Fides per caritatem operatur
Faith working by charity
5:5 Nos enim spiritu ex fide, spem justitiae exspectamus. [n. 284]
5:5 For we in spirit, by faith, wait for the hope of justice. [n. 284]
5:6 Nam in Christo Jesu neque circumcisio aliquid valet, neque praeputium: sed fides, quae per caritatem operatur. [n. 286]
5:6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything: but faith that works by charity. [n. 286]
5:7 Currebatis bene: quis vos impedivit veritati non obedire? [n. 288]
5:7 You did run well. What has hindered you, that you should not obey the truth? [n. 288]
5:8 persuasio haec non est ex eo, qui vocat vos. [n. 290]
5:8 This persuasion is not from him who calls you. [n. 290]
5:9 Modicum fermentum totam massam corrumpit.
5:9 A little leaven corrupts the whole lump.
5:10 Ego confido in vobis in Domino, quod nihil aliud sapietis: qui autem conturbat vos, portabit judicium, quicumque est ille. [n. 292]
5:10 I have confidence in you in the Lord, that you will not be of another mind: but he who troubles you shall bear the judgment, whoever he is. [n. 292]
5:11 Ego autem, fratres, si circumcisionem adhuc praedico: quid adhuc persecutionem patior? ergo evacuatum est scandalum crucis. [n. 294]
5:11 And I, brethren, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution? Then is the scandal of the cross made void. [n. 294]
5:12 Utinam et abscindantur qui vos conturbant. [n. 297]
5:12 Would that even those who trouble you were cut off. [n. 297]
284. Explicavit Apostolus secundum documentum, scilicet quod non esset subeundum iugum servitutis legis, hic autem redit ad primum, ostendens quod stare debent. Et
284. Having explained the second point, namely, that they must not submit to the yoke of serving the law, the Apostle here returns to the first and shows that they must stand fast.
primo proponit standi exemplum;
First, he gives an example of standing fast;
secundo removet stationis impedimentum, ibi currebatis, etc.;
second, he removes an obstacle to standing fast, at you did run well;
tertio assignat standi causam, ibi vos autem in libertatem, et cetera.
third, he tells them the cause for standing fast, at for you, brethren, have been called unto liberty (Gal 5:13).
Circa primum duo facit.
As to the first, he does two things:
Primo proponit standi exemplum;
first, he proposes an example of standing fast;
secundo causam eius assignat, ibi nam in Christo Iesu, et cetera.
second, he assigns its cause, at for in Christ Jesus.
285. Dicit ergo: qui in lege volunt iustificari, Christus eis nihil prodest, quia excidunt a gratia. Sed nos, scilicet apostoli, stamus per spem, quia scilicet expectamus spem iustitiae, id est iustitiam et spem, scilicet aeternam beatitudinem. I Petr. I, 3: regeneravit nos in spem vivam, et cetera. Vel, spem iustitiae, id est Christum, per quem est nobis spes iustitiae, quia per eum iustificamur. Phil. III, 20: Salvatorem expectamus, et cetera. I Cor. I, 30: qui factus est nobis sapientia, et iustitia, et sanctificatio, et redemptio, et cetera. Vel spem iustitiae, id est spem quae est de iustitia, ut iustificentur non per legem, sed per fidem. Rom. III, 28: arbitramur hominem iustificari per fidem sine operibus legis. Vel spem iustitiae, id est rem speratam, in quam tendit iustitia, scilicet vitam aeternam. II Tim. ult.: in reliquo reposita est mihi corona iustitiae, et cetera.
