Matthew 13:46

Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.
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Augustine of Hippo

AD 430
Quaest. in Matt., q. 13: Or, A man seeking goodly pearls has found one pearl of great price; that is, he who is seeking good men with whom he may live profitably, finds one alone, Christ Jesus, without sin; or, seeking precepts of life, by aid of which he may dwell righteously among men, finds love of his neighbour, in which one rule, the Apostle says which is lustrous with the light of truth, stedfast with the strength of eternity, and throughout like to itself with the beauty of divinity, and when we have penetrated the shell of the flesh, will be confessed as God. But whichever of these three it may be, or if there be any thing else that can occur to us, that can be signified under the figure of the one precious pearl, its preciousness is the possession of ourselves, who are not free to possess it unless we despise all things that canbe possessed in this world. For having sold our possessions, we receive no other return greater than ourselves, (for while we were involved in such thi...

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
This eternal kingdom faith opens to your view, but it does not put you in possession without good works. (Bible de Vence)


AD 420
By the goodly pearls may be understood the Law and the Prophets. Hear thenMarcion and Manichaeus; the good pearls are the Law and the Prophets. One pearl, the most precious of all, is the knowledge of the Saviour and the sacrament of His passion and resurrection, which when the merchantman has found, like Paul the Apostle, he straightway despises all the mysteries of the Law and the Prophets and the old observances in which he had lived blameless, counting them as dung that he may win Christ. Not that the finding of a new pearl is the condemnation of the old pearls, but that in comparison of that, all other pearls are worthless.

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Except thou sell all, you buy not; except thou have such a soul, anxious and inquiring, you find not. Two things therefore are requisite, abstinence from worldly matters, and watchfulness. For He says One seeking goodly pearls, who when he had found one of great price, sold all and bought it. For the truth is one, and not in many divisions. And much as he that has the pearl knows indeed himself that he is rich, but others know not, many times, that he is holding it in his hand (for there is no corporeal bulk); just so also with the gospel, they that have hold of it know that they are rich, but the unbelievers, not knowing of this treasure, are in ignorance also of our wealth.

John Chrysostom

AD 407
The Gospel preaching not only offers manifold gain as a treasure, but is precious as a pearl; wherefore after the parable concerning the treasure, He gives that concerning the pearl. And in preaching, two things are required, namely, to be detached from the business of this life, and to be watchful, which are denoted by this merchant- man.Truth moreover is one, and not manifold, and for this reason it is one pearl that is said to be found. And as one who ispossessed of a pearl, himself indeed knows of his wealth, but is not known toothers, ofttimes concealing it in his hand because of its small bulk, so it is in the preaching of the Gospel; they who possess it know that they are rich, the unbelievers, not knowing of this treasure, know not of our wealth.

Theophylact of Ochrid

AD 1107
The sea is the present life. The merchants are those who traverse it in search of some knowledge. Many think that the pearls are the opinions of the multitude of philosophers. But one is of great price. For there is One Truth, which is Christ. It is like the story that is told of how the pearl comes into being within the oyster: the oyster opens its folds and a bolt of lightning strikes within; the folds are again shut and the pearl is conceived from the lightning and a droplet of moisture, giving it its pure whiteness. So Christ also was conceived from the lightning from above, the Holy Spirit. And as a man who has a pearl turns it over and over in his hands, and he knows what great wealth he possesses, while others are ignorant, so too the preaching is hidden among the unnoticed and the simple. To obtain this pearl one must give all.

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

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