This is why holy Bartholomew says that theology is both expansive and minute, and that the gospel is both wide and broad, and narrow. With extraordinary insight he seems to have intuited that the cause of all things, being inherently good, is worthy of long discussion, yet also ineffable, requiring but little speech. It cannot be fully grasped nor described, since it itself lies beyond all things and appears in true, uncovered fashion only to those who have gone through the holy purification rites, ascended all the way up the holy summits, left behind divine lights, sounds, and words from the sky and entered into the darkness where the scriptures say the One who is beyond all things really is. After all, it isn’t just that Moses is bid to purify himself and separate from those not like him; nor that after his purification he hears the ensemble of trumpets and sees lights flashing pure and varied beams of light. After this, he separates from the many and arrives with his chosen priests to the highest summit. Even in such circumstances, he does not meet God himself, nor does he see him (for God cannot be seen). Rather, Moses “saw the place where God stood.” (I think that the “highest and holiest places” signify certain suppositions about how visible and intelligible realities are ultimately subject to the One that transcends all, yet through these assertions we see the presence of the One who is beyond every thought, since it appears to those “peaks of spiritual in sight” in those “most holy places.”) Then Moses separated from them, both things that see and things seen, and went into the darkness of unknowing that is truly a mystery. In this darkness, he closes off all that is grasped with knowledge and enters that which is entirely unseen and intangible. He is entirely of the One who is beyond all things, and of nothing. He is not his own, nor another’s, yet through the complete ceasing of all knowing he is all the more perfectly made one with the One that is unknowable, and through letting go of knowing he begins to know with something that transcends the mind.
Tag: greek translation
Gr. naz. Hymn Virg. (carm. 1.2.1a 107–116)
Below you find my poetic translation of an excerpt from the Hymn Virg. of Gregory of Nazianzus (carm. 1.2.1a 107–116), where he narrates the creation of Eve:
Πλευρὴν ἐκ λαγόνων μούνην ἕλε, τήν ῥα γυναῖκα
Δειμάμενος, καὶ φίλτρον ἐνὶ στέρνοισι κεράσσας,
Ἀμφοτέροις ἐφέηκεν ἐπ’ ἀλλήλοισι φέρεσθαι·
Οὐ πᾶσ’ οὐδ’ ἐπὶ πάντας, ὅρον δ’ ἐπέθηκε πόθοισιν, 
Ὅν ῥα γάμον καλέουσ’, ὕλης ἀμέτροιο χαλινὸν,
Ὡς μὴ μαιμώωσα, καὶ ἄσχετα μαργαίνουσα,
Προφρονέως ἀγεληδὸν ἐπ’ ἀλλήλοισιν ἰόντων,1
Ῥήξειεν μερόπων ἱερὸν γένος ἐκ φιλότητος
Ἀζυγέος, πολέμους δὲ καὶ ἔχθεα πᾶσιν ὀρίνῃ 
Οἶστρος ἀσημάντοισι φορεύμενος ἀφραδίῃσιν.
He took the rib from Adam’s side and made
the wife. He mixed desire in their breasts
and bid them bear themselves to one another,
but not at all without discrimination.
He placed a limit on their loves, what we
call marriage, bridle for unmeasured matter,
lest it go mad, convulsing endlessly,
like animals that read’ly mate in herds,
and wreck the holy race of men through love
unbounded, lest desire unrestrained
should raise up wars and senseless quarrels for all.
- It is not clear how to construe this line; it may be corrupt. ↩
The Tragic Plight of Mary: Barbarians, Faithful Handmaids, and Redemption
Among my present duties is an editorial assistantship for CUA Press. Currently, I’m collating Gennadios 250, a heretofore uncollated manuscript that contains a collection of Theodoret of Cyr’s letters. This particular collection was first published by Sirmond, and hence it is called the Collectio Sirmondiana. The collection was published in two volumes in the Sources Chrétiennes series (vv. 98, 111). My work will eventually be incorporated into an edition and translation of Theodoret’s letters to appear in CUA’s Library of Early Christianity series. One of my professors, Dr. John Petruccione, is editing the Greek text, and the first draft of translation was done by the late Prof. Thomas Halton.
The letters are often quite fun to read. The collection contains everything from festal exhortations to consolatory letters to widows. Some of the latter are quite touching, but others hardly seem comforting at all! This letter (ep. 70) particularly grabbed my attention. It tells a rather touching story of the bond between a handmaid and her mistress, after both are sold into slavery by the Vandals.
The Greek text is Azéma’s with my minor corrections (two movable nu’s). The translation and note are my own, though I have consulted Azéma’s.
To Eusthatius, Bishop of Aegae. Ep. 70.
The story of most-noble Mary is worthy of the tragic stage. For she is the daughter of the highly-esteeemed Eudaimon, as she herself states and anyone else will aver. But in the course of the misfortune that seized Libya, she lost her free-born status and fell into slavery. Certain merchants, after buying her from the barbarians, sold her to certain countrymen of mine. She was sold along with her own handmaid, who had formerly served in Mary’s household. They bore the bitter yoke of their slavery in common, both the handmaid and the mistress together. But the handmaid refused to overlook their difference in status and did not forget her mistress’s former nobility. Instead, she maintained her prior reverence for her mistress, and would attend to her as well, in addition to their common masters. She would wash her feet, make the bed, and take care of all the other chores of this sort. This became known to those who had bought them. At that point, the mistress’s former freedom and the handmaid’s kind service became the talk of the entire city. On learning this, our most faithful soldiers gave the ransom to those who had bought her and freed her from her slavery (for I was away at the time). On my return, once I had been informed about her turn of misfortune, and the praiseworthy initiative of the soldiers, I prayed that God would reward them for their good, and entrusted the noble young woman to one of my most faithful and reverent deacons, instructing him to make suitable provisions for her. Ten months later, upon learning that her father was alive and still a magistrate in the west, she quite naturally desired to return to him. Since many have said that there are a good number of western merchants who are coming to your city for the feast you are now celebrating, she asked to make her departure with a letter from me. Therefore I have written this letter to call kindly upon your piety: give thought to her noble roots, and ask any of those adorned with piety to speak with the merchants, ship captains, and businessmen, that you may entrust her to faithful men who are able to restore her to her father. For they will surely benefit beyond any human expectation when they return this daughter to her father.
 “Libya” in Classical Greek refers to most of Northern Africa. In this case, Theodoret refers to the Vandal invasion of North Africa, which began in 429.
