Reproach of the Galatians
3:1 O insensati Galatae, quis vos fascinavit non obedire veritati, ante quorum oculos Jesus Christus praescriptus est, in vobis crucifixus? [n. 113]
3:1 O senseless Galatians, who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ has been set forth, crucified among you? [n. 113]
113. Supra confutavit Apostolus vanitatem et mutabilitatem Galatarum per auctoritatem Evangelicae doctrinae, ostendens suam doctrinam authenticam fuisse ab aliis apostolis, hic vero per rationem et auctoritatem ostendit hoc idem, scilicet quod legalia non sunt servanda. Et hoc dupliciter.
113. Above, the Apostle reproved the Galatians for their vanity and fickleness on the authority of the Gospel teaching by showing that his doctrine was approved by the other apostles. Now through reason and authority he proves the same thing, namely, that the works of the law must not be observed. This he does in two ways.
Primo ex insufficientia legis;
First, from the insufficiency of the law;
secundo ex dignitate eorum qui ad Christum conversi sunt; et hoc IV cap., ibi dico autem: quanto tempore, et cetera.
second, from the dignity of those who have been converted to Christ, at as long as the heir (Gal 4:1).
Circa primum duo facit.
Concerning the first he does two things.
Primo praemittit obiurgationem;
First, he utters the rebuke;
secundo prosequitur suam probationem, ibi hoc solum a vobis volo, et cetera.
second, he begins his proof, at this only would I learn (Gal 3:2).
Circa primum duo facit:
As to the first, he does two things:
primo obiurgat eos, ostendens eorum fatuitatem;
first, he rebukes them by showing that they are foolish;
secundo rationem obiurgationis assignat, ibi ante quorum oculos, et cetera.
second, he gives the reason for his rebuke, at before whose eyes.
114. Primo ergo eos de fatuitate obiurgat, vocans eos insensatos. Unde dicit o insensati, et cetera. Insensatus autem proprie dicitur qui sensu caret. Sensus autem spiritualis est cognitio veritatis; qui ergo veritate caret, proprie insensatus dicitur. Matth. V: et vos sine intellectu estis. Sap. V, 4: nos insensati vitam istorum, et cetera.
114. First, therefore, he chides them for their folly, calling them senseless. Hence he says, O senseless Galatians. Now ‘senseless’ is properly said of one who lacks sense. But the spiritual sense is knowledge of the truth. Hence anyone who lacks the truth is appropriately called senseless: are you also yet without understanding? (Matt 15:16); we fools esteemed their life madness (Wis 5:4).
Sed contra, Matth. V, 22 dicitur: qui dixerit fratri suo: fatue, etc.; sed fatuus idem est quod insensatus; ergo Apostolus reus est Gehennae ignis.
But against this, it is said: whoever shall say to his brother, ‘you fool’, shall be in danger of hell-fire (Matt 5:22). Now a fool is the same as one who is senseless. Therefore, the Apostle was in danger of hell-fire.
Sed dicendum est, ut Augustinus dicit, quod intelligendum est si dixerit sine causa, et animo vituperandi; sed Apostolus ex causa dixit, et animo corrigendi. Unde dicitur in Glossa hoc dolendo dicit.
But it must be said, as Augustine suggests, that this applies if it is said without reason and with the intention to disparage. But the Apostle said it with reason and with an intention to correct. Hence a Gloss says: he says this in sorrow.
115. Secundo cum dicit quis vos fascinavit, etc., ostendit modum quo insensati erant effecti.
115. Second, when he says, who has bewitched you, he shows how they had become senseless.
Ubi primo notandum est, quod insensatus fit aliquis multis modis. Vel quia non proponitur sibi aliqua veritas quam cognoscere possit; vel quia etsi proponatur sibi, tamen numquam eam acceptat; vel quia veritatem propositam et acceptam deserit, a via veritatis recedens; et tales erant isti Galatae, qui veritatem fidei quam acceperant deserentes, veritatem propositam renuerunt. Supra I, 6: miror quod sic tam cito, et cetera. Et ideo istum gradum insensationis in eis reprehendit, dicens quis vos fascinavit, et cetera.
Here it is to be noted, first of all, that someone becomes senseless in a number of ways: either because some truth he could know is not proposed to him; or because he departs from a truth that had been proposed and accepted, as when he abandons the way of truth. Such were these Galatians who rejected the truth proposed to them and abandoned the truth of the faith they had accepted: I wonder that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ, unto another gospel (Gal 1:6). This, therefore, is the type of senselessness for which he chides them when he says: who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth?
