Some more from St. Jerome on Matthew 27:25

Last week, using the Brepols Library of Latin Texts Series A database (formerly Cetedoc), I was able to increase my list of references to Matthew 27:25 in patristic authors.

It is slightly curious to discover that the results from a search of the database change, if I include a comma, but they do.  The search that gives most results is for “Sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros”, and specifying a date range up to the end of the 5th century AD.

I will integrate the outcome into the main post in due course; but as that post is getting very long, and somewhat hard to work with in WordPress, I thought that I would do some of the work here.  I shall add English translations as I get them, and eventually merge the two posts.

For now, here are the chunks of Latin.  I think all of them now are by St Jerome.

  • Hieronymus (Jerome), Commentarii in Isaiam (Commentary on Isaiah) (CPL 0584).  English translation in ACW 68.

Book 2, Isaiah 4:4.  (4:4) When the Lord will cleanse the filth of the daughters of Zion and wash the blood of Jerusalem from its midst by a spirit of judgment and a spirit of burning, then a remnant from Israel will be sins will be forgiven them in the baptism of the Savior,40 and that blood is washed away that the erring people invoked upon themselves: “May his blood be upon us and upon our sons” [Matt 27:25]. Hence we read above, “When you stretch out your hands, I will not hear you, for your hands are covered with blood” [Isa 1:15]. And later, summoning them to repentance, he adds, “Be washed, be clean” [Isa 1:16].[1]

Book 8, Isaiah 27:9.    37. (27:9) Therefore to these (super his) shall the iniquity of the house of Jacob be forgiven, and this is all the fruit, that its sin should be taken away, because he made all the stones of the altar as stones of ashes broken in pieces; the groves and temples will not stand. Septuagint: “Therefore shall the iniquity of Jacob be taken away; and this will be his blessing, when I remove his sin, when he makes all the stones of the altars shattered as ashes, and their trees and idols will not remain.” He gives the reasons why the Jews, after they laid their hands on the Lord, will obtain pardon, if they are willing to repent, in order that the Savior’s prayer may be fulfilled: “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” [Luke 23:34]. Therefore, he says, shall the iniquity of the house of Jacob be forgiven, and its sin will be taken away, so that the Jew who had prayed a curse upon himself by saying, “His blood be upon us and upon our children” [Matt 27:27], may deserve God’s blessing. For the gospel will be sown in the whole world through the apostles who were from the stock of Israel; and idolatry will be destroyed, and “altars” will be shattered to dust, groves will be burned, temples will fall, and knowledge of the Trinity will be preached under the mystery of the one God.[2]

Book 16. Isaiah 57:3.  (57:3-4a) But draw near hither, you sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer, and of the harlot. (4) Upon whom have you jested? Upon whom have you opened your mouth wide, and put out your tongue? Septuagint: “But draw near hither, you sons of the iniquitous one, the seed of adulterers and the prostitute. (4) At whom have you jested, and upon whom have you opened your mouth, and against whom have you put out your tongue?” With the just man removed, or rather, removed out of the way, whose burial is in peace [cf. Isa 57:1-2], you who are sons of “iniquity,” draw near to me and hear what I say. For just as “he who does iniquity is a slave of iniquity” [John 8:34], so he who is a son of perdition like Judas the traitor [cf. John 17:12] can be called a “son of iniquity.” After all, of the Lord and Savior it is written, “And the son of iniquity will not afflict him again” [Ps 89:22]. In place of the Septuagint’s translation of “iniquity,” or “iniquitous ones,” Theodotion recorded the Hebrew word itself, wvy\vcl, which we have translated in accordance with Symmachus as of the sorceress, namely because Jerusalem, which is the mother of those who hear [cf. Gal 4:26], was always devoted to idolatry. For this reason he calls them the seed of the adulterer, or “adul­terers,” of whom it was said, “And they committed adultery with wood and stone” [Jer 3:9]. Doubtless he means the same one of whom we read above, “How has the faithful city of Zion become a prostitute?” [Isa 1:21] Upon whom have you jested? he says, by spitting in his face and plucking out his beard [cf. Isa 50:6]. And upon whom have you widened and “opened” your mouth, and put out your tongue, when you said to him, ‘You are a Samaritan and have a demon” [John 8:48] ? And again, “This man does not expel demons except by Beelzebub, the prince of demons” [Matt 12:24]. And later on during the passion, “Crucify, cru­cify him!” [Luke 23:21]. And again, “His blood be upon us and upon our children” [Matt 27:25]. And elsewhere, “Hah, he who destroys the temple and rebuilds it in three days; he saved others, he cannot save himself; let him come down now from the cross and we [will] believe in him” [Matt 27:40].[3]

