August 25th, 1983, Serial No. 00704

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Monastic Spirituality Set 12 of 12

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We've been going through Luke's article and using that as a kind of springboard for various digressions concerned with the Word of God and with the reading of the Word, and at different senses. We got as far as page 34, and now I'd like to double back a bit and look more intensively at something that we've struck there, which is these four senses of scripture, because Luke is going to go into the four senses in some depth, and I think we need a little more background than we have at this point. That's the reason why I gave you the page here of St. Thomas Aquinas. And do you have with you that chapter at Conference of Cassian, Conference 14 of Cassian? Okay, let's take a look at that. Let's take a look at that, and what we want to do is to understand as thoroughly as we


can these four senses, the way the Fathers and the Scholastic theologians have understood them. And then, on the basis of that, we can take Luke's attempt, de Lubach and Luke, attempting to make it contemporary, in other words, to make it understandable for us, to translate it into our own language. But first, let's look at it the way the Fathers did. You remember that basically you have, you said you had four senses, and I'll put them a little bit like this. The literal, or historical, the allegorical, that was the language of the Fathers, or typological, the moral, the prophological, and the anagogical, which can also be called mystical.


Or mysticalology, which pertains to Christ, and eschatology. Eschatology is the study of the final thing, that is, last judgment, second coming, everything else, those things. Now, Cassian has his own way of approaching this, and he takes it from the point of view of, actually, a little Greek philosophy, and the division between the different kinds of knowledge in Greek philosophy. So there's practical knowledge and there's theoretical knowledge. And he divides, actually, he's talking about spiritual knowledge here, explicitly, but he's actually talking about the monastic life. He's talking about life as well as knowledge. So he's saying that there's an active life in the contemplative knowledge. So that's the source of those two, those two categories of evolution.


This is Cassian's conference. It's on page 435, conference 14. So if anybody doesn't have it, I have a copy of Cassian's book here. So if you want to look at Cassian's book, you can use that if you want. It's better to have it in front of you. You may have done that at another time. I think you did. Okay, so he talks about, in the first chapter, he talks about the bottom line. Practicae and theoreticae, that's active or practical knowledge and theoretical or contemplative knowledge. Now, those are two degrees of knowledge and also two degrees of life, really, two degrees of monastic life. The point is that you have to do the active life before you can experience the contemplative life. And then in chapter 3, he says that practical perfection or practical knowledge or practical life or active life has two stages.


One is to know the vices and the other is to know the virtues. That all sounds kind of arbitrary, but there's a considerable exception, if you go into it, as he does elsewhere and as the Vagrius does. And that's, many different ways of doing that. Now in chapter 8, on page 437, he gets to spiritual knowledge. And here he's talking about exactly what we're interested in, which is the four senses of scripture. This whole conference is well worth reading. I hope that you will read it. It's a very, very dense and rich conference. Even though it has to be looked at kind of critically, because he's got his own bias. Okay, so let's read chapter 8 with some attention, because it's right on our subject. You see in the footnote number 2 down there, they give that little verse that we had in Latin, with the four senses of litera, gesta, doce. We've talked about that last time. Literal sense, allegorical sense, moral sense, anagogic.


Okay. To return to the explanation of the knowledge from which our discourse took its rise, that's spiritual knowledge, not practical. Theoretical knowledge is divided into two parts, historical and the spiritual sense. And the spiritual knowledge is divided into three kinds, topological, allegorical, and anagogic. So that's where we get the list that I put on the board. If you made a chart of everything that he's talking about, starting from the first chapter, you'd end up with something like this. People are interested in all of this. Knowledge. And then you have your spiritual and your practical. Practical has two kinds. The vices and the virtues. That's like therapy and mysticism.


Therapy and the senses. Two aspects of it. The medicinal and the moral aspects. Knowledge. And the spiritual is divided into a theoretical, a philosophical, a philosophical, there's a use of the word spiritual. Spiritual and literal. Spiritual and allegorical, those three. Back to chapter 8. Of spiritual knowledge there are three kinds, topological, allegorical, and anagogical.