116. Ad sciendum autem quid sit fascinatio, sciendum est, quod secundum Glossam fascinatio proprie dicitur ludificatio sensus, quae per artes magicas fieri consuevit; puta cum hominem facit aspectibus aliorum apparere leonem vel cornutum, et huiusmodi. Et hoc etiam per Daemones potest fieri, qui habent potestatem movendi phantasmata, et reducendi ad principia sensuum, ipsos sensus immutando.
116. To understand what bewitchment is, it should be noted that according to a Gloss, bewitchment is, properly speaking, a sense delusion usually produced by magical arts; for example, to make a man appear to onlookers as a lion or as having horns. This can also be brought about by demons who have the power to set phantasms in motion as well as to produce in the senses the very alterations that real objects are wont to produce.
Et secundum hanc acceptionem satis proprie dicit Apostolus quis vos fascinavit? Quasi dicat: vos estis sicut homo ludificatus, qui res manifestas aliter accipit, quam sint in rei veritate: quia scilicet vos estis ludificati per deceptiones et sophismata, veritati non obedire, id est, veritatem manifestam, et a vobis receptam non videtis, nec obediendo recipitis. Sap. IV, 12: fascinatio nugacitatis obscurat bona. Is. V, 20: vae qui dicunt bonum malum, et cetera.
According to this acceptation the Apostle asks, appropriately enough, who has bewitched you? As if to say: you are as deluded men who take obvious things to be other than they are in very fact, namely, because you are deluded by artifices and sophisms, not to obey the truth, i.e., you neither see the obvious truth received by you nor embrace it by obeying it: for the bewitching of vanity obscures good things (Wis 4:12); woe to you that call evil good, and good evil (Isa 5:20).
117. Alio modo accipitur fascinatio secundum quod aliquis ex aspectu malevolo laeditur, et hoc maxime in vetulis quae visu urenti et aspectu invido fascinant pueros, qui ex hoc infirmantur et vomunt cibum.
117. In another way bewitchment is taken to mean that someone is harmed by an evil look, particularly when cast by sorcerers whose inflamed eyes and hostile glance cast a spell on boys who grow faint from it and vomit their food.
Huius causam volens assignare Avicenna in libro suo de Anima dicit, quod materia corporalis obedit substantiae intellectuali, magis quam qualitatibus activis et passivis in natura. Et ideo ponit quod ad apprehensionem substantiarum intellectualium (quas vocat animas seu motores orbium) multa fiunt praeter ordinem motus caeli et omnium corporalium agentium. Eodem modo dicit, quod quando anima sancta depurata est ab affectibus terrenorum, et a carnalibus vitiis, accedit ad similitudinem substantiarum dictarum, et obedit ei natura. Et hinc est quod aliqui sancti viri operantur quaedam mira praeter naturae cursum; et similiter quia anima alicuius foedata passionibus carnalibus, habet fortem apprehensionem in malitia, obedit ei natura ad transmutationem materiae, in illis maxime in quibus materia habilis est: sicut in pueris teneris contingit. Et sic contingit, secundum eum, quod ex forti apprehensione vetularum, in malitiam immutatur puer et fascinatur.
Avicenna, attempting to explain this phenomenon in his book On the Soul, says that corporeal matter obeys an intellectual substance more than it obeys the active and passive qualities at work in nature. Accordingly, he supposes that through the mental activity of intellectual substance (which he calls the souls or movers of the heavenly spheres) many things occur outside the order of heavenly movements and of all corporeal forces. Along the same lines he says that when a holy soul is purged of all earthly affection and carnal vice, it acquires a likeness to the aforesaid substances, so that nature obeys it. This is why certain holy men achieve marvels that transcend the course of nature. In like manner, because the soul of someone defiled by carnal passions has a vigorous apprehension of malice, nature obeys it to the point of affecting matter, particularly in those in whom the matter is pliant, as in the case of tender children. Thus does it happen, according to him, that from the vigorous apprehension exercised by sorcerers, a child can be evilly affected and bewitched.
Haec autem positio satis videtur vera secundum opinionem Avicennae. Nam ipse posuit formas omnes corporales in istis inferioribus influi a substantiis incorporalibus separatis, et quod agentia naturalia non habent se ad hoc nisi ut disponentia tantum.
This position seems to be true enough according to Avicenna’s tenets. For he postulates that all material forms in sublunar bodies are influenced by the separated incorporeal substances and that natural agents can be no more than dispositive causes in such matter.
