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

Early Church Fathers  Index     

20.  Why Jesus Had to Go to Jerusalem.

Then began He to show;” 5685 and probably afterwards when they were able to receive it He shewed more clearly, no longer beginning to show as to those who were learning the introduction, but already also advancing in the showing; and if it is reasonable to conceive that Jesus altogether completed what He began, then, some time, He altogether completed that which He began to show to His disciples about the necessity of His suffering the things which p. 462 are written.  For, when any one apprehends from the Word the perfect knowledge of these things, then it must be said that, from a rational exhibition (the mind seeing the things which are shown,) the exhibition becomes complete for him who has the will and the power to contemplate these things, and does contemplate them.  But since “it cannot be that a prophet perish out of Jerusalem,” 5686 —a perishing which corresponds to the words, “He that loseth his life for My sake shall find it,” 5687 —on this account it was necessary for Him to go to Jerusalem, that having suffered many things in that Jerusalem, He might make “the first-fruits” 5688 of the resurrection from the dead in the Jerusalem above, doing away with and breaking up the city upon the earth with all the worship which was maintained in it.  For so long as Christ “had not been raised from the dead, the first-fruits of them that are asleep,” 5689 and those who become conformed to His death and resurrection had not yet been raised along with Him, the city of God was sought for below, and the temple, and the purifications, and the rest; but when this took place, no longer were the things below sought for, but the things above; and, in order that these might be set up, it was necessary that He should go unto the Jerusalem below, and there suffer many things from the elders in it, and the chief priests and scribes of the people, in order that He might be glorified by the heavenly elders who could receive his bounties, and by diviner high-priests who are ordained under the one High-Priest, and that He might be glorified by the scribes of the people who are occupied with letters “not written with ink” 5690 but made clear by the Spirit of the living God, and might be killed in the Jerusalem below, and having risen from the dead might reign in Mount Zion, and the city of the living God—the heavenly Jerusalem. 5691   But on the third day He rose from the dead, 5692 in order that having delivered them from the wicked one, and his son, 5693 in whom was falsehood and unrighteousness and war and everything opposed to that which Christ is, and also from the profane spirit who transforms himself into the Holy Spirit, He might gain for those who had been delivered the right to be baptized in spirit and soul and body, into the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, which represent the three days eternally present at the same time to those who by means of them are sons of light.



Matt. xvi. 21.


Luke xiii. 33.


Matt. x. 39.


1 Cor. xv. 20.


1 Cor. xv. 20.


2 Cor. iii. 3.


Heb. xii. 22.


Or (putting a comma after Jerusalem), but that on the third day He might rise.


See xi. c. 6, p. 434, note 2.

Next: Chapter XXI

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