Of which we read as follows in Proverbs. And those applications of the Old Testament are always a little bit debatable. This, for instance, isn't here. So the history, historical sense, literal sense, embraces the knowledge of things past and visible. And then he gives an example which is very useful. The example is from St. Paul's letter to the Galatians, chapter 4. It is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a bondwoman and the other by a priest. So that's history. The allegory. For these are the two covenants, the one from Mount Sinai, which engenders into bondage, which is Agar. Now, you see where you're going. From history to something that's signified allegorically or typically or symbolically by those historical realities. And that is the mystery. And it's the mystery of the two covenants. But particularly it's the mystery of the new covenant. The anagogical sense rises from spiritual mysteries even more sublime to heaven.


That Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us. Now, Jerusalem, strangely, is above and is on earth at the same time. So, when he says that Jerusalem is above, he says that Jerusalem is also ahead, in a way. He seems to be talking about the final Jerusalem, the heavenly city which we see in Isaiah, chapter 21 of the Apocalypse, but which is already above. So it's ahead and above at the same time. We're going to find Luce talking about prophecy and mysticism as being the same thing. The tropological sense is the moral explanation which has to do with improvement of life and practical teaching. As if we were to understand by these two covenants, practical and theoretical instruction. Notice, see the parallel he's making between his Greek scheme of practical and theoretical knowledge, or active and contemplative life, and this biblical scheme of the two covenants.


Now, those things are both useful and treacherous, when you do this. Because you'll find that they conform to a certain extent, and then there's a place where they don't conform, and then you can get into trouble. If you insist that they're the same, they're perfectly fair for you. There is a good parallel there. Think about it for a moment. If you think of the active life as parallel to the old covenant, the Old Testament, and the contemplative life as parallel to the New Testament. Now, what do we read in St. Paul? The Old Testament is the law, right? And the New Testament is the Spirit. Now, the law conforms to the monastic life, or to the things that you have to do by rule, and to the asceticism of the monastic life, daily observances. That's a pretty good parallel. And the Spirit conforms in some way to the spiritual experience of God, actually, which is not under a law, and which is itself clear.


So the parallel is real. It's not just a literary thing he's doing. But, when he says instruction, then you have to be careful. You can put theory in it, or a bunch of nonsense. As long as you translate it from the word of God, it's got a substance to it, and you start putting philosophy in it, sooner or later you'll have to take it out of it. Or, on this level, the other possibility is, interpret Jerusalem or Zion as the soul of man. Praise the Lord of Jerusalem, praise your God of Zion, as if you're talking to your own heart, as if you're talking to your own soul. Now, that's frequently done in monastic exegesis. That's a typically monastic interpretation, but you could call it an introverted or an interiorized interpretation. And we'll talk about that afterwards. Ruth will help us with that. And so these four previously mentioned figures coalesce into one subject, so that one and the same Jerusalem can be taken in four senses, historically as the city of the Jews, allegorically as the Church of Christ.


Now, that is theologically absolutely true. That's the way it is in the Scriptures. Anagogically, as the heavenly city of God, which is the mother of us all. Tropologically, as the soul of man. Which is frequently subject to praise or blame, the idea of correction and of training and of discipline. Now, Ruth criticizes this interpretation of the four senses, remember? She criticizes it as actually concealing the true meaning of these senses. Because he says that the third one is a kind of experience, and the fourth one is a kind of experience too. And when you make it a simple intellectual game in this way, you've obscured it. And we'll see what he does with that afterwards. Nevertheless, this is a pretty consistent thing throughout tradition. And you don't always hear about experience. We have to find a way of understanding it both, either in an objective way or in an experimental way, which conforms to the objective, and try to do it. And then he does something with another passage of St. Paul,


which is from 1 Corinthians. And St. Paul talks about four kinds of understanding. What shall I prophet you unless I speak to you either by revelation or knowledge, or by prophecy or by doctrine? Well, Cassian interprets that in terms of his four senses. And he does a pretty convincing job. But it's very questionable whether that's what St. Paul has in mind. See, that's difficult. You can find a way of... I'm sure you can find an expression for that kind of exegesis, which insists on a mathematical parallel between senses, perhaps, and not the senses. That is very frequent. You can see, every time you get numbers, every time you get 2 or you get 3 or you get 4, there's a risk of that kind of extraneous parallelism. And it's okay as long as it's understood. It's kind of a game. Having this kind of a game. So he interprets knowledge as the topological, and so on.


