Corpus Christi – Luke 9:17

17 And they did all eat, and were filled. And there were taken up of fragments that remained to them, twelve baskets.

Cyril: That this might be a manifest proof that a work of love to our neighbor will claim a rich reward from God.

Theophylact: That we might learn the value of hospitality, and how much our own store is increased when we help those that need.

Chrysostom: He caused not loaves to remain over, but fragments, that He might shew them to be the remnants of the loaves, and these were made to be of that number, that there might be as many baskets as disciples.

Ambrose: Here the bread which Jesus broke is mystically indeed the word of God, and discourse concerning Christ, which when it is divided is increased. For from these few words, He ministered abundant nourishment to the people.

Not without meaning are the fragments which remained over and above what the multitudes had eaten, collected by the disciples, since those things which are divine you may more easily find among the elect than among the people. Blessed is he who can collect those which remain over and above even to the learned. But for what reason did Christ fill twelve baskets, except that He might solve that word concerning the Jewish people, His hands served in the basket? {Ps 81:6] that is, the people who before collected mud for the pots, now through the cross of Christ gather up the nourishment of the heavenly life. Nor is this the office of few, but all. For by the twelve baskets, as if of each of the tribes, the foundation of the faith is spread abroad.

Bede: By the twelve baskets the twelve Apostles are figured, and all succeeding teachers, despised indeed by men without, but within loaded with the fragments of saving food.

Scripture from the Douay-Rheims Bible. Commentary from St. Thomas Aquinas, Catena Aurea, Vol. III (London: Rivington, 1843).

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