Unity of the faith
4:5 Unus Dominus, una fides, unum baptisma. [n. 198]
4:5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism. [n. 198]
4:6 Unus Deus et Pater omnium, qui est super omnes, et per omnia, et in omnibus nobis. [n. 201]
4:6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in us all. [n. 201]
197. Posita eorum exhortatione pro servanda ecclesiastica unitate, in hac parte Apostolus formam dictae unitatis ipsis Ephesiis insinuat. Ubi sciendum est, quod cum Ecclesia Dei sit sicut civitas, est aliquod unum et distinctum, cum non sit unum sicut simplex, sed sicut compositum ex diversis partibus. Et ideo Apostolus duo facit.
197. After he has exhorted them to secure ecclesial unity, the Apostle offers the Ephesians, in this section, a glimpse of this unity’s pattern. Since the Church of God is likened to a city, it is one and distinct, although this unity is not uncomposed but composed of different parts. Thus the Apostle does two things:
Primo ostendit id quod est commune Ecclesiae;
first, he shows what is common in the Church;
secundo ostendit id quod est distinctum in ipsa, ibi unicuique autem nostrum data est gratia, et cetera.
second, he shows what is distinctive to each member in her, at but to every one of us is given grace (Eph 4:7).
In qualibet autem civitate, ad hoc ut sit una, quatuor debent esse communia, scilicet unus gubernator, una lex, eadem insignia, et idem finis: haec autem quatuor dicit Apostolus esse in Ecclesia.
The solidarity of any city demands the presence of four common elements: one governor, one law, the same symbols, and a common goal. The Apostle affirms that these are present in the Church also.
198. Dicit ergo: dico quod debetis habere unum corpus et unum spiritum, quia estis in unitate Ecclesiae, quae est una.
198. Hence, he says: you ought to have one body and one spirit (Eph 4:4) since you belong to the one unified Church.
Primo, quia habet ducem unum, scilicet Christum, et quantum ad hoc dicit unus Dominus, non plures, pro quorum diversis voluntatibus oporteat vos discordare. Dicitur enim Hebr. III, 6: Christus est tamquam Filius in domo sua. Act. II, 36: certissime ergo sciat omnis domus Israel, quia et Dominum eum et Christum Deus fecit hunc Iesum, quem vos crucifixistis. I Cor. VIII, 6: unus Dominus noster Iesus Christus. Zach. c. XIV, 9: in illa die erit Dominus unus, et nomen eius unum.
First, she has one leader, Christ. Obeying one Lord, not many, conflicts do not arise from trying to comply with divergent commands. For it is written: Christ is as the Son in his own house (Heb 3:6). Therefore let all the house of Israel know most certainly that God has made both Lord and Christ, this same Jesus, whom you have crucified (Acts 2:36). There are many lords; yet to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things . . . and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things (1 Cor 8:5–6). And the Lord shall be king over all the earth. In that day there shall be one Lord, and his name shall be one (Zech 14:9).
199. Secundo quia lex eius est una. Lex enim Ecclesiae est lex fidei. Rom. III, v. 27: ubi est ergo nunc gloriatio tua? Exclusa est. Per quam legem? Factorum? Non, sed per legem fidei.
199. Second, her law is one. For the law of the Church is the law of faith: where then is your boasting? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith (Rom 3:27).
Sed fides quandoque sumitur pro ipsa re credita, secundum illud: haec est fides Catholica, etc., id est, ista debent credi. Quandoque vero sumitur pro habitu fidei, quo creditur in corde. Et de utroque hoc potest dici.
Faith is sometimes applied to the reality believed in, as with this is the Catholic faith, meaning this is what must be believed. At other times, faith refers to the habit of faith by which a man believes what he must in his very heart. Faith in both these senses can be called one.
De primo, ut sit sensus una est fides, id est, idem iubemini credere et eodem modo operari, quia unum et idem est quod creditur a cunctis fidelibus, unde universalis seu Catholica dicitur. Unde I Cor. I, 10: idipsum dicatis, id est sentiatis, omnes, et cetera.
In the former, one faith would mean that you are bidden to believe in the same truths and in the same way of acting. For what is believed by all the faithful is one and the same reality, hence their faith is termed Catholic or universal. Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak, that is, think, the same thing and that there be no schisms among you; but that you be perfect in the same mind and in the same judgment (1 Cor 1:10).
