Exhortatio ad dandum eleemosynas
Exhortation to almsgiving
8:9 Scitis enim gratiam Domini nostri Jesu Christi, quoniam propter vos egenus factus est, cum esset dives, ut illius inopia vos divites essetis. [n. 294]
8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that being rich he became destitute for your sakes: that through his poverty you might be rich. [n. 294]
8:10 Et consilium in hoc do: hoc enim vobis utile est, qui non solum facere, sed et velle coepistis ab anno priore: [n. 296]
8:10 And herein I give my advice: for this is profitable for you who began not only to do but also to be willing, a year ago. [n. 296]
8:11 nunc vero et facto perficite: ut quemadmodum promptus est animus voluntatis, ita sit et perficiendi ex eo quod habetis. [n. 300]
8:11 Now therefore perform it also in deed: that as your mind is ready to be willing, so it may be also to perform, out of what you have. [n. 300]
8:12 Si enim voluntas prompta est, secundum id quod habet, accepta est, non secundum id quod non habet. [n. 301]
8:12 For if the will is ready, it is accepted according to what a man has: not according to what he has not. [n. 301]
8:13 Non enim ut aliis sit remissio, vobis autem tribulatio, sed ex aequalitate. [n. 302]
8:13 For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened, but by an equality. [n. 302]
8:14 In praesenti tempore vestra abundantia illorum inopiam suppleat: ut et illorum abundantia vestrae inopiae sit supplementum, ut fiat aequalitas, sicut scriptum est: [n. 305]
8:14 In this present time let your abundance supply their want, that their abundance also may supply your want: that there may be an equality, as it is written: [n. 305]
8:15 Qui multum, non abundavit: et qui modicum, non minoravit. [n. 308]
8:15 He who had much had nothing over; and he who had little had no want. [n. 308]
294. Hic inducit Corinthios ad dandum eleemosynas exemplo Christi, dicens: volo comprobare ingenium vestrum bonum ad dandum, scilicet pauperibus, et hoc facere debetis exemplo Christi. Enim, id est quia, scitis gratiam Domini nostri Iesu Christi, quam quidem humano generi contulit. Io. I, v. 17: gratia et veritas per Iesum Christum, et cetera. Et haec dicitur gratia, quia quidquid Filius Dei poenalitatum nostrarum assumpsit, totum gratiae est imputandum, quia nec praeventus alicuius bonitate, nec alicuius virtute coactus, nec inductus sua necessitate.
294. Here he uses the example of Christ to induce the Corinthians to give alms, saying: I wish to approve your good disposition, namely, for giving to the poor, and you should do this by reason of Christ’s example. For, that is, because you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, which he conferred on the human race: grace and truth came through Jesus Christ (John 1:17). This is called grace, because whatever the Son of God assumed of our punishments, all must be imputed to grace, because he was not anticipated by anyone’s goodness, or compelled by anyone’s power, or induced by any necessity of his own.
Est autem gratia ista quoniam propter nos egenus factus est. Et dicit egenus, quod plus est quam pauper. Nam egenus dicitur ille, qui non solum parum habet, sed qui indiget seu eget; pauper vero ille qui parum habet. Ad significandum ergo maiorem paupertatem dicitur egenus factus est, scilicet in temporalibus. Lc. IX, 58: Filius hominis non habet, et cetera. Thren. III, 19: recordare paupertatis, et cetera.
But it is grace, that being rich he became destitute for your sakes. He says, became destitute which is more than poor; for a destitute person is one who not only has very little, but is in great need; but a poor man is one who has a little. Therefore, to signify the extent of his poverty, he says, he became destitute, namely, in temporal things: the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head (Luke 9:58); remember my affliction (Lam 3:19).
Est autem factus egenus, non ex necessitate, sed ex voluntate, quia gratia ista iam non esset gratia. Et ideo dicit cum dives esset, scilicet in bonis spiritualibus. Rom. X, v. 12: idem Deus dives in omnes, et cetera. Prov. c. VIII, 18: mecum sunt divitiae, et cetera. Dicit autem esset, non fuisset, ne videretur Christus amisisse divitias spirituales cum assumpsit paupertatem. Sic enim assumpsit hanc paupertatem quod illas inaestimabiles divitias non amisit. Ps. XLVIII, 3: simul in unum dives et pauper. Dives in spiritualibus, pauper in temporalibus.