ΕΥΣΤΑΘΙῼ ΕΠΙΣΚΟΠῼ ΑΙΓΩΝ.
Τραγῳδίας ἄξιον τὸ κατὰ τὴν εὐγενεστάτην Μαρίαν διήγημα. Αὕτη γάρ ἐστι μὲν θυγάτηρ τοῦ μεγαλοπρεπεστάτου Εὐδαίμονος, ὡς καὶ αὐτή φησι καὶ ἄλλοι τινὲς μεμαρτυρήκασιν. Ἐν δὲ τῇ καταλαβούσῃ συμφορᾷ τὴν Λιβύην, τῆς προγονικῆς ἐλευθερίας ἐξέπεσεν, καὶ εἰς δουλείαν μετέπεσεν. Ἔμποροι δέ τινες, αὐτὴν παρὰ τῶν βαρβάρων πριάμενοι, διεπώλησάν τισι τὴν ἡμετέραν οἰκοῦσιν. Συνεπράθη δὲ αὐτῇ καὶ παιδίσκη, πάλαι τὴν οἰκετικὴν τάξιν ἔχουσα παρ’ αὐτῇ· κοινῇ τοίνυν εἷλκον τὸν πικρὸν τῆς δουλείας ζυγόν, ἥ τε θεράπαινα καὶ ἡ δέσποινα. Ἀλλ’ οὐκ ἠθέλησεν ἀγνοῆσαι τὸ διάφορον ἡ θεράπαινα, οὐδὲ τῆς προτέρας ἐπελάθετο δεσποτείας· ἀλλὰ τὴν εὔνοιαν τῇ συμφορᾷ διεφύλαξεν, καὶ μετὰ τὴν τῶν κοινῶν δεσποτῶν θεραπείαν ἐθεράπευε τὴν νομιζομένην ὁμόδουλον, ἀπονίπτουσα πόδας, ἐπιμελομένη στρωμνῆς, καὶ τῆς ἄλλης ὡσαύτως ἐπιμελείας φροντίζουσα. Τοῦτο τοῖς πριαμένοις ἐγένετο γνώριμον. Ἐντεῦθεν ἐθρυλήθη κατὰ τὴν πόλιν ἥ τε ταύτης ἐλευθερία καὶ τῆς θεραπαίνης ἡ εὐτροπία. Ταῦτα μεμαθηκότες οἱ παρ’ ἡμῖν ἱδρυμένοι πιστότατοι στρατιῶται —ἐγὼ γὰρ τηνικαῦτα ἀπῆν—, καὶ τοῖς πριαμένοις ἀπέδοσαν τὴν τιμὴν καὶ ταύτην τῆς δουλείας ἐξήρπασαν. Ἐγὼ δὲ μετὰ τὴν ἐπάνοδον, διδαχθεὶς καὶ τὸ δρᾶμα τῆς συμφορᾶς, καὶ τῶν στρατιωτῶν τὴν ἀξιέπαινον ὄρεξιν, τὰ ἀγαθὰ μὲν ἐπηυξάμην ἐκείνοις, τὴν εὐγενεστάτην δὲ κόρην τῶν εὐλαβεστάτων τινὶ διακόνων παρέδωκα, σιτηρέσιον ἀρκοῦν χορηγεῖσθαι παρεγγυήσας. Δέκα δὲ διεληλυθότων μηνῶν, μαθοῦσα τὸν πατέρα ζῆν ἔτι καὶ ἄρχειν ἐν τῇ Δύσει, ἐπεθύμησεν εἰκότως πρὸς ἐκεῖνον ἐπανελθεῖν· καί τινων εἰρηκότων, ὡς ἀπὸ τῆς Ἑσπέρας ἔμποροι πλεῖστοι καταίρουσιν εἰς τὴν νῦν παρ’ ὑμῖν ἐπιτελουμένην πανήγυριν, ᾔτησε μετὰ γραμμάτων ἐμῶν τὴν ἀποδημίαν ποιήσασθαι. Τούτου χάριν ταύτην γέγραφα τὴν ἐπιστολήν, παρακαλῶν σου τὴν θεοσέβειαν, ὡς εὐγενοῦς φροντίσαι βλαστήματος, καὶ κελεῦσαί τινι τῶν εὐλαβείᾳ κοσμουμένων, καὶ ναυκλήροις καὶ κυβερνήταις καὶ ἐμπόροις διαλεχθῆναι, καὶ πιστοῖς αὐτὴν ἀνδράσι παραδοῦναι, ἀποκαταστῆσαι τῷ πατρὶ δυναμένοις. Πάντως γὰρ ὅτι πάμπολλα κερδανοῦσι παρὰ πᾶσαν ἀνθρωπίνην ἐλπίδα τῷ πατρὶ τὴν παῖδα προσάγοντες.
Gregory of Nazianzus, On Christmas
This Christmas, I read through Gregory of Nazianzus’ 38th Oration, On the Theophany. It is wondrously beautiful. Gregory’s theology and language meld into one lovely, harmonious whole. I hope reading through this oration becomes a Christmas tradition! I’ve worked up a little poem to share here. It is a verse rendition of the beginning of the oration. I’m not a particularly good poet, but hopefully enough of Gregory comes through to make it enjoyable. Fr. Aidan posted an English translation of the entire oration here, which you may also view at New Advent.
All ye, come meet the Christ and sing to God,
Thou Plenitude of Earth. Yet I must name
the both: let hea’ens and earth be glad
and make much cheer, Uranic Splendor came,
assumed our terran shame, and in flesh lay.
O man, rejoice in fear, in joy rejoice!
In fear for sin, in joy for hope of him:
The Christ-child borne of Virgin womb and shame!
O Eve’n Daughters, those of Adam’s race,
do now take up your virgin pur’ty, O
that ye be little Mary’s, full of Christ within.
Who shan’t praise him, the Chosen One who comes
of the beginning? Who shall not raise his voice
to him in whom our being finds finality?
Here is the Greek. For my fellow hellenists, much of the language in this oration is pretty simple. It gets difficult and theologically complicated at points, but a good bit is not all that difficult. My way of saying, this is recommended reading! The Greek text of the oration may be found here.