Alio modo una est fides, id est unus habitus fidei quo creditur; una, inquam, non numero, sed specie, quia idem debet esse in corde omnium; et hoc modo idem volentium dicitur una voluntas.
In the second way, one faith designates the unity of the habit of faith by which all believe. I mean that it is specifically one—not numerically one—since the same faith is present in each one’s heart; just as when many persons want the same thing, they are said to be of one will.
200. Tertio eadem sunt insignia Ecclesiae, scilicet sacramenta Christi, inter quae primum baptisma, quod est ianua omnium aliorum. Et ideo dicit unum baptisma.
200. Third, the Church shares the same symbols. They are Christ’s sacraments, of which baptism is the first and the entrance to the rest. Hence he says one baptism.
Dicitur autem unum triplici ratione. Primo quia Baptismata non differunt secundum baptizantes; quia a quocumque conferantur, uniformem virtutem habent, quia qui baptizat interius, unus est, scilicet Christus. Io. I, v. 33: super quem videris Spiritum descendentem, et manentem super eum, hic est qui baptizat in Spiritu Sancto.
Three reasons account for this unity. First, baptisms do not differ by reason of who administers them. No matter who performs the rites they possess an unvaried power because he who baptizes interiorly is one, namely, Christ. He upon whom you shall see the Spirit descending and remaining upon him, he it is that baptizes with the Holy Spirit (John 1:33).
Secundo dicitur unum, quia datur in nomine unius, scilicet Trinitatis. Baptizantes eos in nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti.
Second, baptism is one since it is conferred in the name of the one Triune God: baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matt 28:19).
Tertio quia iterari non potest. Poenitentia autem, matrimonium, Eucharistia, et extrema unctio, iterari possunt, non autem Baptismus. Hebr. VI, 4: impossibile est eos qui semel sunt illuminati, scilicet per baptismum, gustaverunt autem donum caeleste, et participes facti sunt Spiritus Sancti, gustaverunt nihilominus bonum Dei verbum virtutesque saeculi venturi, et prolapsi sunt, scilicet per peccatum, renovari rursus ad poenitentiam. Non iteratur autem vel propter characterem, vel quia causa eius non iteratur. Rom. VI, 4: consepulti enim sumus cum illo per baptismum in mortem, et cetera. Nunc autem Christus semel pro peccatis mortuus est, ut dicitur I Petr. III, 18.
The third reason is that it cannot be repeated. The sacraments of penance, matrimony, the Eucharist and last anointing may be repeated, but not baptism. For it is impossible for those who were once illuminated, by baptism, have tasted also the heavenly gift and were made partakers of the Holy Spirit, have moreover tasted the good word of God and the powers of the world to come, and are fallen away, through sins, to be renewed again to penance (Heb 6:4–6). It is not repeated, either by reason of the sacramental character it imparts, or because its cause is not repeated: for we are buried together with him by baptism into death; that, as Christ is risen from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we also may walk in newness of life (Rom 6:4). And Christ also died for sins once for all (1 Pet 3:18).
201. Quarto in Ecclesia est idem finis, qui est Deus. Filius enim ducit nos ad Patrem. I Cor. XV, 24: cum tradiderit regnum Deo et Patri, cum evacuaverit omnem principatum, et potestatem, et virtutem, oportet autem illum regnare, et cetera. Et quantum ad hoc subiungit, dicens unus Deus, etc., ubi
201. Fourth, the Church has the same goal, which is God. The Son leads us to the Father: when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God and the Father; when he shall have brought to naught all principality and power and virtue (1 Cor 15:24). In reference to this the Apostle adds one God and Father of all:
primo, ponit apostolus eius unitatem;
first, he mentions his unity;
secundo eius dignitatem, ibi qui est super omnes, et cetera.
second, his dignity, at who is above all.
202. Circa primum duo dicit: primum pertinet ad naturam divinam; unde dicit unus Deus. Deut. VI, 4: audi, Israel, Dominus Deus tuus unus est. Aliud pertinet ad eius benevolentiam ad nos et ad pietatem; unde dicit et Pater omnium. Is. LXIII, 16: tu, Domine, Pater noster, et redemptor noster. Mal. II, 10: numquid non Pater unus omnium nostrum? Numquid non Deus creavit nos?
202. Regarding the first he has two remarks. One pertains to the divine nature; he says there is one God: hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord (Deut 6:4). The other has to do with his kindness to us and our piety; whence he says Father of all: you, O Lord, are our Father, our redeemer: from everlasting is your name (Isa 63:16); Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? (Mal 2:10).
