1 "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber; 2 but he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the gatekeeper opens; the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. 5 A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.
1364 After our Lord showed that his teaching had power to enlighten, he here shows that he has power to give life. First, he shows this by word; secondly, by a miracle (chap 11). Concerning the first he does three things. First, he shows that he has life-giving power; secondly, his manner of giving life (v 11); thirdly, he explains his power to give life (v 19). The first part is divided into three parts. First, our Lord relates a parable; secondly, the Evangelist mentions the necessity for explaining it (v 6); thirdly, our Lord explains the parable (v 7).
He relates the parable to them, saying, Truly, truly, I say to you. It concerns two things, a thief and the shepherd of the sheep. Thus he does three things. First, he mentions the mark of a thief and robber; secondly, a characteristic of the shepherd (v 2); thirdly, the effect each of these has (v 4).
1365 To understand this parable we must consider who the sheep are, namely, that they are the faithful of Christ and those in the grace of God: "We are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand" (Ps 95:7); "You, the people, are the sheep of my pasture" [Ez 34:31]. And so the sheepfold is the multitude of the faithful: "I will surely gather all of you, O Jacob, I will gather the remnant of Israel; I will set them together like sheep in a fold" (Mic 2:12). The door of the sheepfold is explained in different ways by Chrysostom and by Augustine.
1366 According to Chrysostom, Christ calls Sacred Scripture the door, according to "Pray for us also that God may open to us a door for the word" (Col 4:3). Sacred Scripture is called a door, as Chrysostom says, first of all, because through it we have access to the knowledge of God: "which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy scriptures" (Rom 1:2). Secondly, for just as the door guards the sheep, so Sacred Scripture preserves the life of the faithful: "You search the scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life" (5:39). Thirdly, because the door keeps the wolf from entering; so Sacred Scripture keeps heretics from harming the faithful: "Every scripture inspired by God is also profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction" (2 Tim 3:16). So, the one who does not enter by the door is the one who does not enter by Sacred Scripture to teach the people. Our Lord says of such: "In vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the precepts of men" (Matt 15:9); "You have made void the word of God" (Matt 15:6). This, then, is the mark of the thief: he does not enter by the door, but in some other way. 
He adds that the thief climbs, and this is appropriate to this parable because thieves climb the walls, instead of entering by the door, and drop into the sheepfold. It also corresponds to the truth, because the reason why some teach what conflicts with Sacred Scripture is due to pride: "If any one teaches otherwise and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching which accords with godliness, he is puffed up with conceit, he knows nothing" (1 Tim 6:3). Referring to this he says that such a person climbs, that is, through pride. The one who climbs in by another way, that man is a thief, because he snatches what is not his, and a robber, because he kills what he snatches: "If thieves came to you, if plunderers by night - how you have been destroyed" (Obad v 5).
According to this explanation, the relation with what preceded is made in this way: Since our Lord had said, "If you were blind, you would have no guilt," the Jews might have answered: "We do not believe you, but this is not due to our blindness. It is because of your own error that we have turned away from you." And so our Lord rejects this, and wishes to show that he is not in error because he enters by the door, by Sacred Scripture, that is, he teaches what is contained in Sacred Scripture.
1367 Against this interpretation is the fact that when our Lord explains this further on, he says, I am the door. So it seems that we should understand the door to be Christ. In answer to this, Chrysostom says that in this parable our Lord refers to himself both as the door and the shepherd; but this is from different points of view, because a door and a shepherd are different. Now aside from Christ nothing is more fittingly called a door than Sacred Scripture, for the reasons given above. Therefore, Sacred Scripture is fittingly called a door.
1368 According to Augustine, the door is Christ, because one enters through him: "After this I looked, and lo, in heaven an open door!" (Rev 4:1). Therefore, any one who enters the sheepfold should enter by the door, that is, by Christ, and not by another way.
Note that both the sheep and their shepherd enter into the sheepfold: the sheep in order to be secure there, and the shepherd in order to guard the sheep. And so, if you wish to enter as a sheep to be kept safe there, or as a shepherd to keep the people safe, you must enter the sheepfold through Christ. You must not enter by any other way, as did the philosophers who treated the principle virtues, and the Pharisees who established the ceremonial traditions. These are neither sheep nor shepherds because, as our Lord says, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, i.e., does not enter by Christ, but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber, because he destroys both himself and others. For Christ and no one else is the door into the sheepfold, that is, the multitude of the faithful: "We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Rom 5:1); "there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
According to this exposition, the connection with what went before is made in this way: Because they said that they could see without Christ - "now that you say, 'We see'" - our Lord shows that this is not true, because they do not enter by the door. Thus he says, Truly, truly, I say to you…
It should be noted that just as one who does not enter by the door as a sheep cannot be kept safe, so one who enters as a shepherd cannot guard the sheep unless he enters by the door, namely, by Christ. This is the door through which the true shepherds have entered: "And one does not take the honor upon himself, but he is called by God, just as Aaron was" (Heb 5:4). Evil shepherds do not enter by the door, but by ambition and secular power and simony; and these are thieves and robbers: "They set up princes, but without my knowledge," that is, without my approval (Hos 8:5). Further, he says such a person climbs in by another way, because the door, namely, Christ, since it is small through humility - "Learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart" (Matt 11:29) - can be entered only by those who imitate the humility of Christ. Therefore, those who do not enter by the door but climb in by another way are the proud. They do not imitate him who, although he was God, became man; and they do not recognize his lowering of himself.
1369 Now he considers the shepherd. First, he mentions the mark of the shepherd; secondly, he shows through signs that he is the shepherd (v 3).
1370 The mark of the true shepherd is to enter by the door, that is, by the testimony of Sacred Scripture. Thus Christ said: "Everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms must be fulfilled" (Lk 24:44). He is called a shepherd: "I am not troubled when I follow you as my shepherd" [Jer 17:16]; "He rebukes and trains and teaches them, and turns them back, as a shepherd his flock" (Sir 18:13).
But if the door is Christ, as Augustine explains it, then in entering by the door, he enters by himself. And this is special to Christ: for no one can enter the door, i.e., to beatitude, except by the truth, because beatitude is nothing else than joy in the truth. But Christ, as God, is the truth; therefore, as man, he enters by himself, that is, by the truth, which he is as God. We, however, are not the truth, but children of the light, by participating in the true and uncreated light. Consequently, we have to enter by the truth which is Christ: "Sanctify them in the truth" (17:17); "If any one enters by me, he will be saved" (10:9). If one wishes to enter even as a shepherd, he must enter by the door, that is, Christ, according to his truth, will and consent. Thus we read in Ezekiel (24:23): "And I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them." This is like saying: They must be given by me, and not by others or themselves.
1371 Now he mentions the signs of a good shepherd; and there are three. The first relates to the gatekeeper, and is that the good shepherd is let in by him. As to this he says, to him the gatekeeper opens. This gatekeeper, according to Chrysostom, is the one who opens the way to a knowledge of Sacred Scripture. The first one to do this was Moses, who first received and established Sacred Scripture. And Moses opened to Christ, because as was said above: "If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote of me" (5:46).
Or, according to Augustine, the gatekeeper is Christ himself, because he brings us himself. He says, "He opens himself who reveals himself, and we enter only by his grace." "For by grace you have been saved" (Eph 2:8). It does not matter if Christ, who is the door, is also the gatekeeper; for certain things are compatible in spiritual matters that cannot occur in physical reality. Now there seems to be a greater difference between a shepherd and a door than between a door and a gatekeeper. Therefore, since Christ can be called both a shepherd and a door, as was said, much more so can he be called a door and a gatekeeper. But if you prefer that someone other than Moses or Christ be the gatekeeper, then consider the Holy Spirit the gatekeeper, as Augustine says. For it is the office of a gatekeeper to open the door, and it says below of the Holy Spirit that "He will guide you into all the truth" (16:13). And Christ is the door insofar as he is the Truth.
1372 The second sign relates to the sheep, and it is that they obey the shepherd. This is what he says, the sheep hear his voice. This is reasonable if the resemblance to a natural shepherd is considered: because just as sheep recognize the voice of their shepherd due to familiar experience, so righteous believers hear the voice of Christ: "O that today you would harken to his voice" (Ps 95:7).
1373 But what of the fact that many who are Christ's sheep did not hear his voice, as Paul; or that some who were not his sheep did here it, as Judas? One might reply that Judas was Christ's sheep for that time as to his present righteousness. And Paul, when he did not hear the voice of Christ, was not a sheep but a wolf; but when the voice of Christ came it changed the wolf into a sheep. This reply could be accepted if it were not contrary to a statement in Ezekiel (34:4): "The crippled you have not bound up, the strayed you have not brought back." It seems from this that even when they were crippled and strayed they were sheep. Therefore, one must say that here our Lord is speaking of his sheep not only according to their present righteousness but even according to their eternal predestination. For there is a certain voice of Christ that only the predestined can hear, i.e., "He who endures to the end" (Matt 10:22).
Again, he says, the sheep hear his voice, because they might offer as an excuse for their unbelief the fact that not only they, but none of the leaders believed in him. So he says in answer to this, the sheep hear his voice, as if saying: They do not believe because they are not my sheep.
1374 The third sign is taken from the actions of the shepherd. Here he mentions four actions of a good shepherd: the first being that he knows his sheep. He says, he calls his own sheep by name, which shows his knowledge of and familiarity with his sheep, for we call by name those whom we know familiarly: "I know you by name" (Ex 33:17). This is part of the office of a shepherd according to: "Be diligent to know the countenance of your flock" [Prv 27:23]. This applies to Christ according to his present knowledge, but even more so considering eternal predestination, by which he knew them by name from eternity: "He determined the number of the stars, he gives to all of them their names" (Ps 147:4); "The Lord knows those who are his" (2 Tim 2:19).