Prophecy is the anagogical, doctrine is the historical. Revelation is allegorical. Okay, that's one example. Now let's look at that page of Thomas Aquinas that you have. Page 7 of the whole Summa. So it's right at the beginning. The article, the question is, whether in Holy Scripture a word may have several senses. The question just before this, Article 9, whether Holy Scripture should use metaphors. See, now you're getting into the time of scholastic understanding where you've got clear ideas, philosophical notions, concepts, and you actually begin to question whether Scripture did it in the right way. And that question can be raised. Well, why doesn't Scripture speak to us in clear ideas, rather than using these extreme metaphors, figurative speech, and poetic usages? So that's what I'm talking about. That's it. You don't have that in a visible context.


Now here it's a question of, well, once again it's a question of clarity. How can the Holy Spirit speak to us on more than one level? Isn't that simply confusing or ambiguous? And if the Scripture does that, then you can't argue about it, then you can't prove anything by it. See, that's the opposition in Objection 1. Many different senses in one text produce confusion, deception, and destroy all course of argument. And remember how... Well, you haven't been in that Irenaeus class, most of you have. That's what Irenaeus accuses the Gnostics of, is having a profusion of senses, whereby nothing can be argued, you can believe anything you want. Hence, no argument and only fallacies can be deduced. And then the second objection is, St. Augustine seems to have a different classification. And thirdly, in Objection 3, there's another one, a parabolical, which hasn't been mentioned, so evidently this first division is not fitting. And then he answers, and this is very powerful,


what he has to say here. It goes right to the root of the question. The author of Holy Writ, that means Holy Scripture, is God, and whose power it is to signify His meaning not by words only, as man can also do, but also by things themselves. Marvelous. In that one phrase, he says it. See, God is the Creator. And this goes in two directions. It goes in the direction of the cosmos of creation, it goes in the direction of history. See, God speaks by the things He makes, and God speaks by the things that He does. He makes and He does. And if you read Irenaeus, His doing is a making too, okay? Because the whole of history consists of creating man through His image and likeness. So, it's like you've got making, you've got doing, and you've got beginning. St. Thomas is insane, but think of three levels. Making, doing, beginning. He makes the creation, and then He acts in it, on man, through history. And in doing that, He makes man to His own image.


But that making man into His own image actually leads to something else, which is begetting man as His son, okay? Think of God acting in those three ways. He's a very active God. There's a difference between the Eastern and the Western, that God speaks and makes and does and begets. And He speaks by everything that He does, and by everything that He makes. He's always speaking, because He generates His word. So, He's creator, and He's the one who acts in history. He acts in things, or He speaks in things that He makes, and those are symbols, okay? And everything that He makes is symbolic, and that's the source of His symbolism. See, that's the source of sacramentality, is the fact that there's a meaning that's written right into a thing, concealed and revealed at the same time. Then He speaks and acts, and that's the history. See, that's the history of salvation. So, St. Thomas is saying, it's not just that God speaks in the words of the scripture.


Now, if we take inspiration too narrowly, that's what we think. We see the sacred writer, we see Isaiah, the prophet, they're sitting there, and God is inspiring him as he writes, and the Luke is talking about that. But that's not really it. That's part of it, but it's not the whole of it. See, God acts in the very events that happen in the history of the Jewish. He speaks in those events. And so, His word is really not just what's on the page, not just what is in the mind of Isaiah, but in what happens. And that's why you can have these different levels of meaning. It's not just like poetry, okay? In some cases in poetry, you just have a connection between words, not between realities. When it's good poetry, the connection is also between realities. But with God, the connection is that you're between realities in a depth way, so you can go right down from one level to another of depth to the reality. So finally, you're at the ground which is God Himself. Whereas in every other science, things are signified by words,


this science has the property that the things signified by the words have themselves also a signification. It's marvelous. See, there's a word about something, and then when you get to the thing itself, that means something too. Therefore, that first signification whereby words signify things belongs to the first sense, the historical or literal. That signification whereby things signified by words have themselves also a signification is called the spiritual sense, which is based on the literal and presupposes it. Now, the spiritual sense is a threefold division, and it goes on to the same thing we've done in Gasham. But he explains it all, of course. For the Apostle says, the old law is a figure of the new law. That means the Old Testament, Old Covenant, New Testament, New Covenant. And the new law itself is a figure of future glory. Again, in the new law, whatever our head has done is a type of what we ought to do. You can intuit the moral sense