He was made needy not from necessity but willingly, because that grace would not then be a grace. Hence he says, that being rich, namely, in spiritual goods: the same Lord is Lord of all and bestows his riches upon all who call upon him (Rom 10:12); riches and honor are with me (Prov 8:18). He says, being, and not having been, lest it seem that Christ lost his spiritual riches when he assumed poverty. For he assumed this poverty in such a way that he did not lose those inestimable riches: both rich and poor together (Ps 49:2), rich in spiritual things, poor in temporal things.
295. Causam autem quare voluit fieri egenus, subdit cum dicit ut illius inopia divites essemus, id est ut illius paupertate in temporalibus, vos essetis divites in spiritualibus. Et hoc est propter duo, scilicet propter exemplum et propter sacramentum.
295. The reason he willed to be made needy is added, when he says, that through his poverty you might become rich, i.e., that through his poverty in temporal things, you might become rich in spiritual things. And this for two reasons: for an example and for a sacrament.
Propter exemplum quidem, quia si Christus dilexit paupertatem, et nos, exemplo suo, debemus diligere eam. Diligendo autem paupertatem in temporalibus, efficimur divites in spiritualibus. Iac. II, 5: nonne Deus elegit pauperes in mundo, divites in fide, et cetera. Et ideo dicit ut illius inopia, et cetera.
For an example, indeed, because if Christ loved poverty, we also should love it because of his example. But by loving poverty in temporal things, we are made rich in spiritual things: has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which he has promised to those who love him? (Jas 2:5). This is why he says, that through his poverty you might become rich.
Propter sacramentum autem, quia omnia quae Christus egit vel sustinuit, fuit propter nos. Unde sicut per hoc quod sustinuit mortem, liberati sumus a morte aeterna et restituti vitae, ita per hoc quod sustinuit inopiam in temporalibus, liberati sumus ab inopia in spiritualibus, et facti divites in spiritualibus. I Cor. I, 5: divites facti estis in illo in omni scientia, et cetera.
For the sacrament, however, because everything Christ did or endured was for our sake. Hence, just as by the fact that he endured death, we were delivered from eternal death and restored to life, so by the fact that he suffered need in temporal things, we have been delivered from need in spiritual things and made rich in spiritual things. That in every way you were enriched in him with all speech and all knowledge (1 Cor 1:5).
296. Consequenter cum dicit consilium in hoc do, etc., inducit eos ad dandum ex parte eorum. Et
296. Then when he says, and herein I give my advice, he induces them to give on their part.
circa hoc duo facit.
In regard to this he does two things.
Primo ponit ipsorum utilitatem, quae ex hoc provenit;
First, he shows the benefit they will obtain from this;
secundo ostendit quod hoc etiam ab ipsis volitum est, scilicet ut darent eleemosynas, ibi qui non solum, et cetera.
second, he shows that this is desired from itself, namely, that they would give alms, at for you who began not only.
297. Dicit ergo: considerans hoc beneficium, consilium vobis do, id est hortor vos ad hoc, scilicet ad dandum eleemosynas, scilicet non solum propter utilitatem sanctorum, qui sunt in Ierusalem, sed et propter utilitatem vestram. Prov. XXVII, 9: boni amici consiliis anima dulcoratur, et cetera.
297. He says, therefore: considering this benefit, I give my advice, i.e., I urge you to give alms not only for the benefit of the saints in Jerusalem but also for your benefit: the good counsels of a friend are sweet to the soul (Prov 27:9).
Et hoc quia utile est vobis. Bonum enim pietatis plus est utile facienti, quam illi cui fit, quia faciens reportat inde commodum spirituale, recipiens vero temporale. Et sicut spirituale praeferri debet temporali, sic in operibus pietatis utilitas dantis praefertur utilitati accipientis. I Tim. IV, 8: pietas ad omnia valet.
And this is because it is profitable for you. For the good of piety is more beneficial to the doer than to the one to whom it is done, because the doer obtains a spiritual benefit from it, but the recipient a temporal one. And just as the spiritual is preferred to the temporal, in works of piety the profit to the giver is preferred to the benefit of the recipient: godliness is of value in every way (1 Tim 4:8).
298. Hoc autem non solum eis est utile sed etiam ipsi hoc voluerunt, et ideo dicit quia non solum, et cetera. Ubi tria facit.
298. But this is not only profitable to them, but they also wanted this; hence he says, for this is profitable for you who began not only to do but also to be willing, a year ago. Here he does three things.
Primo commemorat bonum principium in eis;
First, he reminds them of their good start;
secundo hortatur eos ad debitum finem, ibi nunc vero et facto, etc.;
second, he urges them to the due end, at now therefore perform it also;
tertio exponit quoddam quod dixerat, ibi si enim voluntas, et cetera.
third, he explains something he had said, at for if the will is ready.
