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402 The Imperfect are doubly harmed by their Sins.
HOMIL. Now if he needed so great a conversion, when will it be 10. possible for us to be saved, feeling insensible after so many
sins? For he that hath many good deeds, would easily even by this throw a shade over his sins; but he that is unarmed, wherever he may receive a dart, receives a mortal wound.
In order therefore that this may not be so, let us arm ourselves with good works; and if any offence have befallen us, let us wash it away: that we may be counted worthy, after having lived the present life to the glory of God, to enjoy the life to come; unto which may we all attain, by the grace and love towards man of our Lord Jesus Christ, to Whom be glory and might for ever and ever. Amen.
MATT. viii. 14, 15.
And when Jesus was come into Peter's house, He saw his wife's mother laid and sick of a fever: and He touched her hand, and the fever left her, and she arose and ministered unto Him1.
BUT Mark adds also, " immediately 2," meaning to declare the time as well; but this Evangelist hath set down only the Mark miracle, without signifying besides the time. And whereas the others say, that she that lay ill did also entreat Him, this Luke 4, too he hath passed over in silence. But this comes not of any dissonance, but the one of brevity, the other of exact narrative.
But for what intent did He go into Peter's house? As it seems to me, to take food. This at least is declared when it is said,
She arose and ministered unto Him.
For He used to visit His disciples, (as Matthew likewise, when He had called him,) so honouring them and making them more zealous.
But do thou mark, I pray thee, herein also Peter's reverence towards Him. For though he had his wife's mother at home lying ill, and very sick of a fever, he drew Him not into his house, but waited first for the teaching to be finished, then for all the others to be healed; and then when He had come in, besought Him. Thus from the beginning was he instructed to prefer the things of all others to his own.
The Healing of St. Peter's Wife's Mother.
Therefore neither doth he himself bring Him in, but He entered of His own accord, (after the centurion had said, I 1, 2. v. 8. am not worthy that Thou shouldest come under my roof:) to shew how much favour He bestowed on His disciple. And yet consider of what sort were the houses of these fishermen; but for all that, He disdained not to enter into their mean huts, teaching thee by all means to trample under foot human pride.
And sometimes He heals by words only, sometimes He even stretches forth His hand, sometimes He doeth both these things, to bring into sight His way of healing. For it was not His will always to work miracles in the more surpassing manner: it being needful for Him to be concealed awhile, and especially as concerned His disciples; since they out of their great delight would have proclaimed every thing. And this was evident from the fact, that even after coming to the Mount, it was needful to charge them that they should tell no man.
Having therefore touched her body, He not only quenched the fever, but also gave her back perfect health. Thus, the disease being an ordinary one, He displayed His power by the manner of healing; a thing which no physician's art could have wrought. For ye know that even after the departing of fevers, the patients yet need much time to return to their former health. But then all took place at
And not in this case only, but also in that of the sea. For neither there did He quiet the winds only and the storm, but He also stayed at once the swelling of the waves; and this also was a strange thing. For even if the tempest should cease, the waves continue to swell for a long time.
But with Christ it was not so, but all at once was ended: and so it befel this woman also. Wherefore also the Evanv. 15. gelist, to declare this, said, She arose and ministered unto Him; which was a sign both of Christ's power, and of the disposition of the woman, which she shewed towards Christ.
And another thing together with these we may hence observe, that Christ grants the healing of some to the faith even of others. Since in this case too, others besought Him, as also in the instance of the centurion's servant.
Great abundance of our Lord's Miracles.
And this grant He makes, when there is no unbelief in him MATT. that is to be healed, but either through disease he cannot 16, 17. come unto Him, or through ignorance imagines nothing great of Him, or because of his immature age.
[2.] When the even was come, they brought unto Him many v.16,17. that were possessed with devils: and He cast out the spirits from them with a word, and healed all that were sick: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Prophet Esaias, that He took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.
Seest thou the multitude, by this time growing in faith? For not even when the time pressed could they endure to depart, nor did they account it unseasonable to bring their sick to Him at eventide.
But mark, I pray thee, how great a multitude of persons healed the Evangelists pass quickly over, not mentioning one by one, and giving us an account of them, but in one word traversing an unspeakable sea of miracles. Then lest the greatness of the wonder should drive us again to unbelief, that even so great a people and their various diseases should be delivered and healed by Him in one moment of time, He brings in the Prophet also to bear witness to what is going on indicating the abundance of the proof we have, in every case, out of the Scriptures; such, that from the miracles themselves we have no more; and He saith, that Esaias also spake of these things; He took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses. He said not," He did them away," but He took and bare them; which seems to me to be spoken rather of sins, by the Prophet, in harmony with John, where he saith, Behold the Lamb of God, that beareth the sin of the world1.
How then doth the Evangelist here apply it to diseases? 29. Either as rehearsing the passage in the historical sense, or to shew that most of our diseases arise from sins of the soul. For if the sum of all, death itself, hath its root and foundation from sin, much more the majority of our diseases also: since our very capability of suffering did itself originate there.
a Is. 53, 4. The Evangelist seems sense, to which the actual knowledge to quote the Hebrew, not the LXX. of the facts concerning Christ, apart from what faith teaches, might guide a man." See Suicer in v. ἱστορία.
bxarà irrogíav shy μagrugíav åvays νώσκων, reading the text in that
HOMIL. XXVII. 3, 4.
Why He bade depart to the other side.
[3.] Now when Jesus saw great multitudes about Him, He gave commandment to depart unto the other side.
Seest thou again His freedom from ostentation? in that as the others say, "He charged the devils not to say it 1 Mark was He'," so this writer saith, He repels the multitudes from Him. Now in so doing, He was at once both training us to 4, 41. be moderate, and at the same time allaying the envy of the Jews, and teaching us to do nothing for display. For He was not, we know, a Healer to bodies only, but a Curer also of the soul, and a Teacher of self-restraint; by both disclosing Himself, both by putting away their diseases, and by doing nought for display. Because they indeed were cleaving unto Him, loving Him, and marvelling at Him, and desiring to look upon Him. For who would depart from One who was doing such miracles? Who would not long, were it only to see the Face, and the Mouth that was uttering such words?
4 Is. 53,
For not by any means in working wonders only was He wonderful, but even when merely shewing Himself, He was full 2 głos. of great grace; and to declare this the Prophet said, Fair2 3 Ps. 45, in beauty beyond the children of men3. And if Esaias saith, He hath no form nor comeliness1, he affirms it either in 2. LXX. comparison of the glory of His Godhead, Which surpasses all utterance and description; or as declaring what took place at His passion, and the dishonour which He underwent at the season of the cross, and the mean estate which throughout His life He exemplified in all respects.
Further; He did not first give commandment to depart unto the other side, nor until He had healed them. For surely they could not have borne it. As therefore on the mountain they not only continued with Him while exhorting them, but also when it was silence followed Him; so here too, not in His miracles only did they wait on Him, but also when He had ceased again, from His very countenance receiving no small benefit. For if Moses had his face made glorious, and Stephen like that of an Angel; consider thou our common Lord, what manner of person it was likely He would appear at such a time.
ci. e. 66 moderate, as receivers, in to all display, when we give in His what we expect from Him: and averse Name."