Woe unto you, lawyers! for you have taken away the key of knowledge: you entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in you hindered.
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Clement Of Rome
The scribes also, and Pharisees, are led away into another schism; but these, being baptized by John, and holding the word of truth received from the tradition of Moses as the key of the kingdom of heaven, have hid it from the hearing of the people.
Which the scribes and Pharisees, having received the key of knowledge, had not shut in, but shut out.
Far be such a supposition from us. For He did not act impiously; but since they hid the knowledge of the kingdom,
Woe unto you, lawyers! Ye have usurped, as S. Ambrose renders the Greek Î®Î¶Î±Ï„Îµ, the key of knowledge, i.e, the teaching of the law and the interpretation of scripture. Ye have used this knowledge for your own evil purposes, and have prejudiced the people against Me and the salvation which I came to bestow. Thus ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in, S. Matthew 23:13.
Thus S. Ambrose and Tertullian; and S. Cyril, who understands the key of knowledge to mean the law, the sign of the justice of Christ, and adds, Faith also is the key, because by means of it we retain the knowledge and the truth, for "unless ye believe ye will not understand." These men therefore shut up the kingdom of heaven, for they neither explained the law as testifying to Christ, nor did they suffer men to believe on Him.
Figurativly, S. Augustine (lib. ii. Qust. Evang.), alluding to Isaiah 22:22, and Revelation 3:7, s...
You have taken away the key of knowledge. A comparison of a master that locks others out. As if Christ said: you pretend, as masters and teachers, to open and expound the law and the prophets; and by your false doctrine and interpretations, you neither observe the law, nor permit others to observe it. See Matthew xxiii. 13. (Witham)
The key of knowledge is faith; for by faith we come to the knowledge of truth, according to that of Isaiah, How shall they understand, if they have not believed? Cap. vii, (according to Septuagint) these doctors of the law took away the key of science, by not allowing the people to believe in Christ. (St. Cyril in St. Thomas Aquinas)