The second action of a good shepherd is that he leads them out, i.e., he separates them from the society of those who are evil: "He brought them out of darkness and gloom" (Ps 107:14).
The third is that having separated them from evil and having brought them into the sheepfold, he has brought out all his own, from the sheepfold. He does this, first, for the salvation of others: "I will send survivors to the nations" (Is 66:19); "Behold, I send you as sheep in the midst of wolves" (Matt 10:16), so that they can make sheep out of the wolves. Secondly, they are to show the direction and way to eternal life: "To guide our feet into the way of peace" (Lk 1:79).
Fourthly, the good shepherd goes before his sleep by the example of a good life; so he says, he goes before them, although this is not what the literal shepherd does, for he follows, as in "I took him from following the ewes" [Ps 78:70]. But the good shepherd goes before them by example, "not as domineering over those in your charge but being examples to the flock" (1 Pet 5:3). And Christ does go before them: for he was the first to die for the teaching of the truth - "If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me" (Matt 16:24); and he went before all into everlasting life - "He who opens the breach will go up before them" (Mic 2:13).
1375 Now he considers the effect that both the thief and the shepherd have upon the sheep. First, he mentions the effect of the good shepherd; secondly, the effect of the wolf and the thief (v5).
1376 He says, first, that the sheep follow him who goes before them. This is easy to see, because subjects follow in the steps of their leaders, as is stated: "Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps" (1 Pet 2:21); "My foot has held fast to his steps" (Job 23:11). The sheep follow for they know his voice, i.e., they know it and take delight in it: "Let me hear your voice, for your voice is sweet" (Song 2:14).
1377 The effect that the thief has is that the sheep do not follow him for very long, but only for a time; so he says, a stranger they will not follow, i.e., they do not follow a false and heretical teacher: "The children who are strangers have lied to me" [Ps 17:46]. Thus Paul did not follow false teachers for long. But they will flee from him, because "Bad company ruins good morals" (1 Cor 15:33). They flee for they do not know, that is, do not approve of, the voice of strangers, meaning their teaching, which spreads stealthily like a cancer.
6 This figure Jesus used with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them. 7 So Jesus again said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who came before me are thieves and robbers; but the sheep did not heed them. 9 I am the door; if any one enters by me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly."
1378 Here the Evangelist tells why it was necessary to explain the above similitude; and this necessity was caused by the failure of his listeners to understand. First, he mentions the reason why they failed to understand; secondly, he says they failed to understand.
1379 The cause of their failure to understand was that Christ was speaking in figures. The Evangelist says, This figure [proverbium] Jesus used with them. A figure [proverbium], properly speaking, is the use of one word in place of another, when it is intended that one word be understood from its likeness to the other. This is also called a parable [parabola]. Our Lord spoke in figures, first of all, because of the wicked, in order to conceal from them the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven: "To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but for others they are in parables" (Lk 8:10). Secondly, because of the good, so that his figures might stir them up to make further inquiry. So, after our Lord spoke his figures or parables to the crowds, his disciples questioned him in private, as mentioned in Matthew (13:10) and Mark (4:10). This is the reason why Augustine says: "Our Lord feeds" the believing crowds "with clear words, and stirs up" his disciples "with things that are obscure."
1380 The Evangelist discloses their failure to understand when he says, but they did not understand what he was saying to them. The ignorance which resulted from Christ's figures was both useful and harmful. For the good and the just [who tried to understand them] it was useful for giving praise to God; for although they did not understand, they believed and praised the Lord and his wisdom which was so far above them: "It is the glory of God to conceal the word" [Prv 25:2]. But for the wicked, it was a source of harm, because, failing to understand, they blasphemed: "But these men revile whatever they do not understand" (Jude 10). As Augustine observes, when both the good and the wicked hear the words of the Gospel, and neither of them understands, the good person says that what was said was true and good, but that he does not understand it. Such a person is knocking and deserves to have the door opened, provided he perseveres. But the wicked person says that what was said had no meaning or was evil.
1381 Now our Lord explains the similitude. If the above similitude is examined correctly, it contains two principal clauses, followed by others. The first is: "He who does not enter the sheepfold by the door…is a thief and a robber." The second is: "He who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep." Accordingly, this section is divided into two parts. First, he explains the first clause; then the second clause (v 11). Concerning the first he does two things: first, he explains the first clause; secondly, he proves it (v 7). The first clause mentions a door, a thief and a robber; so first he explains the door, then the thief and then the robber (v 8).
1382 Concerning the first he says, So Jesus again said to them, to gain their attention and have them understand the similitude: "The man of understanding may acquire skill to understand a proverb and a figure" (Prv 1:6). Jesus said, Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door. Now the purpose of a door is to conduct one into the inner rooms of a house; and this is fitting to Christ, for one must enter into the secrets of God through him: "This is the gate of the Lord," that is, Christ, "the righteous shall enter through it" (Ps 118:20). He says, I am the door of the sheep, because through Christ not only the shepherds are brought into the present Church or enter into everlasting happiness, but the sheep also. Thus he says below: "My sheep hear my voice…and they follow me; and I give them eternal life" (10:27).
1383 Then when he says, All who came before me are thieves and robbers, he explains what he had said about thieves and robbers. First, he shows who the thieves and robbers are; secondly, their sign.
1384 In regard to the first, we should avoid the error of the Manicheans, who rejected the Old Testament on the ground that it says here that all who came before me are thieves. They maintained that the fathers of the Old Testament, who came before Christ, were evil and have been damned.
The falsity of this view is clear from three things. First, from what this parable says. For the statement, all who came before me, is intended as a description of the previous statement, which mentioned those who do not enter by the door. Therefore, all who came before me, but not through me, that is, not entering by the door, are thieves and robbers. It is clear that all the patriarchs and prophets, whom the Christ-to-come had sent forerunners, entered by the door, i.e., Christ. For although he took flesh and became man in time, he was the Word of God from all eternity: "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and for ever" (Heb 13:8). Indeed, the prophets were sent by the Word and Wisdom of God: "In every generation she," the Wisdom of God, "passes into holy souls and makes them friends of God, and prophets" (Wis 7:27). Accordingly, we expressly read in the prophets that the word of God came to this or that prophet, who prophesied by participating in the Word of God.
Secondly, the falsity of the teaching of the Manicheans is seen when our Lord says, all who came before me, implying that they were thrusting themselves forward on their own authority and were not sent by God: "I did not send the prophets, yet they ran" (Jer 23:21). Indeed, such prophets have not come from the Word of God: "Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing" (Ez 13:3). But the fathers of the Old Testament were not of this type, as has been said.
Thirdly, this falsity is seen from the fact that he shows what effect their words had, for we read, but the sheep did not heed them. Therefore, those whom the sheep did heed were not thieves and robbers. Now the people of Israel did listen to the prophets, and those who did not heed them were rebuked in Sacred Scripture: "Which of the prophets did not your fathers persecute?" (Acts 7:52); "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, killing the prophets and stoning those who are sent to you!" (Matt 23:37).
1385 Having excluded this error, it must be said that all who came before me, that is, independently of me, without divine inspiration and authority, and not with the intention of seeking the glory of God but acquiring their own, are thieves, insofar as they take for themselves what is not theirs, that is, the authority to teach - "Your princes are rebels and companions of thieves" (Is 1:23) - and robbers, because they kill with their corrupt doctrine - "You make it a den of robbers" (Matt 21:13); "As robbers lie in wait for a man…they murder on the way" (Hos 6:9). But the sheep, that is, the predestined, did not heed them, the thieves and robbers, otherwise they would not have been Christ's sheep, because, as was said before, "A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him." Furthermore, this is commanded in Deuteronomy: "You shall not listen to the words of that prophet or to that dreamer of dreams" (13:3).
1386 I am the door. Here he clarifies his explanation: first, of the door; secondly, of the thief (v 10). Concerning the first, he does two things: first, he repeats what he intends to explain; and secondly, he gives the explanation (v 9).
1387 He repeats what he had already said, namely, I am the door: "If she is a door, we will enclose her with boards of cedar" (Song 8:9), that is, let us grant her an incorruptible power.
1388 He explains this when he says, if any one enters by me, he will be saved. First, he shows that the purpose of a door, which is to keep the sheep safe, applies to himself; secondly, he mentions the manner in which they are kept safe (v 9b).
1389 The door safeguards the sheep by keeping those within from going out, and by protecting them from strangers who want to come in. And this applies to Christ, for he is our safeguard and protection. And this is what he says: if any one, not with insincerity, enters, into the fellowship of the Church and of the faithful, by me, the door, he will be saved, i.e., if he perseveres: "For there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12); "We shall be saved by his life" (Rom 5:10).
1390 The way the sheep are safeguarded is set forth when he says that he will go in and out and find pasture. This statement can be explained in four ways. First of all, according to Chrysostom, it simply affirms the security and freedom of those who cling to Christ. For one who enters some other way than by the door does not have free entry and exit; but one who does enter by the door has free exit, because he can leave freely. Therefore, when he says, he will go in and out, the meaning is that the Apostles adhering to Christ enter with security by living with the faithful, who are within the Church, and with unbelievers who are outside, when they became masters of the whole world and no one wished to cast them out: "Let the Lord, the God of the spirits of all flesh appoint a man over the congregation, who shall go out before them and come in before them…that the congregation of the Lord may not be as sheep which have no shepherd" (Num 27:16). And find pasture, find delight in converting others, and find joy even when persecuted by unbelievers for the name of Christ: "Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name," as we read in Acts (5:41).