or the topological sense coming out of that. Therefore, so far as the things of the old law, the Old Testament, historical sense, signify the things of the new law, there is the allegorical sense. So far as the things done in Christ, in the new law, so far as the things which signify Christ are types of what we ought to do, there is the moral sense. So far as they signify what relates to eternal glory, there is the analogical sense. Since the literal sense is that which the author intends, that's the principle. However, we have to be careful there because God, as author, intends all the senses at once, whereas the human author, even the prophet, may not understand, he doesn't understand the full importance of what he's writing, what he's saying. And since the author of holy writ is God, if by one act, comprehends all things, what he's intending, even according to the literal sense, one word in holy writ should have several senses. So, I think he means there


that all of these senses come from the literal sense. It's important to understand the logic behind these senses. See, when we're talking about it, we're talking about a lot more than just the sense of the scripture. We're talking about the shape of revelation, or the shape of the history of salvation, or the transition to the theology itself. That's why St. Thomas tackles that at the beginning of his sonnet. He's really talking about the theology of salvation. So you've got the historical sense, and then that leads you to what they call the allegorical sense, which is the mystery of Christ. And it's as if that mystery of Christ


has three levels, with a projection between the levels. One level is Christ himself. Let's call that the allegorical sense. And this gives rise to the other. The second is in us, of what Christ is. Us. And this is the final, the final unity. And this is the moral sense of the level, of good or of wrong. And this is the analogical sense. Now, who is it? He thought eventually, he thought eventually, because he said that the reason why it's three in one, the spiritual sense, is because God is in three persons. And that right away doesn't explain why. First of all,


think of the Incarnation. Now think of it. The Old Testament as moving forward to this, this mystery of Christ, and then it opens up to it. But then, God comes down to the definitive word, and the word becomes flesh. And the mystery of Christ happens, and it explodes. Now, consider that first you have the Incarnation, where the word, the second person of the Trinity, becomes man. And that's the source of the Old Testament. It is about Christ and His Church, as it were. Then, Christ gives the Holy Spirit, faith in Him. And the Holy Spirit is working in the children, and working interiorly in each of them. Okay? And then the Holy Spirit gathers itself in the members of the trinity of the Father. Okay? If you read St. Paul, you get this idea of our being finally handed over to the Father by Christ. Okay? Meanwhile, the work is done by the Holy Spirit. But it is a kind of humanitarian strategy. Okay? Which is played out in the mystery of salvation.


And this is the time of the Holy Spirit. The Father has given us a good thing. He's very kind to us. You know? I think He's very kind to us. And it's almost like, you see, you've got a fraternity there. You've got something which is material here. The historical sense. And you've got the mystery here, which I'll put it down here in one of the four senses. That's the paradoxical sense. Let me put it here. I think I've got it. Call this number 1. Call this number 2. This number 3. This number 4. There's a kind of logic in this kind of truth. Here is the historical sense. Think of it. Connect that with purpose. Connect that with creation.


Here is the allegorical sense, where the mystery of Christ, the incarnation of the Word, the Word, is this fraternity. This is creation in that sense. This is the Word. This is the Spirit over here. And this is where you have your third sense, which is the present sense. Now, if we've been calling the moral sense the topological sense, we could also call it the historical sense. Because that sense is really broadened beyond the individual. So it happens that monasticism is materialized. But really it's also what's happening in the church now. And then finally, we've got that anagogical sense, which corresponds to God and corresponds to the Father. That's in the final state that's in heaven. So, you see, there's this kind of program. From the first and second and third and fourth. That quaternity is manifested


in so many ways in theology. I'll just refer you to St. Bonaventure and his River Opium, which is a fascinating book. The first part of it, the prologue, is about the scriptures. he's like the Johann Sebastian Bach of theology, or at least of scholastic theology. Because he's making music all the time. It can annoy you or it can be tired of either one. It's continually a mathematical thing. He loves numbers and things. And he makes everything come out even. It's just like music. And you don't know whether to be skeptical about it or whether to be entranced with it. At any rate, the prologue to the River Opium. The River Opium means a short word. That's a short summary of theology. Remember, he's a contemporary of Thomas Aquinas. And he's the one who sings, whereas


I don't know what the comparison would be. He sings while Thomas Aquinas speaks. Aquinas has the clarity and my venture has the music. And in the prologue he talks about the dimensions of Holy Spirit and Holy Scripture in terms of breadth and length and height and depth. And in the depth he talks about the three senses, the three spiritual senses. He starts out with a passage from Ephesians where St. Paul prays that they may understand comprehend the length and the height and the depth and the breadth. Section four of the depth of Holy Scripture. Lastly, Holy Scripture possesses a depth which consists in the multiplicity of the mystical intelligences. Besides a literal sense it possesses diverse places capable of triple construction namely allegorical, moral, and anagogical. Note he's pointing out that you can't make these other interpretations of every Scripture passage. It would be a futile kind of game to try to do that.