Book 16.  On Isaiah 59:3.  (59:3-4b) For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, and your tongue utters iniquity. (4) There is no one who calls upon justice, neither is there anyone who judges truly, but they trust in nothing and speak vanities. Septuagint: “For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with are defiled with iniquity, and your tongue meditates upon injustice. (4) None speaks just things, neither is there a just judgment; they trust in vain things and they speak empty things.”  He now expounds in detail the iniquities and sins that he had identified in a general way up above. And one should notice that he does not bring up idolatry to them, by which they were held fast dur­ing the time of Isaiah, but the shedding of blood, of which he had already earlier said, “The just man perishes, and no one considers, and just men are taken away, and no one understands in his heart; for the just man has been removed out of the way of iniquity, his burial shall be in peace, he shall be removed out of the way” [Isa 57:1-2]. And although they did not set their hands on the Lord and Savior, nev­ertheless in unison they shouted with the voice of impiety, “His blood [be] upon us and upon our children” [Matt 27:25]. They are culpable for his death, and they have defiled hands. The same prophet testifies about this, “If you shall lift up your hands to me, I shall not hear; for your hands are full of blood” [Isa 1:15].[4]

Book 17.  On Isaiah 63:17.  He says, Our enemies have trodden down your “sanctuary,” doubt­less signifying the temple, which the victorious Romans trampled, and we have become as in the beginning, before we were called in Abraham, and while we were in Egypt, not having God, nor kings, nor rulers, nor prophets, nor the law of the commandments of God. All of these things were fulfilled after the Lord’s passion, and they are being ful­filled today.34 For an eternal curse remains on those who say, “His blood be upon us and upon our sons” [Matt 27:25]; and God does not rule over them, nor is his name invoked upon them, so long as they are not called the people of God.[5]

  • Hieronymus (Jerome), Commentarii in Ezechielem (Commentary on Ezekiel) (CPL 0587).  lib. : 14, cap. (s.s.) : 47, linea : 1187.  quare non ascendit sanatio populi mei? -, et ipse hieremias uociferatur et dicit: sana me, domine, et sanabor; saluum me fac et saluus ero, denique angeli – qui praesides erant iudaeorum eo tempore, quando clamauit multitudo insipiens et ait: sanguis eius super nos et super filios nostros, et uelum templi scissum est et omnia hebraeorum sacramenta reserata – responderunt praecipienti domino, atque dixerunt: curauimus babylonem et non est sanata; relinquamus eam, urbem uidelicet confusionis atque uitiorum – unde et iosephus in sua narrat historia, quod, postquam dominus crucifixus est et uelum templi scissum, siue liminare templi fractum corruit, audita sit uox in adytis templi uirtutum caelestium: transeamus ex his sedibus -. hoc totum non superfluo sed necessario dictum sit, quia mare mortuum influente in se flumine domini dicitur esse curatum -. super hoc mare – ab ‘engaddi’, ‘oculo et fonte haedi’ qui pro peccatis semper offertur, usque ad ‘engallim’, ‘fontem uitulorum’ qui mactantur domino et imitantur uitulum cornua efferentem et ungulas, qui in typo saluatoris ad altare mactantur – erunt piscatores, quibus loquitur iesus: uenite ad me et faciam uos piscatores, de quibus et hieremias: ecce ego, inquit, mittam piscatores; et plurimae species immo genera piscium erunt in mari quondam mortuo, quos pisces ad dexteram partem iubente domino extraxit petrus et erant centum quinquaginta tres ita ut prae multitudine eorum retia rumperentur – aiunt autem qui de animantium scripsere naturis et proprie qui ἁλιευτικά tam latino quam graeco edidere sermone – de quibus opianicus cilex est poeta doctissimus -, centum quinquaginta tria esse genera piscium; quae omnia capta sunt ab apostolis, et nihil remansit incaptum, dum et nobiles et ignobiles et diuites et pauperes et omne genus hominum de mari huius saeculi extrahitur ad salutem – quod autem sequitur: in littoribus eius et in palustribus (siue his quae ex littora egrediuntur) aquae non sanabuntur, illud latenter ostendit quod qui in noe arca non fuerit pereat regnante diluuio, et quos iste fluuius non attigerit non suscipiant sanitatem: sed in salinas, inquit, dabuntur, iuxta illud quod scriptum est: pestilente flagellato, stultus sapientior erit – erudiunt enim bonos exempla peiorum -, siue: in salinas dabuntur, iuxta illud quod in euangelio scriptum est: bonum est sal; si autem sal infatuatum fuerit in nihil est utile, ut in perpetuum frugibus careant et uirore – quod et urbs post ruinam sale conspersa demonstrat -. super torrentem uero (siue fluuium) orietur in ripis eius ex utraque parte lignum omne pomiferum (siue, ut omnes uoce consona transtulerunt, βρώσιμον ‘quod cibum et escam tribuit’ et ‘quod mandi potest’, appellatur que lingua hebraea ‘machal’).
  • Hieronymus. Commentarii in prophetas minores (Commentary on Hosea) (CPL 0589) SL 76, In Osee, lib. : 1, cap. (s.s.) : 1, linea : 276.   iuxta typum dicimus, eos qui propter sanguinem seminis dei uocantur: absque misericordia, et dicere ausi sunt: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros, hucusque seruire romanis.
  • Hieronymus (Jerome), Commentarii in prophetas minores.  (Commentary on Joel) (CPL 0589) SL 76, In Ioelem, cap. (s.s.) : 2, linea : 721.  sol quoque est uersus in tenebras, quando pendentem dominum suum uidere non ausus est, et luna in sanguinem, quod aut iuxta historiam factum esse credamus et ab euangelistis silentio praetermissum, neque enim omnia quae fecit iesus, scripta referuntur; quae si scribantur per singula, ne ipsum quidem arbitror mundum capere eos, qui scribendi sunt, libros, aut certe quomodo sol uersus in tenebras est, non quod ipse sit mutatus in tenebras, sed quod tenebras mundo induxerit; sic et luna non est uersa in sanguinem, sed iudaeos blasphemiarum et negationis in christum horrore coopertos, aeterno testimonii sui sanguine condemnauit, dicentes: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros.
  • Hieronymus (Jerome), Commentarii in prophetas minores (Commentary on Amos) (CPL 0589) SL 76, In Amos.