1391 Secondly, this can be explained as Augustine does in his Commentary on John. Two things are incumbent upon anyone who acts well, namely to be well-ordered to the things that are within him, and to those that are without. Within a person is the spirit, and without is the body: "Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed every day" (2 Cor 4:16). Therefore, a person who clings to Christ will go in through contemplation, to protect his conscience - "When I enter my house," i.e., my conscience, "I shall find rest with her," i.e., with wisdom (Wis 8:16) - and out, namely, by good actions, to tame the body - "Man goes forth to his work and to his labor until the evening" (Ps 104:23) - and find pasture, in a clean and sincere conscience - "I will appear before your sight: I will be satisfied when your glory appears" [Ps 16:15]. Again, by his actions he will find pasture, i.e., fruit - "He shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him" (Ps 126:6).
1392 The third explanation is also Augustine's as well as that given by Gregory in his Commentary on Ezekiel. The meaning, then, is this. Such a one will go in, i.e., into the Church, by believing - "I shall go over into the place of the wonderful tabernacle" [Ps 41:5], and this is to enter the Church Militant; and out, from the Church Militant into the Church Triumphant - "Go forth, O daughters of Zion, and behold King Solomon, with the crown with which his mother crowned him on the day of the wedding" (Song 3:11); and find pasture, that is, the pastures of doctrine and grace in the Church Militant - "He makes me lie down in green pastures"; and the pastures of glory in the Church Triumphant: "I will feed them with good pasture" (Ez 34:14).
1393 Fourthly, there is an explanation found in the work, On the Spirit and the Soul, which has been incorrectly attributed to Augustine. Here it is said that such a one will go in, that is, the saints will go in to contemplate the divinity of Christ, and out, to consider his humanity; and they will find pasture in both, because in both they will taste the joys of contemplation: "Your eyes shall see the king in his beauty" (Is 33:17).
1394 Now he considers the thief. First, he mentions the mark of the thief; secondly, he says that he himself has the opposite characteristic, I came that they may have life.
1395 He says that those who do not enter by the door, i.e., those who have come independently of me, are thieves and robbers; and they are evil. For in the first place, the thief comes only to steal, i.e., to usurp what is not his; these are the agitators and heretics, who fasten on to those who belong to Christ: "He lies in ambush to catch the ones who are poor" [Ps 9:4]. Secondly, the thief comes to kill, and he kills by bringing in perverse teachings and evil practices: "As robbers lie in wait for a man…they murder on the way" (Hos 6:9). Thirdly, the thief comes to destroy, by casting into everlasting destruction: "My people have been lost sheep" (Jer 50:6). But these traits are not in me.
1396 I came that they may have life. This is like saying: The above have not come in by me, otherwise they would do as I do. But they do the contrary, because they steal, and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, that is, the life of righteousness, by entering into the Church Militant through faith: "My righteous one shall live by faith" (Heb 10:38). We read of this life in 1 John (3:14) that "We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren." And have it abundantly, that is, have eternal life, when they leave the body. We read below of this life: "This is eternal life, that they know thee the only true God" (17:3).
11 "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hireling and not a shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hireling and cares nothing for the sheep."
1397 Here he explains the second clause of the parable, "he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep" (10:2). First, he gives the explanation; secondly, he makes it clear (v 14). First, he explains that he is the good shepherd; secondly, he states the office of a good shepherd (v 11b); thirdly, he shows that the opposite is found in an evil shepherd (v 12).
1398 He says, in regard to the first, I am the good shepherd. That Christ is a shepherd is clear enough, for as a flock is led and fed by the shepherd, so the faithful are nourished by Christ with spiritual food, and even with his own body and blood: "For you were straying like sheep, but now have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls" (1 Pet 2:25); "He will feed his flock like a shepherd" (Is 40:11). To distinguish himself from an evil shepherd and thief, he adds, good. Good, I say, because he fulfills the office of a shepherd, just as a soldier is called good who fulfills the office of a soldier. But since Christ had said above that the shepherd enters by the door, and here he says that he is the shepherd, and before he said he was the door (v 9), then he must enter through himself. And he does enter through himself, because he manifests himself and through himself knows the Father. We, however, enter through him, because it is by him that we are led to happiness.
Note that only he is the door, because no one else is the true light, but only shares in the light: "He," John the Baptizer, "was not the light, but came to bear witness to the light" (1:8). But we read of Christ that "He was the true light, which enlightens every man" [1:9]. Therefore, no one else refers to himself as a door; Christ reserved this for himself. But being a shepherd he did share with others, and conferred it on his members: for Peter was a shepherd, and the other apostles were shepherds, as well as all good bishops: "I will give you shepherds after my own heart" (Jer 3:15). Now, although the Church's rulers, who are her children, are all shepherds, as Augustine says, yet he expressly says, I am the good shepherd, in order to emphasize the virtue of charity. For no one is a good shepherd unless he has become one with Christ by love, and has become a member of the true shepherd.
1399 The office of a good shepherd is charity; thus he says, the good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. It should be noted that there is a difference between a good shepherd and an evil one: the good shepherd is intent upon the welfare of the flock, but the evil one is intent upon his own. This difference is touched upon by Ezekiel (34:2): "Ho, shepherds of Israel who have been feeding yourselves! Should not shepherds feed the sheep?" Therefore, one who uses the flock only to feed himself is not a good shepherd. From this it follows that an evil shepherd, even over animals, is not willing to sustain any loss for the flock, since he does not intend the welfare of the flock, but his own. But a good shepherd, even over animals, endures many things for the flock whose welfare he has at heart. Thus Jacob said in Genesis (31:40): "By day the heat consumed me, and the cold by night." However, when dealing with mere animals it is not necessary that a good shepherd expose himself to death for the safety of the flock. But because the spiritual safety of the human flock outweighs the bodily life of the shepherd, when danger threatens the safety of the flock the spiritual shepherd ought to suffer the loss of his bodily life for the safety of the flock. This is what our Lord says, the good shepherd lays down his life, i.e., his bodily life, for the sheep, the sheep who are his by authority and charity. Both are required, for they must belong to him and he must love them; the first without the second is not enough. Furthermore, Christ has given us an example of this teaching: "He laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren" (1 Jn 3:16).
1400 Now he considers the evil shepherd, showing that he possesses characteristics contrary to those of the good shepherd. First, he mentions the marks of an evil shepherd; secondly, he shows how these marks follow one another (v 12). Concerning the first he does two things: first, he gives the marks of an evil shepherd; secondly, he mentions the danger which threatens the flock because of an evil shepherd: the wolf snatches them and scatters them.
1401 Note that from what has been said about the good and evil shepherd, there are three differences in their traits: first in their intentions; secondly, in their solicitude; and thirdly in their affections.
1402 First, they differ in their intentions, and this is implied by their very names. For the first is called a good shepherd, and this implies that he intends to feed the flock: "Should not shepherds feed the sheep?" (Ez 34:2). But the other one, the evil shepherd, is called a hireling, as though he were intent on his wages. Thus they differ in this: the good shepherd looks to the benefit of the flock, while the hireling seeks mainly his own advantage. This is also the difference between a king and a tyrant, as the Philosopher says, because when a king rules he intends to benefit his subjects, while a tyrant seeks his own interest. So a tyrant is like a hireling: "If it seems right to you, give me my wages" (Zech 11:12).
1403 But may not even good shepherds seek a wage? It seems so, for "Reward those who wait for thee" (Si 36:16); "The Lord God comes…his reward is with him" (Is 40:10); "How many of my father's hired servants have bread enough and to spare!" (Lk 15:17).
I answer that wages can be taken in a general sense and in a proper sense. In a general sense, a wage is anything conferred by reason of merits. And because everlasting life, which is God - "This is true God and eternal life" (1 Jn 5:20) - is conferred by reason of merits, everlasting life is said to be a wage. And this is a wage that every good shepherd can and should seek. In the strict sense, however, a wage is different from an inheritance, and a wage is not sought after by a true child, who is entitled to the inheritance. A wage is sought after by servants and hirelings. Thus, since everlasting life is our inheritance, any one who works with an eye towards it is working as a child; but any one who aims at something different (for example, one who longs for worldly gain, or takes delight in the honor of being a prelate) is a hireling.
1404 Secondly, they differ in their solicitude. We read of the good shepherd that the sheep are his own, not only as a trust, but also by love and solicitude: "I hold you in my heart" (Phil 1:7). On the other hand, it is said of the hireling, whose own the sheep are not, i.e., the hireling has no care for them: "My shepherds have not searched for my sheep, but the shepherds have fed themselves" (Ez 34:8).
1405 Thirdly, they differ in their affections. For the good shepherd, who loves his flock, lays down his life for it, i.e., he exposes himself to dangers that affect his bodily life. But the evil shepherd, because he has no love for the flock, flees when he sees the wolf. Thus he says, he sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees. Here, the wolf is understood in three ways. First, for the devil as tempting: "What fellowship has a wolf with a lamb? No more has a sinner with a godly man" (Si 13:17). Secondly, it stands for the heretic who destroys: "beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves" (Matt 7:15); "I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock" (Acts 20:29). Thirdly, it stands for the raging tyrant: "Her princes in the midst of her are like wolves" (Ez 22:27). Therefore, the good shepherd must guard the flock against these three wolves, so that when he sees the wolf, i.e., the devil tempting, the deceiving heretic and the raging tyrant, he can oppose him. Against those who do not, we read, "You have not gone up into the breaches, or built up a wall for the house of Israel" (Ez 13:5).
Accordingly, we read of the evil shepherd that he leaves the sheep and flees: "Woe to my worthless shepherd, who deserts the flock" (Zech 11:17). As if to say: You are not a shepherd, but only appear to be one: "Even her hired soldiers in her midst are like fatted calves; yea, they have turned and fled together, they do not stand" (Jer 46:21).