Χριστὸς γεννᾶται, δοξάσατε· Χριστὸς ἐξ οὐρανῶν, ἀπαντήσατε· Χριστὸς ἐπὶ γῆς, ὑψώθητε. ᾌσατε τῷ Κυρίῳ, πᾶσα ἡ γῆ· καὶ, ἵν ̓ ἀμφότερα συνελὼν εἴπω, Εὐφραινέσθωσαν οἱ οὐρανοὶ, καὶ ἀγαλλιάσθω ἡ γῆ, διὰ τὸν ἐπουράνιον, εἶτα ἐπίγειον. Χριστὸς ἐν σαρκὶ, τρόμῳ καὶ χαρᾷ ἀγαλλιᾶσθε· τρόμῳ, διὰ τὴν ἁμαρτίαν· χαρᾷ, διὰ τὴν ἐλπίδα. Χριστὸς ἐκ Παρθένου· γυναῖκες παρθενεύετε, ἵνα Χριστοῦ γένησθε μητέρες. Τίς οὐ προσκυνεῖ τὸν ἀπ᾽ ἀρχῆς; τίς οὐ δοξάζει τὸν τελευταῖον;
Origen on gods in the scripture
Recently I was asked if Origen had anything to say on “becoming like the angels.” My interlocutor, as I gathered, was tracing the use of such language in early Christian literature. I was familiar with this type of rhetoric in later authors. Chrysostom in particular makes wide use of angels in his various homilies and treatises. Nothing came to mind for Origen, however. I did, of course, recommend the TLG and the Brepols Latin database as places to look, but I also searched through the material I’ve transcribed from the new Origen codex. When I did so, I found an interesting passage in which Origen tackles the verse “τίς θεὸς μέγας ὡς ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν.” (Ps. 76:14 LXX). I would have translated this as “what god is great like our God?” but Origen seems to understand it as “what great god is like our God?” I’m not sure if grammar dictates one interpretation versus the other, but I certainly defer to a native speaker when given the chance. Given the theological difficulties created by the latter reading, I presume it seemed much more likely grammatically. Origen thus gives us a short digression on the two difficult verses of Ps 81, and then describes how the holy men of old became gods. According Origen, God made Patriarchs into gods by joining to them his name (i.e. calling himself the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob). This made it so that they had “participation” (μετοχή) with God’s divinity (θεότης).
My translation is a bit rough in places, and I welcome suggestions. Translating θεός in a passage like this can be particularly tricky, since our language is so heavily influenced by monotheism. The Greek is placed below, as is my custom.
So then, listen to God’s scripture, which says, “all the gods of the nations are demons.” (Ps. 95:5 LXX). Since, however, God is generous with his good works, he has said, “for I have said, ‘you are gods, and sons of the Most High.’” (Ps 81:6) The scripture says this because if someone has received the word of God, he becomes a god. Moreover, the scripture says, “God stands in the assembly of the Gods, in their midst he will judge them.” Now if you are gathered as men, then God is not in the assembly. But if this assembly is an assembly of gods, then you are reckoned among the gods. God is present in this sort of assembly, by virtue of the word of God being in them, and by their not walking as men do. This then is the meaning of “God stands in the assembly of the gods, and their midst he will judge them.”
In some ways, one of these gods has a glory which is analogous to the sun. Another has a glory like the moon, and another like the glory of the stars, for the sun, moon, and stars each have a different glory. Moreover, each star differs from each other in glory. The resurrection of the dead will be the same way. I have dwelt on these passages, “God stands in the assembly of the gods” and “I have said you are gods” so that I may go from there onto “what great god is like our God?” If one must dare to speak such, then Abraham is a great god, Isaac is a great god, and Jacob is a great god. They were made into gods because God joined his own name ‘God’ with each of their names when he said, “I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Having said just once, “I am the god of Abraham, and the god of Isaac, and the god of Jacob,” he granted to Abraham that he should have participation with the divine nature of God. If you should come to the Savior, and confess him to be a god, since he is a god, as “in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” then do not shrink from saying that the many of the righteous are also gods. If the righteous, who shall become like the angels, are gods, then how much more is this the case for the angels? I don’t mean the demons, nor do I mean the idols. I am safeguarded by the great worthiness of God’s word. Rather, our Lord and Savior incomparably surpasses all of these.
γὰρ τῆς γραφῆς τοῦ θεοῦ λεγούσης, πάντες
οἱ θεοὶ τῶν ἐθνῶν, δαιμόνια, ἀλλ᾽ ἐπειδήπερ
ἄφθονός ἐστι τῶν εὐεργεσιῶν
αὐτοῦ ὁ θεὸς, φησίν, ἐγὼ γὰρ εἶπα
θεοὶ ἐστὲ καὶ υἱοὶ ὑψίστου πάντες.
φησὶ γὰρ ἡ γραφὴ, ὅτι εἴ τις ἐδέξατο
τὸν λόγον τοῦ θεοῦ, θεὸς γίνεται. ἀλλὰ
καὶ ὁ θεὸς ἔστη ἐν συναγωγῇ θεῶν, ἐν
μέσῳ δὲ θεοὺς διακρινεῖ. καὶ εἰ μὲν
ἄνθρωποι συνήχθητε, οὐκ ἔστιν ὁ θεὸς ἐν τῇ
συναγωγῇ. εἰ δὲ αὕτη ἡ συναγωγῆ θεῶν
ἐστι συναγωγῆ, θεῶν χρηματιζόντων.
τῷ τὸν λόγον τοῦ θεοῦ εἶναι ἐν
αὐτοῖς καὶ μὴ κατὰ ἄνθρωπον αὐτοὺς περιπατεῖν,
ἐν τοιαύτῃ ἐστὶν ὁ θεός. καὶ
ἐνθάδε ἐστὶν, ὁ θεὸς ἔστη ἐν συναγωγῇ θεῶν,
ἐν μέσῳ δὲ θεοὺς διακρινεῖ. πῆ
τίς μὲν τούτων θεῶν, ἀνάλογον δόξῃ
ἡλίου, δόξαν ἔχει. τίς δὲ ἀνάλογον δόξης
σελήνης, δόξαν ἔχει. τίς ἀνάλογον
δόξης ἀστέρων δόξαν ἔχει. ἄλλη γὰρ
δόξα ἡλίου, καὶ ἄλλη δόξα σελήνς,
καὶ ἄλλη δόξα ἀστέρων. ἀστὴρ γὰρ ἀστέρος
διαφέρει ἐν δόξῇ. οὕτω καὶ ἡ ἀνάστασις
τῶν νεκρῶν. ταῦτα πρὸς τὸ
παραστῆσαι ὅτι ὁ θεὸς ἔστη ἐν συναγωγῇ
θεῶν, καὶ ἐγὼ εἶπα θεοὶ ἐστὲ, ἵν᾽ ἐκεῖθεν
μεταβῶ εἰς τὸ τίς θεὸς μέγας ὡς
ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν; μέγας γὰρ θεὸς εἰ δεῖ οὕτως
τολμήσαντα εἰπεῖν, ἁβραάμ,
μέγας θεὸς ἰσαάκ, μέγας θεὸς ἰακώβ
καὶ διὰ τοῦτο ἐθεοποιήθησαν ἐκεῖνοι,
ἐπειδήπερ συνῆψεν ὁ θεὸς τὸ ἑαυτοῦ
ὄνομα τὸ θεὸς, τῷ ἐκείνων ὀνόματι
λέγων, ἐγὼ θεὸς ἁβραὰμ, καὶ θεὸς ἰσαάκ,
καὶ θεὸς ἰακώβ. ἅπαξ δὲ
εἰπὼν, ἐγὼ θεὸς ἁβραὰμ καὶ θεὸς ἰσαάκ,
καὶ θεὸς ἰακώβ, ἐχαρίσατο καὶ τῷ
ἁβραὰμ, ἐπειδήπερ μετοχὴ αὐτῷ
γίνεται ἀπὸ τῆς θεότητος τοῦ θεοῦ.
