luxury, and to persuade us not to attach ourselves to worldly things. But thou art not thus to be persuaded to cease from gluttony, but though it is but as far as the throat, and as long as the hour of eating, nay not even so long, that the pleasure abides, thou continuest in thine indulgence. Is it not true that as soon as it has passed the palate and the throat, the pleasure ceases? For the sense of it is in the taste, and after that is gratified, a nausea succeeds, the stomach not digesting the food, or not without much difficulty. Justly then is it said, that "she that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth." For the luxurious soul is unable to hear or to see anything. It becomes weak, ignoble, unmanly, illiberal, cowardly, full of impudence, servility, ignorance, rage, violence, and all kinds of evil, and destitute of the opposite virtues. Therefore he says,

Ver. 7. "These things give in charge, that they may be blameless."

He does not leave it to their choice. Command them, he says, not to be luxurious, assuming it to be confessedly an evil, as not holding it lawful or admissible for the luxurious to partake of the Holy Mysteries. "These things command," he says, "that they may be blameless." Thus you see it is reckoned among sins. For if it were a matter of choice, though it were left undone, we might still be blameless. Therefore in obedience to Paul, let us command the luxurious widow not to have place in the list of widows.(1) For if a soldier, who frequents the bath, the theater, the busy scenes of life, is judged to desert his duty, much more the widows. Let us then not seek our rest here, that we may find it hereafter. Let us not live in pleasure here, that we may hereafter enjoy true pleasure, true delight, which brings no evil with it, but infinite good. Of which God grant that we may all be partakers, in Jesus Christ, with whom, &c.

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