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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



1568
Augustine, The City Of God, 15.7


nanBut though God made use of this very mode of address which we have been endeavoring to explain, and spoke to Cain in that form by which He was wont to accommodate Himself to our first parents and converse with them as a companion, what good influence had it on Cain? Did he not fulfill his wicked intention of killing his brother even after he was warned by God's voice? For when God had made a distinction between their sacrifices, neglecting Cain's, regarding Abel's, which was doubtless intimated by some visible sign to that effect; and when God had done so because the works of the one were evil but those of his brother good, Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell. For thus it is written: And the Lord said to Cain, Why are you angry, and why is your countenance fallen? If you offer rightly, but do not rightly distinguish, have you not sinned? Fret not yourself, for unto you shall be his turning, and you shall rule over him. Genesis 4:6-7 In this admonition administered by God to Cain, that clause indeed, If you offer rightly, but do not rightly distinguish, have you not sinned? is obscure, inasmuch as it is not apparent for what reason or purpose it was spoken, and many meanings have been put upon it, as each one who discusses it attempts to interpret it according to the rule of faith. The truth is, that a sacrifice is rightly offered when it is offered to the true God, to whom alone we must sacrifice. And it is not rightly distinguished when we do not rightly distinguish the places or seasons or materials of the offering, or the person offering, or the person to whom it is presented, or those to whom it is distributed for food after the oblation. Distinguishing is here used for discriminating - whether when an offering is made in a place where it ought not or of a material which ought to be offered not there but elsewhere; or when an offering is made at a wrong time, or of a material suitable not then but at some other time; or when that is offered which in no place nor any time ought to be offered; or when a man keeps to himself choicer specimens of the same kind than he offers to God; or when he or any other who may not lawfully partake profanely eats of the oblation. In which of these particulars Cain displeased God, it is difficult to determine. But the Apostle John, speaking of these brothers, says, Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous. 1 John 3:12 He thus gives us to understand that God did not respect his offering because it was not rightly distinguished in this, that he gave to God something of his own but kept himself to himself. For this all do who follow not God's will but their own, who live not with an upright but a crooked heart, and yet offer to God such gifts as they suppose will procure from Him that He aid them not by healing but by gratifying their evil passions. And this is the characteristic of the earthly city, that it worships God or gods who may aid it in reigning victoriously and peacefully on earth not through love of doing good, but through lust of rule. The good use the world that they may enjoy God: the wicked, on the contrary, that they may enjoy the world would fain use God - those of them, at least, who have attained to the belief that He is and takes an interest in human affairs. For they who have not yet attained even to this belief are still at a much lower level. Cain, then, when he saw that God had respect to his brother's sacrifice, but not to his own, should have humbly chosen his good brother as his example, and not proudly counted him his rival. But he was angry, and his countenance fell. This angry regret for another person's goodness, even his brother's, was charged upon him by God as a great sin. And He accused him of it in the interrogation, Why are you angry, and why is your countenance fallen? For God saw that he envied his brother, and of this He accused him. For to men, from whom the heart of their fellow is hid, it might be doubtful and quite uncertain whether that sadness bewailed his own wickedness by which, as he had learned, he had displeased God, or his brother's goodness, which had pleased God, and won His favorable regard to his sacrifice. But God, in giving the reason why He refused to accept Cain's offering and why Cain should rather have been displeased at himself than at his brother, shows him that though he was unjust in not rightly distinguishing, that is, not rightly living and being unworthy to have his offering received, he was more unjust by far in hating his just brother without a cause. Yet He does not dismiss him without counsel, holy, just, and good. Fret not yourself, He says, for unto you shall be his turning, and you shall rule over him. Over his brother, does He mean? Most certainly not. Over what, then, but sin? For He had said, You have sinned, and then He added, Fret not yourself, for to you shall be its turning, and you shall rule over it. And the turning of sin to the man can be understood of his conviction that the guilt of sin can be laid at no other man's door but his own. For this is the health-giving medicine of penitence, and the fit plea for pardon; so that, when it is said, To you its turning, we must not supply shall be, but we must read, To you let its turning be, understanding it as a command, not as a prediction. For then shall a man rule over his sin when he does not prefer it to himself and defend it, but subjects it by repentance; otherwise he that becomes protector of it shall surely become its prisoner. But if we understand this sin to be that carnal concupiscence of which the apostle says, The flesh lusts against the spirit, Galatians 5:17 among the fruits of which lust he names envy, by which assuredly Cain was stung and excited to destroy his brother, then we may properly supply the words shall be, and read, To you shall be its turning, and you shall rule over it. For when the carnal part which the apostle calls sin, in that place where he says, It is not I who do it, but sin that dwells in me, Romans 7:17 that part which the philosophers also call vicious, and which ought not to lead the mind, but which the mind ought to rule and restrain by reason from illicit motions - when, then, this part has been moved to perpetrate any wickedness, if it be curbed and if it obey the word of the apostle, Yield not your members instruments of unrighteousness unto sin, Romans 6:13 it is turned towards the mind and subdued and conquered by it, so that reason rules over it as a subject. It was this which God enjoined on him who was kindled with the fire of envy against his brother, so that he sought to put out of the way him whom he should have set as an example. Fret not yourself, or compose yourself, He says: withhold your hand from crime; let not sin reign in your mortal body to fulfill it in the lusts thereof, nor yield your members instruments of unrighteousness unto sin. For to you shall be its turning, so long as you do not encourage it by giving it the rein, but bridle it by quenching its fire. And you shall rule over it; for when it is not allowed any external actings, it yields itself to the rule of the governing mind and righteous will, and ceases from even internal motions. There is something similar said in the same divine book of the woman, when God questioned and judged them after their sin, and pronounced sentence on them all - the devil in the form of the serpent, the woman and her husband in their own persons. For when He had said to her, I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in sorrow shall you bring forth children, then He added, and your turning shall be to your husband, and he shall rule over you. Genesis 3:16 What is said to Cain about his sin, or about the vicious concupiscence of his flesh, is here said of the woman who had sinned; and we are to understand that the husband is to rule his wife as the soul rules the flesh. And therefore, says the apostle, He that loves his wife, loves himself; for no man ever yet hated his own flesh. Ephesians 5:28-29 This flesh, then, is to be healed, because it belongs to ourselves: is not to be abandoned to destruction as if it were alien to our nature. But Cain received that counsel of God in the spirit of one who did not wish to amend. In fact, the vice of envy grew stronger in him; and, having entrapped his brother, he slew him. Such was the founder of the earthly city. He was also a figure of the Jews who slew Christ the Shepherd of the flock of men, prefigured by Abel the shepherd of sheep: but as this is an allegorical and prophetical matter, I forbear to explain it now; besides, I remember that I have made some remarks upon it in writing against Faustus the Manich an.


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

3 results
1. Aristotle, Rhetoric, 2.5 (4th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

2. New Testament, Romans, 9.7 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

9.7. Neither, because they are Abraham's seed, are they all children. But, "In Isaac will your seed be called.
3. Augustine, The City of God, 15.5, 18.32, 21.24 (4th cent. CE - 5th cent. CE)

15.5. Thus the founder of the earthly city was a fratricide. Overcome with envy, he slew his own brother, a citizen of the eternal city, and a sojourner on earth. So that we cannot be surprised that this first specimen, or, as the Greeks say, archetype of crime, should, long afterwards, find a corresponding crime at the foundation of that city which was destined to reign over so many nations, and be the head of this earthly city of which we speak. For of that city also, as one of their poets has mentioned, the first walls were stained with a brother's blood, or, as Roman history records, Remus was slain by his brother Romulus. And thus there is no difference between the foundation of this city and of the earthly city, unless it be that Romulus and Remus were both citizens of the earthly city. Both desired to have the glory of founding the Roman republic, but both could not have as much glory as if one only claimed it; for he who wished to have the glory of ruling would certainly rule less if his power were shared by a living consort. In order, therefore, that the whole glory might be enjoyed by one, his consort was removed; and by this crime the empire was made larger indeed, but inferior, while otherwise it would have been less, but better. Now these brothers, Cain and Abel, were not both animated by the same earthly desires, nor did the murderer envy the other because he feared that, by both ruling, his own dominion would be curtailed - for Abel was not solicitous to rule in that city which his brother built - he was moved by that diabolical, envious hatred with which the evil regard the good, for no other reason than because they are good while themselves are evil. For the possession of goodness is by no means diminished by being shared with a partner either permanent or temporarily assumed; on the contrary, the possession of goodness is increased in proportion to the concord and charity of each of those who share it. In short, he who is unwilling to share this possession cannot have it; and he who is most willing to admit others to a share of it will have the greatest abundance to himself. The quarrel, then, between Romulus and Remus shows how the earthly city is divided against itself; that which fell out between Cain and Abel illustrated the hatred that subsists between the two cities, that of God and that of men. The wicked war with the wicked; the good also war with the wicked. But with the good, good men, or at least perfectly good men, cannot war; though, while only going on towards perfection, they war to this extent, that every good man resists others in those points in which he resists himself. And in each individual the flesh lusts against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh. Galatians 5:17 This spiritual lusting, therefore, can be at war with the carnal lust of another man; or carnal lust may be at war with the spiritual desires of another, in some such way as good and wicked men are at war; or, still more certainly, the carnal lusts of two men, good but not yet perfect, contend together, just as the wicked contend with the wicked, until the health of those who are under the treatment of grace attains final victory. 