1406 But in Matthew (10:23) we find the contrary: "When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next." Therefore, it seems to be lawful for a shepherd to flee. I reply that there are two answers to this. One is that given by Augustine in his Commentary on John. There are two kinds of flight: that of the soul and that of the body. When we read here, he leaves the sheep and flees, we can understand it to mean the flight of the soul: for when an evil shepherd fears personal danger from a wolf, he does not dare to resist his injustices but flees, not by running away, but by withdrawing his encouragement, refusing to care for his flock.
This should be the explanation when considering the first kind of wolf [the tempting devil], because it is not necessary to physically flee from the devil.
But since sometimes a shepherd does flee physically because of certain wolves, such as powerful heretics and tyrants, another answer must be given, as found in Augustine's Letter to Honoratus. As he says, it seems lawful to flee, even physically, from the wolves, not only because of the authority of our Lord, as cited above, but because of the example of certain saints, as Athanasius and others, who fled from their persecutors. For what is censured is not the flight itself, but the neglect of the flock; so, if the shepherd could flee without abandoning his flock, it would not be blameworthy. Sometimes it is the prelate himself who is the one sought, and at other times, it is the entire flock. It is obvious that if the prelate alone is sought, others can be assigned to guard the flock in his territory, and console and govern the flock in his place. So if he flees under these circumstances, he is not said to leave the sheep. In this way, it is lawful to flee in certain cases. But if the whole flock is sought, then either all the shepherds should be with the people, or some should remain while the others leave. But if all desert the flock, then these words apply, he sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees.
1407 Here he mentions the twofold danger that threatens. One is the ravaging of the sheep; so he says, and the wolf snatches them, i.e., takes for himself what belongs to another, for the faithful are Christ's sheep. Therefore, leaders of sects and wolves snatch the sheep when they entice Christ's faithful to their own teachings: "My sheep have become food for all the wild beasts" (Ez 34:8). The other danger is that the sheep be scattered; so he says, and scatters them, insofar as some are led astray and others persevere: "My sheep were scattered over all the face of the earth, with none to search or seek for them" (Ez 34:6).
1408 Now he shows how the above-mentioned marks are related, for the third follows from the first two. Since the evil shepherd seeks his own advantage and has no love or solicitude for the flock, it follows that he is not willing to endure any inconvenience for them. Thus he says of the hireling, he flees, for this reason, because he is a hireling, that is, he seeks his own advantage, which is the first mark; and cares nothing for the sheep, i.e., he does not love them, and is not solicitous for them, which is the second mark. So we read in Job (39:16) about the evil shepherd: "She deals cruelly with her young, as if they were not hers." The opposite is true of the good shepherd, for he seeks the welfare of his flock, and not his own: "Not that I seek the gift; but I seek the fruit which increases to your credit" (Phil 4:17). Furthermore, he is concerned for his sheep, that is, he loves them and is solicitous for them: "I hold you in my heart" (Phil 1:7).
14 "I am the good shepherd; I know my own and my own know me, 15 as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 And I have other sheep, that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will heed my voice. So there shall be one flock, one shepherd. 17 For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again; this charge I have received from my Father."
1409 Here our Lord proves his explanation. First, he restates what he intends to prove; secondly, he gives the proof, I know my own…(v 14b); and thirdly, he amplifies on it (v 17).
1410 He says, I am the good shepherd, which has been explained above: "As a shepherd seeks out his flock…so will I seek out my sheep" (Ez 34:12).
1411 Then he says, I know my own, he proves what he says. Now he says two things about himself, that he is a shepherd, and that he is good. First, he proves that he is a shepherd; secondly, that he is a good shepherd.
1412 He proves he is a shepherd by the two signs of a shepherd already mentioned. The first of these is that he calls his own sheep by name. Concerning this he says, I know my own: "The Lord knows those who are his" (2 Tim 2:19). I know, I say, not just with mere knowledge only, but with a knowledge joined with approval and love: "To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins" (Rev 1:5). The second sign is that the sheep hear his voice and know him. And concerning this he says, and my own know me. My own, I say, by predestination, by vocation and by grace. This is like saying: They love me and obey me. Thus, we must understand that they have a loving knowledge about which we read: "They shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest" (Jer 31:34).
1413 He shows that he is a good shepherd by mentioning that he has the office of a good shepherd, which is to lay down his life for his sheep. First, he shows the reason for this; secondly, he gives a sign of it; and thirdly, he shows the fruit of his sign.
1414 The reason for this sign, that is, of his laying down his life for his sheep, is the knowledge he has of the Father. Concerning this he says, as the Father knows me and I know the Father, and I lay down my life for the sheep. This statement can be explained in two ways. In one way, so that "as" indicates just a similarity in knowledge; and taken this way, such knowledge can be given to a creature: "I shall know even as I am known" [1 Cor 13:12], i.e., as I am known without obscurity, so I will know without obscurity. In another way, the "as" implies an equality of knowledge. And then to know the Father as he is known by him is proper to the Son alone, because only the Son knows the Father comprehensively, just as the Father knows the Son comprehensively: "No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son" (Matt 11:27), that is, with a comprehensive knowledge. Our Lord says this because in knowing the Father, he knows the will of the Father that the Son should die for the salvation of the human race. He is also saying here that he is the mediator between God and man. For as he is related to the sheep as known by them and as knowing them, so also he is related to the Father, because as the Father knows him, so he knows the Father.
1415 Then when he says, and I lay down my life for the sheep, he gives the sign: "By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us" (1 Jn 3:16). But since there are three substances in Christ, namely the substance of the Word, of the soul, and of the body, one might ask who is speaking when he says, I lay down my life ["my life" can also be literally translated as "my soul"]. If you say that the Word is speaking here, it is not true, because the Word never laid down his soul, since He was never separated from his soul. If you say that the soul is speaking, this too seems impossible, because nothing is separated from itself. And if you say that Christ says this referring to his body, it does not seem to be so, because his body does not have the power to take up its soul. Therefore, one must say that when Christ died, his soul was separated from his flesh, otherwise Christ would not have been truly dead. But in Christ, his divinity was never separated from his soul or his flesh; but was united to his soul, as it descended to the lower world, and to his body, as it lay in the tomb. And therefore, his body, by the power of his divinity, laid down his soul [or life] by the power of his divinity, and took it up again.
1416 Then when he says, and I have other sheep, he sets down the fruit of Christ's death, which is the salvation not only of the Jews but of the Gentiles as well. For since he had said, "I lay down my life for the sheep," the Jews, who regarded themselves as God's sheep - "We thy people, the flock of thy pasture" (Ps 79:13) - could have said that he laid down his life for them alone. But our Lord adds that it is not only for them, but for others too: "He prophesied that Jesus should die for the nation, and not for the nation only, but to gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad" (11:51).
1417 In regard to this fruit our Lord does three things. First, he mentions the predestination of the Gentiles; secondly, their vocation through grace; and thirdly their justification.
As to the first he says, and I have other sheep, that is, the Gentiles, that are not of this fold, i.e., of the family of the flesh of Israel, which was in a way a flock: "I will surely gather all of you, O Jacob" (Mic 2:12). For as sheep are enclosed in a fold, so the Jews were kept enclosed within the precepts of the Law, as we read in Galatians (c 3). These other sheep, I say, that is, the Gentiles, I have from my Father through an eternal predestination: "Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage" (Ps 2:8); "I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth" (Is 49:6).
1418 As to the second he says, I must bring them also, i.e., according to the plans of divine predestination it is time to call them to grace.
This seems to conflict with what our Lord says in Matthew (15:24): "I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." I answer that Jesus was sent only to the sheep of the house of Israel in the sense of preaching to them personally, as we read in Romans (15:8): "Christ became a servant to the circumcised to show God's truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs." It was through the apostles that he brought in the Gentiles: "From them I will send survivors to the nations" (Is 66:19).
1419 In regard to the third he says, and they will heed my voice. Here he mentions three things necessary for righteousness in the Christian religion. The first is obedience to the commandments of God. Concerning this he says, and they will heed my voice, i.e., they will observe my commandments: "Teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you" (Matt 28:20); "People whom I had not known," i.e., whom I did not approve, served me. As soon as they heard of me they obeyed me" (Ps 18:43).
The second is the unity of charity, and concerning this he says, so there shall be one flock, i.e., one Church of the faithful from the two peoples, the Jews and the Gentiles: "One faith" (Eph 4:5); "For he is our peace, who has made us both one" (Eph 2:14).
The third is the unity of faith, and in regard to this he says, one shepherd: "They shall all have one shepherd," that is, the Jews and the Gentiles (Ez 37:24).
1420 Now our Lord explains his proof: first, he amplifies on the reason for the sign [his death for his sheep]; secondly, he explains the sign, or the effect (v 18); thirdly, he shows that the reason is appropriate (v 18b).
1421 Our Lord says that the reason for his death is the knowledge he has of the Father, saying, "as the Father knows me and I know the Father, and I lay down my life for the sheep." In explaining this he says, for this reason the Father loves me. From this it is clear that the Father knows him with a knowledge joined with approval, for this reason, I say, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again.
1422 But is it true that his death is the cause of the Father's love? It seems not, because something temporal is not the cause of something eternal. But Christ's death is in the temporal order, while the love of God for Christ is eternal. I answer that Christ is speaking here of the Father's love for him as having a human nature. Accordingly, this passage can be understood in three ways. In one way, so that because indicates a cause, while in the other way it indicates the term or sign of love.
If it is taken casually, then the meaning is: because I lay down my life, i.e., endure death, for this reason the Father loves me, that is, he grants me the effect of his love, which is the glory and exaltation of my body: "He humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him a name which is above every name" (Phil 2:8).
