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Moralium. Lib. xxxiii. in c. xli. beati Job. (Editio ut supra.)

“ Non quia sufficientes simus aliquid cogitare a nobis quasi ex nobis, sed sufficientia nostra ex Deo est.” Nemo ergo Deum meritis Κ ut tenere eum quasi debitorem possit, sed miro modo æquus 9mnibus conditor, et quosdam præelegit, et quosdam in suis pravis moribus justè dere(inquit.

The DUTY and ADVANTAGE of reading the SCRIPTURES ; and the right mode of obtaining a true understanding of them, and the beauty and fullness of the written Word: in opposition to the declaration of the Trentine Fathers that the indiscriminate reading of the Seriptures is attended with more harm tham good, and that the Church is their only true interpreter.

AUGUsTINE.
The sufficiency qf the Scriptures.

Proinde sive de Christi, sive de ejus ecclesiâ, sive de quâcumque aliâ re, quæ pertinet ad fidem vitamque vestram, non dicam nos, nequaquam comparandi ei qui dixit, Licet si nos, sed omninò quod sequitur adjecit, si angelus de coelo vobis annuntiaverit praeterquam quod in Scripturis legalibus et evangelicis accepistis, anathema sit.—Lib. iii. cont. lit. Petit. c. 7. tom. ix. p. 302. (Bened. edit. Paris. 1685.)

Civitas Dei dubitationem tanquam academicorum dementiam detestatur ; credit enim Scripturis sanctis veteribus et novis, quas canonicas appellamus, unde fides ipsa concepta est, ex quâ justus vivit, per quam sine dubitatione ambulamus.— De Civitate Dei. lib. xix. c. 18. tom. vii. (Editio ut supra.)

The Scriptures are to be preferred to all the subsequent writings Qf bishops, and even General Councils may be amended by subsequent ones.

Quis nesciat scripturam canonicam veteris et Novi Testamenti, certis suis terminis eontineri, eamque omnibus posterioribus episcoporum litteris esse præponendam, ut de illâ omnino dubitari et disceptari non possit, utrum verum vel utrum rectum sit, quidquid in eâ scriptum esse constiterit.

1Episeoporum autem litteras, quæ post confirmatum canonem vel seriptæ sunt, vel scribuntur, et per sermonem forte sapientiorem cujuslibet in eâ re peritioris, et per aliorum episcoporum grayiorem auctoritatem doctioremque prudentiam et per concilia licet reprehendere, si quid in eis fortè a veritate deviatum est. Et ipsa concilia quæ per singulas regiones vel provincias fiunt, plenariorum conciliorum auctoritati, quæ fiunt ex universo orbe Christiano, sine ullis am' bagibus cedere : ipsaque plenaria saepe priora posterioribus emendari, cum aliquo experimento rerum aperitur quod clausum erat, et cognoscitur quod latebat.—Epist. de Baptismo, contra Donatistas, lib. xi. c. 3. tom. ix. p. 12. (Editio ut supra.)

In iis quæ apertè in Scripturâ posita sunt, inveniuntur illa omnia quæ continent fidem moresque vivendi.—De doctrinâ Christianâ, lib. ii. c. 9. tom. iii. (Editio ut supra.)

The Church is to be proved by the Scriptures.

Non audiamus, hæc dico, hæc dicis, sed audiamus hæc dicit Dominus. Sunt certè libri Dominici, eujus auctoritati utrique consentimus, utrique credimus, utrique servimus. Ibi quaeramus ecclesiam, ibi discutiamus causam nostram. Auferantur illa de medio, quæ adversus nos invicem, non ex ex divinis canonicis libris, sed aliunde recitamus. . . .

- Nolo humanis documentis, sed divinis oraculis ecclesiam demonstrari.—De unitate Ecclesiæ, c. 3. tom. ix. p. 341. (Bened. edit. Parisiis, 1694.)

Legite nobis hæc de lege, de prophetis, de Psalmis, de ipso evangelio, de apostolicis litteris, legite, et credimus.— Ibid. c. 6.

Hoc in lege et prophetis et Psalmis esse scriptum ipse testatus est ; hoc ejus commendatum ore tenemus. Hæc sunt causæ nostræ documenta, hæc fùndamenta, hæc firmamenta.—Ibidem, c. 16.

