Blaise Pascal.

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The symbols of the Gospel for the state of the sick soul are sick
bodies; but because one body cannot be sick enough to express it well,
several have been needed. Thus there are the deaf, the dumb, the blind,
the paralytic, the dead Lazarus, the possessed. All this crowd is in the
sick soul.


_Types._ - To show that the Old Testament is only figurative, and that
the prophets understood by temporal blessings other blessings, this is
the proof:

First, that this would be unworthy of God.

Secondly, that their discourses express very clearly the promise of
temporal blessings, and that they say nevertheless that their discourses
are obscure, and that their meaning will not be understood. Whence it
appears that this secret meaning was not that which they openly
expressed, and that consequently they meant to speak of other
sacrifices, of another deliverer, etc. They say that they will be
understood only in the fullness of time (Jer. xxx, _ult._).

The third proof is that their discourses are contradictory, and
neutralise each other; so that if we think that they did not mean by the
words "law" and "sacrifice" anything else than that of Moses, there is a
plain and gross contradiction. Therefore they meant something else,
sometimes contradicting themselves in the same chapter. Now, to
understand the meaning of an author ...


Lust has become natural to us, and has made our second nature. Thus
there are two natures in us - the one good, the other bad. Where is God?
Where you are not, and the kingdom of God is within you. The Rabbis.


Penitence, alone of all these mysteries, has been manifestly declared to
the Jews, and by Saint John, the Forerunner; and then the other
mysteries; to indicate that in each man, as in the entire world, this
order must be observed.


The carnal Jews understood neither the greatness nor the humiliation of
the Messiah foretold in their prophecies. They misunderstood Him in His
foretold greatness, as when He said that the Messiah should be lord of
David, though his son, and that He was before Abraham, who had seen Him.
They did not believe Him so great as to be eternal, and they likewise
misunderstood Him in His humiliation and in His death. "The Messiah,"
said they, "abideth for ever, and this man says that he shall die."[240]
Therefore they believed Him neither mortal nor eternal; they only sought
in Him for a carnal greatness.


_Typical._ - Nothing is so like charity as covetousness, and nothing is
so opposed to it. Thus the Jews, full of possessions which flattered
their covetousness, were very like Christians, and very contrary. And by
this means they had the two qualities which it was necessary they should
have, to be very like the Messiah to typify Him, and very contrary not
to be suspected witnesses.


_Typical._ - God made use of the lust of the Jews to make them minister
to Jesus Christ, [who brought the remedy for their lust].


Charity is not a figurative precept. It is dreadful to say that Jesus
Christ, who came to take away types in order to establish the truth,
came only to establish the type of charity, in order to take away the
existing reality which was there before.

"If the light be darkness, how great is that darkness!"[241]


Fascination. _Somnum suum.[242] Figura hujus mundi._[243]

The Eucharist. _Comedes panem_ tuum.[244] _Panem_ nostrum.

_Inimici Dei terram lingent._[245] Sinners lick the dust, that is to
say, love earthly pleasures.

The Old Testament contained the types of future joy, and the New
contains the means of arriving at it. The types were of joy; the means
of penitence; and nevertheless the Paschal Lamb was eaten with bitter
herbs, _cum amaritudinibus_.[246]

_Singularis sum ego donec transeam._[247] - Jesus Christ before His death
was almost the only martyr.


_Typical._ - The expressions, sword, shield. _Potentissime._


We are estranged, only by departing from charity. Our prayers and our
virtues are abominable before God, if they are not the prayers and the
virtues of Jesus Christ. And our sins will never be the object of
[_mercy_], but of the justice of God, if they are not [_those of_] Jesus
Christ. He has adopted our sins, and has [_admitted_] us into union
[_with Him_], for virtues are [_His own, and_] sins are foreign to Him;
while virtues _[are]_ foreign to us, and our sins are our own.

Let us change the rule which we have hitherto chosen for judging what is
good. We had our own will as our rule. Let us now take the will of
[_God_]; all that He wills is good and right to us, all that He does not
will is [_bad_].