But one might object to this that good works cannot merit the divine love. For since our works are meritorious to the extent that they are given life by charity - "If I give away all I have…but have not love, I gain nothing" (1 Cor 13:3) - and since God is the first to love - "In this is love, not that we love God but that he first loved us" [1 Jn 4:10] - it is clear that his love precedes all our merit. This can be answered by saying that no one can merit God's love; nevertheless, we can merit by our good works the effect of God's love, that is, an increase of grace and the reception of the good of glory, both of which God bestows on us because of his love. Thus we can say that for this reason God loves this or that person, that is, bestows on him the effect of his love, because he obeys his commandments. And so we can say about Christ as man, that for this reason the Father loves him, that is, has exalted him and given him the brightness of glory, because he laid down his life in death.
But if because indicates a sign of love, then he meaning is this: for this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, as if to say: This is a sign that the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again, that is, I fulfill his commands and will and endure death. For an obvious sign of love is that a person, out of charity, fulfills the commands of God.
1423 Now he explains the effect of the sign. And since the sign was "I lay down my life for the sheep," he explains how he lays it down. First, he excludes violence; secondly, he speaks of his power.
1424 The violence he excludes is that which could be employed in taking a life: such violence was not accomplished in Christ. Concerning this he says, no one takes it from me, that is, my life, by violence, but I lay it down, by my own power, that is, of my own accord: "Can the prey be taken from the mighty?" (Is 49:24).
But did not the Jews use violence against Christ? They did insofar as it was in them; but this violence was not in Christ because he laid down his life voluntarily, when he willed. Thus we read above (7:30) that the Jews wanted to arrest him but were unable "because his hour had not yet come." It was voluntary "not as though he was forced to die, but he condescended to be killed,"  as Augustine says.
1425 He adds something about his power when he says, I have power to lay it down. Apropos of this it should be noted that since the union of the soul and body is natural, their separation is natural. And although the cause of this separation and death can be voluntary, yet among human beings death is always natural. Now nature is not subject to the will of any mere human, since nature, as well as the will, are from God. Therefore, the death of any mere human person must be natural. But in Christ, his own nature and every other nature are subject to his will, just like artifacts are subject to the will of the artisan. Thus, according to the pleasure of his will, he could lay down his life when he willed, and he could take it up again; no mere human being can do this, although he could voluntarily use some instrument to kill himself. This explains why the centurion, seeing that Christ did not die by a natural necessity, but by his own [will] - since "Jesus cried again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit" (Matt 27:50) - recognized a divine power in him, and said: "Truly, this was the Son of God" (Matt 27:54). Again, the Apostle says in 1 Corinthians (1:18): "For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God," that is, his great power was revealed in the very death of Christ.
1426 Here he shows that the above-mentioned reason is appropriate, for to fulfill a command shows love for the one commanding. Thus he says, this charge I have received from my Father, that is, to lay down my life and take it up again: "If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him" (14:23).
19 There was again a division among the Jews because of these words. 20 Many of them said, "He has a demon, and he is mad; why listen to him?" 21 Others said, "These are not the sayings of one who has a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?" 22 It was the feast of the Dedication at Jerusalem; 23 it was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the portico of Solomon. 24 So the Jews gathered round him and said to him, "How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly." 25 Jesus answered them, "I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness to me; 26 but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; 28 and I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish, and no one shall snatch them out of my hand. 29 What my Father has given to me is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. 30 I and the Father are one."
1427 After showing that he has power to give life and showing his manner of doing so, our Lord here shows how this power to give life belongs to him. First, the Evangelist mentions the dispute which arose among the crowd on his point; secondly, he gives the discussion between the Jewish leaders and Christ (v 22). Concerning the first he does three things. First, he mentions the dispute within the crowd; secondly, he gives the opinion of one side; and then states the reasonable position of the other side.
1428 The dispute arose within the crowd which was listening to Christ because of what he said. The Evangelist says, There was again a division among the Jews because of these words. Since some of them understood his words correctly, and others did not, they argued among themselves: "I have not come to bring peace, but a sword," that is, the sword of gospel teaching, which some believed and others deny (Matt 10:34). "He pours contempt upon princes" (Ps 107:40).
1429 The opinion of one party to the argument was false. About this he says, Many of them said…He says, Many, because as we read in Ecclesiastes [1:15]: "The number of fools is infinite." They said, He has a demon, and he is mad, for it is the habit of the foolish to always give an evil interpretation to matters about which they are in doubt; whereas the opposite should be done. Thus they revile whatever they do not know, as we read in the letter of Jude. And so because they were incapable of understanding our Lord's words - for "the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it" [1:5] -they blasphemed, saying, he has a demon, and he is mad. And they try to turn others away from him, saying Why listen to him?
These blasphemers accuse Christ of two things. First, that he has a demon. As if to say: He is not speaking due to the Holy Spirit, but from a wicked spirit. Something similar is found in Acts about Paul: "He seems to be a preacher of foreign divinities [demons]" (17:18). Now the fact is that a person who has his own and familiar demon is always spiritually mad, but not always mad in a bodily way. But some can be possessed by a demon, and these are always mad even in a bodily way. Thus it was said of Christ "He has become mad" (Mk 3:21). Secondly, to show that Christ has a demon in this way, they say, and he is mad. "Your great learning is turning you mad" (Acts 26:24). Yet their blasphemy is not surprising, because they are sensual and, as we read in 1 Corinthians [2:14]: "The sensual person does not perceive those things that pertain to the Spirit of God."
1430 This opinion is refuted by the statements of the other side, and this is in two ways. First, by the profundity of Christ's words. Thus he says, Others, that is, those who rightly understood, said, These are not the sayings of one who has a demon. This was like saying: It is clear from what he is saying that he is not mad, because his words are orderly and profound: "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life" (6:69). And Paul says, "I am not mad, most excellent Festus, but I am speaking the sober truth" (Acts 26:25). Secondly, this opinion is refuted by the greatness of the miracle worked by Christ. Thus they say, Can a demon open the eyes of the blind? This means: Was not this one of the greatest of miracles? They were correct in believing that it could be performed only by the power of God: "If this man were not from God, he could do nothing" (9:33).
1431 It should be noted that there are certain "miracles" which can be performed by the power of demons and angels, and there are others which in no way can be accomplished by their power. Those things which are above the order of nature no creature whatever can perform by its own power, since the creature itself is subject to the laws of nature. God alone, who is above nature, can act above the order of nature. Therefore, whatever any creature performs must remain within the order of nature, an angel, either good or wicked, is able to do, when it is permitted. Thus, by using the seeds which in natural things are ordered to the generation of certain animals, they are able to effect the generation of these animals, as Pharaoh's magicians did (Ex 7:11). Again, they can produce changes affecting the nature of a thing; thus, they can heal the sick who could be helped by the power of nature.
But things that absolutely transcend the order of nature can be performed by God alone, or by good angels and saintly men through God's power, which they obtain through prayer. Such would be the conferring of sight on the blind and the raising of the dead; for the power of nature cannot extend to the restoring of sight or to the raising of the dead. Consequently, a demon cannot open the eyes of a blind man or raise the dead, because this is done by God alone, and by the saints through the power of God.
1432 Here we see the dispute which the Jewish leaders initiated with Christ. First, the Evangelist gives the question asked by the Jews; secondly, Christ's answer (v 25); and thirdly, the effect of this answer (v 31). Concerning the first he does two things: first, he describes the circumstances of the questioning; secondly, he gives the question itself (v 24). The circumstances of the questioning are described with respect to three things: the time, the place, and the persons who ask the question.
1433 He mentions the specific time first, saying, it was (encaenia) the feast of the Dedication at Jerusalem. To understand this we have to know, as Augustine says, that an "encaenia" was the feast of the dedication of a church. The Greek word, caenos, is the same as the Latin word for "new." Thus an encaenia is the same as a renewal; and even in everyday speech, when something is dedicated to some use, it is said to be "encaeniated," which is the same thing as being renewed. Thus the encaenia, the feast of the Dedication, was the feast and commemoration of the dedication of the temple, for when we newly dedicate some church to the divine worship, we celebrate its being set aside for a sacred purpose; and in memory of this we celebrate it every year on the same day. Thus every year the Jews celebrated the encaenia, the remembrance of the dedication of the temple.
1434 To understand why there is a feast for the consecration of a church, we should note that all the feasts in the Church are celebrated in remembrance of God's blessings: "I will recount the steadfast love of the Lord" (Is 63:7). Again in Psalm 117 [v 1], after David called to mind God's many blessings, saying, "Give praise to the Lord, for he is good," he adds, "Solemnize this day, with shady boughs, even to the horn of the altar" [v 26].
We recall God's benefits to us as being of three kinds. Sometimes, as they are found in our head, the Lord Jesus Christ. Thus we celebrate the feast of his birth, and of his resurrection, and so on. Sometimes we recall them as found in our fellow members, that is, in the saints, who are members of the Church. This is fitting, for as the Apostle says: "If one member is honored, all rejoice together" (1 Cor 12:26). Thus we celebrate the feasts of Saints Peter and Paul, and the other saints. But at times we recall God's benefits as found in the entire Church: for example, the benefits of the sacraments and other things granted to the Church in general. Now a material church building is like a sign of the gathering of the faithful of the Church, and in this building all the sacraments of grace are dispensed. So it is in memory of these benefits that we celebrate the feast of the dedication of a church. Indeed, such a feast is greater than the feast of any saint, just as the benefits conferred upon the whole Church, which benefits we celebrate, exceed the benefits conferred on some saint and recalled during his feast.
