116
EXEGESIS -- EZECHIEL -- OSEE -- JOEL -- HABACUC -- ZACHARIAS.

"By this closed gate is signified the virginal womb of Mary, who, ever a perfect Virgin brought forth the Saviour. For Christ the Lord alone, as saith Bishop Augustine of blessed memory, brought out, through the inviolate virginal entrails of His Mother, the limbs of an infant, even as after the Resurrection, through closed doors, He brought in the limbs of a young man."*

OSEE.

"And I will espouse thee to Me in faith." -- ii. 20.

"What are the nuptial pledges of the Virgin, the holy spouse? And I will espouse thee to Me in faith. Elizabeth too, speaking of Mary says: Blessed is she who believed," etc.+

JOEL.

"It shall come to pass in that day, that... a fountain shall come forth from the house of the Lord, and shall water the torrent of thorns." -- iii. 18.

"In Mary the prophecies of the just and of all the prophets had their fulfilment... Mary may most fitly be called by divers names. Thus she is the Temple of the Son of God... She is that new mystical Heaven,++ wherein the King of kings dwelt as in His abode, from whence He came down to earth... She is the Vine that is fruitful of fragrant sweetness.**... She is the Fountain that is come forth from the House of God."||

HABACUC.

"And the Holy One from Mount Pharan." -- iii. 3.

"This spiritual mountain signifies to us the holy Virgin in whom God dwelt, and out of whom He was cut without hands, that is, without marriage, according to Daniel's vision of the stone that was cut out of the mountain without hands."***

ZACHARIAS.

"Behold a candlestick all of gold," etc. -- iv. 2, 3.

"Who then is this candlestick:? The holy Mary. Because she bore the immaterial light, God incarnate. Why all golden? Because she remained Virgin after the Birth...."

S. Ephrem goes on to apply the Eastern gate that was always to be kept shut,+++ to Mary, and then continues:--

"And as the candlestick is not of itself the cause of light, but is that which bears the light, so too the Virgin is not of herself God, but the temple of God."|||


* Julianus Pomerius, De Promiss. et Praedictionib. Dei, P. ii. c. 36; Int. Opp. Prosper. Aquet.

+ S. Cyril of Jerusalem, Cat. xii. 26. Patr. Gr. Tom. 33, p. 760.

++ Apoc. xxi. 1.

** Ecclus. xxiv. 23.

|| S. Ephrem, Serm. de laud. Dei. Gen. Mariae, i. See above in Cant. iv. 2, S. Jerome, Epist. 48, n. 21.

*** Dan. ii. 45, S. Ephrem, Comment. in Habac., ap. Lamy, vol. ii., p. 271.

+++ Ezech. xliv. 1-3.

||| Orat. ii. De Incarnat. Domini.

 

 

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