All that God does not permit is forbidden. Sins are forbidden by the
general declaration that God has made, that He did not allow them. Other
things which He has left without general prohibition, and which for that
reason are said to be permitted, are nevertheless not always permitted.
For when God removed some one of them from us, and when, by the event,
which is a manifestation of the will of God, it appears that God does
not will that we should have a thing, that is then forbidden to us as
sin; since the will of God is that we should not have one more than
another. There is this sole difference between these two things, that it
is certain that God will never allow sin, while it is not certain that
He will never allow the other. But so long as God does not permit it, we
ought to regard it as sin; so long as the absence of God's will, which
alone is all goodness and all justice, renders it unjust and wrong.


To change the type, because of our weakness.


_Types._ - The Jews had grown old in these earthly thoughts, that God
loved their father Abraham, his flesh and what sprung from it; that on
account of this He had multiplied them, and distinguished them from all
other nations, without allowing them to intermingle; that when they were
languishing in Egypt, He brought them out with all these great signs in
their favour; that He fed them with manna in the desert, and led them
into a very rich land; that He gave them kings and a well-built temple,
in order to offer up beasts before Him, by the shedding of whose blood
they should be purified; and that at last He was to send them the
Messiah to make them masters of all the world, and foretold the time of
His coming.

The world having grown old in these carnal errors, Jesus Christ came at
the time foretold, but not with the expected glory; and thus men did not
think it was He. After His death, Saint Paul[248] came to teach men that
all these things had happened in allegory; that the kingdom of God did
not consist in the flesh, but in the spirit; that the enemies of men
were not the Babylonians, but the passions; that God delighted not in
temples made with hands, but in a pure and contrite heart; that the
circumcision of the body was unprofitable, but that of the heart was
needed; that Moses had not given them the bread from heaven, etc.[249]

But God, not having desired to reveal these things to this people who
were unworthy of them, and having nevertheless desired to foretell them,
in order that they might be believed, foretold the time clearly, and
expressed the things sometimes clearly, but very often in figures, in
order that those who loved symbols might consider them, and those who
loved what was symbolised might see it therein.

All that tends not to charity is figurative.

The sole aim of the Scripture is charity.

All which tends not to the sole end is the type of it. For since there
is only one end, all which does not lead to it in express terms is

God thus varies that sole precept of charity to satisfy our curiosity,
which seeks for variety, by that variety which still leads us to the one
thing needful. For one thing alone is needful,[250] and we love variety;
and God satisfies both by these varieties, which lead to the one thing

The Jews have so much loved the shadows, and have so strictly expected
them, that they have misunderstood the reality, when it came in the time
and manner foretold.

The Rabbis take the breasts of the Spouse[251] for types, and all that
does not express the only end they have, namely, temporal good.

And Christians take even the Eucharist as a type of the glory at which
they aim.


The Jews, who have been called to subdue nations and kings, have been
the slaves of sin; and the Christians, whose calling has been to be
servants and subjects, are free children.[252]


_A formal point._ - When Saint Peter and the Apostles deliberated about
abolishing circumcision, where it was a question of acting against the
law of God, they did not heed the prophets, but simply the reception of
the Holy Spirit in the persons uncircumcised.[253]

They thought it more certain that God approved of those whom He filled
with His Spirit, than it was that the law must be obeyed. They knew that
the end of the law was only the Holy Spirit; and that thus, as men
certainly had this without circumcision, it was not necessary.


_Fac secundum exemplar quod tibi ostensum est in monte._[254] - The
Jewish religion then has been formed on its likeness to the truth of the
Messiah; and the truth of the Messiah has been recognised by the Jewish
religion, which was the type of it.

Among the Jews the truth was only typified; in heaven it is revealed.

In the Church it is hidden, and recognised by its resemblance to the

The type has been made according to the truth, and the truth has been
recognised according to the type.

Saint Paul[255] says himself that people will forbid to marry, and he
himself speaks of it to the Corinthians in a way which is a snare. For
if a prophet had said the one, and Saint Paul had then said the other,
he would have been accused.


_Typical._ - "Do all things according to the pattern which has been shown
thee on the mount." On which Saint Paul says that the Jews have shadowed
forth heavenly things.[256]


... And yet this Covenant, made to blind some and enlighten others,
indicated in those very persons, whom it blinded, the truth which should
be recognised by others. For the visible blessings which they received
from God were so great and so divine, that He indeed appeared able to
give them those that are invisible, and a Messiah.

For nature is an image of Grace, and visible miracles are images of the
invisible. _Ut sciatis ... tibi dico: Surge._

Isaiah says that Redemption will be as the passage of the Red Sea.