18.32. In his prayer, with a song, to whom but the Lord Christ does he say, O Lord, I have heard Your hearing, and was afraid: O Lord, I have considered Your works, and was greatly afraid? Habakkuk 3:2 What is this but the inexpressible admiration of the foreknown, new, and sudden salvation of men? In the midst of two living creatures you shall be recognized. What is this but either between the two testaments, or between the two thieves, or between Moses and Elias talking with Him on the mount? While the years draw near, You will be recognized; at the coming of the time You will be shown, does not even need exposition. While my soul shall be troubled at Him, in wrath You will be mindful of mercy. What is this but that He puts Himself for the Jews, of whose nation He was, who were troubled with great anger and crucified Christ, when He, mindful of mercy, said, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do? Luke 23:34 God shall come from Teman, and the Holy One from the shady and close mountain. Habakkuk 3:3 What is said here, He shall come from Teman, some interpret from the south, or from the southwest, by which is signified the noonday, that is, the fervor of charity and the splendor of truth. The shady and close mountain might be understood in many ways, yet I prefer to take it as meaning the depth of the divine Scriptures, in which Christ is prophesied: for in the Scriptures there are many things shady and close which exercise the mind of the reader; and Christ comes thence when he who has understanding finds Him there. His power covers up the heavens, and the earth is full of His praise. What is this but what is also said in the psalm, Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; and Your glory above all the earth? His splendor shall be as the light. What is it but that the fame of Him shall illuminate believers? Horns are in His hands. What is this but the trophy of the cross? And He has placed the firm charity of His strength Habakkuk 3:4 needs no exposition. Before His face shall go the word, and it shall go forth into the field after His feet. What is this but that He should both be announced before His coming hither and after His return hence? He stood, and the earth was moved. What is this but that He stood for succor, and the earth was moved to believe? He regarded, and the nations melted; that is, He had compassion, and made the people penitent. The mountains are broken with violence; that is, through the power of those who work miracles the pride of the haughty is broken. The everlasting hills flowed down; that is, they are humbled in time that they may be lifted up for eternity. I saw His goings [made] eternal for his labors; that is, I beheld His labor of love not left without the reward of eternity. The tents of Ethiopia shall be greatly afraid, and the tents of the land of Midian; that is, even those nations which are not under the Roman authority, being suddenly terrified by the news of Your wonderful works, shall become a Christian people. Were You angry at the rivers, O Lord? Or was Your fury against the rivers? Or was Your rage against the sea? This is said because He does not now come to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. John 3:17 For You shall mount upon Your horses, and Your riding shall be salvation; that is, Your evangelists shall carry You, for they are guided by You, and Your gospel is salvation to them that believe in You. Bending, You will bend Your bow against the sceptres, says the Lord; that is, You will threaten even the kings of the earth with Your judgment. The earth shall be cleft with rivers; that is, by the sermons of those who preach You flowing in upon them, men's hearts shall be opened to make confession, to whom it is said, Rend your hearts and not your garments. Joel 2:13 What does The people shall see You and grieve mean, but that in mourning they shall be blessed? Matthew 5:4 What is Scattering the waters in marching, but that by walking in those who everywhere proclaim You, You will scatter here and there the streams of Your doctrine? What is The abyss uttered its voice? Is it not that the depth of the human heart expressed what it perceived? The words, The depth of its phantasy, are an explanation of the previous verse, for the depth is the abyss; and Uttered its voice is to be understood before them, that is, as we have said, it expressed what it perceived. Now the phantasy is the vision, which it did not hold or conceal, but poured forth in confession. The sun was raised up, and the moon stood still in her course; that is, Christ ascended into heaven, and the Church was established under her King. Your darts shall go in the light; that is, Your words shall not be sent in secret, but openly. For He had said to His own disciples, What I tell you in darkness, speak in the light. Matthew 10:27 By threatening you shall diminish the earth; that is, by that threatening You shall humble men. And in fury You shall cast down the nations; for in punishing those who exalt themselves You dash them one against another. You went forth for the salvation of Your people, that You might save Your Christ; You have sent death on the heads of the wicked. None of these words require exposition. You have lifted up the bonds, even to the neck. This may be understood even of the good bonds of wisdom, that the feet may be put into its fetters, and the neck into its collar. You have struck off in amazement of mind the bonds must be understood for, He lifts up the good and strikes off the bad, about which it is said to Him, You have broken asunder my bonds, and that in amazement of mind, that is, wonderfully. The heads of the mighty