κἂν ἐπὶ τὸν σωτῆρα δὲ ἔλθῃς, καὶ θεὸν
τοῦτον ὁμολογήσῃς, ἔστι γὰρ θεὸς, ἐπεὶ
ἐν ἀρχῇ ἦν ὁ λόγος, καὶ θεὸς ἦν πρὸς
τὸν θεόν, καὶ θεὸς ἦν ὁ λόγος, μὴ ὄκνει
λέγειν, ὅτι πολλοὶ μὲν δίκαιοι θεοί εἰσιν.
εἰ δὲ οἱ δίκαιοι, οἱ ἐσόμενοι ἰσάγγελοι, πολλῷ
πλέον ἄγγελοι. οὐ λέγω τὰ δαιμόνια,
οὐ λέγω τὰ εἴδωλα. ἀσφαλίζομαι
γὰρ, διὰ τὸ εὐπρεπὲς τοῦ θεοῦ λόγου. ἀλλ᾽ ὁ
σωτὴρ καὶ κύριος ἡμῶν ἀσυγκρίτως ὑπερέχει
Origen on Punishment – A Different Take
I my recent series on Origen and eternal punishment (v. here), I translated a portion of a lecture  in which Origen speculates about the end of time and the nature of punishment. Some scholars take Origen’s “universalism” as a given, but the situation is more complicated than that. In the homily on Ps. 76, Origen suggests pretty clearly that punishment is not eternal, and lasts only for a time. He’s a bit elliptical, but it’s not difficult to fill in the gaps. In other places, however, Origen states the familiar eternal punishment doctrine without comment. Once such example comes in his third homily on Ps. 36, which I translate below. He is commenting on Ps 36:19 (LXX), “They [sc. the righteous] will not be put to shame in an evil time, and in the days of famine they will be full.” In a future post, I’ll examine the Greek adjective αἰώνιος, and explore whether the two views can be reconciled.
The righteous will inherit the promises forever in those days , and they “will not be be put to shame in an evil time.” ‘An evil time’ is what he calls the time of judgment, due to the great number of sinners. Because of the great number being punished, it is only the righteous who “will not be put to shame in an evil time,” that is, when the resurrection occurs and all shall rise, some to life, and some to eternal shame and rebuke.
γὰρ ἐν ἐκεῖναις ταῖς ἡμέραις
εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα οἱ δίκαιοι τὰς ἐπαγγελίας,
καὶ οὐκ αἰσχυνθήσονται ἐν καιρῷ πονηρῷ,
καιρὸν δὲ πονηρὸν, τὸν τῆς κρίσεως ὀνομασε
διὰ τὸ πλῆθος τῶν ἁμαρτανόντων.
διὰ τοὺς πολλοὺς τῶν κολαζομένων,
μόνοι οὖν οἱ δίκαιοι, οὐκ αἰσχυνθήσονται
ἐν καιρῷ πονηρῷ, ὅταν ἡ ἀναστασις
γίνηται, καὶ ἀνίστανται, οἱ μὲν, εἰς ζωὴν,
οἱ δὲ, εἰς ὀνειδισμὸν καὶ αἰσχύνην αἰώνιον. (Cod Mon Graec. f. 62v).
 I say lecture (instead of homily) because I am not sure that it was spoken in a church. The greek word ὁμιλία, whence comes our word homily, originally just meant informal talk or lecture (rather than a highly polished rhetorical speech). Homily became associated with Christian sermons because they tended to be the former, not the latter.
Basil the Great on Psalm 1
I’ve been reading over Basil the Great’s homily on the first Psalm, and rather enjoying it. The beginning is an introduction to the Psalms as a genre. Basil praises the Psalms as they combine the best of other genres in the Old Testament. They foretell events to come, like the prophets, recall events in the past, like the histories, and give rules to live by, like the law. The “old wounds of the soul are healed, and the newer ones are quickly set to rights.” One of Basil’s favorite features of the psalms is their musicality. The doctrine mixed with the “honey of melody” is delightful for the soul, where straight doctrine would not be so palatable.
My own experience with the psalms has been different. Frankly, I find it a rather puzzling book. I usually prefer either the narrative of the gospels or the logic of the epistles. I realize, though, that I’ve completely missed the “honey of melody.” In the west, most traditions typically don’t sing the psalms (unless they get appropriated for hymns or songs, which does happen rather often). Here I’m jealous of Eastern Christians, who, as I understand, still sing (or chant) the psalms in their liturgies. I do think I’d have an easier time memorizing the psalms and appreciating them if I sang them.
Basil also shows his pastoral ability in the homily. The Septuagint uses the gendered ἀνήρ (man, as opposed to woman) in the first psalm, rather than the more gender-neutral ἄνθρωπος (man/person, as opposed to God/gods). I found his response rather interesting. It does not cohere precisely with modern sensibilities (man is described as “the one more given to leadership”), but it’s not precisely complementarian either. I found it rather touching:
“Why does the prophet single out the man for blessing? Has he cut off women from this blessing? God forbid! Man and woman share a common virtue (ἀρετή). Since their creation was of the same honor, so too do they receive the same reward. Listen to Genesis, ‘And God made mankind (ἄνθρωπον), in the image of God he created it, male and female he created them.’ Those who share a nature, also share labor, and those who have the same labor receive the same reward. Why then, does he mention man, but keep silent about woman? Because he thought it was sufficient, in light of their shared nature, to refer to the whole by mentioning only the half more given to authority (ἡγεμονικώτερος).”