And notice also that they keep passing over the question of whether we're talking about an Old Testament passage or a New Testament passage. And that's because I think there's a difficulty there. See, there are some passages in the New Testament which are straight. They just have one sense actually. They don't have any spiritual sense but the spiritual sense is in the literal sense sometimes in the New Testament. In St. John and St. Paul too. And the other Gospels and the parables the parables as it were put you back into the historical sense of the Old Testament and they give you the full sweep of senses again. They may have only two senses sometimes. Sometimes they have all four. There's a play in the interaction between those different senses that the theory hasn't been subtle enough to handle. The instrument hasn't been fine enough to handle the way they interact the way they move around as the Word Himself speaks especially in the New Testament and as the Word is present in the New Testament. Holy Scripture


given through the Holy Ghost considers the Book of Creation the Book of Creation He's got three books the Book of Creation the Book of the Word which is the Scriptures and then the Imperial Book by referring to the end with a triple meaning so that through the topological sense we may have a list of things to be done energetically through the allegorical sense we may have an indication of the things to be believed truly through the anagogical sense a list of things to be sought out for enjoyment. We're going to find that we need to broaden that when we get to Luke. Any questions about this which may seem kind of dry stuff or kind of abstract but you'll find that what it does it sort of stakes out the dimensions of Holy Scripture for you and it helps you to follow out and to see how far you can go with the Scriptures to point out certain paths to follow in reading the Scriptures so that we don't get stuck just on one moment so that we begin to


feel the richness of the Word. This book of Beiluvar the famous four volumes on Medieval and Zoroastrianism you have selections from it as I said in here in the Sources of Revelation and the last chapter of this is entitled The Unity of the Four Senses The Unity of the Quadruple Meaning it goes from page 217 up to 229 and it's rather difficult but if you're interested you can make a note of it and it's worth reading if not now then perhaps later and there he wrestles with the question of the unity of the four senses and perhaps doesn't make it seem that simple he kind of he brings out some beautiful lights about it


but sometimes what he's writing seems a little hard to penetrate let me read you skip through a little bit of what he's saying and see if it helps to enrich all of us from head to toe Christianity is a fulfillment and yet it is in its very fulfillment also an expectation see the part of the thing of these four senses is that we're in between we can't consider that we simply have an Old Testament and then a New Testament and that everything here is an expectation everything here is in fulfillment that's not true the Jesus himself foretells the end of his account and he's kind of overriding it so that you can say that we're in a zone


something like that you have an Old Testament which is to be completely replaced by something new you have the complete something new here which is like the heavenly eternity and then we're in the scene here in the zone which is partly fulfillment and partly expectation partly fulfillment and partly expectation it's like the parable of Judas Minor remember what Judas said to him he said watch watch because you know when the Lord is coming when the Mass is coming that's expectation that's not fulfillment because the partial fulfillment of Christ is really expressed inside of us the Holy Spirit is given to us and the Church is the life of God in the world and yet it's very much an expectation a lot of the problems that develop are coming between me and not yet so we're in here which means that the Old Testament has a lot more meaning for us than you might think that it does


for society the psalmist how many of you have seen the psalms with that fact that I was talking about did you see them they were still in the same state as they should be coming into fulfillment as they were but the psalmist wasn't like this um I'll just leave that for later yeah, they aren't fulfilled especially in the prophets okay because take the prophet Isaiah take the second and third Isaiah from chapter 40 up to the end um some things are fulfilled in Jesus but with a fulfillment which is still not fulfilled the fulfillment is only partial it's like a seed that comes the key of fulfillment is there when the Messiah comes when Jesus comes when the word becomes flesh and yet the seed is in the ground and hasn't sprouted out yet