lib. : 2, cap. (s.s.) : 5, linea : 773.  quorum deus odit et proicit festiuitates, et non capit odorem coetus eorum, quando congregati dicunt: crucifige, crucifige talem, et: sanguis eius super nos et super filios nostros.

lib. : 3, cap. (s.s.) : 9, linea : 23.  quod que iuxta lxx legimus: ut dissecaret in capitibus omnium, pulchre eorum capita diuiduntur, qui ab eo, qui caput est omnium, sua sponte diuisi sunt atque dixerunt: non habemus regem nisi caesarem, qui uoce impia clamauerunt: crucifige, crucifige talem, et: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros.

  • Hieronymus, Commentarii in prophetas minores (On Jonah), chap. 1. Via Cetedoc.[6]

LXX: And they shouted to the Lord, and they said: “By no means, Lord, may we perish because of the soul of this man, and do not hold over us the blood of a just man; for you, Lord, have done just as you wished.”

Great is the faith of the sailors, who are themselves in danger, yet they pray for the soul of another: for they know that death from sin is worse than physical death. “And do not hold over us”, they say, “the blood of an innocent man.” They call God to witness that whatever they would do should not be reckoned against them, and in a way they are saying: “We do not wish to kill your prophet, but he himself has admitted your wrath, and the storm tells us ‘that you, Lord, have done just as you have wished’– your will is being fulfilled through our hands.”

Does not the voice of the seamen seem to us to be the confession of Pilate, who washes his hands and says: “I am clean from the blood of this man.” (Mt. 27:24) The gentiles do not wish Christ to perish; they protest that this is the blood of an innocent man. But the Jews say: “His blood be upon us, and upon our children.” (Mt. 27:25) Therefore, if they lift up their hands in prayer they are not heard, since they are full of blood.

  • Hieronymus, Commentarii in prophetas minores (On Habbakuk) (CPL 0589)

SL 76A, In Abacuc, lib. : 1, cap. (s.s.) : 2, linea : 270.  sed et terrae impietas, id est iudaicae, et ciuitatis hierusalem, et omnium habitatorum eius; qui dixerunt aduersum creatorem suum: crucifige, crucifige eum; sanguis eius super nos et super filios nostros, reuertetur in caput tuum, et exspoliationis tuae causae erunt.

SL 76A, In Abacuc, lib. : 1, cap. (s.s.) : 2, linea : 507.  et quae dicit in domini passione: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros.

