Parvuli malitia, perfecti sensibus
Children in malice, perfect in sense
14:18 Gratias ago Deo meo, quod omnium vestrum lingua loquor. [n. 847]
14:18 I thank my God I speak with all your tongues. [n. 847]
14:19 Sed in Ecclesia volo quinque verba sensu meo loqui, ut et alios instruam: quam decem millia verborum in lingua. [n. 849]
14:19 But in the Church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may instruct others also: than ten thousand words in a tongue. [n. 849]
14:20 Fratres, nolite pueri effici sensibus, sed malitia parvuli estote: sensibus autem perfecti estote. [n. 851]
14:20 Brethren, do not become children in sense. But in malice be children: and in sense be perfect. [n. 851]
14:21 In lege scriptum est: quoniam in aliis linguis et labiis aliis loquar populo huic: et nec sic exaudient me, dicit Dominus. [n. 853]
14:21 In the law it is written: in other tongues and other lips I will speak to this people: and neither so will they hear me, says the Lord. [n. 853]
14:22 Itaque linguae in signum sunt non fidelibus, sed infidelibus: prophetiae autem non infidelibus, sed fidelibus. [n. 857]
14:22 Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to believers but to unbelievers: but prophecies, not to unbelievers but to believers. [n. 857]
847. Hic ostendit Apostolus excellentiam doni prophetiae ad donum linguarum per rationes sumptas ex parte sui ipsius.
847. Here the Apostle shows that the gift of prophecy excels the gift of tongues with reasons taken on his own part.
Et circa hoc duo facit.
In regard to this he does two things:
Primo agit gratias de dono linguarum sibi a Deo dato;
first, he gives thanks for the gift of tongues given him by God;
secundo se eis in exemplum proponit, ibi sed in Ecclesia volo, et cetera.
second, he proposes himself to them as an example, at but in the Church.
848. Dicit ergo gratias ago, etc., quasi dicat: non ideo vilipendo donum linguarum, quia ego dico quod donum prophetiae sit excellentius, sed debet charum haberi. Unde et ego gratias ago, et cetera. Est ergo de omnibus gratias agendum. I Thess. V, 18: in omnibus gratias agite, et cetera.
848. He says, therefore, I thank my God that I speak in tongues more than you all. As if to say: I do not belittle the gift of tongues, because I say that the gift of prophecy is more excellent, but it ought to be cherished. Hence, I thank my God. Therefore, thanks should be given for all things: in all things give thanks (1 Thess 5:18).
Vel gratias ago, quasi dicat: non ideo vilipendo donum linguarum, quasi eo carens, immo etiam ego habeo; et ideo dicit gratias ago, et cetera.
Or I thank my God. As if to say: I do not belittle the gift of tongues, as though lacking it; rather I have it. Therefore, he says: I thank my God.
Et ne intelligatur quod omnes loquerentur una lingua, dicit quod omnium vestrum lingua loquor, Act. II, 4: loquebantur variis linguis apostoli, et cetera.
But lest it be understood that all speak in one tongue, he says: that I speak with all your tongues: they spoke in various tongues (Acts 2:4).
849. Sed in Ecclesia. Hic ponit se in exemplum, quasi dicat: si ego habeo donum linguarum sicut et vos, debetis facere illud quod facio. Sed ego volo, id est magis volo, loqui in Ecclesia quinque, id est pauca, verba sensu meo, id est intellectu, ut scilicet ego intelligam et intelligar, et ex hoc instruam alios, quam decem millia, id est quamcumque multitudinem, verborum in lingua; quod est loqui non ad intellectum quocumque modo fiat, ut supra expositum est.
849. But in the Church. Here he presents himself as an example. As if to say: if I have the gift of tongues, just as you, you should do as I do. But in the Church I had rather speak five words, i.e., a few words, with my understanding, i.e., intellect, so that I understand and be understood, in order that I may instruct others also: than ten thousand, i.e., any number of words in a tongue; which is not to speak to the mind in any way, as explained above.
850. Dicunt quidam quod ideo dicit quinque, quia Apostolus videtur velle, quod magis velit dicere solum unam orationem ad intellectum, quam multas sine intellectu. Oratio autem, secundum grammaticos, ad hoc quod debeat facere perfectum sensum, debet habere quinque, scilicet subiectum, praedicatum, copulam verbalem, determinationem subiecti, et determinationem praedicati.
850. Some say that he says, five, because the Apostle seems to prefer to say one prayer with understanding than many without understanding. But according to the grammarians, if a statement is to have perfect sense, it should have five things: a subject, predicate, verbal copula, a modifier of the subject and a modifier of the predicate.
Aliis videtur melius quod quia ad hoc loquendum est cum intellectu, ut alii doceantur, ideo ponit quinque, quia doctor debet quinque, scilicet: credenda, Tit. II, 11: haec loquere et exhortare, etc.; agenda, Mc. XVI, v. 15: euntes in mundum, etc.; vitanda, scilicet peccata Eccli. XXI, 2: quasi a facie colubri fuge, etc.; Is. LVIII, 1: annuntia populo meo scelera, etc.; speranda scilicet mercedem aeternam, I Petr. I, 10: de qua salute exquisierunt, etc.; timenda, scilicet poenas aeternas, Matth. XXV, 21: ite, maledicti, in ignem aeternum, et cetera.
To others it seems better to say, that because we speak with the intellect in order that others be taught, he mentions five, because the teacher should teach five things, namely: things to be believed: declare and exhort these things (Titus 2:11); things to be done: go into the whole world and preach the Gospel, teaching them to observe all things I have commanded you (Mark 16:15); things to be avoided, i.e., sins: flee from sin as from a snake (Sir 21:2); declare to my people their transgressions, to the house of Jacob their sins (Isa 58:1); things to be hoped for, i.e., the eternal reward: they searched and inquired about this salvation (1 Pet 1:10); things to be feared, i.e., eternal punishments: depart, you accursed into everlasting fire (Matt 25:21).
851. Fratres mei, nolite, et cetera. Hic ostendit excellentiam doni prophetiae ad donum linguarum, rationibus sumptis ex parte infidelium.
851. Brethren, do not become children in sense. Here he shows that the gift of prophecy excels the gift of tongue with reasons taken on the part of unbelievers.
Et circa hoc duo facit.
In regard to this he does two things:
Primo excitat attentionem, et reddit attentos;
first, he gets their attention and makes them attentive;
secundo arguit ad propositum, ibi in lege quid scriptum est?
second, he argues to his point, at in the law it is written.
852. Circa primum videtur Apostolus excludere pallium excusationis aliquorum qui ideo docent quaedam rudia et superficialia, quasi ostendant se volentes vivere in simplicitate, et ideo non curantes de subtilitatibus ad quas secundum rei veritatem non attingunt, habentes verbum Domini ad hoc Matthaei XVIII, 3: nisi conversi fueritis, et efficiamini sicut parvuli, et cetera.
852. In regard to the first the Apostle seems to remove the mantle of excuse from those who teach certain rude and superficial things, as if to show that they wish to live in simplicity, and not caring about subtleties to which they really do not attain; and for this they appeal to the Lord’s words: unless you be converted and become as little children, you shall not enter the kingdom of heaven (Matt 18:13).
Sed hoc Apostolus excludit, cum dicit nolite pueri effici sensu, id est nolite puerilia et inutilia et stulta loqui et docere. Supra XIII, v. 11: cum essem parvulus, et cetera.
But the Apostle rejects this, when he says: do not become children in sense, i.e., do not speak and teach childish and useless and foolish things: when I was a child, I spoke as a child (1 Cor 13:11).
Sed quomodo debetis effici pueri? Affectu, non intellectu. Et ideo dicit sed malitia. Ubi sciendum est quod parvuli deficiunt in cogitando mala, et sic debemus effici parvuli, et ideo dicit sed malitia parvuli estote, et deficiunt in cogitando bona, et sic non debemus esse parvuli, immo viri perfecti, et ideo dicit sensibus autem perfecti, etc., id est ad discretionem boni et mali perfecti sitis. Unde Hebr. V, 14: perfectorum est solidus cibus, et cetera.
But how should you become children? In affection, not in understanding. Therefore he says: but in malice. Here it should be noted that children are not wont to think evil, and therefore he says: in malice be children. And they are not accustomed to think of the good. In this sense, we should not become children but perfect men. Therefore, he says: and in sense be perfect, i.e., be perfect in discerning good and evil. Hence it is said: solid food is for the mature, for those who have their faculties trained to distinguish good from evil (Heb 5:14).
Non ergo laudatur in vobis simplicitas quae opponitur prudentiae, sed simplicitas, quae astutiae. Et ideo Dominus dicit Matth. c. X, 16: estote prudentes sicut serpentes. Rom. XVI, 19: volo vos sapientes esse in bono, simplices in malo.
Therefore, what is praised in you is not the simplicity opposed to prudence but the simplicity opposed to craftiness: be wise as serpents (Matt 10:16); I would have you wise as to what is good and guileless as to what is evil (Rom 16:19).
