|<< Philippians 1 >>|
Homilies of Chrysostom
1Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:
"Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, fellow-Bishops  and Deacons: Grace to you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ."
Here, as writing to those of equal honor, he does not set down his rank of Teacher, but another, and that a great one. And what is that? He calls himself a "servant," and not an Apostle. For great truly is this rank too, and the sum of all good things, to be a servant of Christ, and not merely to be called so. "The servant of Christ," this is truly a free man in respect to sin, and being a genuine servant, he is not a servant to any other, since he would not be Christ's servant, but by halves. And in again writing to the Romans also, he says, "Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ." (Romans 1:1.) But writing to the Corinthians and to Timothy he calls himself an "Apostle." On what account then is this? Not because they were superior to Timothy. Far from it. But rather he honors them, and shows them attention, beyond all others to whom he wrote. For he also bears witness to great virtue in them. For besides, there indeed he was about to order many things, and therefore assumed his rank as an Apostle. But here he gives them no injunctions but such as they could perceive of themselves.
"To the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi. " Since it was likely that the Jews too would call themselves "saints" from the first oracle, when  they were called a "holy people, a people for God's own possession" (Exodus 19:6; Deuteronomy 7:6, etc.); for this reason he added, "to the saints in Christ Jesus." For these alone are holy, and those hence-forward profane. "To the fellow-Bishops  and Deacons." What is this? were there several Bishops of one city? Certainly not; but he called the Presbyters so. For then they still interchanged the titles, and the Bishop was called a Deacon.  For this cause in writing to Timothy, he said, "Fulfil thy ministry," when he was a Bishop. For that he was a Bishop appears by his saying to him, "Lay hands hastily on no man." (1 Timothy 5:22.) And again, "Which was given thee with the laying on of the hands of the Presbytery." (1 Timothy 4:14.) Yet Presbyters would not have laid hands on a Bishop. And again, in writing to Titus, he says, "For this cause I left thee in Crete, that thou shouldest appoint elders  in every city, as I gave thee charge. If any man is blameless, the husband of one wife" (Titus 1:5, 6.); which he says of the Bishop.  And after saying this, he adds immediately, "For the Bishop must be blameless, as God's steward, not self willed." (Titus 1:7.) So then, as I said, both the Presbyters were of old called Bishops and Deacons of Christ, and the Bishops Presbyters; and hence even now many Bishops write, "To my fellow-Presbyter," and, "To my fellow-Deacon." But otherwise the specific name is distinctly appropriated to each, the Bishop and the Presbyter. "To the fellow-Bishops," he says, "and Deacons,
2Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Ver. 2. "Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ."
How is it that though he nowhere else writes to the Clergy, not in Rome, nor in Corinth, nor in Ephesus, nor anywhere, but in general, to "all the saints, the believers, the beloved," yet here he writes to the Clergy? Because it was they that sent, and bare fruit, and it was they that dispatched Epaphroditus to him.
3I thank my God upon every remembrance of you,
Ver. 3. "I thank my God," he says, "upon all my remembrance of you."
He said in another of his writings, "Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit to them: for they watch in behalf of your souls, as they that shall give account; that they may do this with joy, and not with grief." (Hebrews 13:17.) If then the "grief" be due to the wickedness of the disciples, the doing it "with joy" would be due to their advancement. As often as I remember you, I glorify God. But this he does from his being conscious of many good things in them. I both glorify, he says, and pray. I do not, because ye have advanced unto virtue, cease praying for you. But "I thank my God," he says, "upon all my remembrance of you,"
4Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy,
Ver. 4. "Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request also with joy."
"Always,"  not only while I am praying. "With joy." For it is possible to do this with grief too, as when he says elsewhere, "For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears." (2 Corinthians 2:4.)
5For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now;
Ver. 5. "For your fellowship in furtherance of the Gospel from the first day even until now."
Great is that he here witnesseth of them, and very great, and what one might have witnessed of Apostles and Evangelists. Ye did not, because ye were entrusted with one city, he saith, care for that only, but ye leave nothing undone to be sharers of my labors, being everywhere at hand and working with me, and taking part in my preaching. It is not once, or the second, or third time, but always, from the time ye believed until now, ye have assumed the readiness of Apostles. Behold how those indeed that were in Rome turned away from him;  for hear him saying, "This thou knowest, that all that are in Asia turned away from me." (2 Timothy 1:15.) And again, "Demas forsook me": and "at my first defence no one took my part." (2 Timothy 4:10, 16.) But these, although absent, shared in his tribulations, both sending men to him, and ministering to him according to their ability, and leaving out nothing at all. And this ye do not now only, saith he, but always, in every way assisting me. So then it is a "fellowship in furtherance of the Gospel." For when one preacheth, and thou waitest on the preacher, thou sharest his crowns. Since even in the contests that are without, the crown is not only for him that striveth, but for the trainer, and the attendant, and all that help to prepare the athlete. For they that strengthen him, and recover him, may fairly participate in his victory. And in wars too, not only he that wins the prize of valor, but all they too that attend him, may fairly claim a share in the trophies, and partake of the glory, as having shared in his conflict by their attendance on him. For it availeth not a little to wait on saints, but very much. For it makes us sharers in the rewards that are laid up for them. Thus; suppose some one hath given up great possessions for God, continually devotes himself to God, practices great virtue, and even to words, and even to thoughts, and even in everything observes extreme strictness. It is open to thee too, even without showing such strictness, to have a share in the rewards that are laid up for him for these things. How? If thou aid him both in word and deed. If thou encourage him both by supplying his needs, and by doing him every possible service. For then the smoother of that rugged path will be thyself. So then if ye admire those in the deserts that have adopted the angelic life, those in the churches that practice the same virtues with them; if ye admire, and are grieved that ye are far behind them; ye may, in another way, share with them, by waiting on them, and aiding them. For indeed this too is of God's lovingkindness, to bring those that are less zealous,  and are not able to undertake the hard and rugged and strict life, to bring, I say, even those, by another way, into the same rank with the others. And this Paul means by "fellowship." They give a share to us, he means, in carnal things, and we give a share to them in spiritual things. For if God for little and worthless things granteth the kingdom, His servants too, for little and material things, give a share in spiritual things: or rather it is He that giveth both the one and the other by means of them. Thou canst not fast, nor be alone, nor lie on the ground, nor watch all night? Yet mayest thou gain the reward of all these things, if thou go about the matter another way, by attending on him that laboreth in them, and refreshing and anointing him constantly, and lightening the pains of these works. He, for his part, stands fighting and taking blows. Do thou wait on him when he returns from the combat, receive him in thy arms, wipe off the sweat, and refresh him; comfort, soothe, restore his wearied soul. If we will but minister to the saints with such readiness, we shall be partakers of their rewards. This Christ also tells us. "Make to yourselves friends by means of the mammon of unrighteousness, that they may receive you into their eternal tabernacles." (Luke 16:9.) Seest thou that they are become sharers? "From the first day," he says, "even until now." And "I rejoice" not only for what is past, but also for the future; for from the past I guess that too.
Ver. 6. "Being confident of this very thing, that He which began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ."
See how he also teaches them to be unassuming. For since he had witnessed a great thing of them, that they may not feel as men are apt to do, he presently teaches them to refer both the past and the future to Christ. How? By saying, not, "Being confident that as ye began ye will also finish," but what? "He which began a good work in you will perfect it." He did not rob them of the achievement, (for he said, "I rejoice for your fellowship," clearly as if making it their act,) nor did he call their good deeds solely their own, but primarily of God. "For I am confident," saith he, "that He which began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ." That is, God will. And it is not about yourselves, he implies, but about those descending from you that I feel thus. And indeed it is no small praise, that God should work in one. For if He is "no respecter of persons," as indeed He is none, but is looking to our purpose  when He aids us in good deeds, it is evident that we are agents in drawing Him to us; so that even in this view he did not rob them of their praise. Since if His in working were indiscriminate, there would have been nothing to hinder but that even Heathens and all men might have Him working in them, that is, if He moved us like logs and stones, and required not our part. So that in saying "God will perfect it," this also again is made their praise, who have drawn to them the grace of God, so that He aids them in going beyond human nature. And in another way also a praise, as that "such are your good deeds that they cannot be of man, but require the divine impulse." But if God will perfect, then neither shall there be much labor, but it is right to be of good courage, for that they shall easily accomplish all, as being assisted by Him.
6Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
7Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace.
Ver. 7. "Even as it is right for me to be thus minded on behalf of you all, because I have you in my heart, inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the Gospel, ye all are partakers with me of grace."
Greatly still does he show here his longing desire, in that he had them in his heart; and in the very prison, and though bound, he remembered the Philippians. And it is not a little to the praise of these men, since it is not of prejudice that this Saint conceived his love, but of judgment, and right reasons. So that to be loved of Paul so earnestly is a proof of one's being something great and admirable. "And in the defense,"  he says, "and confirmation of the Gospel." And what wonder if he had them when in prison, since not even at the moment of going before the tribunal to make my defense, he says, did ye slip from my memory. For so imperial a thing is spiritual love, that it gives way to no season, but ever keeps hold of the soul of him who loves, and allows no trouble or pain to overcome that soul. For as in the case of the Babylonian furnace, when so vast a flame was raised, it was a dew to those blessed Children. So too does friendship occupying the soul of one who loves, and who pleases God, shake off every flame, and produce a marvelous dew.
"And in the confirmation of the Gospel," he says. So then his bonds were a confirmation of the Gospel, and a defense. And most truly so. How? For if he had shunned bonds, he might have been thought a deceiver; but he that endures every thing, both bonds and affliction, shows that he suffers this for no human reason, but for God, who rewards. For no one would have been willing to die, or to incur such great risks, no one would have chosen to come into collision with such a king,  I mean Nero, unless he looked to another far greater King. Truly a "confirmation of the Gospel" were his bonds. See how he more than succeeded in turning all things to their opposite. For what they supposed to be a weakness and a detraction, that he calls a confirmation; and had this not taken place, there had been a weakness. Then he shows that his love was not of prejudice, but of judgment. Why? I have you (in my heart), he says, in my bonds, and in my defense, because of your being "partakers of my grace." What is this? Was this the "grace" of the Apostle, to be bound, to be driven about, to suffer ten thousand evils? Yes. For He says, "My grace is sufficient for thee, for my power is made perfect in weakness." (2 Corinthians 12:9.) "Wherefore," saith he, "I take pleasure in weaknesses, in injuries." Since then I see you in your actions giving proof of your virtue, and being partakers of this grace, and that with readiness, I reasonably suppose thus much. For I that have had trial of you, and more than any have known you, and your good deeds; how that even when so distant from us, ye strive not to be wanting to us in our troubles, but to partake in our trials for the Gospel's sake, and to take no less share than myself, who am engaged in the combat, far off as ye are; am doing but justice in witnessing to these things.
And why did he not say "partakers," but "partakers with me"  ? I myself too, he means, share with another, that I may be a partaker of the Gospel; that is, that I may share in the good things laid up for the Gospel.  And the wonder indeed is that they were all so minded; for he says that "ye all are fellow-partakers of grace." From these beginnings, then, I am confident that such ye will be even to the end. For it cannot be that so bright a commencement should be quenched, and fail, but it points to  great results.
Since then it is possible also in other ways  to partake of grace, and of trials, and of tribulations, let us also, I beseech you, be partakers. How many of those who stand here, yea, rather all, would fain share with Paul in the good things to come! It is in your power if ye are willing, on behalf of those who have succeeded to his ministry, when they suffer any hardship for Christ's sake, to take their part and succor them. Hast thou seen thy brother in trial? Hold out a hand! Hast thou seen thy teacher in conflict? Stand by him! But, says one, there is no one like Paul! now for disdain! now for criticism! So there is no one like Paul? Well, I grant it. But, "He that receiveth," saith He, "a prophet in the name of a prophet, shall receive a prophet's reward." (Matthew 10:41.) For was it for this that these were honored, that they co?perated with Paul? Not for this, but because they co?perated with one who had undertaken the preaching. Paul was honorable for this, that he suffered these things for Christ's sake.
There is indeed no one like Paul. No, not even but a little approaching to that blessed one. But the preaching is the same as it was then.
And not only in his bonds did they have fellowship with him, but also from the beginning. For hear him saying, "And ye yourselves also know, ye Philippians, that in the beginning of the Gospel, no Church had fellowship with me in the matter of giving and receiving, but ye only." (Philip. iv. 15.) And even apart from trials, the teacher has much labor, watching, toiling in the word, teaching, complaints, accusations, imputations, envyings. Is this a little matter, to bear ten thousand tongues, when one might have but one's own anxieties? Alas! what shall I do? for I am in a strait between two things. I long to urge you on and encourage you to the alliance and succor of the saints of God; but I fear lest some one should suspect another thing, that I say this not for your sakes, but for theirs. But know that it is not for their sakes I say these things, but for your own. And if ye are willing to attend, I convince you by my very words; the gain is not equal to you and to them. For ye, if ye give, will give those things from which, willing or unwilling, ye must soon after part, and give place to others; but what thou receivest is great and far more abundant. Or, are ye not so disposed, that in giving ye will receive? For if ye are not so disposed, I do not even wish you to give. So far am I from making a speech for them! Except one have first so disposed himself, as receiving rather than giving, as gaining ten thousand fold, as benefited rather than a benefactor, let him not give. If as one granting a favor to the receiver, let him not give. For this is not so much my care, that the saints may be supported. For even if thou give not, another will give. So that what I want is this, that you may have a relief from your own sins. But he that gives not so will have no relief. For it is not giving that is doing alms, but the doing it with readiness; the rejoicing, the feeling grateful to him that receives. For, "not grudgingly," saith he, "or of necessity; for God loveth a cheerful giver." (2 Corinthians 9:7.) Except then one so give, let him not give: for that is loss, not alms. If then ye know that ye will gain, not they, know that your gain becomes greater.  For as for them the body is fed, but your soul is approved; for them, not one of their sins is forgiven when they receive, but for you, the more part of your offenses is removed. Let us then share with them in their great prizes.  When men adopt kings they do not think they give more than they receive. Adopt thou Christ, and thou shalt have great security. Wilt thou also share with Paul? Why do I say Paul when it is Christ that receiveth?
But that ye may know that all is for your sakes that I say and do, and not of care for the comfort of others, if there is any of the rulers of the church that lives in abundance and wants nothing, though he be a saint, give not, but prefer to him one that is in want, though he be not so admirable. And wherefore? Because Christ too so willeth, as when He saith, "If thou make a supper or a dinner, call not thy friends, neither thy kinsmen, but the maimed, the lame, the blind, that cannot recompense thee." (Luke 14:12.) For it is not indiscriminately that one should pay such attentions, but to the hungry, but to the thirsty, but to those who need clothing, but to strangers, but to those who from riches have been reduced to poverty.  For He said not simply, "I was fed," but "I was an hungered," for, "Ye saw me an hungered," He says, "and fed me." (Matthew 25:35.) Twofold is the claim, both that he is a saint and that he is hungry. For if he that is simply hungry ought to be fed, much more when he is a saint too that is hungry. If then he is a saint, but not in need, give not; for this were no gain. For neither did Christ enjoin it; or rather, neither is he a saint  that is in abundance and receiveth. Seest thou that it is not for filthy lucre that these things have been said to you, but for your profit? Feed the hungry, that thou mayest not feed the fire of hell. He, eating of what is thine, sanctifies also what remains. (Luke 11:41.) Think how the widow maintained Elias; and she did not more feed than she was fed: she did not more give than receive. This now also takes place in a much greater thing. For it is not a "barrel of meal," nor "a cruse of oil" (1 Kings 17:14.), but what? "An hundred fold, and eternal life" (Matthew 19:21, 29.), is the recompense for such--the mercy of God thou becomest; the spiritual food; a pure leaven. She was a widow, famine was pressing, and none of these things hindered her. Children too she had, and not even so was she withheld. (1 Kings 17:12.) This woman is become equal to her that cast in the two mites. She said not to herself, "What shall I receive from this man? He stands in need of me. If he had any power he had not hungered, he had broken the drought, he had not been subject to like sufferings. Perchance he too offends God." None of these things did she think of. Seest thou how great a good it is to do well with simplicity, and not to be over curious about the person benefited? If she had chosen to be curious she would have doubted; she would not have believed. So, too, Abraham, if he had chosen to be curious, would not have received angels. For it cannot, indeed it cannot be, that one who is exceeding nice in these matters, should ever meet with them. No, such an one usually lights on impostors; and how that is, I will tell you. The pious man is not desirous to appear pious, and does not clothe himself in show, and is likely to be rejected. But the impostor, as he makes a business of it, puts on a deal of piety that is hard to see through. So that while he who does good, even to those who seem not pious, will fall in with those who are so, he who seeks out those who are thought to be pious, will often fall in with those who are not so. Wherefore, I beseech you, let us do all things in simplicity. For let us even suppose that he is an impostor that comes; you are not bidden to be curious about this. For, "Give," saith he, "to every one that asketh thee" (Luke 6:30.); and, "Forbear not to redeem him that is to be slain." (Proverbs 24:11.) Yet most of those that are slain suffer this for some evil they are convicted of; still he saith, "Forbear not." For in this shall we be like God, thus shall we be admired, and shall obtain those immortal blessings, which may we all be thought worthy of, through the grace and lovingkindness of Jesus Christ our Lord, with whom, to the Father, together with the Holy Spirit, be glory, power, honor, now and forever, and world without end. Amen.
 E.V. "with the bishops," reading the preposition separately. [See below.]
 [Viz. in the times of "the first oracle," i. e. the Old Test.--J.A.B.]
 [A good many late manuscripts of N.T., and several late Fathers, read with Chrys. sunepiskopois, "to the co-bishops"; but the early documents and modern critics give sun episkopois, "with the bishops," as in the Eng. versions.--J.A.B.]
 Diakonos, usually [translated] in E.V. "Minister," when thus used.
 Gr. Presbyters.
 See 1 Timothy 3:2, but Chrys.'s reason for taking it thus is rather that kata polin seems to imply one for each city.
 The stop might be after "always," but that is harsh.
 This was at a later period. But the comparison is in general terms.
 rhathumoterous. The words "are not able" seem to show that this is here used of natural character.
 So he explains Romans 8:28, where "His" is not in the Greek, though rightly (as it seems) understood by St. Augustine and others. See on Rom. Hom. xv. Tr. p. 453.
 [The Greek word for "king" was often applied to the Roman emperor (1 Timothy 2:2; 1 Pet. ii. 13.).--J.A.B.]
 "Or fellow-partakers," sunkoinonous, see marginal version [and Rev. Ver.--J.A.B.]
 The word may be here used, as often, for the "preaching" of the Gospel.
 al. and end without producing.
 heteros, in other ways than by actually undergoing the trials; but Savile conjectures heterois, "with others."
 i. e. than if ye did not acknowledge this.
 al. "in their toils in order that we may share also in their great prizes."
 [This last clause was wanting in the text of the printed editions earlier than the Benedictine. It is found in a good group of mss.--J.A.B.]
 There is a ms. discourse of St. Macarius on the danger of monastic life in a town, from the multitude of presents.
8For God is my record, how greatly I long after you all in the bowels of Jesus Christ.
"For God is my witness, how I long after you all in the tender mercies of Jesus Christ. And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and all discernment; that ye may approve the things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and void of offense unto the day of Christ; being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are through Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God."
He calls not God to witness as though he should be doubted, but does this from his great affection, and his exceeding persuasion and confidence; for after saying that they had fellowship with him, he adds this also, "in the tender mercies of Christ," lest they should think that his longing for them was for this cause, and not simply for their own sake. And what mean these words, "in the tender mercies of Christ"? They stand for "according to Christ." Because ye are believers, because ye love Christ, because of the love that is according to Christ. He does not say "love," but uses a still warmer expression, "the tender mercies of Christ," as though he had said, "having become as a father to you through the relationship which is in Christ." For this imparts to us bowels  warm and glowing. For He gives such bowels to His true servants. "In these bowels," saith He, as though one should say, "I love you with no natural bowels, but with warmer ones, namely, those of Christ." "How I long after you all." I long after all, since ye are all of this nature; I am unable in words to represent to you my longing; it is therefore impossible to tell. For this cause I leave it to God, whose range is in the heart, to know this. Now had he been flattering them, he would not have called God to witness, for this cannot be done without peril.
9And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment;
Ver. 9. "And this," saith he, "I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more." For this is a good of which there is no satiety; for see, being so loved he wished to be loved still more, for he who loves the object of his love, is willing to stay at no point of love, for it is impossible there should be a measure of so noble a thing. Paul desires that the debt of love should always be owing; "Owe no man any thing, save to love one another." (Romans 13:8.) The measure of love is, to stop nowhere; "that your love," says he, "may abound yet more and more." Consider the character of the expression, "that it may abound yet more and more," he says, "in knowledge and all discernment." He does not extol friendship merely, nor love merely, but such as comes of knowledge; that is, Ye should not apply the same love to all: for this comes not of love, but from want of feeling. What means he by "in knowledge"? He means, with judgment, with reason, with discrimination. There are who love without reason, simply and any how, whence it comes that such friendships are weak. He says, "in knowledge and all discernment, that ye may approve the things that are excellent," that is, the things that are profitable. This I say not for my own sake, says he, but for yours, for there is danger lest any one be spoiled by the love of the heretics; for all this he hints at, and see how he brings it in. Not for my own sake, says he, do I say this, but that ye may be sincere, that is, that ye receive no spurious doctrine under the pretence of love. How then, says he, "If it be possible, live peaceably with all men"? "Live peaceably" (Romans 12:18.), he says, not, Love so as to be harmed by that friendship; for he says, "if thy right eye causeth thee to stumble, pluck it out, and cast it from thee; that ye may be sincere" (Matthew 5:29.), that is, before God, "and without offence," that is, before men, for many men's friendships are often a hurt to them. Even though it hurts thee not, says he, still another may stumble thereat. "Unto the day of Christ"; i. e. that ye may then be found pure, having caused no one to stumble.
10That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ;
11Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.
Ver. 11. "Being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are through Jesus Christ unto the glory and praise of God;" i. e. holding, together with true doctrine, an upright life.
And not merely upright, but "filled with the fruits of righteousness." For there is indeed a righteousness not according to Christ, as, for example, a moral life. "Which are through Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God." Seest thou  that I speak not of mine own glory, but the righteousness of God; and oftentimes he calls mercy itself too righteousness; let not your love, he says, indirectly injure you, by hindering your perception of things profitable, and take heed lest you fall through your love to any one. For I would indeed that your love should be increased, but not so that ye should be injured by it. And I would not that it should be simply of prejudice, but upon proof whether I speak well or no. He says not, that ye may take up my opinion, but that ye may "prove" it. He does not say outright, join not yourself to this or that man, but, I would that your love should have respect to what is profitable, not that ye should be void of understanding. For it is a foolish thing if ye work not righteousness for Christ's sake and through Him. Mark the words, "through Him." Does he then use God as a mere assistant? Away with the thought. Not that I may receive praise, says he, but that God may be glorified.
12But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel;
Ver. 12, 13. "Now I would have you know, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the progress of the Gospel, so that my bonds became manifest in Christ throughout the whole pr?torian guard, and to all the rest."
It was likely they would grieve when they heard he was in bonds, and imagine that the preaching was at a stand. What then? He straightway destroys this suspicion. And this also shows his affection, that he declares the things which had happened to him, because they were anxious. What say you? you are in bonds! you are hindered! how then does the Gospel advance? He answers, "so that my bonds in Christ became manifest in all the pr?torium." This thing not only did not silence the rest, nor affright them, but contrariwise rather encouraged them. If then they who were near the dangers were not only nothing hurt, but even received greater confidence, much more should you. Had he when in bonds taken it hardly, and held his peace, it were probable that they would be affected in like sort. But as he spoke more boldly when in bonds, he gave them more confidence than if he had not been bound. And how have his bonds "turned to the progress of the Gospel"? So God in His dispensation ordered, he means, that my bonds were not hid, my bonds which were "in" Christ, which were "for" Christ.
"In the whole pr?torium." For up to that time they so called the palace.  And in the whole city,  says he.
13So that my bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places;
14And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.
Ver. 14. "And that most of the brethren in the Lord, being confident through my bonds, are more abundantly bold to speak the word without fear."
This shows that they were of good courage even before, and spoke with boldness, but much more now. If others then, says he, are of good courage through my bonds, much more am I; if I am the cause of confidence to others, much more to myself. "And most of the brethren in the Lord." As it was a great thing to say, My bonds gave confidence to them, he therefore adds beforehand, "in the Lord." Do you see how, even when he sees himself constrained to speak great things, he departs not from moderation? "Are more abundantly bold," he says, "to speak the word without fear"; the words "more abundantly" show that they had already begun.
15Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will:
Ver. 15. "Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife, and some also of good will."
And what this means is worth enquiry. Since Paul was under restraint, many of the unbelievers, willing to stir up more vehemently the persecution from the Emperor, themselves also preached Christ, in order that the Emperor's wrath might be increased at the spread of the Gospel, and all his anger might fall on the head of Paul. From my bonds then two lines of action have sprung. One party took great courage thereat; the other, from hope to work my destruction, set themselves to preach Christ; "some of them through envy," that is, envying my reputation and constancy, and from desire of my destruction, and the spirit of strife, work with me; or that they themselves may be esteemed, and from the expectation that they will draw to themselves somewhat of my glory. "And some also of good will," that is, without hypocrisy, with all earnestness.
Ver. 16. "The one proclaim Christ of faction not sincerely." 
That is, not with pure motives, nor from regard to the matter itself; but why? "thinking to add affliction to my bonds."  As they think that I shall thus fall into greater peril, they add affliction to affliction. O cruelty! O devilish instigation! They saw him in bonds, and cast into prison, and still they envied him. They would increase his calamities, and render him subject to greater anger: well said he, "thinking," for it did not so turn out. They thought indeed to grieve me by this; but I rejoiced that the Gospel was furthered.
Ver. 17. "But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defense of the Gospel."
What means, "that I am set for the defense of the Gospel"?  It is, They are preparing for  the account which I must give to God, and assisting me.
What is meant by "for the defense"? I have been appointed to preach, I must give account, and answer for the work to which I have been appointed; they assist me, that my defense may be easy; for if there be found many who have been instructed and have believed, my defense will be easy. So it is possible to do a good work, from a motive which is not good. And not only is there no reward in store for such an action, but punishment. For as they preached Christ from a desire to involve the preacher of Christ in greater perils, not only shall they receive no reward, but shall be subject to vengeance and punishment.  "And some of love." That is, they know that I must give account for the Gospel.
Ver. 18. "What then? only that every way, whether in pretense, or in truth, Christ is proclaimed."
But see the wisdom of the Man. He did not vehemently accuse them, but mentioned the result; what difference does it make to me, says he, whether it be done in this or that way? only that every way, "whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed." He did not say, "Let him be proclaimed," as some suppose, stating that he opens the way for the heresies, but, "He is proclaimed."  For in the first place he did not lay down the law and say, as if laying down the law, "Let Him be proclaimed," but he reported what was taking place; secondly, if he even spoke as laying down the law, not even thus would he be opening the way for the heresies.
For let us examine the matter. For even if he gave permission to preach as they preached, not even thus was he opening the way for the heresies. How so? In that they preached healthfully; though the aim and purpose on which they acted was corrupted, still the preaching itself was not changed, and they were forced so to preach. And why? Because, had they preached otherwise than as Paul preached, had they taught otherwise than as he taught, they would not have increased the wrath of the Emperor. But now by furthering his preaching, by teaching in the same way, and making disciples as he did, they had power to exasperate the Emperor, when he saw the multitude of the disciples numerous. But then some wicked and senseless man, taking hold of this passage, says, Verily they would have done the contrary, they would have driven off those who had already believed, instead of making believers to abound, had they wished to annoy him. What shall we answer? That they looked to this thing only, how they might involve him in present danger, and leave him no escape; and thus they thought to grieve him, and to quench the Gospel, rather than in the other way.
By that other course they would have extinguished the wrath of the Emperor, they would have let him go at large and preach again; but by this course they thought that because of him all would be ruined, could they but destroy him. The many however could not have this intention, but certain bitter men alone.
Then "and therein," says he, "I rejoice, yea, and will rejoice." What means, "yea, I will rejoice"? Even if this be done still more, he means. For they co?perate with me even against their will; and will receive punishment for their toil, whilst I, who contributed nothing thereto, shall receive reward. Is there anything beyond this villainy of the Devil, to contrive the punishment of the preaching, and vengeance for the toils? Seest thou with how many evils he pierces through his own! How else would a hater and an enemy of their salvation have arranged all this? Seest thou how he who wages war against the truth has no power, but rather wounds himself, as one who kicks against the goads?
16The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds:
17But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel.
18What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.
"And therein I rejoice, yea, and will rejoice. For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your supplication, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, according to my earnest expectation and hope, that in nothing shall I be put to shame, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether by life, or by death."
None of the grievous things which are in this present life can fix their fangs upon that lofty soul, which is truly philosophic, neither enmity, nor accusations, nor slanders, nor dangers, nor plots. It flies for refuge as it were to a mighty fortress, securely defended there against all that attack it from this lower earth. Such was the soul of Paul; it had taken possession of a place higher than any fortress, the seat of spiritual wisdom, that is, true philosophy. For that of those without, i. e. the heathen, is mere words, and childish toys. But it is not of these we now speak, but at present concerning the things of Paul. That blessed one had both the Emperor for his enemy, and in addition, many other foes many ways afflicting him, even with bitter slander. And what says he? Not only do I not grieve nor sink beneath these things, but "I even rejoice, yea, and will rejoice," not for a season, but always will I rejoice for these things. "For I know that this shall turn out to my salvation," that which is to come, when even their enmity and jealousy towards me further the Gospel. "Through your supplication," he adds, "and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ according to my earnest expectation and hope." Behold the humble-mindedness of this blessed one; he was striving in the contest, he was now close to his crown, he had done ten thousand exploits, for he was Paul, and what can one add to this? still he writes to the Philippians, I may be saved "through your supplication," I who have gained salvation through countless achievements. "And the supply," saith he, "of the Spirit of Jesus Christ." It is as though he said, if I am thought worthy of your prayers, I shall also be thought worthy of more grace. For the meaning of "supply" is this, if the Spirit be supplied to me, be given to me more abundantly. Or he is speaking of deliverance, "unto salvation"; that is, I shall also escape the present as I did the former danger. Of this same matter he says, "At my first defense no one took my part, but all forsook me; may it not be laid to their account. But the Lord stood by me, and strengthened me." (2 Timothy 4:16.) This then he now predicts: "Through your supplication and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, according to my earnest expectation and hope," for thus do I hope. For that he may persuade us not to leave the whole matter to the prayers made for us,  and contribute nothing ourselves, behold how he lays down his own part, which is Hope, the source of all good, as the Prophet says. "Let thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, according as we have hoped in Thee." (Psalm 33:22.) And as it is written in another place, "Look to the generations of old and see, did any one hope in the Lord, and was made ashamed?" (Ecclus. ii. 10.) And again, this same blessed one says, "Hope putteth not to shame." (Romans 5:5.) This is Paul's hope, the hoping that I shall nowhere be put to shame.
"According to my earnest expectation and hope," says he, "that in nothing shall I be put to shame." Do you see how great a thing it is to hope in God? Whatever happens, he says, I shall not be put to shame, i. e. they will not obtain the mastery, over me, "but with all boldness, as always, so now also, Christ shall be magnified in my body." They forsooth expected to catch Paul in this snare, and to quench the preaching of the Gospel, as though their craftiness were of any power. This then, he says, shall not be so, I shall not now die, but "as always, so now also, Christ shall be magnified in my body." How so? Ofttimes have I fallen into dangers, when all men gave us up, and what is more, when I myself did. For "we had the answer of death within ourselves" (2 Corinthians 1:9.), but from all the Lord delivered me, so now too he shall be magnified in my body. What then? Lest any one should suppose and say, If you die, will He not then be magnified? Yes, he answers, I know He will; for this cause I did not say that my life alone shall magnify him, but my death too. At present he means "by life"; they will not destroy me; even did they so, Christ will even thus be magnified. How so? Through life, because He delivered me, but through my death, because even death itself could not persuade me to deny Him, since He gave me such readiness, and made me stronger than death. On the one hand because He freed me from peril; on the other, because He suffered me not to fear the tyranny of death: thus shall he be magnified through life and death. And this he says, not as though he were about to die, but lest on his death they should be affected as men are apt to be.
But that you may know these his words did not point to immediate death, the thought that pained them most, see how he relieves it by almost saying, These things I say, not as one about to die; wherefore he soon after adds, "And having this confidence I know that I shall abide, yea and abide with you all." "In nothing," says he, "shall I be put to shame"; that is, death brings no shame to me, but rather great gain. Why so? Because I am not immortal, but I shall shine more brightly than if I were so, for it is not the same thing for one immortal, and for one who is mortal, to despise death; so that not even instant death is shame to me, yet shall I not die; "in nothing shall I be put to shame," neither in life nor death. For I will bear either nobly, whether life or death. Well says he! This is the part of a Christian soul! but he adds, "with all boldness." Seest thou how entirely I am freed from shame? For if the fear of death had cut short my boldness, death would have been worthy of shame, but if death at its approach cast no terror on me, no shame is here; but whether it be through life I shall not be put to shame, for I still preach the Preaching, or whether it be through death I shall not be put to shame; fear does not hold me back, since I still exhibit the same boldness. Do not, when I mention my bonds, think shame of the matter; so manifold good hath it caused to me, that it hath even given confidence to others. For that we should be bound for Christ, is no shame, but for fear of bonds to betray aught that is Christ's, this is shame. When there is no such thing, bonds are even a cause of boldness. But since I have ofttimes escaped dangers, and have this to boast of to the unbelievers, do not straightway think I am put to shame, if now it should turn out otherwise. The one event no less than the other gives you boldness. Note how he brings this forward in his own person, which he does in many places, as in the Epistle to the Romans; "For I am not ashamed of the Gospel." (Romans 1:16.) And again in that to the Corinthians; "And these things I have in a figure transferred to myself and Apollos." (1 Corinthians 4:6.)--"Whether by life or by death": this he says not as in ignorance, (for he knew that he was not then to die, but some time after); yet even now does he prepare their soul.
19For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,
Ver. 19. "For I know," says he, "that this shall turn to my salvation through your supplication, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ."
Nothing is more villainous than the Devil. So does he everywhere involve his own in unprofitable toils, and rends them. Not only does he not suffer them to obtain the prizes, but he even subjects them to punishment.
For not only does he command them the preaching of the Gospel, but likewise fasting and virginity, in such sort as will not only deprive them of their reward, but will bring down heavy evil on those who pursue that course. Concerning whom he says elsewhere, also, "Branded in their own conscience as with a hot iron." (1 Timothy 4:2.)
Wherefore, I beseech you, let us give thanks to God for all things, since he hath both lightened our toil, and increased our reward. For such as among them live in virginity enjoy not the rewards, which they do who among us live chastely in wedlock; but they who live as virgins among the heretics are subject to the condemnation of the fornicators. All this springs from their not acting with a right aim, but as accusing God's creatures,  and His unspeakable Wisdom.
Let us not then be sluggish. God hath placed before us contests within measure, having no toil. Yet let us not despise them for this. For if the heretics put themselves to the stretch in unprofitable toils, what excuse shall we have if we will not endure those which are less, and which have a greater reward? For which of Christ's ordinances is burdensome? which is grievous? Art thou unable to live a virgin life? Thou art permitted to marry. Art thou unable to strip thyself of all thou hast? Thou art permitted to supply the needs of others from what thou hast. Let "your abundance be a supply for their want." (2 Corinthians 8:14.) These things indeed appear burdensome. What things? I mean to despise money, and to overcome the desires of the body. But His other commands require no cost, no violence. For tell me, what violence is there in speaking no ill, in simply abstaining from slander?  What violence is there in envying not another man's goods? What violence in not being led away by vain-glory? To be tortured, and endure it, is the part of strength. The exercise of philosophy is the part of strength. To bear poverty through life is the part of strength. It is the part of strength to wrestle with hunger and thirst. Where none of these things are, but where you may enjoy your own, as becomes a Christian, without envying others, what violence is there?
From this source springs envy; nay, rather all evils spring from no other source than this, that we cleave to things present. For did you hold money and the glory of this world to be nought, you would not cast an evil eye on its possessors. But since you gape at these things, and idolize them, and are flattered by them, for this reason envy troubles you, and vain-glory; it all springs from idolizing the things of the present life. Art thou envious because another man is rich? Nay, such an one is an object for pity and for tears. But you laugh and answer straight, I am the object for tears, not he! Thou also art an object for tears, not because thou art poor, but because thou thinkest thyself wretched. For we weep for those who have nothing the matter, and are discontented, not because they have anything the matter, but because, without having, they think they have. For example: if any one, cured of a fever, still is restless and rolls about, lying in health on his bed, is he not more to be wept for than those in fever, not that he has a fever, for he has none, but because having no sickness he still thinks he has? And thou art an object for tears just because thou thinkest thyself wretched, not for thy poverty. For thy poverty thou art to be thought happy.
Why enviest thou the rich man? Is it because he has subjected himself to many cares? to a harder slavery? because he is bound like a dog, with ten thousand chains--namely, his riches? Evening overtakes him, night overtakes him, but the season of rest is to him a time of trouble of anguish, of pain, of anxiety. There is a noise: he straightway jumps up. Has his neighbor been plundered? He who has lost nothing cares more for it than the loser. For that man has lost once, but having endured the pain he lays aside his care; but the other has it always with him. Night comes on, the haven of our ills, the solace of our woes, the medicine of our wounds. For they who are weighed down by excess of grief, often give no ear to their friends, to their relations, to their intimates,--ofttimes not even to a father when he would give comfort, but take their very words amiss; but when sleep bids them rest, none has the power to look him in the face. For worse than any burning does the bitterness of grief afflict our souls. And as the body, when parched and worn down by struggling against the violence of the sunbeams, is brought to a caravansary with many fountains, and the soothing of a gentle breeze, so does night hand over our soul to sleep. Yea, rather, I should say, not night nor sleep does this, but God, who knoweth our toil-worn race, has wrought this, while we have no compassion on ourselves, but, as though at enmity with ourselves, have devised a tyranny more powerful than natural want of rest--the sleeplessness which comes of wealth. For it is said, "The anxieties of wealth drive away sleep." (Ecclus. xxxi. 1.) See how great is the care of God. But He hath not committed rest to our will, nor our need of sleep to choice, but hath bound it up in the necessities of nature, that good may be done to us even against our wills. For to sleep is of nature. But we, as mighty haters of ourselves, like enemies and persecutors of others, have devised a tyranny greater than this necessity of nature that, namely, which comes of money. Has day dawned? Then such an one is in dread of the informers. Hath night overtaken him? He trembles at robbers. Is death at hand? The thought that he must leave his goods to others preys upon him worse than death. Hath he a son? His desires are increased; and then he fancies himself poor. Has he none? His pains are greater. Deemest thou him blessed who is unable to receive pleasure from any quarter? Can you envy him thus tempest-tossed, while you yourself are placed in the quiet haven of poverty? Of a truth this is the imperfection of human nature; that it bears not its good nobly, but casts insults on its very prosperity.
And all this on earth; but when we depart thither, listen what the rich man, who was lord of innumerable goods, as you say (since for my part I call not these things good, but indifferent), listen to what this lord of innumerable goods says, and of what he stands in need: "Father Abraham," he exclaims, "send Lazarus, that with the tip of his finger he may drop water on my tongue, for I am scorched in this flame." For even if that rich man had endured none of the things I have mentioned, if he had passed his whole life without dread and care--why say I his whole life? rather that one moment (for it is a moment, our whole life is but one moment, compared with that eternity which has no end)--if all things had turned out according to his desire; must he not be pitied for these words, yea, rather, for this state of things? Was not your table once deluged with wine? Now you are not master even of a drop of water, and that, too, in your greatest need. Did not you neglect that poor man full of sores? But now you ask a sight of him, and no one gives leave. He lay at your gate; but now in Abraham's bosom. You then lay under your lofty ceiling; but now in the fire of hell.
These things let the rich men hear. Yea, rather not the rich, but the pitiless. For not in that he was rich was he punished, but because he showed no pity; for it is possible that a man who is at the same time rich and pitiful, should meet with every good. And for this cause the rich man's eyes were fixed on no one else, but on him alone, who then begged his alms; that he might learn from memory of his former actions, that his punishment was just. Were there not ten thousand poor men who were righteous? But he, who then lay at his gate, alone is seen by him, to instruct him and us, how great a good it is to put no trust in riches. His poverty hindered not the one in obtaining the kingdom; his riches helped not the other to avoid hell. Where is the point at which a man is poor? where is the point at which he is reduced to beggary?  He is not, he is not poor, who has nought, but he who desires many things! He is not rich who has large possessions, but he who stands in need of nothing. For what profit is there to possess the whole world, and yet live in greater despondency than he who has nothing? Their dispositions make men rich and poor, not the abundance or the want of money. Would you, who are a poor man, become rich? You may have your will, and no one can hinder you. Despise the world's wealth, think it nought, as it is nought. Cast out the desire of wealth, and you are straightway rich. He is rich who does not desire to become rich; he who is unwilling to be poor, is the poor man. As he is the diseased man,  who even in health bemoans his case, and not the man who bears his disease more lightly than perfect health, so also he is poor who cannot endure poverty, but in the midst of wealth thinks himself poorer than the poor; not he who bears his poverty more lightly than they their riches, for he is a richer man.
For tell me, wherefore fearest thou poverty? wherefore tremblest thou? is it not by reason of hunger? is it not for thirst? is it not for cold? Is it not indeed for these things? There is not, there is not any one who is ever destitute in these things! "For look at the generations of old, and see, did ever any one trust in the Lord, and was forsaken? or did any one hope in Him, and was made ashamed?" (Ecclus. ii. 11.)
And again, "Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them." (Matthew 6:26.) No one can readily point us out any one who has perished by hunger and cold. Wherefore then dost thou tremble at poverty? Thou canst not say. For if thou hast necessaries enough, wherefore dost thou tremble at it? Because thou hast not a multitude of servants? This truly is to be quit of masters; this is continual happiness, this is freedom from care. Is it because your vessels, your couches, your furniture are not formed of silver? And what greater enjoyment than thine has he who possesses these things? None at all. The use is the same, whether they are of this or that material. Is it because thou art not an object of fear to the many? May you never become so! For what pleasure is it that any should stand in dread and fear of thee? Is it because thou art afraid of others? But thou canst not be alarmed. For "wouldest thou have no fear of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise from the same." (Romans 13:3.) Does any say, It is because we are subject to contempt, and apt to suffer ill? It is not poverty but wickedness which causes this; for many poor men have quietly passed through life, whilst rulers, and the rich, and powerful, have ended their days more wretchedly than all evil doers, than bandits, than grave-robbers. For what poverty brings in thy case, that doth wealth in theirs. For that which they who would ill-treat thee do through thy contemptible estate, they do to him from envy and the evil eye they cast upon him, and the latter still more than the former, for this is the stronger craving to ill-treat another. He who envies does everything with all his might and main, while the despiser ofttimes has even pity on the despised; and his very poverty, and utter want of power, has often been the cause of his deliverance.
And sometimes by saying to him,  "A great deed it will be if you make away with such an one! If you slay one poor man, what vast advantage will you reap?" we may thus soften down his anger. But envy sets itself against the rich, and ceases not until it has wrought its will, and has poured forth its venom. See you, neither poverty nor wealth is good in itself, but our own disposition. Let us bring it to a good tone, let us discipline it in true wisdom. If this be well affected, riches cannot cast us out of the kingdom, poverty will not make us come short. But we shall meekly bear our poverty, and receive no loss in respect to the enjoyment of future goods, nor even here on earth. But we shall both enjoy what is good on earth, and obtain the good things in heaven, which may we all obtain, through the grace and lovingkindness, &c.
 [Above translated "tender mercies."--J.A.B.]
 This is still in the person of St. Paul. Of this use of the word Righteousness, see on Romans 3:22.
 basileia. This is the eastern and despotic name; the other was a remnant of the republic. [The Rev. Ver. understands the word pr?torium here to mean the pr?torian guard. See Lightfoot on Philip. Others, the pr?torian barracks, or the great pr?torian camp; but without distinct warrant of usage.--J.A.B.]
 [This seems to be Chrys.'s interpretation, or recollection, of the Apostle's phrase, "and to all the rest."--J.A.B.]
 [The order of vers. 16 and 17 is transposed in Rev. Ver., upon the authority of nearly all the uncial mss., nearly all the ancient versions, and other documents. It is best here to leave Chrys.'s order, which is that of the Common Ver., but the translation of Rev. Ver. is given as elsewhere.--J.A.B.]
 [So Chrys.'s text. The true text is (as Rev. Ver.) "thinking to raise up affliction for me in my bonds."--J.A.B.]
 He takes "the Gospel" here in the sense of St. Paul's preaching of the Gospel. Theodoret takes it of his being a champion of the Gospel among men.
 [The altered text has "cutting down," "lessening."--J.A.B.]
 [The altered text puts these three last sentences under ver. 16.--J.A.B.]
 [This sentence, wanting in all known mss. of Chrys. is supplied by Field from a Catena. It evidently fell out, as often happened in copying, through similarity to the following sentence. The amplifying repetition is quite in Chrys.'s manner.--J.A.B.]
 See on 1 Timothy 4.Hom. xii. and article Manichees in indices.
 Or "in keeping from needless evil speaking."
 Or "Till when (lasts) poverty? Till when beggary?"
 noson. Perhaps alluding to the sense "insane."
 The reading is doubtful, but the sense clear.
20According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.
21For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
Ver. 21. "For to me," he says, "to live is Christ, and to die is gain."
For even in dying, he means, I shall not have died, for I have my life in myself: then would they truly have slain me, had they had power through this fear to cast faith out of my soul. But as long as Christ is with me, even though death overtake me, still I live, and in this present life, not this, but Christ is my life. Since, then, not even in the present life is it so, "but that life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith;" so I say in that state also, "I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." (Galatians 2:20.) Such ought a Christian to be! I live not, he says, the common life. How livest thou then, O blessed Paul? Dost thou not see the sun, dost thou not breathe the common air? art thou not nourished with the same food as others? dost thou not tread the earth as we? needest thou not sleep, nor clothing, nor shoes? what meanest thou by, "I live not"? how dost thou not live? Why boastest thou thyself? No boasting is here. For if indeed the fact did not witness to him, a man might with some show have called it boasting; but if facts do witness, how is boasting here? Let us then learn how he lives not, for he himself says in another place, "I have been crucified to the world, and the world to me." (Galatians 6:14.) Hear then how he says, "I no longer live." And how he says, "to me to live is Christ." The word "life" is much significant, beloved, as also the word "death." There is this life of the body, there is the life of sin, as he himself elsewhere says, "But if we died to sin, how shall we any longer live therein?" (Romans 6:2.) It is then possible to live the life of sin. Attend diligently, I entreat you, lest my labor be vain. There is the life everlasting and immortal; with eternal life the heavenly; "for our citizenship," says he, "is in heaven" (Philip. iii. 20.) There is the life of the body whereof he speaks, "through him we live and move and have our being." (Acts 17:28.) He does not then deny that he lives the natural life, but that of sin, which all men live. He who desires not the present life, how does he live it? He who is hastening to another, how does he live this life? He who despiseth death, how does he live this life? He who desires nothing, how does he live it? For as one made of adamant, though he were struck a thousand blows, would never attend to it, no more would Paul. And "I live," says he, "but no longer I," that is, no longer the old man; as again elsewhere, "Wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me out of the body of this death!" (Romans 7:24.) How too does he live who does nought for the sake of food, nought for the sake of clothing, nought for any of these present things? Such an one does not even live the natural life: he who takes thought for none of the things which sustain life, lives not. We live this life, whose every action regards it. But he lived not; he busied himself about nought of the things here. How then lived he? Just as we are accustomed to say, in common matters, such an one is not with me, when he does nothing that pertains to me. Again, in like sort, such a man lives not for me. Elsewhere he shows that he rejects not the natural life: "The life which I now live in the flesh, I live in the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me" (Galatians 2:20.); i. e. a certain new life I live, an altered one. And truly all these things he said to comfort the Philippians. Think not, says he, that I shall be deprived of this life, for neither whilst alive did I live this life, but that which Christ willed. For tell me? He who despises money, luxury, hunger, thirst, dangers, health, safety, does he live this life? He who has nothing here, and is ofttimes willing to cast life away, if need be, and clings not to it, does he live this life? By no means. This I must make clear to you by a kind of example. Let us imagine some one in great wealth, with many servants, and much gold, and who makes no use of all these things; is such an one rich for all his wealth? By no means. Let him see his children dissipating his property, strolling idly about; let him feel no concern for them; when beaten let him not even be pained; shall we call him a man of wealth? By no means; although his wealth is his own. "To me," he says, "to live is Christ;" if you will enquire of my life, it is He. "And to die is gain." Wherefore? Because I shall more clearly be present with Him; so that my death is rather a coming to life; they who kill me will work on me no dreadful thing, they will only send me onward to my proper life, and free me from that which is not mine. What then, while thou wert here, wert thou not Christ's? Yes, and in a high degree.
22But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not.
Ver. 22. "But if to live in the flesh,--if this is the fruit of my work, then what I shall choose I wot not."
Lest any should say, If what you say is life, wherefore hath Christ left you here? "It is," he says, "the fruit of my work;" so that it is possible to use to good purpose the present life, while not living it. Lest you should think that reproach is cast upon life. For if we gain no advantage here, wherefore do we not make away with ourselves, nor slay ourselves? By no means, he answers. It is open to us to profit even here, if we live not this, but another life. But perchance one will say, does this bear thee fruit? Yes! he answers. Where are now the heretics? Behold now; "to live in the flesh," this is "the fruit of his work." "That which I now live in the flesh, I live in faith;" therefore it is "the fruit of my work."
"And what I shall choose I know not." Marvelous! How great was his philosophy! How hath he both cast out the desire of the present life, and yet thrown no reproach upon it! For in that he saith, "to die is gain," by this he hath cast out the desire, but in that he saith, "to live in the flesh is the fruit of my work," here he shows that the present life also is needful, if we use it as need is, if we bear fruit; since if it be unfruitful, it is no longer life. For we despise those trees which bear no fruit, as though they were dry, and give them up to the fire. Life itself belongs to that middle class of indifferent things, whilst to live well or ill is in ourselves. We do not then hate life, for we may live well too. So even if we use it ill, we do not even then cast the blame on it. And wherefore? Because not itself, but the free choice of those who use it ill is to blame. For God hath made thee live, that thou mayest live to Him. But thou, by living through corruption unto sin, makest thyself accountable for all blame. What sayest thou, tell me. Thou knowest not what to choose? Here hath he revealed a great mystery, in that his departure was in his own power; for where choice is, there have we power. "What I shall choose," says he, "I know not." Is it in thine own power? Yes, he answers, if I would ask this grace of God.
Philippians 1:22-26"Then what I shall choose I wot not. But I am in a strait betwixt the two, having the desire to depart and be with Christ; which is very far better: yet to abide in the flesh is more needful for your sake. And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide, yea and abide with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith; that your glorying may abound in Jesus Christ in me, through my presence with you again."
Nothing can be more blessed than the spirit of Paul, for the reason that nothing is more noble. We all shudder at death, I am wont to say, some by reason of our many sins, of whom I too am one, others from love of life, and cowardice, of whom may I never be one; for they who are subject to this fear are mere animals. This then, which we all shudder at, he prayed for, and hasted toward Him; saying, "To depart is very far better." What sayest thou? when thou art about to change from earth to heaven, and to be with Christ, dost thou not know what to choose? Nay, far is this from the spirit of Paul; for if such an offer were made to any one on sure grounds, would he not straightway seize it? Yes, for as it is not ours "to depart and be with Christ," neither, if we were able to attain to this, were it ours to remain here. Both are of Paul, and of his spirit. He was confidently persuaded. What? Art thou about to be with Christ? and dost thou say, "What I shall choose I wot not"? and not this only, but dost thou choose that which is here, "to abide in the flesh"? What in the world? didst thou not live an exceeding bitter life, in "watchings," in shipwrecks, in "hunger and thirst," and "nakedness," in cares and anxiety? "with the weak" thou wert "weak," and for those who "were made to stumble" thou dost "burn." (2 Corinthians 11:23, 29.) "In much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in fastings, in pureness." (2 Corinthians 6:5, 6.) "Five times" didst thou "receive forty stripes save one," "thrice" wast thou "beaten with rods, once" wast thou "stoned" "a night and a day" thou hast "been in the deep, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils among false brethren." (2 Corinthians 11:24-26.) Didst thou not, when the whole nation of the Galatians returned to the observance of the law, didst thou not cry aloud, and say, "Whosoever of you would be justified by the law, ye are fallen away from grace"? (Galatians 5:4.) How great was then thy grief, and still dost thou desire this perishing life? Had none of these things befallen thee, but had thy success, wherever success attended thee, been without fear, and full of delight, yet shouldest not thou hasten to some harbor, from fear of the uncertain future? For tell me, what trader, whose vessel is full of untold wealth, when he may run into port, and be at rest, would prefer to be still at sea? what wrestler, when he might be crowned, would prefer to contend? what boxer, when he might put on his crown, would choose to enter afresh into the contest, and offer his head to wounds? what general is there, who when he might be quit of war with good report, and trophies, and might with the king refresh himself in the palace, would choose still to toil, and to stand in battle array? How then dost thou, who livest a life so exceeding bitter, wish to remain still here? Didst thou not say, I am in dread, "lest by any means, after that I have preached to others, I myself should be rejected?" (1 Corinthians 9:27.) If for no other cause, yet surely for this, thou oughtest to desire thy release; were the present full of innumerable goods, yet for the sake of Christ thy Desire. 
Oh that spirit of Paul! nothing was ever like it, nor ever will be! Thou fearest the future, thou art compassed by innumerable dreadful things, and wilt thou not be with Christ? No, he answers, and this for Christ's sake, that I may render more loving unto Him those whom I have made his servants, that I may make the plot  which I have planted bear much fruit. (1 Corinthians 3:9.). Didst thou not hear me, when I declared that I sought not "that which profited myself" (1 Corinthians 10:33.), but my neighbor? Heardest thou not these words, "I could wish that I myself were anathema from Christ" (Romans 9:3.), that many might come unto Him? I, who chose that part, shall I not much rather choose this, shall I not with pleasure harm myself by this delay and postponement, that they may be saved?
"Who shall utter Thy mighty acts, O Lord" (Psalm 106:2.), because Thou sufferedst not Paul to be hidden, because Thou madest manifest to the world such a man? All the Angels of God praised Thee with one accord, when Thou madest the stars (Job 38:7.), and so too surely when Thou madest the sun, but not so much as when Thou didst manifest Paul to the whole world. By this, the earth was made more brilliant than the heaven, for he is brighter than the solar light, he hath shot forth more brilliant rays, he hath shed abroad more joyous beams. What fruit hath this man borne for us! not by making fat our corn, not by nurturing our pomegranates, but by producing and perfecting the fruit of holiness, and when falling to pieces, continually recovering them. For the sun itself can nothing profit fruits that are once decayed, but Paul has called out of their sins those who had manifold decays. And it gives place to the night, but he had mastery over the Devil. Nothing ever subdued him, nothing mastered him. The sun, when it mounts the heavens, darts down its rays, but he, as he rose from beneath, filled not the mid space of heaven and earth with light, but as soon as he opened his mouth, filled the Angels with exceeding joy. For if "there is joy in heaven over one sinner that repenteth" (Luke 15:7.), while he at his first address caught multitudes, does he not fill with joy the Powers above? What say I? It sufficeth that Paul should only be named, and the heavens leap for joy. For if when the Israelites "went forth out of Egypt, the mountains skipped like rams" (Psalm 114:4.), how great, thinkest thou, was the joy, when men ascended from earth to heaven!
23For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better:
Ver. 23. "I am in a strait betwixt the two, having the desire."
See the affection of this blessed one; in this way too he comforts them, when they see that he is master of his own choice, and that this is done not by man's sin, but by the dispensation of God. Why mourn ye, says he, at my death? It had been far better to have passed away long since. "For to depart," he says, "and to be with Christ, is very far better."
Ver. 24. "Yet to abide in the flesh is more needful for your sake."
These words were to prepare them for his death when it came, that they might bear it nobly: this was to teach true wisdom. "It is good for me to depart and be with Christ," for even death is a thing indifferent; since death itself is no ill, but to be punished after death is an ill. Nor is death a good, but it is good after our departure "to be with Christ." What follows death is either good or ill.
Let us then not simply grieve for the dead, nor joy for the living simply. But how? Let us grieve for sinners, not only when dying, but also while living. Let us joy for the just, not only while living, but also when dead. For those though living are dead, while these although dead, yet live: those even while here are to be pitied of all, because they are at enmity with God; the other even when they have departed Thither, are blessed, because they are gone to Christ. Sinners, wherever they are, are far from the King. Therefore they are subjects for tears; while the just, be they here, or be they there, are with the King; and there, in a higher and nearer degree, not through an entrance,  or by faith, but "face to face." (1 Corinthians 13:12.)
Let us then not make wailings for the dead simply, but for those who have died in sins. They deserve wailing; they deserve beating of the breast and tears. For tell me what hope is there, when our sins accompany us Thither, where there is no putting off sins? As long as they were here, perchance there was great expectation that they would change, that they would become better; but when they are gone to Hades, where nought can be gained from repentance (for it is written, "In Sheol who shall give thee thanks?") (Psalm 6:5.), are they not worthy of our lamentation? Let us wail for those who depart hence in such sort; let us wail, I hinder you not; yet in no unseemly way, not in tearing our hair, or baring our arms, or lacerating our face, or wearing black apparel, but only in soul, shedding in quiet the bitter tear. For we may weep bitterly without all that display. And not as in sport only. For the laments which many make differ not from sport. Those public mournings do not proceed from sympathy, but from display, from emulation and vainglory. Many women do this as of their craft. Weep bitterly; moan at home, when no one sees you; this is the part of true sympathy; by this you profit yourself too. For he who laments another in such sort, will be much the more earnest never to fall into the same sins. Sin henceforth will be an object of dread to thee. Weep for the unbelievers; weep for those who differ in nowise from them, those who depart hence without the illumination,  without the seal! they indeed deserve our wailing, they deserve our groans; they are outside the Palace, with the culprits, with the condemned: for, "Verily I say unto you, Except a man be born of water and the Spirit, he shall not enter into the kingdom of Heaven." Mourn for those who have died in wealth, and did not from their wealth think of any solace for their soul, who had power to wash away their sins and would not. Let us all weep for these in private and in public, but with propriety, with gravity, not so as to make exhibitions of ourselves; let us weep for these, not one day, or two, but all our life. Such tears spring not from senseless passion, but from true affection. The other sort are of senseless passion. For this cause they are quickly quenched, whereas if they spring from the fear of God, they always abide with us. Let us weep for these; let us assist them according to our power; let us think of some assistance for them, small though it be, yet still let us assist them. How and in what way? By praying and entreating others to make prayers for them, by continually giving to the poor on their behalf. This deed hath some consolation; for hear the words of God Himself, when He says, "I will defend this city for Mine own sake, and for My servant David's sake." (2 Kings 20:6.) If the remembrance only of a just man had so great power when deeds are done for one, how great power will it not have? Not in vain did the Apostles order  that remembrance should be made of the dead in the dreadful Mysteries. They know that great gain resulteth to them, great benefit; for when the whole people stands with uplifted hands, a priestly assembly, and that awful Sacrifice lies displayed, how shall we not prevail with God by our entreaties for them? And this we do for those who have departed in faith,  whilst the catechumens are not thought worthy even of this consolation, but are deprived of all means of help save one. And what is this? We may give to the poor on their behalf. This deed in a certain way refreshes them. For God wills that we should be mutually assisted; else why hath He ordered us to pray for peace and the good estate of the world? why on behalf of all men? since in this number are included robbers, violaters of tombs, thieves, men laden with untold crimes; and yet we pray on behalf of all; perchance they may turn. As then we pray for those living, who differ not from the dead, so too we may pray for them. Job offered sacrifice for his children, and freed them from their sins. "It may be," said he, "that they have renounced God in their hearts." (Job 1:5.) Thus does one provide for one's children! He said not, as many do nowadays, I will leave them property; he said not, I will procure them honor; he said not, I will purchase an office; he said not, I will buy them land; but, "it may be that they have renounced God in their hearts." For what profit is there in those things? None at all, in those that remain here. I will make the King of all things favorable to them, and then they will no more want any thing. "The Lord," saith one, "is my Shepherd, I shall not want." (Psalm 23:4.) This is great wealth, this is treasure. If we have the fear of God, we want nothing; if we have not this, though we have royalty itself, we are the poorest of all men. Nothing is like the man that feareth the Lord. For "the fear of the Lord," it is said, "surpasseth all things." (Ecclus. xxv. 11.) This let us procure; let us do all things for its sake. If need be that we lay down our lives, if our body must be mangled, let us not spare them; let us do all, to obtain this fear. For thus shall we abound above all men; and shall obtain those good things to come in Christ Jesus our Lord, to whom, &c.
 This may possibly refer especially to departed Saints. See Hom. vi. on Stat. fin. [But does it not manifestly mean the prayers which others now living make for us, as the Philippians then did for Paul?--J.A.B.]
 dia eisodou Ben. dia eidous, "through a figure," but it should probably be di' esoptrou, "in a mirror," as in the text (1 Corinthians 13:12.).
 [A common expression among the Fathers for baptism.--J.A.B.]
 [The reference doubtless is to the so-called "Apostolical Constitutions," which direct the observance of the Eucharist in commemoration of the departed. See Smith's Dict. Chr. Antiq., pp. 1436 f.--J.A.B.]
 See Hom. vi. on the Statues, Tr. p. 387, note 6; also on 1 Corinthians 15:46. Hom. xli. . On Stat. xxi. 15 Tr. p. 487. St. Chrys. makes Flavian speak to Theodosius of the prayers for him after death, that might be won by an act of mercy. Comp. S. Ambr. de ob. Theod. ? 37. Tert. de Corona, c. iii. speaks of oblations for the deceased as a general tradition in his time. St. Cyprian, Ephesians 66, forbids Eucharistic prayer for one who makes a clergyman his executor. Euseb. Vit. Const. iv. 71, speaks of Constantine sharing in the prayers of the faithful in connection with his burial near the relics of the Apostles. He does not directly mention this as depending on his "Baptism," but the terms of the Eucharistic prayer seem to have marked this, and it is implied in the rule given by St. Cyprian, and the whole principle of that commemoration stated in the passage cited of St. Chrys. on 1 Corinthians 15.
24Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.
Ver. 24. For this cause "to abide in the flesh is more needful for your sake."
And what excuse is left to us? ofttimes it happens that a man who possesses a little and poor city, chooses not to depart to another place, preferring his own rest. Paul might depart to Christ, and would not, (Christ whom he so desired, as for his sake to choose even hell, ) but still remained in the contest on behalf of man. What excuse shall we have? May we then even make mention of Paul? Look to his deeds. He showed that to depart was better, persuading himself not to grieve: he showed them, that if he remained, he remained for their sake, that it proceeded not from wickedness of those who plotted against him. He subjoined also the reason, that he might secure their belief. For if this is necessary, that is, I shall by all means remain, and I will not "remain" simply, but "will remain with you." For this is the meaning of the word, "and I shall abide with," i. e. I shall see you. For what cause? "For your progress and joy in the faith." Here too he rouses them, to take heed unto themselves. If, says he, for your sakes I abide, see that ye shame not my abiding. "For your progress," I have chosen to remain, when I was about to see Christ. I have chosen to remain, because my presence advances both your faith and your joy. What then? Did he remain for the sake of the Philippians only? He stayed not for their sake only; but this he says, that he may show regard to them. And how were they to "progress" in "the faith "? That you may be more strengthened, like young fowl, who need their mother until their feathers are set. This is a proof of his great love. In like sort, we also rouse some of you, when we say, for your sake have I remained, that I may make you good.
25And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of faith;
26That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Jesus Christ for me by my coming to you again.
Ver. 26. "That your glorying may abound in Christ Jesus in me, through my presence with you again."
You see that this explains the word "abide with you." Behold his humility. Having said, "for your progress," he shows that it was for his own profit too. This also he does, when he writes to the Romans, and says, "That is, that we may be comforted together in you." (Romans 1:11, 12.) Having previously said, "That I may impart unto you some spiritual gift." And what means, "That your glorying may abound"? This glorying was, their establishment in the faith. For an upright life is glorying in Christ. And sayest thou, "Your glorying in me, through my presence with you again"? Yes, he answers; "For what is our hope, or crown of glorying? Are not even ye?" (1 Thess. ii. 19.) Because "you are our glorying, even as we also are yours" (2 Corinthians 1:14.), i. e. that I may be able to rejoice in you greatly. How sayest thou, "That your glorying may abound"? I may glory the more when you make progress. 
"Through my presence with you again." What then! Did he come to them? Search ye whether he came.
27Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;
Ver. 27. "Only let your manner of life be worthy of the Gospel of Christ."
Do you see, how all that he has said, tends to turn them to this one thing, advancement in virtue? "Only let your manner of life be worthy of the Gospel of Christ." What means this word "only," but that this, and nought else, is the only thing we should seek? If we have this, nothing grievous will befall us. "That whether I come and see you, or be absent, I may hear of your state." This he says not as if he had changed his purpose, and no longer meant to visit them. But if this come to pass, he says, even though absent, I am able to rejoice. "If," that is, "I hear that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one soul." This is what above all things unites believers, and maintains love unbroken, "that they may be one." (John 17:11.) For a "kingdom divided against itself shall not stand." (Mark 3:24.) For this cause he everywhere counsels his disciples much to be of one mind. And Christ says, "By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye love one another." (John 13:35.) That is, do not look with expectation toward me, and therefore slumber, as waiting for my coming, and then, when ye see me not coming faint. For even from report I can receive pleasure likewise.
What means, "In one spirit"? By the same gift of grace, viz. that of concord, and zeal; for the Spirit  is one, and he shows it; for then are we able to stand in "one soul," also, when we all have "one Spirit." See how the word "one" is used for concord. See how their souls being many are called one. Thus was it of old. "For they were all," it is written, "of one heart and of one soul. Striving together for the faith of the Gospel." (Acts 4:32.) Does he say, striving together for each other,  as though the faith did strive? For did they wrestle against each other? But help each other, he says, in your striving for the faith of the Gospel.
Ver. 28. "And in nothing affrighted by the adversaries; which is for them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation."
Well said he, "affrighted," this is what befalls us from our enemies, they only frighten. "In nothing" therefore, he says, whatever happens, whether dangers--whether plots. For this is the part of those who stand upright; the enemy can do nought but frighten only. Since it was likely that they should be greatly troubled, when Paul suffered such numberless ills, he says, I exhort you not only not to be shaken, but not to be affrighted, yea rather to despise them heartily; for if ye are thus affected, ye will straightway, by this means, make evident at once their destruction, and your salvation. For when they see, that with their innumerable plots they are unable to frighten you, they will take it as a proof of their own destruction. For when the persecutors prevail not over the persecuted, the plotters over the objects of their plots, the powerful over those subject to their power, will it not be self-evident, that their perdition is at hand, that their power is nought, that their part is false, that their  part is weak? "And this," he says, "comes from God."
Ver. 29. "For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on Him, but also to suffer in his behalf."
Again does he teach them moderation of spirit by referring all to God, and saying that sufferings in behalf of Christ are of grace, the gift of grace, a free gift. Be not then ashamed of the gift of grace, for it is more wonderful than the power of raising the dead, or working miracles; for there I am a debtor, but here I have Christ for my debtor. Wherefore ought we not only not to be ashamed, but even to rejoice, in that we have this gift. Virtues he calls gifts, yet not in like sort as other things, for those are entirely of God, but in these we have a share. But since even here the greatest part is of God, he ascribes it entirely to Him, not to overturn our free will, but to make us humble and rightly disposed.
Ver. 30. "Having the same conflict which ye saw in me"; i. e. ye have also an example. Here again he raises them up, by showing them that everywhere their conflicts were the same with his, their struggles were the same with his, both severally, and in that they united with him in bearing trials. He said not, ye have heard, but "ye saw," for he strove too at Philippi. Truly this is an exceeding virtue. Wherefore writing to the Galatians, also he said, "Did ye suffer so many things in vain, if it be indeed in vain." (Galatians 3:4.) And again, writing to the Hebrews, he said, "But call to remembrance the former days, in which, after ye were enlightened, ye endured a great conflict of suffering; partly, being made a gazing-stock both by reproaches and afflictions." (Hebrews 10:32, 33.) And writing again to Macedonians, that is, to the Thessalonians, he said, "For they themselves report concerning us, what manner of entering in we had unto you." (1 Thess. i. 9.) And again, "For yourselves, brethren, know our entering in unto you, that it hath not been found vain." (1 Thess. ii. 1.) And in like sort does he witness the same things of them all, labors and strivings. But such things ye will not now find among us; now it is much if one suffer a little in goods alone. And in respect of their goods also he witnesses great things of them. For to some he says, "For ye took joyfully the spoiling of your possessions" (Hebrews 10:34.); and to others, "For it hath been the good pleasure of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor" (Romans 15:26.); and "your zeal hath stirred up very many of them." (2 Corinthians 9:2.)
