25 For he that will save his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for my sake, shall find it.
Origen: This may be understood in two ways. First thus; if any lover of this present life spares his life, fearing to die, and supposing that his life is ended with this death; he seeking in this way to save his life, shall lose it, estranging it from life eternal. But if any, despising the present life, shall contend for the truth unto death, he shall lose his life as far as this present life is concerned, but forasmuch as he loses it for Christ, he shall the more save it for life eternal.
Otherwise thus; if any understand what is true salvation, and desire to obtain it for the salvation of his own life, he by denying himself loses his life as to the enjoyments of the flesh, but saves it by works of piety.
26 For what doth it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his own soul? Or what exchange shall a man give for his soul?
Chrysostom: If you should reign over the whole world, you would not be able to buy your soul. . . . As much as to say, if you lose goods, you may have it in your power to give other goods to recover them; but if you lose your soul, you can neither give another soul, nor any thing else in ransom for it. And what marvel is it if this happen in the soul, when we see the same happen in the body; for if you should surround a body afflicted with an incurable disease with ten thousand diadems, they would not heal it.
Origen: A man has nothing that giving as a ransom for his soul he should deliver it from death. God gave the ransom for the souls of men, namely the precious blood of His Son.
Scripture from the Douay-Rheims Bible. Commentary from St. Thomas Aquinas, Catena Aurea, Vol. I (London: Rivington, 1842).