Διὰ τί, φησὶν, ὁ προφήτης τὸν ἄνδρα μόνον ἐκλεξάμενος μακαρίζει; ἆρα μὴ τοῦ μακαρισμοῦ τὰς γυναῖκας ἀπέκλεισε; Μὴ γένοιτο! Μία γὰρ ἀρετὴ ἀνδρὸς καὶ γυναικὸς, ἐπειδὴ καὶ ἡ κτίσις ἀμφοτέροις ὁμότιμος, ὥστε καὶ ὁ μισθὸς ὁ αὐ- τὸς ἀμφοτέροις. Ἄκουε τῆς Γενέσεως· Ἐποίησε, (217.) φησὶ, ὁ Θεὸς τὸν ἄνθρωπον· κατ’ εἰκόνα Θεοῦ ἐποίησεν αὐτόν· ἄρσεν καὶ θῆλυ ἐποίησεν αὐτούς. Ὧν δὲ ἡ φύσις μία, τούτων καὶ ἐνέργειαι αἱ αὐταί· ὧν δὲ τὸ ἔργον ἴσον, τούτων καὶ ὁ μισθὸς ὁ αὐτός. Διὰ τί οὖν, ἀνδρὸς μνησθεὶς, τὴν γυναῖκα (5) ἀπεσιώπησεν; Ὅτι ἀρκεῖν ἡγήσατο, μιᾶς οὔσης τῆς φύσεως, ἐκ τοῦ ἡγεμονικωτέρου τὸ ὅλον ἐνδείξασθαι. (PG 29.217).
Basil’s Greek, at least here, is not overly taxing. Fortunately, though, these homilies are available in English. CUA Press published the translation in 1963 as part of the Fathers of the Church series. Sister Agnes Clare Way translated the homilies on the Psalms and the better known Hexameron. The translation seems to have made it onto Archive.org, which seems a bit strange to me (as the book is not yet in the public domain), but Ι᾽d certainly commend the homilies, in Greek or English, to the interested reader.
Origen on the Ages to Come Pt. 3
This is the last in a three part series. See parts 1 and 2, and the intro.
This segment concludes Origen’s homily on Ps. 76. This is certainly not the only place we see Origen discussing the destiny of the human race, but it does offer a nice view into his theological method. First, as you can see from the many scriptural citations, Origen’s theology is deeply rooted in the biblical text. In these two paragraphs, he cites not only copiously from Psalm before him, but also draws from the prophets (Jonah), another Psalm, and two places in the New Testament. This may strike some as odd: I certainly wouldn’t think while reading this psalm that it had anything to do with eternal punishment. In our English translations, it seems much more natural to read it as simply a lament about this life: will the Lord continue to look away from his people? Origen has good reasons, in this case at least, for going beyond this age and considering others. Vs. 6 reads “I have pondered the ancient days, and I have remembered the eternal years.” The Greek Septuagint thus invites him to speculate on these “eternal years,” and furthermore to consider the following verses on God’s punishment as pertaining to the ages to come rather than only to this life. It’s important to remember that Origen knew is scripture extremely well. His theological and philosophical opinions will often look strange, but seeing the scriptural underpinning makes his views much more understandable.
Another key feature that we can see here is Origen’s approach to revelation and prayer. The psalmist had a profound revelation in prayer, as did Paul and John. Origen thus encourages us to “probe our spirit in the night” and “meditate on the ancient days” like the psalmist did. Not every revelation, however, can be shared. Just as Paul and John did not share the contents of their visions, so we should not make definitive statements on areas in which the scriptures are not clear. The proper course of action is instead a Socratic one: the “sage” must pose questions. Some truths are hidden for “those who fear God.” In doing so, Origen attempts to strike an exegetical and pastoral balance. He understands that declaring a blanket universalism would have negative effects in the moral lives of his students/parishioners. He also is well aware of the biblical passages that discuss punishment, and that to be punished by God is a truly fearful thing. On the other hand, he sees glimpses in scripture that suggest God’s punishment may be restorative rather than retributive, and he finds that compelling. In all things, though, he urges humility and prayer, which strikes me as sage advice even after all these years.
Rather, let us say, “Surely the Lord will not reject forever, nor refuse always to show his favor?” However, if God’s judgments are hidden from us, we should not simply assert that God will change his mind about our punishment. Instead, let us do as the Ninevites did and say, “Let us pray and fast. Who knows if the Lord will change his mind and turn away from his wrath?” (Jonah 3:9). Or, let us say, “Surely he will not cut off his mercy for ever, from generation to generation?” This is what I pondered, and this is what my spirit probed to find: will God, after giving us over to punishments, cut off his mercy from us, so that we’ll never be able to flee again to his mercy? will he cut off his mercy “from generation to generation” and forsake us? will God forget to show mercy? after leaving us to such a fate, one of pain and toil, will he proceed to forget us, and never again show mercy?
“And I have said, ‘now I have begun.'” (Ps. 76:11 LXX) After I have pondered all these things, I have said, “now I am beginning to understand.” His understanding, though, is private. Although he had gained understanding, he decided not to share it. Instead, though he had beheld the mystery, he concealed it, instead posing question. In doing this, he did as Paul and John did. Though Paul had heard “words unspeakable” (2 Cor. 12:4) and John had heard the “seven thunders” (Rev. 10:3-4), neither wrote down what they had heard. Therefore, it was better for him to hide the mystery, and for all who have received such revelation to say, “how great the magnitude of your goodness, Lord, which you have hidden for those who fear you” (Ps. 31:19/30:20 LXX), in Christ Jesus, to whom be glory and power forever and ever, amen.
An impromptu homily.
¶ ἀλλ᾽ ἡμεῖς λέγωμεν,
μὴ εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας ἀπώσεται κύριος,
καὶ οὐ προσθήσει τοῦ εὐδοκῆσαι ἔτι; πλὴν
εἰ καὶ οὐκ ἀπέφηνε τὰ κρίματα τοῦ θεοῦ,
ἀλλ᾽ ἡμᾶς ὅπερ ἐποίησαν οἱ νινευῖται,
οὐκ εἶπαν μετανοήσει ὁ θεὸς, ἀλλὰ προσευχώμεθα
καὶ νηστεύωμεν. τίς οἶδεν
εἰ μετανοήσει κύριος, καὶ ἀποστρέψει τὸν
θυμὸν αὐτοῦ, ἢ τὸ ἔλεος αὐτοῦ ἀποκόψει
εἰς τέλος, ἀπὸ γενεᾶς εἰς γενεάν;
καὶ τοῦτο διελογιζόμην καὶ ἔσκαλλε
τὸ πνεῦμά μου. ἆρα ὁ θεὸς παραδιδοὺς
ἡμᾶς ταῖς κολάσεσι, τὸ ἔλεος
ἀποκόψει ἀφ᾽ἡμῶν, ὡς μηδέποτε
αὐτὸν παλινδρομῆσαι ἐπὶ τὸ ἐλεῆσαι
ἡμᾶς, ἀλλὰ ἀπὸ γενεᾶς εἰς γενεὰν
ἀποκόψας τὸ ἔλεος, καταλέιψει
ἠμᾶς, ἢ ἐπιλήσεται τοῦ οἰκτειρῆσαι
ὁ θεός; οἷον καταλιπὼν τοῖς πόνοις
καὶ ταῖς ἀλγηδόσι, μέλλει ἡμᾶς
ἐπιλανθάνεσθαι, καὶ μηδέποτε οἰκτείρειν;
¶ καὶ εἶπα νῦν ἠρξάμην. ὅτε
ταύτα πάντα ἐλογισάμην, εἶπα,
νῦν ἄρχομαι νοεῖν. ἐνόησε
καθ᾽αὑτόν. νοήσας δὲ, οὐκ ἔκρινεν
εἰπεῖν ὃ ἐνοήσεν. ἀλλ᾽ὥσπερ παῦλος
ἤκουσεν ἄρρητα ῥήματα, καὶ ἰωάννης
ἤκουσε τῶν ἑπτὰ βροτῶν, καὶ οὔτε
παῦλος ἔγραψε τὰ ἄρρητα ῥήματα,
οὕτε ἰωάννης τοὺς λόγους τῶν ἑπτὰ
βροτῶν, οὕτως καὶ οὗτος κλαύσας
καὶ ἐπαπορήσας, εἶδε τὸ μυστήριον, ἐπειδήπερ
κρεῖττον ἦν κρύπτειν αὐτὸ, καὶ
λέγειν πάντα τὸν νοήσαντα τοιαῦτα,
ὡς πολὺ τὸ πλῆθος τῆς χρηστότητος
σου κύριε, ἧς ἔκρυψας τοῖς φοβουμένοις
σε. ἐν χριστῷ ἰησοῦ ᾧ ἡ δόξα καὶ τὸ κράτος
εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰώνων ἁμήν.
ὁμιλία σχεδιασθεῖσα. #END
Origen on the Ages to Come Pt. 2
Part 1 is here. As promised, here is the second installment of the end of Origen’s first homily on Ps. 77 (76 LXX). In these two paragraphs, Origen discusses God’s rejection. Based on the psalm, he doesn’t think rejection will last forever, but he also urges his audience to consider the terror of separation from God. To be separated from God even for a single hour is dreadful, as whenever someone is rejected they are handed over to Satan and his angels.
“Surely the Lord will not reject forever?”
As I probed my spirit about these matters, I reasoned carefully and said, “Let God reject someone for a year, and hand him over to trials. Let this last for two years. Let this be the case for their entire life. How many years is this? Fifty or sixty. Let him forsake someone for this entire age. Will God forsake them forever? “Surely the Lord will not reject forever?” is said, for he doesn’t wish to forsake us, even for a single age. There are, though, those whom he will reject in another age besides this one. The Savior mentions these, saying that when people sin against the Holy Spirit, “it will not be forgiven them, neither in this age, nor the one to come.” Consider someone who sinned at the time of Adam, who will be punished from that time until the end of the age for their sin. Think about the span of this punishment, and if you can, think of another like it, equal in time to this age or not (I don’t know, after all, the sizes of the different ages). Look at someone being punished for that entire age, consider the great magnitude of punishment, but do not despise it. Rather, remember the prophet’s words, that the Lord will not reject for ever.
On those rejected by God.
Remember too that to be rejected by the Lord for a single hour is a terrible punishment, because when God rejects me, the Devil receives me. When someone is rejected, he is handed over to the devil, which is what happened when Paul rejected the sexually immoral man in Corinth. Why did he bar him from the church? He handed him over to Satan so that the man’s flesh would be destroyed and his spirit saved. Should God reject any one of us, we would fall right into the hands of Satan and his angels. It is a horrible thing to be subjected to Satan, and if someone is made subject to him, it is God’s punishment, for the person deserves this subjection.
¶ μὴ εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας
ἀπώσεται κύριος; ταῦτα σκάλλων τὸ πνεῦμα,
διελογισάμην καὶ ἔλεγον, ἔστω ἀπωθεῖται
τινὰ ὁ θεὸς ἐπὶ ἐνιαυτὸν, καὶ ἐγκαταλείπει
αὐτὸν εἰς θλίψεις. ἔστω δὲ ἐπὶ
δύο ἔτη τινὰ καταλείπεσθαι. ἔστω,
ἐπὶ ὅλον τὸν χρόνον τῆς ἐνταῦθα ζωῆς.
πόσα ἐστὶ τὰ ἔτη; πεντήκοντα ἔτη
καὶ ἐξήκοντα. ἔστω τινὰ καταλείπεσθαι
ὅλον τὸν αἰῶνα τοῦτον. ἆρα καὶ
ἐφ᾽ ὅλους τοὺς αἰῶνας ἐγκαταλείψει ὁ
θεὸς; μὴ, εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας ἀπώσηται κύριος·
ἵνα μὴ ἀπώσηται ἡμᾶς μηδὲ εἰς ἕνα
αἰῶνα. εἰσὶ γάρ τινες οὓς ἀπωθεῖται
καὶ ἐπὶ αἰῶνα ἕτερον, παρὰ τοῦτον
αἰῶνα, περὶ ὧν ὁ σωτὴρ λέγει, ὅταν
ἁμάρτωσιν εἰς τὸ ἅγιον πνεῦμα, ὅτι οὐ μὴ
ἀφεθῇ αὐτῷ, οὔτε ἐν τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι οὔτε
ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι. φέρε
γὰρ τινὰ ἔχειν ἁμάρτημα ἐπὶ τῶν χρόνων
τοῦ ἀδὰμ, καὶ κολάζεσθαι ἔκτοτε
μέχρι τῆς συντελείας ἐπὶ τῷ ἁμαρτήματι.
