| The charge to go and do in like manner |
Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost Comprehensive Catholic Commentary
Fr. George Leo Haydock
Editor's Note: We continue with this special feature provided by John Gregory with the Haydock Commentary found at the bottom of each page of the Douay-Rheims Bible. With the type so small in most bibles, we publish it here in larger type in conjunction with the Epistle and Gospel for the Sunday Mass, with the cogent comprehensive Catholic Commentary penned by Father George Leo Haydock. For the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost Father brings out the importance of the Good Samaritan parable for it is, as the Fathers and early Doctors of the Church all agree, an allegory of the New Covenant. The victim in dire help is Adam, his posterity is Jerusalem. The man, by heading for Jericho is seeking the world, the flesh and the devil, is accommodated by the demons personified in the robbers, who take grace from him by beating him as he succumbs to sin. Those who pass by him without helping represent the old Law, while the Samaritan is Christ Who represents the New Law. His beast of burden signifies our Lord's humanity and the inn He brings the man to represents the only Church He founded. The wine for the man is the Blood of Christ, the oil is His mercy. The host of the inn represents St. Peter and his succession of true Popes and Hierarchy.
Epistle: 2 Corinthians 3: 4-9
4 And such confidence we have, through Christ, towards God.
5 Not that we are sufficient to think any thing of ourselves, as of ourselves: but our sufficiency is from God.
6Who also hath made us fit ministers of the new testament, not in the letter, but in the spirit. For the letter killeth, but the spirit quickeneth.
Commentary on Verse 5-6 To think any thing of ourselves, that may deserve a reward in heaven. - But Christ hath made us fit ministers of His New Testament by the Spirit: for the letter of the Old Testament killeth, but the Spirit of the New Testament giveth life. (Wi.) - The letter. Not rightly understood, and taken without the spirit. (Ch.) - This verse, (6th) refers to that in the last chapter, where he says: And for these things who is so fit? Who is so capable of such a ministry? It is God alone Who gives us strength, light and grace. I am far from giving a part only to God, and a part to myself. It all exclusively belongs to Him. (Saint John Chrysostom) 7 Now if the ministration of death, engraven with letters upon stones, was glorious; so that the children of Israel could not steadfastly behold the face of Moses, for the glory of his countenance, which is made void:
Commentary on Verse 7 Now if the ministration of death: he meaneth the former law, which by giving them a greater knowledge, and not giving graces of itself to fulfill those precepts, occasioned death, was notwithstanding glorious, accompanied with miracles on Mount Sinai, and so that the Israelites, when Moses came down from the mountain, could not bear the glory of his countenance, which he was forced to cover with a veil, when he spoke to them. Shall not the ministration of the Spirit in the new law, which worketh our sanctification and salvation, abound with much greater glory? Especially since the old law was to be made void, and pass away. - Neither was that glorified, or to be esteemed glorious, in comparison of the new law, the blessings of the new so far surpassing those of the old law. (Wi.) - If the law of Moses, written on tables of stone, which was only able to cause death, inasmuch as it gave us light sufficient to know what was right, though it did not give us strength or graces to comply with the obligations imposed by it; if this law, nevertheless, was accompanied with so much glory, that Moses was obliged to put a veil over his face, what must we think of the ministry of the Spirit, and of the glorious duties of the apostleship? How ought our glory to be manifest, and who is fit for such an undertaking. If I thus extol the excellency of my ministry, do not imagine that I attribute any thing to myself. I am unworthy of this office, which so far surpasseth that of Moses, that his glory (v. 10.) could not be truly called glory, when compared with this of ours, which so far excelleth his. (Calmet.) - The letter of the New Testament also, not truly taken or expounded by the Spirit of God, which is in His Church, must in the same manner be said to kill. See Saint Austin, sermon 70 & 100 de tempore. & l. de spirit. & lit. c. 5. 6. & dein. 8 How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather in glory?
9 For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more the ministration of justice aboundeth in glory.
Gospel: St. Luke 10: 23-37
23 And turning to His disciples, He said: Blessed are the eyes that see the things which you see.
24 For I say to you, that many prophets and kings have desired to see the things that you see, and have not seen them; and to hear the things that you hear, and have not heard them.
25 And behold a certain lawyer stood up, tempting Him, and saying, Master, what must I do to possess eternal life?
Commentary on Verse 25 Eternal life? The law of Moses does not expressly promise eternal life to the observers of it, but confines its promises to temporal blessings during this life. Still we always find that the Jews hoped in another life after this. This opinion is clearly observable in the books of Scripture, written both before and after the captivity, and in Josephus and Philo. (Calmet.) 26 But He said to him: What is written in the law? how readest thou?
27 He answering, said: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind: and thy neighbour as thyself.
28 And He said to him: Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. 29 But he willing to justify himself, said to Jesus: And who is my neighbor?
Commentary on Verse 29 Neighbor? It appears this was a celebrated controversy among the doctors of the law; some probably affirming, that the Jews only were so; while others maintained that their friends alone were their neighbours. (Maldonatus.) 30 And Jesus answering, said: A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among robbers, who also stripped him, and having wounded him went away, leaving him half dead.
Commentary on Verse 30 A certain man, & c. This would have to be a history: others rather judge it spoken by way of parable, to teach us to perform offices of charity towards all men without exception. (Wi.) - Were we to adhere to the mere words of this parable, it would seem to follow, that only those who do us good were to be esteemed our neighbours; for the context seems to intimate, that the Levite and the priest were not neighbours to the man who fell among the robbers, because they did not assist him. But according to the opinion of most fathers, the intent of this parable is to shew, that every person who has need of our assistance is our neighbour. (Maldonatus.) 31 And it chanced, that a certain priest went down the same way: and seeing him, passed by.
Commentary on Verse 31 Our Savior here shows the Jewish priests how preposterous was their behaviour, who, though scrupulously exact in performing all external acts of religion, entirely neglected piety, mercy, and other more essential duties. The Jews despised the Samaritans as wicked and irreligious men; but our Savior here tells them that they were less exact in works of charity towards their neighbours than the very Samaritans. (Tirinus.) 32 In like manner also a Levite, when he was near the place and saw him, passed by.
33 But a certain Samaritan being on his journey, came near him; and seeing him, was moved with compassion.
34 And going up to him, bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine: and setting him upon his own beast, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
Commentary on Verse 34 This is the allegorical meaning of the parable: The man that fell among robbers, represents Adam and his posterity; Jerusalem, the state of peace and innocence, which man leaves by going down to Jericho, which means the moon, the state of trouble and sin: the robbers represent the devil, who stripped him of his supernatural gifts, and wounded him in his natural faculties: the priest and Levite represent the old law: the Samaritan, Christ; and the beast, his humanity. The inn means the Church; wine, the blood of Christ; oil, his mercy; whilst the host signifies Saint Peter and his successors, the bishops and priests of the Church. (Origen, Saint Jerome, Saint Ambrose, Saint Augustine, and others)35 And the next day he took out two pence, and gave to the host, and said: Take care of him; and whatsoever thou shalt spend over and above, I, at my return, will repay thee.
36 Which of these three, in thy opinion, was neighbor to him that fell among the robbers?
37 But he said: He that shewed mercy to him. And Jesus said to him: Go, and do thou in like manner.
Haydock Commentary for the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost