Job 41:6

Shall your companions make a banquet of him? shall they apportion him among the merchants?
All Commentaries on Job 41:6 Go To Job 41

Gregory The Dialogist

AD 604
33. This Leviathan is cut in pieces, as often as his members are severed from him by the sword of the Divine Word. For when wicked men hear the word of truth, and, smitten with holy fear, suspend their imitation of the ancient enemy, he, from whom those who wickedly adhered to him are withdrawn, is himself divided in his own body. But He terms those His ‘friends,’ whom before He calls ‘maidens,’ those also He calls ‘merchants,’ whom He had termed ‘friends.’ For holy preachers are first ‘maidens’ through their fear, afterwards ‘friends’ through faith, at last ‘merchants’ also through their actions. For it is said to them when weak; Fear not, little flock, for it hath pleased the Father to give you a kingdom. [Luke 12, 32] It is said to them again, growing strong, But I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard of My Father, I have made known unto you. [John 15, 15] Lastly, they are ordered when going forth to carry on their business; Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature. [Mark 16, 15] For in the preaching of the faith a kind of traffic is, as it were, carried on; when the word is given to, and faith received from, the hearers. They make as it were a kind of traffic, who make a venture [‘prærogant’] with their preaching, and bring back faith from the people. They impart to them faith, and immediately receive back their holy life. For if the preaching of the righteous had not been a traffic, the Psalmist surely would not be saying, Take a psalm, and give a timbrel. [Ps. 81, 2] For in a timbrel, leather is dried, in order that it may sound. What is meant then by saying, Take a psalm, and give a timbrel, except this? Take ye the spiritual song of the heart, and give back the temporal maceration of the body. If heavenly preaching had not been a traffic, Solomon would never say of Holy Church under the type of a virtuous woman, She made fine linen, and sold it, and delivered a girdle to the Canaanite. [Prov. 31, 24] For what is signified by a garment of fine linen, but the subtle texture of holy preaching? In which men rest softly, because the mind of the faithful is refreshed therein by heavenly hope. Whence also the animals are shewn to Peter in a linen sheet, [Acts 10, 11. 12.] because the souls of sinners mercifully gathered together are inclosed in the gentle quiet of faith. The Church, therefore, made and sold this fine garment, because she imparted in words that faith which she had woven by belief; and received from unbelievers a life of upright conversation. And she delivered a girdle to the Canaanite, because by the might of the righteousness she displayed, she constrained the lax doings of the Gentile world, in order that that might be maintained in their doings which is commanded, Let your loins be girded about. [Luke 12, 35] The Lord, therefore, in searching out for His preachers finds them as ‘maidens,’ by changing them He makes them ‘friends,’ by enriching sets them forth as ‘merchants.’ For they who in their infirmity were at first afraid of the threats of the world, ascend afterwards to know the Divine counsels. But when enriched with virtues, they are led as far as to carry on the traffic of faith, in order that by their threats and persuasions they may smite the members of this Leviathan the more severely, the more truly, having become even friends, they unite themselves to the love of the Truth; and that they may withdraw from him more quickly the souls of sinners, the more, having become skilful traffickers, they display in themselves the most ample treasures of virtues. For that the possession of this Leviathan is, much to their praise, taken from him by the preachers of God, the voice of Truth promises by the Prophet, saying, And if thou wilt separate the precious from the vile, thou shall be as My mouth. [Jer. 15, 19] For he in truth separates the precious from the vile, who cuts off the minds of men from accursed [‘reproba’] imitation of the ancient enemy. He is rightly called the mouth of God, because by him doubtless the divine words are uttered.
4 mins

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation - 2 Peter 1:20

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