299. Dicit ergo: vere debetis libenter dare eleemosynas, quia non solum est vobis utile, sed etiam hoc ipsum velle sponte coepistis, scilicet dare eleemosynas, a priori anno, quo scilicet veni ad vos. Vel a priori anno, id est praecedenti. Quasi dicat: plus est velle, quam facere, iuxta illud Eccli. XVIII, v. 16: verbum melius est quam datum, et cetera. Et ideo debetis esse prompti ad dandum.
299. He says, therefore: in truth you should give alms gladly, because this is not only profitable to you, but you who began not only to do but also to be willing, namely, to give alms, a year ago, i.e., before I came to you. As if to say: it is better to will than to do: so a word is better than a gift (Sir 18:16). Therefore, you should be eager to give.
300. Et quia estis prompti ad dandum, ideo nunc quod habuistis in animo perficite facto, alioquin illa voluntas esset frustra. Io. IV: non diligamus verbo, neque lingua, et cetera. Phil. I, 6: qui coepit in vobis, et cetera. Et huius ratio est, ut quemadmodum promptus est animus voluntatis, id est discretio voluntatis. Secundum Glossam, prompta est, ita sit prompta discretio perficiendi.
300. And because you are eager to give, therefore, now therefore perform it also in deed; otherwise that willingness is in vain: let us not love in word or speech but in deed and in truth (1 John 3:18); and I am sure that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ (Phil 1:6). The reason for this is that as your mind is ready to be willing, so it may be also to perform, i.e., the judgment of your will, according to a Gloss, is prompt, may be matched by your completing it.
Vel, aliter, ut animus sumatur pro voluntate. Et tunc dicitur: quemadmodum prompti fuistis ad volendum, ita prompti ad perficiendum. Et hoc ex eo quod habetis, id est secundum facultatem vestram.
Or another way, so that mind is taken for will, and then the sense is: as you were prompt in willing, so be prompt in accomplishing, out of what you have, i.e., according to your means.
301. Consequenter exponit hoc quod dicit ex eo quod habetis, dicens si enim, etc., quasi dicat: dico quod debetis esse prompti ad dandum, et in hoc non intendo vos gravare, ut scilicet detis supra facultates vestras, quia forte voluntas prompta ad hoc inducit vos, sed in hoc opus non potest imitari voluntatem. Et ideo dicit: ex eo quod habetis, enim, pro quia, si voluntas prompta est secundum id quod habet, accepta est.
301. Then he explains what he means by out of what you have, saying, for if the will is ready, it is accepted according to what a man has. As if to say: I say that you should be prompt to give, but I do not wish to burden you in this matter, namely, that you would give beyond your means, because perhaps your will inclines you to this; but in this matter the work cannot follow the will. Therefore he says, out of what you have. For, i.e., because, if the will is ready, it is accepted according to what a man has.
Et huius ratio est, quia voluntas acceptatur in perfectione operationis; opus autem non perficitur, nisi ex eo quod habetur. Et ideo dicit secundum quod habet, accepta est. Tob. IV, 9: si multum tibi fuerit, abundanter tribue, et cetera.
The reason being that the will is accepted in the accomplishment of the work; but the work is not perfected except from what a man has; hence he says, it is accepted according to what a man has. If you have much, give generously; if you have a little, then try to impart a little gladly (Tob 4:9).
302. Consequenter cum dicit non enim ut aliis, etc., removet suspicionem quamdam.
302. Then when he says, for do not I mean, he removes a suspicion.
Possent enim dicere isti: si damus eleemosynas pauperibus sanctis, qui sunt in Ierusalem, ipsi otiosi vivent, et nos damna patiemur, et sic efficiemur miseri. Ideo Apostolus
For someone could say: if we give alms to the saints in Jerusalem, they will live in idleness, while we suffer a loss and become wretched. Therefore the Apostle
primo hanc suspicionem excludit;
first removes the suspicion;
secundo suam intentionem manifestat;
second he shows his intention;
tertio vero confirmat per auctoritatem.
third, he confirms it by authority.
303. Et removet suspicionem, cum dicit non enim ut aliis, etc.; quasi dicat: non enim ita moneo vos eleemosynas dare, ut aliis sit refrigerium, dum otiose viverent de eleemosynis vestris, vobis autem sit tribulatio, id est paupertas, quia vos affligeremini.
303. He removes this suspicion when he says, for I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened. As if to say: I do not urge you to give alms in order that others might be refreshed, as they live in idleness off your alms, while you are burdened, impoverished, because you would be afflicted.