1435 Recall that the temple at Jerusalem had been consecrated three times: first by Solomon (1 Kgs c 8); secondly, during the time of Ezra by Zerubbabel and Jesus, the high priest (Ezra c 6); thirdly, by the Maccabees, for it says in 1 Maccabees (c 4) that they went up to Jerusalem to cleanse the holy places. Now this feast was not celebrated in memory of the dedication by Solomon, because that took place in the fall, i.e., in the seventh month; nor was it in memory of the dedication made at the time of Ezra, for this took place during the spring, i.e., the ninth day of March. But it was in memory of the dedication made by the Maccabees, which took place during the winter. And so to show this he mentions the specific time, saying, it was winter.
There is also a mystical reason for mentioning the time. As Gregory says (Morals 2), the Evangelist took care to mention the season as winter in order to indicate the chill of evil in the hearts of those listening, that is, the Jews: "As a well keeps its water cold, so she keeps cold her wickedness" [Jer 6:7]; and we read of this winter: "The winter is past, the rain is over and gone" (Song 2:11).
1436 Then he describes the place, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the portico of Solomon. He describes it first in a general way, in the temple: "The Lord is in his holy temple" (Ps 11:4); secondly, in more detail, saying, in the portico of Solomon. We have to know that the temple included not just its main building, but the surrounding porticos as well; it was on these porticos that the people stood and prayed, for only the priests prayed in the temple. It was called the portico of Solomon because it was the place where Solomon stood and prayed when the temple was being dedicated: "Then Solomon stood before the altar of the Lord in the presence of all the assembly of Israel" (1 Kgs 8:22).
1437 One might object that the temple which Solomon built was destroyed, and so was his portico. I answer that the temple was rebuilt according to the specifications of the previous one; and so just as that portico was called the portico of Solomon in the first instance, it was called the same later out of respect for him.
1438 The persons who question Christ are described as to their malice; thus he says, so the Jews gathered round him, unwarmed by loving charity, but burning with the desire to harm him. They came to attack him, surrounding and pressing him in on all sides: "Many bulls encompass me" (Ps 22:12); "Ephraim has encompassed me" (Hos 11:12).
1439 Then when he says, and said to him…we see the Jews questioning him. First, he mentions the pretended reason for their questions when he says, How long will you keep us in suspense? Their manner is flattering because they want it to appear that they desire to know the truth about him. It is like they were saying: We are hanging in anticipation. How long will you keep us unsatisfied? "Hope deferred makes the heart sick" (Prv 13:12).
Secondly, they state their question, If you are the Christ, tell us plainly. Note their perversity; for since they resent Christ's calling himself the Son of God (5:18), they do not ask him if he is the Son of God, but If you are the Christ, tell us plainly. They hoped by this to obtain grounds for accusing him before Pilate for inciting sedition and making himself king - which was in opposition to Caesar and offensive to the Romans. Thus it was that when the Jews accused Christ of making himself the Son of God, Pilate was not very impressed; but when they said: "Every one who makes himself a king sets himself against Caesar" (19:12), he was swayed against Christ. This is why they say, If you are the Christ, or a king, or anointed, tell us plainly.
Secondly, notice their wickedness, because they say, plainly. It was like saying: Up to now you have not taught in public, but more or less in secret; but in reality, Christ said everything openly and was present for the festival days, and said nothing in secret: "I have spoken openly to the world…I have said nothing secretly" (18:20).
1440 Now we have the answer of Christ, where he shows their unbelief, proving they were deceitful in saying they wished to know the truth when they said, "How long will you keep us in suspense?" He shows this in two ways. First, because they did not believe his words; and about this he says, I told you, and you do not believe. As if to say: You say to me, "If you are the Christ," the king, "tell us." But I told you, that is, I told you the truth, and you do not believe. "If I tell you, you will not believe" (Lk 22:67).
He shows this in a second way because they do not believe his works. And about this he says: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness to me. He first shows their unbelief in his works; secondly, the reason for their unbelief (v 26).
1441 As to the first he says, the works that I do…. This was like saying: You cannot be persuaded and satisfied by my words, nor even by those great works which I do in my Father's name, i.e., for his glory. They bear witness to me, because they can be performed by God alone. Thus they clearly show that I have come from God: "The tree is known by its fruit" (Matt 12:33); "These very works which I am doing, bear witness" (5:36). But you do not believe: "Though he had done so many signs before them, yet they did not believe in him" (12:37). For this reason they are inexcusable: "If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have seen and hated both me and my Father (15:24).
1442 The reason for their unbelief is that they are separated from Christ's sheep. So he says, but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. He does three things concerning this. First, he says that they are excluded from membership in the sheep of Christ; secondly, he shows the dignity of his sheep (v 27); thirdly, he proves that no one will snatch his sheep out of his hands (v 29).
1443 He mentions that they are not among his sheep when he says, you do not belong to my sheep, i.e., you are not predestined to believe, but foreknown to eternal destruction. For the very fact that we believe is due to God: "For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake" (Phil 1:29); "For by grace you have been saved thorough faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God" (Eph 2:8). And this is given only to those for whom it was prepared from eternity; thus, only those believe in him who have been ordained to this by God through an eternal predestination: "As many as were ordained to eternal life believed" (Acts 13:48); "We believe that we shall be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus" (Acts 15:11).
1444 But should anyone be told that he is not predestined? It seems that he should not be told: for since no one can be saved unless he is predestined, if one is told that he is not predestined, he would be driven to despair. And so our Lord was driving the Jews to despair when he said to them, you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. My answer to this is that in this group there was something common to all, that is, they were not preordained by God to believe at that time; and there was also something special, that is, some of them were preordained to believe later. Thus, some of them did believe later, for we read in Acts (c 2) that three thousand of them believed in one day. But some were not preordained to do this. Therefore, it did not militate against hope to say to a group, some of whom were preordained to believe later, that they did not belong to his sheep, because no one of them could apply this definitely to himself. But it would militate against hope if Christ had said this to some definite person.
1445 Now he reveals the dignity of his sheep when he says, my sheep hear my voice. He here mentions four things: two of them are what we do in reference to Christ; the other two, which correspond to the first two are what Christ does in us.
1446 The first thing we do is to obey Christ. Concerning this he says, my sheep, through predestination, hear my voice, by believing and obeying my precepts: "O that today you would harken to his voice! Harden not your hearts" (Ps 95:7).
1447 The second thing, corresponding to this, is what Christ does, which is to give his love and approval. Concerning this he says, and I know them, that is, I love and approve of them: "The Lord knows those who are his" (2 Tim 2:19). This is like saying: The very fact that they hear me is due to the fact that I know them by an eternal election.
But if a person cannot believe unless God gives this to him, it seems that unbelief should not be imputed to anyone. I answer that it is imputed to them because they are the cause why it is not given to them. Thus, I cannot see the light unless I am enlightened by the sun. Yet if I were to close my eyes, I would not see the light; but this is not due to the sun but to me, because by closing my eyes I am the cause of my not being enlightened. Now sin, for example, original sin, and in some persons actual sin, is the cause why we are not enlightened by God through faith. This cause is in everyone. Thus, all who are left by God are left by reason of the just judgment of God, and those who are chosen are lifted up by God's mercy.
1448 The third thing, which is what we do, concerns our imitation of Christ. So he says, and they follow me: "My foot has held fast his steps" (Job 23:11); "Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps" (1 Pet 2:21).
1449 The corresponding fourth part, which is what Christ does, is the bestowing of a reward. Concerning this he says, and I give them eternal life. This is like saying: They follow me by walking the path of gentleness and innocence in this life, and I will see that afterwards they will follow me by entering into the joys of eternal life.
Our Lord shows in three ways that this reward will never end. Something can end in three ways. First of all, by its very nature, for example, if it is corruptible. But this reward is incorruptible of its very nature. Thus He says, I give them eternal life, which is incorruptible and ever-living enjoyment of God: "This is eternal life, that they know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent" (17:3). As Augustine says, this is the pasture which he spoke before (v 9). Indeed, eternal life is called a good pasture because it is entirely verdant and nothing withers away. Secondly, a thing can end because the one receiving it ends, or does not guard it well. But this will not happen to that reward; so he says, and they shall never perish, that is, the sheep will never perish. This conflicts with Origen, for he said that the saints in glory are able to sin. Yet our Lord says, they shall never perish, because they will be preserved forever: "He who conquers I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God; never shall he go out of it" (Rev 3:12). Thirdly, a thing can end by being snatched by force: for perhaps Adam would not have been cast out if the Deceiver had not been there. But this will not happen in eternal life, and so he says, and no one shall snatch them, that is, the sheep, out of my hand, that is, from my protection and loyalty: "The souls of the righteous are in the hand of God" (Wis 3:1). As Augustine says: "There the wolf does not snatch, nor the thief steal, nor the robber kill."
1450 He now proves what he had said above about the dignity of his sheep, namely, that no one can snatch them from his hand. His reason is this: No one can snatch what is in the hand of my Father; but the Father's hand and mine are the same; therefore, no one can snatch what is in my hand. Concerning this he does three things: first, he gives the minor premise by showing that the Father had communicated divinity to him, saying, what my Father has given to me, through an eternal generation, is greater than all. "For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself" (5:26). It is greater than any power: "He has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of man" (5:27); it is greater than any reverence and honor: "God had bestowed on him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow" (Phil 2:9). Therefore, what my Father has given to me, that is, that I am his Word, his only begotten, and the splendor of his light, is greater than all.
Secondly, he mentions the greatness of the Father's power, which concerns the major premise, when he says, and no one is able to snatch, take by violence or secretly pilfer, out of my Father's hand, from the power of my Father, or from me, who am the might of the Father - although as Augustine says, it is better to say "from the power of the Father" than "from me."  Now no one is able to snatch out of my Father's hand, because he is the almighty One who is not subject to violence, and he is all-wise from whom nothing is hidden: "He is wise in heart, and mighty in strength" (Job 9:4).