ὅρα τὸ μέγεθος πηλίκον ἐστὶ τῆς κολάσεως.
καὶ εἰ δύνασαι καὶ ἄλλον συνάψαι.
ἤτοι ἰσόχρονον τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι,
ἢ οὐκ ἰσόχρονον. οὐ γὰρ οἶδα τὰ
μεγέθη τῶν αἰώνων. ἴδε τινά μοι κολαζόμενον
κἀκεῖνον τὸν αἰῶνα, καὶ ὅρα τὸ
μέγεθος τῆς κολάσεως, καὶ μὴ καταφρόνει,
καὶ νόει τὰ ἐνταῦθα εἰρημένα
ὑπὸ τοῦ φροφήτου ὅτι οὐκ εἰς
τοὺς αἰῶνας ἀπώσεται κύριος. ¶ τῶν
ἀπωσωμῶν τοῦ θεοῦ. ἀλλ᾽ ὅρα ὅτι καὶ μίαν
ὥραν ἀπωσθῆναι τοῦ θεοῦ, ζημία ἐστὶ
μεγάλη. ὅταν γὰρ ἀπώσηταί με ὁ θεὸς,
διάβολός με λαμβάνει, ὡς ἀπωσθέντα,
καὶ αὐτῷ παραδοθέντα, οἷον ἀπώσατο
παῦλος τὸν πεπορνευκότα ἐν κορίνθῳ.
διὰ τοῦτο ἀπώσατο αὐτὸν ἀπὸ
τῆς ἐκκλησίας, παρέδωκεν αὐτὸν
τῷ σατανᾷ εἰς ὄλεθρον τῆς σαρκὸς
ἵνα τὸ πνεῦμα σωθῇ. καὶ ἕκαστον ἡμῶν
ἂν ἀπώσηται ὁ θεὸς, οὐδεὶς ἄλλος παραλαμβάνει,
ἢ ὁ σατανᾶς καὶ οἱ ἄγγελοι
αὐτοῦ. φοβερὸν τὸ ὑπ᾽ ἐκεῖνον γενέσθαι,
καὶ εἴ τις γίνεται ὑπ᾽ ἐκεῖνον, κρίματι
θεοῦ ὡς ἄξιος τοῦ ὑπ᾽ ἐκεῖνον γενέσθαι
Origen on the Ages to Come Pt. 1
“I have pondered over the ancient days,
and I have kept remembrance and meditated upon the eternal years.
In the night, I groaned deeply in my heart,
and I probed my spirit.
Surely the Lord will not reject forever,
and continue not to set forth goodwill?
Surely, in the end, he will not cut off his mercy
from generation to generation?
Surely God will not forget to show compassion,
and withhold, within his wrath, his mercies?” (Ps. 76:6-10 LXX).
The Psalmist says, “I have pondered the ancient days,” but then as he ponders the ancient days, he ascends to what is beyond them: the eternal years. Moreover (if I may say so) years that share in temporality are themselves temporary, since the things we see are only temporary. There are, however, other years that are eternal: those before the world, perhaps, and those after the world. The law has measures concerning these years, because it has a shadow of the good things to come: it teaches about what must be done in the seventh year and in the fiftieth. After all, when someone has comprehended the spiritual nature of the law, they will understand that these ordinances refer to eternal years. Thus, this righteous one ascends from pondering the ancient days to the eternal years. These eternal years are comprised of eternal days, which are written about in Deuteronomy, “remember the days of eternity. Understand the years of the generation of generations.” (Dt. 32:7) Hearing this, we pray to ascend from these earthly days, and months, and years, to ascend to the days of eternity, to the eternal years, and, if I dare say so, since the new-moon feast is spiritual, to ascend also to the eternal months, in which the passage of our lives is not demarcated by the sun, for there the “Lord will be an eternal light for you, and God will be your glory” (Is 60:19).
Therefore, “I have remembered and meditated on the eternal years. In the night, I would search deeply with my heart, and would probe my spirit.” Take note of this passage, so that if sleep ever forsakes you, and you are lying awake, you do not waste that time of wakefulness on unnecessary things. Rather, during the time you are awake, while sleep as forsaken you, set your thoughts on service to God. This man, having set his mind to such things, said, “in the night I would search deeply with my heart, and would probe my spirit.” His spirit and heart replied, “Surely the Lord will not reject forever, nor hold back his mercies within his wrath?” This is what he said, ‘I meditated in the night, and in private I would search deeply with my heart, and would probe my spirit.’ Since our spirit was given to us to be a better helper than our souls, if someone wishes to find what they seek, they shouldn’t probe their soul, nor probe their body, but probe instead their spirit. Just as someone who wishes to find something in the ground will probe the ground to find what they imagine to be in the ground, so too you must probe the spirit to find the fruits of the spirit, if you are seeking spiritual things. “I was probing my spirit” because you, [my spirit], “search all things.” That is, [as you search] the deep things of God, you are probing your spirit. Furthermore, I’d say that you’re probing the Spirit of God, for it is possible to come to the Spirit and search him.
First, I’ll say that I’ve tried to produce a translation in the proper register. The proper register for this homily is classroom lecture, or church sermon, and so I’ve tried to use appropriately colloquial English (that’s why you see singular ‘they’, which may grate the ears of some). I’ve taken liberties at several points to add clarifying phrases, so you are getting my interpretation of what Origen says here (as always happens when reading a translation). I’ve tried to be a faithful translator, but there will always be problems somewhere! If you notice something off, do let me know.
This discussion precedes Origen’s discussion on punishment, but you can see how the text demands that he will discuss it. He follows the text quite closely, and what I find interesting is his attention to method. This comes out in several ways. First, as he is wont to due, Origen brings in relevant scriptures from other places (Deuteronomy and Isaiah). He does indulge in some speculative philosophy on the nature of the “eternal days,” and he acknowledges this by saying ‘If I dare say so.’ But this is deeply rooted in the text, something many people who haven’t read much Origen forget. He was known later as the most infamous of all allegorists, but his attention to detail is remarkable and note worthy.