The Jews, with their Scriptures,* were like a blind man with a glass. Proferimus codices ab inimicis, ut confundamus alios inimicos. In quali opprobrio sunt Judæi ? Codicem portat Judæus, unde credat Christianus. Librarii nostri facti sunt. . . . . Apparent Judæi de Scripturâ sanctâ quam portant, quomodo apparet facies cæci de speculo : ab aliis videtur, ab ipso non videtur.—Enarratio in Ps. 56. tom. iv. p. 534.

* In another work Augustine declares that he would not believe the VOL. II. T.

The Scriptures sufficient for salvation.

Nam cùm multa fecisset Dominus, non omnia seripta sunt, sicut idem ipse Johannes Evangelista testatur, multa Dominum Christum et dixisse et fecisse, quæ scripta non sunt; electa sunt autem quæ scriberentur, quæ saluti credentium sufficere videbantur.—In Joh. Evang. tract. 49. p. 619. tom. iii. Editio ut supra.

Est autem mater ecclesia, et ubera ejus duo testamenta Scripturarum divinarum. Hinc sugatur lac omnium saeramentorum temporaliter pro nostrâ salute gestorum.—In epist. Joh. c. ii. tract. 3. p. 843. tom. iii. Editio ut supra.

Search the Scriptures.

Serutamini Scripturas, &c.] Judæis dicit Caput nostrum, quod nobis corpus dicit. Quæretis me et non invenietis me. Quare ? quia non serutamini Seripturas, quæ testimonium perhibent de me.—Serm. cxxix. de verbis evang. Johan. 5. (Bened. edit. Parisiis, 1685.)

Scriptures without the authority of the Catholic Church. But this is not inconsistent with his trying the character and doctrines of the Church by the Scriptures, when received upon the authority of the Church. We receive the canon of the Old Testament from the Jews; and by their own Scriptures we condemm the Jews. But Augustine must have alluded to the evidence of the genuimeness and canonicity of the Scriptures as proved by the writings of Churchmen. For no General Council had decided the canon of Scripture. Particular Coumcils, as well as the Fathers, varied in their canons; some included the Apocrypha, and some omitted them. Augustine included them, Jerome, more learned in Hebrew, rejected them. Augustine could not have meant that he received the Scriptures upon the authority qfthe Church Qf Rome, for Jerome testifies that in his days the Romans rejected the Epistle to the Hebrews. The 9th volume of Äugustine was published a few years later than the 6th, the latter was published in 1685, the former in 1694.

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There is scarcely any hope of salvation to those who are ignorant of the Scriptures.

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For as the earth which does not enjoy the labour of the husbandman becomes barren, and grows wildly luxuriant, in like manner the soul which does not enjoy spiritual instruction produces thorns and thistles. For if we who daily partake of (or enjoy) the hearing of the o and Apostles, scarcely restrain our passion, scarcely curb our anger, scarcely allay our desires, scarcely cast out the consumption of envy, and soothing (as we do) our passions continually with charms from the divine Scriptures, scarcely quiet these shameless beasts, tell me what hope have they of salvation who never enjoy this medicine, who never listen to the divine philosophy P

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* None of the Fathers is so much opposed to the Church of Rome in the reading of the Scriptures and the true way of understanding them, as

Chrysostom.

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also, has introduced heresies, the not being willing to pass over the whole body, but thinking that some of it is superfluous and redundant.

an exhaustless mine.

But if those who dig out the metal of fine gold, of whatever riches they may have emptied it, do not desist till they have removed all the gold, how much greater desire and eagerness does it become us to employ in our search into the divine Word. For we, too, dig up fine gold, not material, but spiritual. For we labour not for the metals of earth, but for those of the Spirit. For the epistles of Paul are the metals and fountains of the Spirit; metals, because they present us with wealth more precious than all fine gold; fountains, because they never fail, but whatever you empty thence, as much, and more, flows in again, of which all the time that is past would be a clear evidence. Five * hundred years have elapsed since Paul ived, and during the whole of that period many writers, and many teachers and interpreters have thence drawn many things, and have not exhausted the wealth contained in them. For the treasure is not material, and

* Either Chyrsostom erred in his chronology; or this sermon was written

by some Father in the next century.

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