all those those wonderful um passages about Jerusalem they just haven't happened yet you know the joy the rejoicing of Jerusalem that hasn't happened it means both the whole and one big secret in this you see is the union of the Jews and the Christians okay is the return of the Jews as they say that's a big secret here because these prophecies can't really be fulfilled until that happens in some way otherwise God would seem as playing tricks when he foretells to Jerusalem that you are going to return you the baron you're going to rejoice and then the promise is fulfilled to somebody else over here so in some way it has to be true also for the Jews and Paul says this in Romans the last chapter of Romans that when the the Jews are brought back as it were somehow reunited with the Christians that is definitely the resurrection of the dead so that that marks the end let me just


read a bit of one of these we're digressing a lot here okay arise shine for your light has come and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you for behold darkness shall cover the earth and deep darkness the people for the Lord will rise upon you and the glory will be seen upon you and nations will come to your light and kings to the brightness of the horizon now that's true in a way for the Church and it's also not true either for the Church or for Israel or for the Jews because the Church is still largely in the darkness it's not like the nations are just walking through the Church that'll happen at the end it's not happening it's not happening that's right it's gotta happen still see there's this big dramatic burst of light and of fulfillment at the end it hasn't happened yet it flashes with the coming of Christ when he came as man it flashes and then quickly it's covered up you see as if it's very and it's sort of maturing underground it's growing


like the cold and maturing underground but it hasn't happened yet as you hear Isaiah keeping single barren one who did not bear break forth into singing cry aloud you who have not been in travail for the children of the desolate land that one will be more than the children of paradise and paradise says the Lord enlarge the place of your tent and let the curtains of your habitation be stretched out for you will spread abroad to the right and the left and your descendants will possess the nations and the people and the rest of the cities and so on they've happened in a certain way but in the way that they've happened we find ourselves back in the position of the Jewish people see Christianity starts out by being an explosion of the power of God going beyond the bounds of Israel and then we find ourselves back for a while back in the position of Israel even looking back say looking back in medieval Christianity which is very much like David's Jerusalem the empire of David and then we discover that we can't look back to that kind of empire anymore like the christening of European Christianity because you


can't expect that to happen just like the people after in the time of the exile couldn't look for the real return of the David King on earth we're not supposed to look for that in some way it's going to come in another way but there's a terrific parallel between our position in the church now and the position of the Jews in exile so all of those things come back and they apply to us in a new way not the same way a new way but we're very much in the position of the Jewish people and we're hopeless at the next side we're not looking for the coming of another day for the first time or the second just reflect on the Psalms and the fact that we've used the Psalms for two thousand years how could we use the Psalms to be fulfilled if the whole fulfillment had to come that's the joy in a way


in the Old Testament discovering that that promise is made to us so when those words are spoken and spoken for us we're supposed to be looking forward to that joy no there's a way in which they happen internally and see the mystics for instance will have an experience of that joy of that final outcome but generally in our life we have to live with the word we don't have a Christian just like in the letter of Paul he says so that the prophetic word may be confirmed and burn in your heart like a lamp until the day starts rising in your heart the prophetic word is also in us we're in the same condition that's it we've got something that the Jews didn't have that's this through our baptism the Holy Spirit in our hearts and knowledge of Christ but we're still in spiritism in the place of exploitation yeah and it bursts out from time to time you know because it's inside the church and it bursts out from time to time like you'll have a renewal


of some kind a charismatic renewal at a certain point experiences that joy and then it bursts out in certain communities certain monastic communities too of course there's a cycle between the beginning and the end of that so we haven't experienced it we've experienced it and we're still waiting for it too because we thought it would die yeah but now that's right yeah that's right see that's that's the already now we all lose sight see that's the problem of even talking about this when you have to say the already and the not yet at the same time because you talk about one you have to set the other one aside from it we've both got it and we're waiting for it and the monks are the people who are most intensely into both of those dimensions see they're the ones who


most intensely are supposed to be the ones who most intensely are convinced of the already and that's the contemplative one in a sense And yet, the ones who are most intensely in the expectation of what's coming, that's what I like to mention, out of Europe, separating yourself from the world, not getting married and so on, in order to avoid the bridegroom, vigils and everything else, it's not important there. Let's see if there's anything else we can do about this thing which is particularly striking. This whole chapter is revolting, it's tense. The mystery which allegory thereby uncovers... Let's see. Here he's gone from one to the other, of course. Allegory is truly the truth of history. So, allegory is the interior truth of history. That word allegory always somehow gets in our way. It doesn't have the power that this truth has.