Seest thou the praises of the men of that time? But we endure not so much as buffetings or blows, neither insult nor loss of our possessions: they were straightway zealous, and all of them strove as martyrs, whilst we have grown cold in love toward Christ. Again I am constrained to accuse things present; and what shall I do? It is against my will, yet am I constrained. Were I able by my silence of things which are done, by holding my peace, and not mentioning aught, to remove them, it would behoove me to be silent. But if the contrary comes to pass; if not only are these things not removed by our silence, but even become worse, we are forced to speak. For he who rebukes sinners, if he does nought else, suffers them not to go farther. For there is no such shameless and rash soul, as not to turn, and remit the extravagance of its evil deeds, on hearing any one continually rebuking it. There is, there is indeed, even in the shameless, a small portion of shame. For God hath sown in our nature the seeds of shame; for since fear was insufficient to bring us to a right tone, He hath also prepared many other ways for avoiding sin. For example, that a man should be accused, fear of the enacted laws,  love of reputation, the desire of forming friendships; for all these are paths to avoid sin. Ofttimes that which was not done for God's sake, was done through shame; that which was not done for God's sake, was done for fear of men. That which we seek for is, in the first place not to sin, and we shall afterwards succeed in doing this for God's sake. Else why did Paul exhort those, who were about to overcome  their enemies, not by the fear of God, but on the score of waiting for the vengeance?  "For by so doing," he says, "thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head." (Romans 12:20.) For this is his first wish, that our virtue should be established. As I said then, there is in us a sense of shame. We have many good natural affections, which lead to virtue; as, for example, all of us men are naturally moved to pity, and no other good thing so inheres in our nature, but this alone. Whence any one might reasonably enquire, wherefore these seeds have above all others been sown in our nature, by which we melt  at tears, by which we are turned to compassion, and are ready to pity. No one is naturally idle,  no one is naturally regardless of his reputation, no one is naturally above emulation, but pity lies deep in every one's nature, however fierce and ungentle he be. And what wonder? we pity beasts, such a superabundance of pity lies deep in us. If we see a lion's whelp, we are somewhat affected; much more in the case of one of our race. See, how many maimed are there! and this is sufficient to lead us to pity. Nothing so much pleases God as mercy.  Wherefore with this the priests were anointed, and the kings, and the prophets, for they had, in oil, a type of God's love to man; and they further learnt, that rulers should have a greater share of mercy.  It showed that the Spirit is to come to men through mercy, since God pities and is kind to man. For, "Thou hast mercy upon all," it is written, "for Thou canst do all things." (Wisd. xi. 23.) For this cause they were anointed with oil: and indeed it was from mercy He appointed the priesthood. And kings were anointed with oil; and would one praise a ruler, he can make mention of nothing so becoming him as mercy. For pity is peculiar to power. Consider that the world was established by pity,  and then imitate thy Lord. "The mercy of man is toward his neighbor, but the mercy of the Lord is upon all flesh." (Ecclus. xviii. 13.) How "upon all flesh"? Whether you mean sinners, or just men, we all need the mercy of God; we all enjoy it, be it Paul, be it Peter, or be it John. And listen to their own words; there is no need of mine. For what says this blessed one? "But I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly." (1 Timothy 1:13.) What then, was there afterwards no need of mercy? Hear what he says; "But I labored more abundantly than they all; yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me." (1 Corinthians 15:10.) And of Epaphroditus he says, "For indeed he was sick, nigh unto death; but God had mercy on him; and not on him only, but on me also, that I might not have sorrow upon sorrow." (Philip. ii. 27.) And again he says, "We were weighed down exceedingly, beyond our power, insomuch that we despaired even of life. Yea, we ourselves have had the answer of death within ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God, who delivered us out of so great a death, and will deliver." (2 Corinthians 1:8, 9, 10.) And again, "And I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion; and the Lord will deliver me." (2 Timothy 4:17, 18.) And everywhere we shall find him glorying in this, that by mercy he was saved. Peter, too, became so great, because mercy was shown him. For hear Christ saying to him, "Satan hath desired to sift you as wheat; and I made supplication for thee, that thy faith fail not." (Luke 22:31, 32.) John, too, became so great through mercy, and in short all of them. For listen to Christ when He says, "Ye did not choose Me, but I chose you." (John 15:16.) For we all have need of the mercy of God, as it is written, "The mercy of God is upon all flesh."  But if these men needed the mercy of God, what should one say of the rest? For why, tell me, doth He "make the sun to rise on the evil and the good"? Did He withhold the rain for one year, would He not destroy all? And what if He caused overwhelming rain? what if He rained down fire? what if He sent flies? But what do I say? if He were so to do  as He once did, would not all perish? If He were to shake the earth, would not all perish? It is now seasonable to say, "What is man, that Thou art mindful of him?" (Psalm 8:4.) Were He only to threaten the earth, all men would become one tomb. "As a drop of water from the bucket," it is written, "so are the nations in His sight, they shall be counted as very small dust, as the turning of the balance." (Isaiah 40.15.) It were as easy for Him to destroy all things, and to make them again, as for us to turn the balance. He then who has such power over us, and sees us sinning every day, and yet punishes us not, how is it but by mercy He bears with us? Since beasts too exist by mercy: "Thou, Lord, wilt preserve both men and beasts." (Psalm 36:7.) He looked upon the earth, and filled it with living things. And wherefore? For thy sake! And wherefore did He make thee? Through His goodness.
There is nothing better than oil. It is the cause of light, and there also it is the cause of light.  "Then shall thy light break forth as the morning" (Isaiah 58:8.), saith the Prophet, if thou showest pity upon thy neighbour. And as natural oil contains light, so then doth mercy [alms] grant us a great, a marvelous light. Much mention doth Paul, too, make of this mercy. In one place, hear him say, "Only that we should remember the poor." (Galatians 2:10.) And in another, "If it be meet for me to go also." (1 Corinthians 16:4.) And in every place, turn where you will, ye see him anxious about this very thing. And again, "And let our people also learn to maintain good works." (Titus 3:14.) And again, "These things are good and profitable unto men." (Titus 3:8.) Listen to a certain other one who saith, "Alms  do deliver from death" (Tob. xii. 9.); If Thou takest away pity, "Lord, Lord, who shall stand" (Psalm 130:3.); and it is said, If Thou enterest "into judgment with thy servant" (Psalm 143:2.); "A great thing is man"; why? "and an honorable thing is a merciful man." (Proverbs 20:6, LXX.) For this is the true character of man, to be merciful, yea rather the character of God, to show mercy. Dost thou see, how strong is the mercy of God? This made all things, this formed the world, this made the angels, it was through mere goodness. For this cause, too, He threatened hell, that we may attain unto the kingdom, and through mercy we do attain unto the kingdom. For wherefore did God, being alone, create so many beings? was it not through goodness? was it not through love to men? If you ask why such and such things are, you will always find your answer in Goodness. Let us show mercy to our neighbors, that mercy may be shown to us. These acts of mercy  we show not so much to them, as lay up for ourselves against That Day. When the flame of the fire is great, this oil (mercy) is that which quenches the fire, and this brings light to us. Thus by this means shall we be freed from the fire of hell. For whence will He be compassionate and show mercy? Mercy comes of love! Nothing incenses God so much as to be pitiless. "A man was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents, and he was moved with compassion, and forgave him. And there were owing to that man from his fellow-servant a hundred pence, and he caught him by the throat. Therefore the Lord delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay what was due." Let us on hearing this be merciful to those who are our debtors in money or in sins. Let no one remember evils, if at least he does not wish to injure himself; for he does not so much aggrieve the other (as he injures himself). For he  either will follow him with vengeance, or he has not done so; but dost thou thyself, while not forgiving thy neighbor his sins, seek for a kingdom? Lest this should happen to us, let us forgive all, (for it is ourselves that we pardon,) that God may forgive us our sins, and so we may obtain the good things which are in store, through the grace and lovingkindness, &c.
 [The editions in Greek, and the Latin translations, without support from any known Greek ms., here repeat, "thou oughtest to desire thy release from these things." Field retains it as if necessary. Yet it is not necessary, and is in character quite similar to the additions which are so common in the altered text.--J.A.B.]
 [Chrys. frequently refers to Romans 9:3, according to his mistaken interpretation.--J.A.B.]
 St. Chrys. seems to take "your glorying" as "the glorying which I Paul have in you." The passage quoted from 2 Corinthians 1:14 shows that the two senses are connected. Compare 2 Corinthians 5:12.
 The punctuation is altered. He seems to be proving, not the unity of the Spirit, but the relation of that doctrine to practice.
 [i. e. you and the faith.--J.A.B.]
 Chrys. seems to make a false opposition between ekeinon and hauton; but if the reading is correct, this is really one of his rapid changes of the "point of view," though not amounting to a change of person. Doun?us suggests hoti ta ekeinon alethe; (for asthene;) That the others' (principles) are true.' Compare the letter of Antoninus [Hadrian] quoted by Justin Martyr. Apol. i. 70.
 See on Stat. Hom. vi.
 kratein. He seems to mean "to have them in their power."
 See on the passage, Hom. xxii. , Tr. p. 508.
 kataklasthai. See on Stat. Hom. xiii. ? 9, Tr. p. 429. In that and Hom. xii. the law of nature is discussed at some length.
 [This is obscure, and the Oxford editor follows the suggestion of Downes that for argos, "idle," we should read aorgos, "without anger," but, as Field points out, there is no such word.--J.A.B.]
 Comp. Wisd. i. 14, xi. 24.
 Ecclus. xviii. 13, as above. Compare Psalm 145:9 and Job 4:18.
 [So the best group of mss., though Field retains the reading of the other group, "if he were to make darkness." The vague expression, "so to do as He once did," probably refers to the universal destruction at the Deluge.--J.A.B.]
 [There is a queer play upon the words elaiou, "oil," and eleou, "mercy," which in Chrys.'s day (as in Mod. Greek) were pronounced alike. As oil in the natural, so mercy in the spiritual sphere, he says, is the cause of light.--J.A.B.]
 [The Greek word which we borrow and contract into "alms" is derived from the word here rendered pity and mercy.--J.A.B.]
 al. This oil; see note 2; and on Romans 14:13, Hom. xxv. , Tr. p. 425, note g; and on Matthew 25. Hom. lxxviii. init., also Hom. on Stat. vi. , Tr. p. 130, note c. He may mean here to distinguish the fire of Hell, from which we may be freed, from that which is to rage, but to be quenched.
 [This probably means God, as suggested by the altered text, which of course tinkered so obscure a passage.--J.A.B.]
28And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God.
29For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;
30Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me.