285. He says therefore: those who want to be justified in the law, Christ profits them nothing, because they are fallen from grace. But we, namely, the apostles, stand through hope, because we wait for the hope of justice, i.e., for justice and hope, namely, eternal happiness: he has regenerated us unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead (1 Pet 1:3). Or, the hope of justice, i.e., Christ, by whom we have a hope for justice, because we are justified by him: we look for the Savior, our Lord Jesus Christ (Phil 3:20); who of God is made unto us wisdom and justice and sanctification and redemption (1 Cor 1:30). Or, the hope of justice, i.e., the hope which is concerned with justice; that we be justified not by the law but by faith: we account a man to be justified by faith without the works of the law (Rom 3:28). Or, the hope of justice, i.e., the things we hope for, and unto which justice tends, namely, eternal life: as to the rest, there is laid up for me a crown of justice which the Lord, the just judge, will render to me in that day (2 Tim 4:8).
Et hoc ex fide, quia iustitia Dei est per fidem Iesu Christi, ut dicitur Rom. III, 22. Quae quidem fides non est ab homine, sed a Spiritu Sancto qui eam inspirat. Rom. VIII, v. 15: accepistis Spiritum filiorum, in quo clamamus: Abba, Pater, et cetera.
And this by faith, because the justice of God is by the faith of Jesus Christ (Rom 3:22). Which faith is not of man but of the Holy Spirit who inspires it. You have received the Spirit of adoption of sons, whereby we cry: Abba, Father (Rom 8:15).
Sicut ergo fides est ex Spiritu, ita ex fide est spes, ex spe iustitia, per quam pervenimus ad vitam aeternam.
Therefore, as faith is from the Spirit, so from faith is hope, and from hope the justice through which we reach eternal life.
286. Haec autem spes non venit ex circumcisione, neque ex gentilitate, quia nihil faciunt ad hoc. Et ideo dicit nam in Christo Iesu, id est in his qui sunt in fide Christi, neque circumcisio, neque praeputium, etc., id est indifferentia sunt. Sed fides, non informis, sed ea quae per dilectionem operatur, Iac. II, 26: fides sine operibus mortua est, et cetera. Nam fides est cognitio Verbi Dei, Eph. III, 17: habitare Christum per fidem, et cetera. Et hoc Verbum nec perfecte habetur, nec perfecte cognoscitur, nisi etiam habeatur amor quem sperat.
286. However, this hope does not come from circumcision or from paganism, because these contribute nothing to it. Hence he says, for in Christ Jesus, i.e., in those who live in the faith of Christ, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, i.e., they make no difference; but faith, not unformed, but the kind that works by charity: faith without works is dead (Jas 2:26). For faith is a knowledge of the Word of God—that Christ may dwell by faith in your hearts (Eph 3:17)—which Word is not perfectly possessed or perfectly known unless the love which it hopes for is possessed.
287. Hic sunt duo dubia circa Glossam. Primum est, quod dicit praeputium et circumcisionem esse indifferentia, cum supra dixerit si circumcidimini, Christus vobis nihil proderit.
287. Here a Gloss raises two problems. The first is that he says circumcision and uncircumcision to be indifferent, whereas above he had said, if you be circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing.
Sed dicendum est, quod ex genere operis sunt indifferentia, scilicet illis, qui non ponunt spem in eis; sed ex intentione operantis non sunt indifferentia. Nam ponentibus in eis spem, mortifera sunt.
I answer that it is from the general nature of the work that they are indifferent, namely, to those who do not put any trust in them; however, they are not indifferent if you consider the intention of the one acting. For they are deadly to those who put their trust in them.
Secundum dubium est de hoc, quod dicit quod illi qui non credunt, peiores sunt quam daemones, cum daemones credant et contremiscant.
The second problem concerns his saying that those who do not believe are worse than demons, for the demons believe and tremble.
Respondeo. Dicendum est, quod peiores quidem sunt ex specie operis, sed non quantum ad affectum. Nam daemonibus displicet hoc, quod credunt; nec etiam est tanta nequitia voluntatis in homine qui non credit, quanta in daemone qui odit quod credit.
I answer that if you consider the nature of the work, they are worse; but not if you consider the will. For the demons are displeased by the fact of their believing; furthermore, there is not as much malice in the will of a man who does not believe as there is in the demon who hates what he believes.
288. Consequenter cum dicit currebatis bene, etc., agitur de impedimento stationis. Et
288. Then when he says, you did run well, he deals with the obstacle to standing fast.
primo ponit impedimentum;
First, he mentions the obstacle;
secundo docet eius remotionem, ibi nemini consenseritis, et cetera.
second, he teaches its removal.
289. Impedimentum stationis eorum magnum erat et nocivum; nam tanto aliquid est magis nocivum, quanto maius bonum privat. Quando ergo aliquis multis bonis spiritualibus privatur, signum est habuisse magnum impedimentum. Et ideo, ut ostendat eos apostolus magnum impedimentum habuisse, commemorat eis bona spiritualia, quae amiserunt, cum dicit currebatis bene, etc., scilicet per opera fidei formatae per caritatem, quae instigat ad currendum. Ps. CXVIII, v. 32: viam mandatorum tuorum cucurri, cum dilatasti cor meum.
289. The obstacle to their standing fast was great and harmful, for the harmfulness of anything is reckoned according to the greater good it hinders. Therefore, when someone is kept from many spiritual goods, it is an indication that he is faced with a great obstacle. Accordingly, in order to show them that they have a great obstacle, he reminds them of the spiritual goods they have lost, when he says: you did run well, namely, by means of the works of faith formed by charity, which incites one to run: I have run the way of your commandments, when you enlarged my heart (Ps 119:32).
Et hoc quidem fuit olim in vobis, sed dum sic currebatis, estis impediti, et ideo subdit: quis vos fascinavit? De quo dictum est supra cap. III, 1; et ideo supersedeo ad praesens.
And this did indeed apply to you formerly; but while you were thus running, you came upon an obstacle. Therefore he says: who has bewitched you? (Gal 3:1) This has been discussed already in chapter three; hence we pass over it now.
Quis ergo vos fascinavit, id est impedivit veritati, scilicet Evangelicae, non obedire? Et hoc congrue dicit; nam obedire est voluntatis applicandae ad consensum praecipientis. Et ideo fides est voluntatis et intellectus scientia. Oportet ergo voluntati fidei obedire; hoc autem est volendo credere, quod gratia fidei Christi sufficiat ad salutem sine legalibus observantiis.
Therefore, who has bewitched you, i.e., hindered you, that you should not obey the truth, namely, of the Gospel? This is appropriately said: for obedience is the application of the will to the edict of the one who commands. That is why faith is a science of the will and of the understanding. It is suitable, therefore, for the will to obey the faith. But this is done by willing to believe that the grace of Christ is sufficient for salvation without the legal observances.
290. Excludit autem impedimentum, cum dicit nemini, etc., et hoc ex triplici parte.
290. Then when he says, consent to no one, he removes the obstacle.
Primo ex parte eorum;
First, on their part;
secundo ex parte Dei, ibi ego confido, etc.;
second, on God’s part, at I have confidence;
tertio ex parte Apostoli, ibi ego autem, fratres, et cetera.
third, on the Apostle’s part, at and I, brethren.
291. Ex parte eorum, cum dicit nemini, et cetera. Ubi primo ostendit quid requiratur ex parte eorum, ut vitent hoc nocumentum, scilicet quod nemini pseudo deinceps consentiant. I Thess. V, 5: non simus noctis neque tenebrarum, et cetera. Eph. V, 11: nolite communicare operibus infructuosis tenebrarum, etc., et II Tim. II, 17: et sermo eorum ut cancer serpit, et cetera. Ex quo datur intelligi, quod nondum erant corrupti, sed sollicitabantur de hoc.
291. On their part when he says, consent to no one. Herein he shows what is required on their part to overcome this obstacle, namely, that henceforth they not give their consent to any deceiver: we are not of the night nor of the darkness; therefore, let us not sleep (1 Thess 5:5); have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness but rather reprove them (Eph 5:11); and their speech spreads like a canker (2 Tim 2:17). From this it can be gathered that they were not yet corrupted, but he was concerned.