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Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol IX:
Origen's Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew.: Chapter X

Early Church Fathers  Index     

10.  The Traditions of the Elders in Collision with Divine Law.

But let us return to the subject before us, in which the Saviour abridged and expounded two commandments from the law, the one from the decalogue from Exodus, and the other from Leviticus, or the other from some one of the books of the Pentateuch.  Then since we have explained in what way they made void the word of God which said, “Honour thy father and thy mother,” by saying, “Thou shalt not honour thy father or thy mother,” whosoever shall say to his father or mother, “It is a gift that wherewith thou mightest have been profited by me,” some one may inquire whether the words, “He that speaketh evil of father or mother, let him die the death,” 5422 are not extraneous.  For, granted that he does not honour his father and mother, who consecrates to what is called Corban that which would have been given in honour of father and mother, in what way, therefore, does the tradition of the Pharisees make void the word which said, “He that speaketh evil of father or mother, let him die the death?”  But, perhaps, when any one said to his father or his mother, “It is a gift, that wherewith thou mightest have been profited by me,” 5423 he, as it were, casts abuse on his father or mother as if he were calling his parents sacrilegious, in taking that which was consecrated to Corban from him who had consecrated it to Corban.  The Jews then punish their sons 5424 according to the law, as speaking evil of father or mother, when they say to their father or mother, “It is a gift, that wherewith thou mightest have been profited by me,” but you by one of your traditions make void two commandments of God.  And then you are not ashamed to accuse My disciples who transgress no commandment; for they walk “in all His commandments and ordinances blamelessly,” 5425 but transgress a tradition of the elders, so as not to transgress a commandment of God.  And if you had held this aim before you, you would have kept the commandment about the honour due to father and mother, and that which said, “He that speaketh evil of father and mother, let him die the death;” but the tradition of the elders which is opposed to these commandments you would not have kept.



Matt. xv. 4.


Matt. xv. 5.


Or, you, if we read ὑμᾶς.


Cf. Luke i. 6.

Next: Chapter XI

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