203. Dignitatem autem eius commendat ex tribus. Ex altitudine divinitatis, cum dicit qui est super omnes. Ps. CXII, 4: super omnes gentes Dominus, et cetera. Ex amplitudine eius potestatis, cum dicit per omnia. Ier. c. XXXIII, 24: caelum et terram ego impleo, et cetera. Ps. VIII, 8: omnia subiecisti sub pedibus, et cetera. Lc. X, 22: omnia mihi quippe tradita sunt, quippe quia omnia per ipsum facta sunt, Io. I, 3. Sed modo quo dicitur Sap. XI, 21: omnia in numero, et pondere, et mensura disposuisti. Ex largitate gratiae, cum dicit et in omnibus nobis, scilicet per gratiam. Ier. XIV, 9: tu autem in nobis es, Domine, et cetera.
203. He extols God’s dignity on three scores. The divine majesty who is above all: the Lord is high above all nations; and his glory above the heavens (Ps 113:4). His power which extends through all: do I not fill heaven and earth? says the Lord (Jer 23:24). You have subjected all things under his feet (Ps 8:8). All things are delivered to me (Luke 10:22) since all things were made by him (John 1:3). It is indicated how this is accomplished: you have ordered all things in measure, and number, and weight. For great power always belonged to you alone: and who shall resist the strength of your arm? (Wis 11:21) Finally, there is the abundance of his grace in us all: you, O Lord, are among us, and your name is called upon by us (Jer 14:9).
Sed primum appropriatur Patri, qui est fontale principium divinitatis et omnes creaturas excellit. Secundum Filio, qui est sapientia attingens a fine usque ad finem fortiter, Sap. VIII, 1. Tertium vero Spiritui Sancto, qui replet orbem terrarum, Sap. I, 7.
Majesty is appropriated to the Father who is the source and principle in the divinity, exceeding the whole of creation. Power is appropriated to the Son who is that wisdom which reaches from end to end mightily (Wis 8:1). Grace is appropriated to the Holy Spirit who has filled the whole world (Wis 1:7).
Accensus et descensus Christi
Christ’s ascent and descent
4:7 Unicuique autem nostrum data est gratia secundum mensuram donationis Christi. [n. 205]
4:7 But to every one of us is given grace, according to the measure of the giving of Christ. [n. 205]
4:8 Propter quod dicit: ascendens in altum, captivam duxit captivitatem: dedit dona hominibus. [n. 206]
4:8 Wherefore he says: ascending on high, he led captivity captive: he gave gifts to men. [n. 206]
4:9 Quod autem ascendit, quid est, nisi quia et descendit primum in inferiores partes terrae? [n. 207]
4:9 Now, that he ascended, what is it, except that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? [n. 207]
4:10 Qui descendit, ipse est et qui ascendit super omnes caelos, ut impleret omnia. [n. 209]
4:10 He that descended is the same also that ascended above all the heavens: that he might fill all things. [n. 209]
204. Supra ostendit Apostolus ecclesiasticam unitatem quantum ad id quod in Ecclesia est commune, hic idem ostendit quantum ad hoc quod singulis fidelibus membris Ecclesiae est proprium et speciale.
204. Previously the Apostle dealt with ecclesial unity in the perspective of what is common within the Church, and now he manifests this same unity from the viewpoint of what is personal and specific to each of the faithful members of the Church.
Circa quod tria facit:
Concerning this he makes three points:
primo proponit distinctionem;
first, he points out the fact of distinctions;
secundo inducit ad hoc auctoritatem, ibi propter quod dicit, etc.;
second, he introduces an authority for them, at wherefore he says;
tertio ponit auctoritatis expositionem, ibi quod autem ascendit, et cetera.
third, he explains this authoritative quotation, at now that he ascended.
205. Dicit ergo: habemus in Ecclesia unum Deum, unam fidem, etc., sed tamen diversas gratias diversis particulariter collatas habemus, quia unicuique nostrum data est gratia, quasi dicat: nullus nostrum est qui non sit particeps divinae gratiae et communionis. Io. I, 16: de plenitudine eius omnes accepimus gratiam pro gratia.
205. He states: we have in the Church one God, one faith, one baptism. Nonetheless, each of us has the diverse graces especially granted to him—to every one of us is given grace. As though he said: none of us lack a share in divine grace and communion, for of his fullness we all have received; and grace for grace (John 1:16).