853. Consequenter cum dicit in lege quid scriptum est? Arguit ad propositum.
853. Then when he says: in the law it is written, he argues to his proposition.
Ubi sciendum est quod hoc argumentum, sicut patet per Glossam, distinguitur per multa; sed secundum intentionem apostoli non videtur quod attendatur in loco hoc nisi una ratio. Et ratio sua ad probandum quod donum prophetiae est excellentius, quam donum linguarum, est talis: omne quod plus valet ad illud ad quod alterum principaliter ordinatur, est melius illo altero ordinato ad hoc; sed tam donum prophetiae, quam donum linguarum, ordinatur ad conversionem infidelium; sed prophetiae plus valent ad hoc, quam donum linguarum; ergo prophetia est melior.
Here it should be noted that this argument, as is clear from a Gloss, is distinguished by many things; but according to the Apostle’s intent, it does not seem that in this place attention is paid to more than one reason. The argument proving that the gift of prophecy excels the gift of tongues is this: whatever contributes more to that to which another is principally ordained is better than the latter; but the gift of prophecy and the gift of tongues are both ordained to the conversion of unbelievers, although the gift of prophecy contributes more to this than does the gift of tongues. Therefore, prophecy is better.
854. Circa hanc ergo rationem duo facit.
854. In regard to this reason he does two things:
Primo ostendit ad quid ordinatur donum linguarum, et ad quid ordinatur donum prophetiae;
first, he shows to what the gift of tongues is ordained, and to what the gift of prophecy is ordained;
secundo quod plus valet donum prophetiae, ibi si ergo conveniat universa, et cetera.
second, that the gift of prophecy contributes more, at if therefore the whole Church (1 Cor 14:23).
Circa primum duo facit.
As to the first he does two things.
Primo inducit auctoritatem;
First, he brings forward an authority;
secundo ex auctoritate arguit ad propositum, ibi itaque linguae, et cetera.
second, he argues for his point from this authority, at wherefore tongues.
855. Circa primum sciendum est, quod hoc quod dicit in lege quid scriptum est? Potest legi vel interrogative, quasi dicat: non debetis effici pueri sensibus, sed perfecti, et hoc est videre et scire legem. Unde si estis perfecti sensibus, sciatis scilicet legem, et in lege quid scriptum est de linguis? Quae sunt inutiles aliquando ad id ad quod ordinatae sunt, quia licet in diversis linguis loquar, scilicet populo Iudaeorum, tamen homo non exaudit, et cetera.
855. In regard to the first it should be noted that this question: in the law it is written can be taken as an interrogation, as though he were saying: you should not become children in sense but mature, and this is to see and know the law. Hence, if you are mature in your senses, you should know the law and what has been written in the law about tongues, which are useless at times for that to which they are ordained, because although I should speak in various tongues, namely, to the Jewish people, nevertheless man does not hear.
Potest etiam legi remissive in lege quid scriptum est. Quasi dicat: nolite moveri sicut pueri ad aliquid appetendum, non discernentes utrum bonum vel minus bonum sit quod affectatis, et praeponatis meliori bono, sed estote perfecti sensibus, idest discernatis inter bona et magis bona, et sic affectetis. Et hoc fit si cogitatis quid scriptum est in lege quoniam in aliis, etc., Sap. VI, 16: cogitare ergo de illa, sensus est consummatus.
It can also be taken in a remissive sense, in the law it is written; as if he were saying: do not be enticed as children to desire something, not discerning whether you are being attracted to good or evil and preferring the good to the better; but be mature in sense, i.e., distinguish between the good and the better, and thus be attracted. And this happens, if you reflect on what has been written in the law: in other tongues and other lips I will speak: to fix one’s thought on her is perfect understanding (Wis 6:15).
Et dicit in lege, non accipiendo legem stricte pro quinque libris Moysi tantum, sicut accipitur Lc. ult.: necesse est impleri omnia quae scripta sunt de me in lege, etc.; sed pro toto Veteri Testamento, sicut accipitur Io. XV, 25: ut impleatur sermo qui in lege eorum scriptus est: quia odio habuerunt me gratis, quod tamen in Ps. XXIV, 19 scriptum est.
He says, in the law, not taking law exclusively for the five books of Moses, as it is taken in Luke: everything written about me in the law of Moses must be fulfilled (Luke 24:44), but for the entire Old Testament, as it is taken in John: it is to fulfill the word that is written in their law: they hated me without cause (John 15:25), which was written in a psalm (Ps 25:19).