Allegory is the truth that's within history. History by itself would be incapable of an intelligible self-fulfillment. Allegory brings this about in history by bestowing upon it all its meaning. So, as we move from history to allegory to the mystery of Christ, the allegory, the revelation of the mystery of Christ, basically, is in our history, or has its culmination. The mystery which allegory thereby uncovers merely initiates yet another cycle. So, allegory gives you the insight into this mystery. You see it because you recognize Christ in the Old Testament. You recognize Christ in David, you recognize the rest of the Passover, but Christ in the Passover of the Old Testament, and so on. You recognize the Church in the Promised Land, but there's all those things, the Eucharist and the Manna. You're always moving into this one mystery and coming into the other three, and allegory. That's allegory. But that initiates another cycle, which leads us to the New Testament.


In order to be fully itself, it must find a double fulfillment. To begin with, it moves inward upon itself and produces its fruit in the spiritual life, which is freedom from poverty. So, that's the first movement. Moves inward upon itself and produces its fruit in the spiritual life, which is freedom from poverty. The spiritual life must then open up into the Son of the Kingdom, at the end of time, which is the object of anagagia. Anagagia also. For what we now realize in Christ, through delivered acts of will, is exactly what will one day, after the defeat of all obstacles and all obscurity, be the essence of eternal life. So, this is an interior sense. And then, we come out into the sunshine, which is interior in some way isolated, because it's inside each of us, but it's not like we can share it completely. It's hidden, but it's hidden from God. And then, we come out into the sunshine, here, and it's completely free.


And then, we all somehow participate in it together. And we are all seeing God, and we are sharing it completely. And you can have good energy. The spiritual life must then open out into the Son of the Kingdom, to get the idea of the fruit, which is maturing inside, like a flower. It's maturing inside within the spiritual life. And then, at the end, we come out into the sunshine. And in the sunshine, everybody's together around the sun. Everybody's together with the sun. Complete revelation to both the mystery and the truth. Now, I think that this sense, the moral and psychological sense, is the one of the rest that needs a lot of attention from us. You'll find that Luther changes the common understanding of that sense. And he doesn't make it purely interdictive. He's got his own interpretation of how these final two senses work, the moral and the psychological. So, let's return to Luke now, for a few minutes, and see if we can make a connection.


We had gotten as far as the bottom of 34. The Spirit is enclosed within the Word of Sacred Scripture. Now, when he says the Spirit, he means God. He means God and the power of God, especially the life of God. This is why it is sacrament. The Word is sacrament. What is the sacrament? The sacrament is a material thing which communicates God. It's a material thing, a visible thing, in which God is hidden, invisible, and which is revealed in so much work. So, he's saying the Scripture is that. The Scripture is something physical. It's a part of it, a book. And that's why we revere the book, he says. The Spirit continues to remain there, enclosed within the Word. It continues to journey along with its people. The Word becomes more full as the people make progress. In that measure, it becomes enriched, receives a new meaning, reveals a deeper meaning.


Now, in all of this, it's not enough to understand this. It's like this kind of thing is something you can meditate on, and then you become convinced of it again and again and again. So, it's like a door that opens for you. It's a kind of understanding that when you understand it, the door is open and you have something you can walk through, you see. It's not just picking up another path. It's an approach to Scripture which opens the door to Scripture to you in such a way that there's always power and meaning in it. And it always relates immediately to your life. That's what he's trying to do. So, it's not a kind of thing that you can read it and put it away and go on something else. Even within the Old Testament, there were what we nowadays call re-readings or reinterpretations of earlier texts and transmitted tradition. Can you find... Can you think of any example of this? Where a text of Scripture will be picked up later in the Bible, later right within the Old Testament, and reinterpreted.


Remember the book of Deuteronomy? Where Moses gives the word, second delivery of the word. It was really a retreatment. It was done a long time later. And it's a retreatment of the evasive experience. Or remember the wisdom books when they talk about all of the history of the Jews. Reviewing how God acted towards his people. All those earlier demonstrations. And then interprets it in a new light. Or remember the prophets talking about... Remember Isaiah talking about the first exodus? Remember? And then he says there's going to be another exodus, like the first one, but different. So that's a reinterpretation in terms of the history of that time, you see. And then the same thing happened very late. It explodes in the New Testament. When all of the Old Testament is re-read in the light of Christ. In the light of the information.