shall be moved in it; to wit, in that wonder. They shall open their teeth like a poor man eating secretly. For some of the mighty among the Jews shall come to the Lord, admiring His works and words, and shall greedily eat the bread of His doctrine in secret for fear of the Jews, just as the Gospel has shown they did. And You have sent into the sea Your horses, troubling many waters, which are nothing else than many people; for unless all were troubled, some would not be converted with fear, others pursued with fury. I gave heed, and my belly trembled at the voice of the prayer of my lips; and trembling entered into my bones, and my habit of body was troubled under me. He gave heed to those things which he said, and was himself terrified at his own prayer, which he had poured forth prophetically, and in which he discerned things to come. For when many people are troubled, he saw the threatening tribulation of the Church, and at once acknowledged himself a member of it, and said, I shall rest in the day of tribulation, as being one of those who are rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation. Romans 12:12 That I may ascend, he says, among the people of my pilgrimage, departing quite from the wicked people of his carnal kinship, who are not pilgrims in this earth, and do not seek the country above. Although the fig-tree, he says, shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labor of the olive shall lie, and the fields shall yield no meat; the sheep shall be cut off from the meat, and there shall be no oxen in the stalls. He sees that nation which was to slay Christ about to lose the abundance of spiritual supplies, which, in prophetic fashion, he has set forth by the figure of earthly plenty. And because that nation was to suffer such wrath of God, because, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, it wished to establish its own, Romans 10:3 he immediately says, Yet will I rejoice in the Lord; I will joy in God my salvation. The Lord God is my strength, and He will set my feet in completion; He will place me above the heights, that I may conquer in His song, to wit, in that song of which something similar is said in the psalm, He set my feet upon a rock, and directed my goings, and put in my mouth a new song, a hymn to our God. He therefore conquers in the song of the Lord, who takes pleasure in His praise, not in his own; that He that glories, let him glory in the Lord. But some copies have, I will joy in God my Jesus, which seems to me better than the version of those who, wishing to put it in Latin, have not set down that very name which for us it is dearer and sweeter to name. 21.24. And this reasoning is equally conclusive against those who, in their own interest, but under the guise of a greater tenderness of spirit, attempt to invalidate the words of God, and who assert that these words are true, not because men shall suffer those things which are threatened by God, but because they deserve to suffer them. For God, they say, will yield them to the prayers of His saints, who will then the more earnestly pray for their enemies, as they shall be more perfect in holiness, and whose prayers will be the more efficacious and the more worthy of God's ear, because now purged from all sin whatsoever. Why, then, if in that perfected holiness their prayers be so pure and all-availing, will they not use them in behalf of the angels for whom eternal fire is prepared, that God may mitigate His sentence and alter it, and extricate them from that fire? Or will there, perhaps, be some one hardy enough to affirm that even the holy angels will make common cause with holy men (then become the equals of God's angels), and will intercede for the guilty, both men and angels, that mercy may spare them the punishment which truth has pronounced them to deserve? But this has been asserted by no one sound in the faith; nor will be. Otherwise there is no reason why the Church should not even now pray for the devil and his angels, since God her Master has ordered her to pray for her enemies. The reason, then, which prevents the Church from now praying for the wicked angels, whom she knows to be her enemies, is the identical reason which shall prevent her, however perfected in holiness, from praying at the last judgment for those men who are to be punished in eternal fire. At present she prays for her enemies among men, because they have yet opportunity for fruitful repentance. For what does she especially beg for them but that God would grant them repentance, as the apostle says, that they may return to soberness out of the snare of the devil, by whom they are held captive according to his will? 2 Timothy 2:25-26 But if the Church were certified who those are, who, though they are still abiding in this life, are yet predestinated to go with the devil into eternal fire, then for them she could no more pray than for him. But since she has this certainty regarding no man, she prays for all her enemies who yet live in this world; and yet she is not heard in behalf of all. But she is heard in the case of those only who, though they oppose the Church, are yet predestinated to become her sons through her intercession. But if any retain an impenitent heart until death, and are not converted from enemies into sons, does the Church continue to pray for them, for the spirits, i.e., of such persons deceased? And why does she cease to pray for them, unless because the man who was not translated into Christ's kingdom while he was in the body, is now judged to be of Satan's following? It is then, I say, the same reason which prevents the Church at any time from praying for the wicked angels, which prevents her from praying hereafter for those men who are to be punished in eternal fire; and this also is the reason why, though she prays even for the wicked so long as they live, she yet does not even in this world pray for the unbelieving and godless who are dead. For some of the dead, indeed, the prayer of the Church or of pious individuals is heard; but it is for