Thirdly, he affirms his unity with the Father, and from this the conclusion follows. Thus he says, I and the Father are one. As if to say: no one shall snatch them out of my hand, because I and the Father are one, by a unity of essence, for the Father and the Son are the same in nature.
1451 This statement rejects two errors: that of Arius, who distinguished the essence [of the Father from that of the Son], and that of Sabellius, who did not distinguish the person [of the Father from the person of the Son]. We escape both Charybdis and Scylla, for by the fact that Christ says, one, he saves us from Arius, because if one, then they are not different [in nature]. And by the fact that he says, we are, he saves us from Sabellius, for if we are, then the Father and the Son are not the same [person].
Yet the Arians, deceived by their wickedness, try to deny this, and say that a creature can in some sense be one with God, and in this sense the Son can be one with the Father. The falsity of this can be shown in three ways. First, from our very manner of speaking. For it is clear that "one" is asserted as "being"; thus, just as something is not said to be a being absolutely except according to its substance, so it is not said to be one except according to its substance or nature. Now something is asserted absolutely when it is asserted with no added qualification. Therefore, because I and the Father are one, is asserted absolutely, without any qualifications added, it is plain that they are one according to substance and nature. But we never find that God and a creature are one without some added qualification, as in 1 Corinthians (6:17): "He who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with him." Therefore, it is clear that the Son of God is not one with the Father as a creature can be.
Secondly, we can see this from his previous statement, what my Father has given me is greater than all. He draws the conclusion from this: I and the Father are one. This is like saying: We are one to the extent that the Father has given me that which is greater than all.
Thirdly, it is clear from his intention. For our Lord proves that no one will snatch the sheep from his hand precisely because no one can snatch from the hand of his Father. But this would not follow if his power were less than the power of the Father. Therefore, the Father and Son are one in nature, honor and power.
31 The Jews took up stones again to stone him. 32 Jesus answered them, "I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of these do you stone me?" 33 The Jews answered him, "We stone you for no good work but for blasphemy; because you, being a man, make yourself God." 34 Jesus answered them, "Is it not written in your law, 'I said, you are gods'? 35 If he called them gods to whom the word of God came (and scripture cannot be broken), 36 do you say of him whom the Father consecrated [sanctified] and sent into the world, 'You are blaspheming,' because I said, 'I am the Son of God'? 37 If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me; 38 but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand [believe] that the Father is in me and I am in the Father." 39 Again they tried to arrest him, but he escaped from their hands. 40 He went away again across the Jordan to the place where John at first baptized, and there he remained. 41 And many came to him; and they said, "John did no sign, but everything that John said about this man was true." 42 And many believed in him there.
1452 We have seen the teaching of Christ; and now we see the effect this teaching has on the Jews. First, Jesus reproves their fierceness; secondly, he defends himself against the charge of blasphemy; and thirdly, he escapes from their violence (v 39).
1453 Concerning the first, two things are done. First, we see the violence of the Jews inciting them to stone Christ. The Evangelist says, The Jews took up stones again to stone him. They were hard of heart and unable to understand his profound message; and so, being like stones, they resort to stones: "When I spoke to them they fought against me without cause" [Ps 119:7].
1454 Secondly, we see our Lord reprove their violence, saying, I have shown you many good works. First, he reminds them of the benefits given to them; secondly, he reproves their violence. He recalls the benefits he granted in healing the sick, in teaching them and performing his miracles. So he answered them saying, I have shown you many good works, by healing, teaching and working miracles - "He has done all things well" (Mk 7:37) - from the Father, whose glory I have sought in all these things - "Yet I do not seek my own glory" (8:50). And he reproves their violence when he says, for which of these do you stone me? This was like saying: You should honor one who does good to you, not stone him: "Is evil a recompense for good?" (Jer 18:20).
1455 Now our Lord defends himself from the charge of blasphemy. First, we see him accused of blasphemy by the Jews; and secondly, Christ proves his innocence (v 34).
1456 With respect to the first, the Evangelist says, The Jews answered him, We stone you for no good work but for blasphemy. There are five things to be considered here. First, what seems to be the motive for their stoning him, namely, his blasphemy. For Leviticus commands that blasphemers be stoned: "Bring out of the camp him who has blasphemed; and let all who heard him lay their hands upon his head, and let the congregation stone him" [24:14]. Mentioning this motive, they say, We stone you for no good work but for blasphemy.
Secondly, they specify his blasphemy. It is blasphemy not only to attribute to God what is not appropriate to him, but also to attribute to another what belongs to God alone. So, it is blasphemy not only to say that God is a body, but also to say that a creature can create: "It is blasphemy! Who can forgive sins but God alone?" (Mk 2:7). Thus the Jews were saying that our Lord was a blasphemer not in the first way, but for usurping for himself what is proper to God: because you, being a man, make yourself God.
The third thing to be considered is that the Jews understood the words of Christ, I and the Father are one, better than the Arians did. Thus they were incensed because they understood that I and the Father are one could only be said if the Father and Son are equal. This is what they say, you make yourself God, claiming by your words that you are God, which is not true, you, being a man.
The fourth point to consider is that the distance between God and man is so great that it was unbelievable to them that someone with a human nature could be God. So they significantly say, because you, being a man, make yourself God. Yet this unbelief could have been dispelled by what is read in the Psalm, "What is man that you are mindful of him? Or the son of man that you visit him?" [Ps 8:5]; and in Habakkuk (1:5): "For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told," this is, the work of the incarnation, which surpasses every mind.
The fifth thing to consider is that they do not agree with themselves: for on the one hand, they say that Christ does good works, saying, we stone you for no good work; and on the other hand, they accuse him of blasphemy, usurping for himself the honor of God. Now these conflict with each other, for he could not accomplish miracles from God if he blasphemed God, because "A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit" (Mt 7:18). And this applied especially to Christ.
1457 Here our Lord defends himself against the charge of blasphemy. First, he gives his defense; secondly, he shows them the truth (v 37). He defends himself by divine authority, and so first, he mentions the authority of Scripture; secondly, he explains its meaning; and thirdly, he draws his conclusion.
1458 The Evangelist says, Jesus answered them: Is it not written in your law (in Psalm 82:6): I said, you are gods? Here we should note that "law" is understood in three ways in Scripture. Some times it is taken in a general sense for the entire Old Testament, containing the five books of Moses, the prophets and the hagiographies. This is the way in your law is understood here, meaning in the Old Testament. For this quotation is from the psalms which are referred to as the law because the entire Old Testament is considered to have the authority of law. Sometimes "law" is understood as distinct from the prophets, psalms, and the hagiographies; this is the way Luke uses it in "Everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms must be fulfilled" (Lk 24:44). Again, at other times it is distinguished from the prophets. In this sense the psalms and the other books of the Old Testament, other than the Pentateuch, are included within the prophets, on the ground that the Old Testament was produced by a prophetic spirit. This is the way it is understood in Matthew: "On these two commandments depend all the law and the prophets" (Mt 23:40).
1459 The word "God" is also used in three senses. Sometimes it signifies the divine nature itself, and then it is used only in the singular: "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord" (Deut 6:4). At other times it is taken in a denominative sense: in this way idols are called gods: "All the gods of the peoples are idols" (Ps 96:5). And sometimes someone is called a god because of a certain participation in divinity, or in some sublime power divinely infused. In this way, even judges are called gods in Scripture: "If the thief is not known, the owner of the house shall be brought to the gods," that is, to the judges [Ex 22:8]; "You shall not speak ill of the gods," that is, of the rulers [Ex 22:28]. This is the way the word "god" is taken here, when he says, I said, you are gods, i.e., you share in some divine power superior to the human.
1460 Then when he says, If he called them gods to whom the word of God came, he shows the meaning of the authority he cited. This was like saying: He called them gods because they participated in something divine insofar as they participated in God's word, which was spoken to them. For due to God's word a person obtains some participation in the divine power and purity: "You are already made clean by the word which I have spoken to you" (15:3); and in Exodus (c 34) we read that the face of Moses shone when he heard the words of the Lord.
From what has been said above, one might argue in this way: It is clear that a person by participating in the word of God becomes god by participation. But a thing does not become this or that by participation unless it participates in what is this or that by its essence: for example, a thing does not become fire by participation unless it participates in what is fire by its essence. Therefore, one does not become god by participation unless he participates in what is God by essence. Therefore, the Word of God, that is the Son, by participation in whom we become gods, is God by essence. But our Lord, rather than argue so profoundly against the Jews, preferred to argue in a more human way. He says, and scripture cannot be broken, in order to show the irrefutable truth of Scripture: "O Lord, your word endures forever" [Ps 118:89].
1461 Then when he says, do you say of him whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, You are blaspheming, he draws his conclusion. If, with Hilary, we refer this to Christ insofar as he has a human nature, the meaning is this: Some people are called gods only because they participate in God's word. How then can you say, you are blaspheming, that is, how can you consider it blasphemy, if that man who is united in person to the Word of God is called God?  This is why he says, whom the Father sanctified. For although God sanctifies all who are sanctified - "Sanctify them in truth" (17:17) - he sanctified Christ in a special way. He sanctifies others to be adopted children - "You have received the spirit of adoption" (Rom 8:15) - but he sanctified Christ to be the Son of God by nature, united in person to the Word of God. These words, whom the Father sanctified, show this in two ways. For if God sanctifies as Father, it is clear that he sanctifies Christ as his Son: "He was predestined to be the Son of God by the Spirit of sanctification" [Rom 1:4]. We can also see this by his saying, and sent into the world. For it is not fitting for a thing to be sent some place unless it existed before it was sent there. Therefore, he whom the Father sent into the world in a visible way, is the Son of God, who existed before he was visible: for as we saw above, "He was in the world, and the world was made through him" (1:10); and "God sent the Son into the world" (3:17). Do you say of him whom the Father sent into the world, you are blaspheming, because I said, I am the Son of God? This was like saying: I, who am united in person to the Word, have much more reason to say this than those to whom the word of God came.