Beyond exegetical method, Origen gives much attention to the nature and method of revelation. The psalmist is an example of devotion for us to follow. Our sleeplessness should cause us to pursue God in prayer, and it is only in the context of prayer that one experiences what Paul calls “things unspeakable” (2 Cor 12:4). This “mystical ascent” cannot always be expressed in direct terms, and when it is shared, it’s often done in symbolically or apophatically. Thus, Paul (2 Cor 12) and John (Revelation) are models for how to understand this passage. We must remember this mystical “reluctance” when reading Origen’s statements on the ages to come. Hopefully I’ll have more up soon!
Note this is a provisional transcription. I’ve taken the liberty of italicizing scriptural quotations, and I’ve tried to divide the sentences logically. In punctuating, I’ve considered the manuscript’s punctuation, but also tried to make it comprehensible for a modern reader. One of the reasons I’ve left it in this form is so you can check my work against the manuscript. If something looks off, then please take a look at the ms and let me know in the comments. You can find direction on my Origen page for how to access it.
οὖν φησι, ἡμέρας ἀρχαίας. εἶτα
διαλογισάμενος ἡμέρας ἀρχαίας,
ἔτι ἀναβαίνει ἐπὶ τὰ ἀνωτέρω τῶν ἀρχαίων
ἡμερῶν, τὰ ἔτη τὰ αἰώνια.
ἀλλ᾽εἰ δεῖ οὕτως εἰπεῖν, ἐπεὶ τὰ βλεπόμενα
πρόσκαιρά ἐστι, καὶ τὰ ἐν τοῖς
προσκαίροις ἔτη, πρόσκαιρά ἐστιν.
ἔστι δὲ ἄλλα ἔτη αἰώνια, τὰ πρὸ τοῦ
κόσμου τάχα, καὶ τὰ μετὰ τὸν κόσμον,
περὶ ὧν ἐτῶν, περιέχει ὁ σκιὰν ἔχων
τῶν μελλόντων ἀγαθῶν νόμος, διδάσκει
περὶ ἑβδόμου ἔτους ὃ δεὶ ποιεῖν, περὶ
πεντηκοστοῦ ἔτους. ὁ γὰρ νοήσας τὸν
νόμον καθὸ πνευματικός ἐστιν, ἀνάγει
ταῦτα ἐπὶ τὰ αἰώνια ἔτη. ὁ οὖν δίκαιος
ἀναβαίνει ἀπὸ τοῦ διαλογίσασθαι
ἡμέρας ἀρχαίας, ἐπὶ τὰ ἔτη τὰ αἰώνια.
τάδε αἰώνια ἔτη συνέστηκεν, ἐξ ἡμερῶν
αἱωνίων, περὶ ὧν γέγραπται ἐν
δευτερονομίῳ, τοῦτον τὸν τρόπον, μνήσθητε
ἡμέρας αἰῶνος. σύνετε ἔτη γενεᾶς
γενεῶν. καὶ εὐχόμεθά γε ἀναβῆναι
ἀπὸ τούτων τῶν ἡμερῶν, καὶ τούτων
τῶν μηνῶν, καὶ τούτων τῶν ἐτῶν, ἐπὶ
τὰς τοῦ αἰῶνος ἡμέρας, καὶ ἐπὶ τὰ ἔτη
τὰ αἰώνια, καὶ εἰ δεῖ τολμήσαντα εἰπεῖν,
διὰ τὸ καὶ νουμηνίας εἶναι πνευματικὰς,
καὶ ἐπὶ τοὺς μῆνας τοὺς αἱωνίους,
ἐν οἷς πολιτεύομεθα χαρακτηριζόμενοι,
οὐχ ὑπὸ τούτου τοῦ ἡλίου
ἔσται γάρ σοι κύριος φῶς αἰώνιον, καὶ ὁ θεὸς
δόξα σου. ¶ ἔτη οὖν αἰώνια ἐμνήσθην καὶ
ἐμελέτησα, νυκτὸς μετὰ τῆς καρδίας
μου ἠδολέσχουν. καὶ ἐσκάλαυον τὸ πνεῦμα
μου. μάνθανε καὶ ἀπὸ τοῦ ῥητοῦ, ἐάν
ποτέ σε καὶ ὕπνος καταλίπῃ καὶ
διαγρυπνῇς, μὴ παραπολλύειν τὸν
χρόνον τῆς ἀγρυπνίας εἰς τὸ μὴ δέον·
ἀλλὰ παρ᾽ ὃν καιρὸν ἐγρήγορας, τοῦ ὕπνου σε
λαμβάνειν θεοσεβείας. ὁ ποίους λαβῶν
οὗτος ἔλεγε, νυκτὸς μετὰ τῆς καρδίας
μου ἠδολέσχουν, καὶ ἐσκάλαυον τὸ
πνεῦμα μου. καὶ εἶπον, μὴ, εἰς τοὺ αἰῶνας
ἀπώσεται κύριος, ἢ συνέξει ἐν τῇ ὀργῇ
αὐτοῦ τοὺς οἰκτιρμοὺς αὐτοῦ; ταῦτά φησι
νυκτὸς διελογισάμην, καὶ κατ᾽ ἐμαυτὸν
ἠδολέσχουν, μετὰ τῆς καρδίας μου, καὶ
ἐσκάλαυον τὸ πνεῦμα μου. ἐπεὶ γὰρ τὸ πνεῦμα
δίδοται ὑπὸ θεοῦ εἰς βοήθειαν, ὡς
κρεῖττον τυχάνον τῆς ψυχῆς ἡμῶν, ὁ
βουλόμενος εὑρεῖν ὃ ζητεῖ, μὴ σκαλευέτω
τὴν ψυχὴν, μηδὲ σκαλαύετω τὸ σῶμα.
ἀλλὰ σκαλευέτω τὸ πνεῦμα. καὶ ὥσπερ
ὁ βουλόμενος τί εὑρεῖν ἐν γῇ, σκάλει
τὴν γῆν ἵνα εὕρῃ ὃ φαντάζεται εἶναι
ἐν τῇ γῇ, τὸν αὐτὸν τρόπον, ἐι πνευματικὰ
ζητεῖς, σκάλλε τὸ πνεῦμα, εὑρίσκειν τοὺς
καρποὺς τοῦ πνεύματος. ἔσκαλλον τὸ πνεῦμα
μου, ὅτε καὶ σὺ πάντα ἐρευνᾷς. καὶ
τὰ βάθη τοῦ θεοῦ, σκάλλεις τὸ πνεῦμα σου.
ἐγὼ δὲ λέγω, ὅτι καὶ τὸ πνεῦμα τοῦ θεοῦ.
δυνατὸν γάρ ἐστι καὶ ἐπ᾽αὐτὸ φθάσαι