those who, having been regenerated in Christ, did not spend their life so wickedly that they can be judged unworthy of such compassion, nor so well that they can be considered to have no need of it. As also, after the resurrection, there will be some of the dead to whom, after they have endured the pains proper to the spirits of the dead, mercy shall be accorded, and acquittal from the punishment of the eternal fire. For were there not some whose sins, though not remitted in this life, shall be remitted in that which is to come, it could not be truly said, They shall not be forgiven, neither in this world, neither in that which is to come. Matthew 12:32 But when the Judge of quick and dead has said, Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, and to those on the other side, Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire, which is prepared for the devil and his angels, and These shall go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life, it were excessively presumptuous to say that the punishment of any of those whom God has said shall go away into eternal punishment shall not be eternal, and so bring either despair or doubt upon the corresponding promise of life eternal. Let no man then so understand the words of the Psalmist, Shall God forget to be gracious? Shall He shut up in His anger His tender mercies as if the sentence of God were true of good men, false of bad men, or true of good men and wicked angels, but false of bad men. For the Psalmist's words refer to the vessels of mercy and the children of the promise, of whom the prophet himself was one; for when he had said, Shall God forget to be gracious? Shall He shut up in His anger His tender mercies? and then immediately subjoins, And I said, Now I begin: this is the change wrought by the right hand of the Most High, he manifestly explained what he meant by the words, Shall he shut up in His anger His tender mercies? For God's anger is this mortal life, in which man is made like to vanity, and his days pass as a shadow. Yet in this anger God does not forget to be gracious, causing His sun to shine and His rain to descend on the just and the unjust; Matthew 5:45 and thus He does not in His anger cut short His tender mercies, and especially in what the Psalmist speaks of in the words, Now I begin: this change is from the right hand of the Most High; for He changes for the better the vessels of mercy, even while they are still in this most wretched life, which is God's anger, and even while His anger is manifesting itself in this miserable corruption; for in His anger He does not shut up His tender mercies. And since the truth of this divine canticle is quite satisfied by this application of it, there is no need to give it a reference to that place in which those who do not belong to the city of God are punished in eternal fire. But if any persist in extending its application to the torments of the wicked, let them at least understand it so that the anger of God, which has threatened the wicked with eternal punishment, shall abide, but shall be mixed with mercy to the extent of alleviating the torments which might justly be inflicted; so that the wicked shall neither wholly escape, nor only for a time endure these threatened pains, but that they shall be less severe and more endurable than they deserve. Thus the anger of God shall continue, and at the same time He will not in this anger shut up His tender mercies. But even this hypothesis I am not to be supposed to affirm because I do not positively oppose it. As for those who find an empty threat rather than a truth in such passages as these: Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire; and These shall go away into eternal punishment; Matthew 25:41, 46 and They shall be tormented for ever and ever; Revelation 20:10 and Their worm shall not die, and their fire shall not be quenched, Isaiah 66:24 - such persons, I say, are most emphatically and abundantly refuted, not by me so much as by the divine Scripture itself. For the men of Nineveh repented in this life, and therefore their repentance was fruitful, inasmuch as they sowed in that field which the Lord meant to be sown in tears that it might afterwards be reaped in joy. And yet who will deny that God's prediction was fulfilled in their case, if at least he observes that God destroys sinners not only in anger but also in compassion? For sinners are destroyed in two ways - either, like the Sodomites, the men themselves are punished for their sins, or, like the Ninevites, the men's sins are destroyed by repentance. God's prediction, therefore, was fulfilled - the wicked Nineveh was overthrown, and a good Nineveh built up. For its walls and houses remained standing; the city was overthrown in its depraved manners. And thus, though the prophet was provoked that the destruction which the inhabitants dreaded, because of his prediction, did not take place, yet that which God's foreknowledge had predicted did take place, for He who foretold the destruction knew how it should be fulfilled in a less calamitous sense. But that these perversely compassionate persons may see what is the purport of these words, How great is the abundance of Your sweetness, Lord, which You have hidden for them that fear You, let them read what follows: And You have perfected it for them that hope in You. For what means, You have hidden it for them that fear You, You have perfected it for them that hope in You, unless this, that to those who through fear of punishment seek to establish their own righteousness by the law, the righteousness of God is not sweet, because they are ignorant of it? They have not tasted it. For they hope in themselves, not in Him; and therefore God's abundant sweetness is hidden from them. They fear God, indeed, but it is with that servile fear which is not in love; for perfect love casts out fear. 1 John 4:18 Therefore to them that hope in Him He perfects His sweetness, inspiring them with His own love, so that with a holy fear, which love does not cast out, but which endures