God has then shown by the deliverance from Egypt, and from the sea, by
the defeat of kings, by the manna, by the whole genealogy of Abraham,
that He was able to save, to send down bread from heaven, etc.; so that
the people hostile to Him are the type and the representation of the
very Messiah whom they know not, etc.

He has then taught us at last that all these things were only types, and
what is "true freedom," a "true Israelite," "true circumcision," "true
bread from heaven," etc.

In these promises each one finds what he has most at heart, temporal
benefits or spiritual, God or the creatures; but with this difference,
that those who therein seek the creatures find them, but with many
contradictions, with a prohibition against loving them, with the command
to worship God only, and to love Him only, which is the same thing, and,
finally, that the Messiah came not for them; whereas those who therein
seek God find Him, without any contradiction, with the command to love
Him only, and that the Messiah came in the time foretold, to give them
the blessings which they ask.

Thus the Jews had miracles and prophecies, which they say fulfilled and
the teaching of their law was to worship and love God only; it was also
perpetual. Thus it had all the marks of the true religion; and so it
was. But the Jewish teaching must be distinguished from the teaching of
the Jewish law. Now the Jewish teaching was not true, although it had
miracles and prophecy and perpetuity, because it had not this other
point of worshipping and loving God only.


The veil, which is upon these books for the Jews, is there also for evil
Christians, and for all who do not hate themselves.

But how well disposed men are to understand them and to know Jesus
Christ, when they truly hate themselves!


A type conveys absence and presence, pleasure and pain.

A cipher has a double meaning, one clear, and one in which it is said
that the meaning is hidden.


_Types._ - A portrait conveys absence and presence, pleasure and pain.
The reality excludes absence and pain.

To know if the law and the sacrifices are a reality or a type, we must
see if the prophets, in speaking of these things, confined their view
and their thought to them, so that they saw only the old covenant; or if
they saw therein something else of which they were the representation,
for in a portrait we see the thing figured. For this we need only
examine what they say of them.

When they say that it will be eternal, do they mean to speak of that
covenant which they say will be changed; and so of the sacrifices, etc.?

A cipher has two meanings. When we find out an important letter in which
we discover a clear meaning, and in which it is nevertheless said that
the meaning is veiled and obscure, that it is hidden, so that we might
read the letter without seeing it, and interpret it without
understanding it, what must we think but that here is a cipher with a
double meaning, and the more so if we find obvious contradictions in the
literal meaning? The prophets have clearly said that Israel would be
always loved by God, and that the law would be eternal; and they have
said that their meaning would not be understood, and that it was veiled.

How greatly then ought we to value those who interpret the cipher, and
teach us to understand the hidden meaning, especially if the principles
which they educe are perfectly clear and natural! This is what Jesus
Christ did, and the Apostles. They broke the seal; He rent the veil, and
revealed the spirit. They have taught us through this that the enemies
of man are his passions; that the Redeemer would be spiritual, and His
reign spiritual; that there would be two advents, one in lowliness to
humble the proud, the other in glory to exalt the humble; that Jesus
Christ would be both God and man.


_Types._ - Jesus Christ opened their mind to understand the Scriptures.

Two great revelations are these. (1) All things happened to them in
types: _vere Israëlitæ, vere liberi_, true bread from Heaven. (2) A God
humbled to the Cross. It was necessary that Christ should suffer in
order to enter into glory, "that He should destroy death through
death."[257] Two advents.


_Types._ - When once this secret is disclosed, it is impossible not to
see it. Let us read the Old Testament in this light, and let us see if
the sacrifices were real; if the fatherhood of Abraham was the true
cause of the friendship of God; and if the promised land was the true
place of rest. No. They are therefore types. Let us in the same way
examine all those ordained ceremonies, all those commandments which are
not of charity, and we shall see that they are types.

All these sacrifices and ceremonies were then either types or nonsense.
Now these are things too clear, and too lofty, to be thought nonsense.

To know if the prophets confined their view in the Old Testament, or saw
therein other things.


_Typical._ - The key of the cipher. _Veri adoratores._[258] - _Ecce agnus
Dei qui tollit peccata mundi._[259]


Is. i, 21. Change of good into evil, and the vengeance of God. Is. x, I;
xxvi, 20; xxviii, I. Miracles: Is. xxxiii, 9; xl, 17; xli, 26; xliii,

Jer. xi, 21; xv, 12; xvii, 9. _Pravum est cor omnium et incrustabile;
quis cognoscet illud?_ that is to say, Who can know all its evil? For it
is already known to be wicked. _Ego dominus_, etc. - vii, 14, _Faciam
domui huic_, etc. Trust in external sacrifices - vii, 22, _Quia non sum
locutus_, etc. Outward sacrifice is not the essential point - xi, 13,
_Secundum numerum_, etc. A multitude of doctrines.

