105
EXEGESIS -- ISAIAS.

"Hence Emmanuel sprung from the holy Virgin, that Virgin who said: How shall this be done, because I know not man? To whom the Angel gave answer: The Spirit of the Lord shall come upon thee, and the power of the Most High overshadow thee. This Virgin was not subject to the law of purification in Deuteronomy.* Since, without human generation, she became Emmanuel's Mother, pure, holy, and undefiled; and after having become Mother, remained still a Virgin."+

"Mary was not like other mothers, but a pure Virgin not amenable to the Levitical law."++

"And for this reason it was that Christ was born of a Virgin, who should after His birth be also married, that in Christ the two titles of sanctity might be distinctly marked by His having a Mother who was both a Virgin, and married also to one only husband."**

"We have witnessed this heavenly combat. And the servant of God has been crowned conqueror in the contest. This is that combat which the prophet Isaias foretold when he says: No little contest have ye with men; for God Himself provides the combat.|| And to show what this combat is, he adds: Behold a Virgin shall conceive and bring forth a Son, and ye shall call His name Emmanuel. Here is the combat."

***

"Come then Eve, now Mary, who not only brought us the incentive to virginity, but also gave us God. Whence Isaias joyful and exulting at so great a gift says: Behold a Virgin shall receive in her womb and shall bring forth a Son, and His name shall be called Emmanuel, which is being interpreted God with us. Whence is this gift? Not from earth assuredly, but from heaven did Christ choose for Himself this vessel, whereby He might descend, and consecrated it a temple of purity. By one woman He came down, but many women has He called. Hence too the Lord's Mary found this her name, which signifies, God from my origin (Deus ex genere meo)."+++

"Thy Only-begotten Son Himself, when about to come to earth to take to Himself what was lost, could not find a more pure generation of His flesh than to dedicate the court of the heavenly Virgin for His own habitation, in whom might be the sanctuary of immaculate chastity, and the temple of God."|||


* Lev. xiii. 2.

+ Comment in Isa., in loc., Int. Opp. S. Basilii. It is disputed whether this Commentary is by S. Basil, but agreed among the learned that it was written about the fourth century. See also S. Cyril of Alex., De adorat. in sp. et verit., Lib. 15, Patr. Gr. Tom. 68, p. 1005.

++ Origen, Hom. viii., in Levit. xii. 2.

** Tertullian, De Monogamia, cap. viii., P.L. Tom. 2. It is by the virginity of Mary that S. Justin (Tryph. c. 100) confutes Trypho and the Ebionites, who denied the divinity of Jesus Christ, as S. Ignatius confuted the Docetae, who denied His humanity, by her maternity. Thus S. Justin appeals to this passage of Isaias: Ecce Virgo concipiet. Trypho would read he neanis, but S. Justin shows from the lxx. that it is he parthenos (c.c. 43, 67).

|| Compare Is. vii. 13, 14 with ix. 3-6.

*** S. Cyprian, On the Martyrdom of S. Mappallicus.

+++ S. Ambrose, De Instit. Virg. cap. v. n. 33.

||| Ibid. cap. xvii., nn. 104, 105.

 

 

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