for ever, they may, when they glory, glory in the Lord. For the righteousness of God is Christ, who is of God made unto us, as the apostle says, wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: as it is written, He that glories, let him glory in the Lord. 1 Corinthians 1:30-31 This righteousness of God, which is the gift of grace without merits, is not known by those who go about to establish their own righteousness, and are therefore not subject to the righteousness of God, which is Christ. Romans 10:3 But it is in this righteousness that we find the great abundance of God's sweetness, of which the psalm says, Taste and see how sweet the Lord is. And this we rather taste than partake of to satiety in this our pilgrimage. We hunger and thirst for it now, that hereafter we may be satisfied with it when we see Him as He is, and that is fulfilled which is written, I shall be satisfied when Your glory shall be manifested. It is thus that Christ perfects the great abundance of His sweetness to them that hope in Him. But if God conceals His sweetness from them that fear Him in the sense that these our objectors fancy, so that men's ignorance of His purpose of mercy towards the wicked may lead them to fear Him and live better, and so that there may be prayer made for those who are not living as they ought, how then does He perfect His sweetness to them that hope in Him, since, if their dreams be true, it is this very sweetness which will prevent Him from punishing those who do not hope in Him? Let us then seek that sweetness of His, which He perfects to them that hope in Him, not that which He is supposed to perfect to those who despise and blaspheme Him; for in vain, after this life, does a man seek for what he has neglected to provide while in this life. Then, as to that saying of the apostle, For God has concluded all in unbelief, that He may have mercy upon all, Romans 11:32 it does not mean that He will condemn no one; but the foregoing context shows what is meant. The apostle composed the epistle for the Gentiles who were already believers; and when he was speaking to them of the Jews who were yet to believe, he says, For as you in times past believed not God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief; even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy. Then he added the words in question with which these persons beguile themselves: For God concluded all in unbelief, that He might have mercy upon all. All whom, if not all those of whom he was speaking, just as if he had said, Both you and them? God then concluded all those in unbelief, both Jews and Gentiles, whom He foreknew and predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that they might be confounded by the bitterness of unbelief, and might repent and believingly turn to the sweetness of God's mercy, and might take up that exclamation of the psalm, How great is the abundance of Your sweetness, O Lord, which You have hidden for them that fear You, but have perfected to them that hope, not in themselves, but in You. He has mercy, then, on all the vessels of mercy. And what means all? Both those of the Gentiles and those of the Jews whom He predestinated, called, justified, glorified: none of these will be condemned by Him; but we cannot say none of all men whatever.


Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
adam Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
aristotelian Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
aristotle Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
athanasius Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
augustine Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168; Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 254
beatus Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
browning nelson Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
carroll, james Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 254
children Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
christianity, augustine on Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 254
constantines sword, the church and the jews (carroll) Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 254
cynics, cynicism Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
didymus Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
emotions Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
eve Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
genitals Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
happiness/the happy life Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
iustus, iustitia Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
law Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
life, eternal life Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
lust Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
mind Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
obedience/disobedience Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
platonists/platonism Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
pudicitia/pudicus Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
pythagoras Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
ratio Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
reason/rationality Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
sapiens, sapientia Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
sex, sexuality Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
shame Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
stoics Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
tripartite soul model Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
tura Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
uerecundia Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
watts' Larsen and Rubenson, Monastic Education in Late Antiquity: The Transformation of Classical 'Paideia' (2018) 168
wife Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158
wisdom, wise man Trettel, Desires in Paradise: An Interpretative Study of Augustine's City of God 14 (2019) 158