Sed hoc quidem improbatur a Philosopho. Agens enim oportet esse simile subiecto. Non fit autem forma tantum, nec materia, sed compositum ex materia et forma. Id ergo quod agit ad esse corporalium, oportet quod habeat materiam et formam. Unde dicit quod transmutare materiam et formam non potest, nisi id quod habet materiam et formam, et hoc quidem vel virtute, sicut Deus, qui actor est formae et materiae: vel actu, sicut agens corporeum. Et ideo materia corporalis quantum ad huiusmodi formas, nec angelis, nec alicui purae creaturae obedit ad nutum, sed soli Deo, ut Augustinus dicit. Unde non est verum quod Avicenna dicit de huiusmodi fascinatione.
However, this is disproved by the Philosopher. For an agent should be similar to what is subject to it. Now what comes into existence is not a form alone or matter alone but the composite of matter and form. Consequently, that which acts to produce the existence of corporeal things ought to have matter and form. Therefore he says that the only thing which can cause changes of matter and form is something that itself has matter and form either virtually, as God, who is the maker of form and matter, or actually, as a bodily agent. Therefore with respect to forms of this kind, corporeal matter obeys the nod neither of angels nor of any mere creature but of God alone, as Augustine says. Hence what Avicenna says about this matter of bewitchment is not true.
Et ideo dicendum, quod ad imaginationem seu apprehensionem hominis, quando fortis est, immutatur sensus, seu appetitus sensitivus: quae quidem immutatio non est sine alteratione corporis et spirituum corporis, sicut nos videmus quod ad apprehensionem delectabilis movetur appetitus sensitivus ad concupiscentiam, et exinde corpus calefit. Similiter ex apprehensione timendi, frigescit.
Therefore it is better to say that when a man’s act of imagining or apprehending is strong, the sense is affected or at least the sense appetite is now such as affection does not occur without some alteration taking place in the body and the bodily spirits; as, for example, we see that when something pleasant is apprehended, the sense appetite is moved to desire and as a result the body becomes warm. Similarly, as a result of apprehending something horrible, the body grows cold.
Immutatio autem spirituum maxime inficit oculos, qui infecti rem per aspectum inficiunt, sicut patet in speculo mundo, quod ex aspectu menstruatae inficitur. Sic ergo quia vetulae obstinatae in malitia et durae sunt, ex forti apprehensione immutatur appetitus sensitivus, et ex hoc, sicut dictum est, infectio maxime fit a venis ad oculos, et ex oculis ad rem perspectam. Unde quia caro pueri mollis est, ad earum invidum aspectum inficitur et fascinatur. Et quandoque quidem ad hunc effectum Daemones operantur.
When the spirits are thus moved they mainly infect the eyes, which in turn infect certain things through their glance, as is plain in the case of a clean mirror that becomes defiled when looked into by a woman in her monthly purification. Therefore because sorcerers are obstinate and hardened in evil, their sense appetite is affected by the vigor of their apprehension; as a result, as has been said, the infection moves from the veins to the eyes and thence to the object upon which they look. Accordingly, because the flesh of children is soft, it is influenced and charmed by their hostile glance. And demons, too, can sometimes produce this effect.
Dicit ergo quis vos fascinavit veritati non obedire? Quasi dicat: vos aliquando obedistis veritati fidei, sed modo non; ergo estis sicut pueri, qui ex aliquo invido aspectu infecti, cibum receptum vomitis.
He says, therefore, who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth? As if to say: you once obeyed the truth of the faith, but now you do not. Therefore, you are as children infected by some hostile glance who vomit the food they have eaten.
118. Rationem autem obiurgationis assignat, dicens ante quorum oculos, et cetera. Quod potest tripliciter legi.
118. Then he tells why he rebukes them, when he says, before whose eyes Jesus Christ has been set forth, crucified among you. This can be interpreted in three ways.
Uno modo, secundum Hieronymum, ut respondeat primae acceptioni fascinationis; quasi dicat: dico vos fascinatos, quia ante quorum oculos, etc., id est proscriptio Christi, qui damnatus est in mortem, adeo vobis manifesta fuit, ac si ante oculos vestros fuisset, et in vobis crucifixus, id est, in intellectibus vestris erat crucifixio Iesu Christi, ita ut sciretis qualiter facta esset; unde si eam non videtis modo, nec obeditis, hoc contingit, quia estis ludificati et fascinati. Contra quod dicitur Cant. ult.: pone me ut signaculum super cor tuum, et cetera.
One way, which is according to Jerome, corresponds to the first meaning of bewitchment; as if he says: I say that you are bewitched, because before your eyes Jesus Christ has been set forth, i.e., the outlawing of Christ, who was condemned to death, is as vivid to your eyes as if it were being enacted before your eyes and he was being crucified among you, i.e., the crucifixion of Christ was as clear in your understanding as though it were taking place there. Hence, if you no longer see it, it is because you have been deluded and bewitched. Against such a change of heart, it is said: put me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm (Song 8:6).