  • Hieronymus, Commentarii in prophetas minores (On Zephaniah) (CPL 0589)

SL 76A, In Sophoniam, cap. (s.s.) : 1, linea : 421. multi putant iuxta historiam quod ad babyloniorum tempora retulimus, intellegendum esse de primo saluatoris aduentu, quando propter peccata nimia, et clamorem populi concrepantem: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros, circumdata est ab exercitu hierusalem, et a duobus ursis, uespasiano uidelicet et tito, irridentium puerorum turba consumpta est.

SL 76A, In Sophoniam, cap. (s.s.) : 1, linea : 645.  uere enim expetita uindicta est a sanguine abel iusti usque ad sanguinem zachariae, quem occiderunt inter templum et altare, et ad extremum de dei filio, dicentes: sanguis eius super nos et super filios nostros, experti sunt diem amaram, quia ad amaritudinem dominum prouocauerant; diem a domino constitutam, in qua non imbecillis quilibet, sed fortissimi uiri deprimentur, et ueniet super eos ira in finem.

  • Hieronymus, Commentarii in prophetas minores  (On Haggai) (CPL 0589) SL 76A, In Aggaeum, cap. (s.s.) : 1, linea : 45.  porro ubi manus sanguine plenae sunt, et interficitur iesus, et audet populus dicere: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros ibi non fit sermo dei.
  • Hieronymus, Commentarii in prophetas minores (On Zachariah) (CPL 0589) SL 76A, In Zachariam.

lib. : 3, cap. (s.s.) : 11, linea : 191.  et hoc de uno iudaico populo dicere uidebatur, quod interfectis prophetis, etiam in filium dei misissent manus, et uoce temeraria conclamassent: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros.

lib. : 3, cap. (s.s.) : 12, linea : 362.  igitur et nunc tribus domus David, et tribus domus Nathan, et tribus domus Levi, et tribus domus  semei, a suis uxoribus separantur, ut plangant unigenitum et primogenitum dominum iesum, de quo dixerat: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros.

  • Hieronymus, Commentarii in iv epistulas Paulinas (Commentary on 4 letters of Paul – Titus) (CPL 0591).  Ad Titum, col. : 628, linea : 35.  postquam uero populus conclamauit: crucifige, crucifige eum; non habemus regem nisi caesarem: et: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros, et ablatum est ab eis regnum dei, et traditum genti facienti fructus eius: ex eo tempore, qui in christum non credidit, fuit stultus, errabundus, incredulus, et seruiens uariis uoluptatibus.
  1. [1]SL 73, lib. : 2, cap. (s.s.) : 4, par. : 4, linea : 3.   tunc saluabuntur reliquiae de israel, quando in baptismate saluatoris eis fuerint peccata dimissa et ille sanguis ablutus, quem super se errans populus imprecatus est: sanguis eius super nos et super filios nostros.
  2. [2]SL 73, lib. : 8, cap. (s.s.) : 27, par. : 9, linea : 11.   propterea, inquit, dimittetur iniquitas domui iacob et auferetur peccatum eius, ut mereatur benedictionem dei, qui sibi maledictionem fuerat imprecatus, dicens: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros, quia per apostolos de stirpe israel in toto orbe euangelium seminabitur, et destruetur idololatria, et comminuentur arae usque ad puluerem, succidentur luci, delubra corruent, et dei unius sub mysterio trinitatis notitia praedicabitur
  3. [3]SL 73A, lib. : 16, cap. (s.s.) : 57, par. : 3+, linea : 26.   et rursum: sanguis eius super nos et super filios nostros.
  4. [4]SL 73A, lib. : 16, cap. (s.s.) : 59, par. : 3+, linea : 16.    et quamquam ipsi manus non miserint in dominum saluatorem, tamen consona impietatis uoce clamantes: sanguis eius super nos et super filios nostros, mortis eius rei sunt, et habent pollutas manus.
  5. [5]SL 73A, lib. : 17, cap. (s.s.) : 63, par. : 17+, linea : 83.  dicentibus enim illis: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros, manet maledictio sempiterna, et non dominatur eorum deus, neque inuocatur nomen illius super eos, dum nequaquam dei populus nuncupatur.
  6. [6](CPL 0589).  CCSL 76, In Jonam, cap. (s.s.) : 1, linea : 415.  et iudaei dicunt: sanguis eius super nos, et super filios nostros. English translation T. Hegedus, Jerome’s commentary on Jonah: Translation with introduction and critical notes, thesis, 1991, p.24.

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