1462 But how did the Jews realize that he was claiming to be the Son of God? Our Lord did not say this expressly. I answer that although our Lord did not say this expressly, yet from what he did say - I and the Father are one and what my Father has given to me is greater than all - they understood that he received his nature from the Father and was one in nature with him. But to receive the same nature from another, and to be it, is to be a son.
1463 But if, with Augustine, we refer him whom the Father sanctified to Christ as God, then the meaning is this: him whom the Father sanctified is he whom he has begotten holy, or sanctified, from eternity. The other things which follow should be explained in the same way as Hilary does. Yet the better explanation is to refer everything to Christ as man.
1464 Then when he says, If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me, he proves the truth of the foregoing. This is like saying: Although in your opinion I am only human, yet I am not blaspheming when I say that I am truly God, because I truly am. He does two things concerning this: first, he presents the argument of his works; secondly, he draws his conclusion (v 38b).
1465 He does two things concerning the first. In the first place he says that in the absence of his works they would have an excuse. He says, If I am not doing the works of my Father, i.e., the same ones that he does, and with the same might and power, then do not believe me. "Whatever he [the Father] does, that the Son does likewise" (5:19).
Secondly, he says that they are convicted by his very works: but if I do them, the same works the Father does, then even though you do not believe me, who appears as a son of man, believe the works, i.e., these works show that I am the Son of God: "If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin" (15:24).
1466 Now he draws his conclusion, saying, that you may know and believe that the Father is in me and I am in the Father. For the clearest indication of the nature of a thing is taken from its works. Therefore, from the fact that he does the works of God it can be clearly known and believed that Christ is God. Accordingly he says: I will argue from my works themselves, that you may know and believe what you cannot see with your own eyes, that is, that the Father is in me and I am in the Father: "I am in the Father and the Father in me," by a unity of essence (14:10). The Father is in me and I am in the Father and "I and the Father are one," have the same meaning.
Hilary explains this well by saying that there is this difference between God and man: man being a composite, is not his own nature; but God, being entirely simple, is his own existence and his own nature. Therefore, in whomever the nature of God is, there is God. And so, since the Father is God and the Son is God, where the nature of the Father is, there is the Father, and where the nature of the Son is, there is the Son. Therefore, since the nature of the Father is in the Son, and conversely, the Father is in the Son, and conversely. But as Augustine remarks, although God is in man and man is in God - "He who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him" (1 Jn 4:16) - this does not mean that they are one in essence. Rather, man is in God, that is, under the divine care and protection, and God is in man, by the likeness of his grace. However, the only Son is in the Father and the Father is in him as equals.
1467 Now our Lord turns away from the obstinacy of the Jews. First, the Evangelist shows they were obstinate; secondly, we see that Christ turns away from this; thirdly, we see what effect this had.
1468 The Evangelist shows their inflexibility by the fact that after so many confirmations of the truth, after the evidence of so many miracles and wonders, they still persist in their evil. So again they tried to arrest him, to apprehend him, not in order to believe and understand, but in their rage to do him harm; they were even the more enraged because he had more clearly expressed his equality with the Father: "They hold fast to deceit, they refuse to return" (Jer 8:5).
1469 But our Lord turns away from their rage, and so the Evangelist says, but he escaped from their hands. Here we see, first, that he left them by escaping from their hands. He did this for two reasons. To show that he could not be restrained unless he willed: "Passing through the midst of them he went away" (Lk 4:30); "No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord" (10:18). Secondly, to give us the example of turning away from persecution when this can be done without endangering the faith: "Do not make your stand against one who can injure you" [Sir 8:14].
We see, secondly, where he went when the Evangelist says, he went away again across the Jordan to the place where John at first baptized. The mystical reason for this is that at some time, through the apostles, Jesus would go to convert the Gentiles. The literal reason is twofold. First, this place was near Jerusalem, and since his passion was near, he did not wish to be too far away. Secondly, he wanted to recall the witness which John had given there, when he said, "Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world" (1:29), as well as the Father's testimony to his Son, Christ, at the time of his baptism.
1470 The effect of this turning away was that many were converted to the faith. Three points are made about this conversion. First, many imitated his works; so he says, and many came to him, namely, by imitating his works: "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (Matt 11:28). Secondly, many professed him in word, and they said, John did no sign. By this they profess Christ's superiority to John. The reason for this was that John was sent as a witness to Christ; thus he should show that he was worthy to be believed and his testimony would be shown to be true. Now this is fittingly done by holiness of life. On the other hand, Christ came as God; consequently, it was fitting that he show the signs of divine power. And so John stood out by the sanctity of his life; Christ, however, in addition to this, performed works which manifested his divine power. This was in accord with the practice of the rulers of antiquity that when in the presence of a higher power a lesser power did not display the insignia of its power. Thus, in the presence of the Dictator, the Consuls took down their insignia. So it was not fitting that John, who possessed less power, because he was a precursor and witness, should employ the insignia of divine power; only Christ should have done this. They profess the truth of John's witness to Christ, saying, but everything that John said about this man, Christ, was true. They were saying: Although John did no sign, he nevertheless said all things truthfully about Christ. Thirdly, he reveals the faith in their hearts, saying, and many believed in him there. As Augustine remarks, they grasped Christ remaining, whom the Jews wanted to seize waning, because through the lamp they had come to the day. For John was that lamp and gave testimony to the day.
 In Ioannem hom., 59, ch. 2; PG 59, col. 324; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:1-5.
 Ibid.; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:1-5.
 Tract. in Io., 45, ch. 2, col. 1720; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:1-5.
 loc. cit; also Tract. in Io., 47, ch. 1, col. 1733; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:11-13.
 In Ioannem hom., 59, ch. 2; PG 59, col. 324; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:1-5.
 Tract. in Io., 46, ch. 2, col. 1728; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:1-5.
 Ibid.; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:1-5.
 St. Thomas refers to Jn 10:10 in the Summa Theologiae: III, q. 50, a. 1, obj. 3; q. 55, a. 5, obj. 3.
 Tract. in Io., 45, ch. 6, col. 1721; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:6.
 Tract. in Io., 45, ch. 7, col. 1722.
 In Ioannem hom., 59, ch. 3; PG 59, col. 325; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:7-10.
 Tract. in Io., 45, ch. 15, col. 1726-27; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:7-10.
 Gregory, Super Ezek. Hom, 13; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:7-10.
 De Spiritu et Anima, ch. IX; PL 40, col. 785.
 St. Thomas refers to Jn 10:11 in the Summa Theologiae: II-II, q. 184, a. 5; q. 185, a. 4; Jn 12: ST II-II, q. 185, a. 5, obj. 1.
 Tract. in Io., 46, ch. 1, col. 1727-28; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:11-13.
 Augustine, Tract. in Io., 46, ch. 8, col. 1732; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:11-13.
 Augustine, Epistola CCXXVII, ch. 2; PL 33, col. 1014. cf. Catena Aurea, 10:11-13.
 St. Thomas refers to Jn 10:16 in the Summa Theologiae: III, q. 35, a. 8, ad 1; Jn 10:17: ST III, q. 5, a. 4, s. c.; Jn 10:18: ST III, q. 5, a. 3; q. 47, a. 1, obj. 1; q. 47, a. 2, ad 1; q. 50, a. 3, obj. 1; q. 53, a. 4, s. c.
 summa-three substances in Christ; his body and soul were separated at death but his divinity remained united to both.
 Summa-- God's love is the cause of human love, but works done in charity merit the increase of the effects of God's love.
 Tract., in Io., 31, ch. 5, col. 1638.
 summa-Christ's entire nature was subject to His will.
 St. Thomas refers to Jn 10:27in the Summa Theologiae: I-II, q. 108, a. 4, ad 3; Jn 30: ST III, q. 17, a. 1, obj. 5.
 Tract. in Io., 48, ch. 2, col. 1741; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:22-30.
 Moralia, II, ch. 2, no. 2; PL 75, col. 555C; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:22-30.
 1443, 1444, Summa-predestination and preordination. He begins to mention predestination in 1373, but says more about it here, also 1447, why it is the fault of some why it is not given to them to believe.
 Tract. in Io., 48, ch. 5, col. 1742; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:22-30.
 Tract. in Io., 48, ch. 6, col. 1743; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:22-30.
 Ibid, 48, ch. 6, col. 1743; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:22-30.
 Summa, Christ is one with the Father absolutely, creatures can only become one with God in a qualified sense.
 St. Thomas refers to Jn 10:36 in the Summa Theologiae: III, q. 34, a. 1, s. c.; Jn 10:38: ST III, q. 43, a. 1; Jn 10:41: ST III, q. 27, a. 5, ad 3; q. 38, a. 2, obj. 2.
 Summa-because we become gods by participating in the Word of God, the Word must be divine.
 De Trin., 7, ch. 24; PL 10; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:31-38.
 Tract. in Io., 48, ch. 10, col. 1745; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:31-38.
 Hilary, De Trin., 9, ch. 61; PL 10, col. 330B.
 Tract. in Io., 48, ch. 10, col. 1745; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:31-38.
 Tract. in Io., 48, ch. 12, col. 1746; cf. Catena Aurea, 10:39-42.