119. Alio modo secundum Augustinum; quasi dicat: recte fascinati estis, quia veritatem quam recepistis, scilicet Christum, per fidem, in cordibus vestris evomitis sicut pueri. Et hoc quia ante oculos vestros, id est, in vestra praesentia, Iesus Christus proscriptus est, id est, expellitur et eiicitur de haereditate sua, quod molestum deberet esse vobis; quia quem non deberetis pati quod ab aliis proscriberetur, et expelleretur, in vobis proscriptus est, id est, haereditatem suam amisit in vobis, id est, vosipsos.
119. Another way, which is according to Augustine, is as if he said: you are justifiably bewitched, because as children, you vomit out the truth you have received, namely, Christ by faith in your hearts. And you do this because before your eyes, i.e., in your presence, Jesus Christ has been set forth, i.e., expelled and refused his inheritance. This should trouble you, because the very one whom you should not allow to be outlawed and expelled by others has been outlawed among you, i.e., has lost his inheritance, namely, yourselves, among you.
Et tunc hoc quod sequitur, scilicet crucifixus, legi debet cum pondere et ostensione doloris, quia hoc addidit, ut considerarent quo pretio Christus emerit possessionem, quam in eis amittebat, et ex hoc moverentur magis. Quasi dicat: Christus proscriptus est in vobis, scilicet qui crucifixus, id est, qui cruce sua et sanguine proprio acquisivit hanc haereditatem. I Cor. VI, 20: empti enim estis pretio magno, et cetera. I Petr. I, 18: non corruptibilibus auro vel argento, et cetera.
Then that which follows, namely, crucified, should be read as with a heavy burden and obvious pain, because he adds this to make them consider the great price Christ paid for the inheritance he lost among them, and thus move them more deeply. As if to say: Christ has been outlawed among you, he who was crucified, i.e., who with his cross and his own blood purchased this inheritance: you are bought with a great price (1 Cor 6:20); knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, as gold or silver . . . but with the precious blood of Christ (1 Pet 1:18).
120. Tertio modo secundum Ambrosium, quasi dicat: vere fascinati estis, ante quorum oculos, id est, in quorum reputatione, scilicet secundum iudicium vestrum, Iesus Christus proscriptus est, id est, damnatus, non alios salvans. Et in vobis, id est, secundum quod vos intelligitis, crucifixus est, id est, mortuus tantum, non autem alios iustificans, cum tamen de eo dicatur, II Cor. c. ult., quod si mortuus est ex infirmitate nostra, vivit tamen ex virtute Dei.
120. The third way, which is according to Ambrose, is as though he says: yes, you are bewitched, you, before whose eyes, i.e., in whose opinion, namely, according to your judgment, Jesus Christ has been set forth, i.e., condemned without saving others. And among you, i.e., so far as you understand, he was crucified, i.e., merely died, but justified no one in spite of the fact that it is said of him, although he was crucified through weakness, yet he lives by the power of God (2 Cor 13:4).
121. Potest, et quarto modo, exponi secundum Glossam, ut per hoc designet Apostolus gravitatem culpae eorum, quia in hoc quod Christum deserunt legem observantes, aequaliter quodammodo peccabant Pilato, qui Christum proscripsit, id est, damnavit. Ut dum insufficientem Christum credunt ad salvandum, similes in peccando crucifixoribus Christi sint, qui ipsum in ligno suspenderunt, morte turpissima condemnantes et afficientes. Aequalitas tamen est accipienda ex parte eius, in quem peccatur, quia in Christum Galatae peccabant, sicut Pilatus et crucifixores Christi.
121. It can be explained also in a fourth way according to a Gloss to the effect that by these words the Apostle proclaims the gravity of their guilt, because in deserting Christ by observing the law, they sin somewhat on a par with Pilate who set forth Christ, i.e., condemned him. For in believing that Christ does not suffice to save them, they are made to be sinners similar to Christ’s executioners who hung him on the cross, condemning him to a most shameful death and killing him. The parity is taken on the side of the one against whom they sinned, because the Galatians sinned against Christ Jesus as did Pilate and those who crucified Christ.
Virtus Spiritus non legis
Power of the Spirit, not the law
3:2 Hoc solum a vobis volo discere: ex operibus legis Spiritum accepistis, an ex auditu fidei? [n. 122]
3:2 This only would I learn of you: did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law or by the hearing of faith? [n. 122]
3:3 sic stulti estis, ut cum Spiritu coeperitis, nunc carne consummemini? [n. 124]
3:3 Are you so foolish that, whereas you began in the Spirit, you would now be made perfect by the flesh? [n. 124]