Is. xliv, 20-24; liv, 8; lxiii, 12-17; lxvi, 17. Jer. ii, 35; iv, 22-24;
v, 4, 29-31; vi, 16; xxiii, 15-17.


_Types_, - The letter kills. All happened in types. Here is the cipher
which Saint Paul gives us. Christ must suffer. An humiliated God.
Circumcision of the heart, true fasting, true sacrifice, a true temple.
The prophets have shown that all these must be spiritual.

Not the meat which perishes, but that which does not perish.

"Ye shall be free indeed."[260] Then the other freedom was only a type
of freedom.

"I am the true bread from Heaven."[261]


_Contradiction._ - We can only describe a good character by reconciling
all contrary qualities, and it is not enough to keep up a series of
harmonious qualities, without reconciling contradictory ones. To
understand the meaning of an author, we must make all the contrary
passages agree.

Thus, to understand Scripture, we must have a meaning in which all the
contrary passages are reconciled. It is not enough to have one which
suits many concurring passages; but it is necessary to have one which
reconciles even contradictory passages.

Every author has a meaning in which all the contradictory passages
agree, or he has no meaning at all. We cannot affirm the latter of
Scripture and the prophets; they undoubtedly are full of good sense. We
must then seek for a meaning which reconciles all discrepancies.

The true meaning then is not that of the Jews; but in Jesus Christ all
the contradictions are reconciled.

The Jews could not reconcile the cessation of the royalty and
principality, foretold by Hosea, with the prophecy of Jacob.

If we take the law, the sacrifices, and the kingdom as realities, we
cannot reconcile all the passages. They must then necessarily be only
types. We cannot even reconcile the passages of the same author, nor of
the same book, nor sometimes of the same chapter, which indicates
copiously what was the meaning of the author. As when Ezekiel, chap, xx,
says that man will not live by the commandments of God and will live by


_Types._ - If the law and the sacrifices are the truth, it must please
God, and must not displease Him. If they are types, they must be both
pleasing and displeasing.

Now in all the Scripture they are both pleasing and displeasing. It is
said that the law shall be changed; that the sacrifice shall be changed;
that they shall be without law, without a prince, and without a
sacrifice; that a new covenant shall be made; that the law shall be
renewed; that the precepts which they have received are not good; that
their sacrifices are abominable; that God has demanded none of them.

It is said, on the contrary, that the law shall abide for ever; that
this covenant shall be for ever; that sacrifice shall be eternal; that
the sceptre shall never depart from among them, because it shall not
depart from them till the eternal King comes.

Do all these passages indicate what is real? No. Do they then indicate
what is typical? No, but what is either real or typical. But the first
passages, excluding as they do reality, indicate that all this is only

All these passages together cannot be applied to reality; all can be
said to be typical; therefore they are not spoken of reality, but of the

_Agnus occisus est ab origine mundi._[262] A sacrificing judge.


_Contradictions._ - The sceptre till the Messiah - without king or prince.

The eternal law - changed.

The eternal covenant - a new covenant.

Good laws - bad precepts. Ezekiel.


_Types._ - When the word of God, which is really true, is false
literally, it is true spiritually. _Sede a dextris meis:_[263] this is
false literally, therefore it is true spiritually.

In these expressions, God is spoken of after the manner of men; and
this means nothing else but that the intention which men have in giving
a seat at their right hand, God will have also. It is then an indication
of the intention of God, not of His manner of carrying it out.

Thus when it is said, "God has received the odour of your incense, and
will in recompense give you a rich land," that is equivalent to saying
that the same intention which a man would have, who, pleased with your
perfumes, should in recompense give you a rich land, God will have
towards you, because you have had the same intention as a man has
towards him to whom he presents perfumes. So _iratus est_, a "jealous
God,"[264] etc. For, the things of God being inexpressible, they cannot
be spoken of otherwise, and the Church makes use of them even to-day:
_Quia confortavil seras_,[265] etc.

It is not allowable to attribute to Scripture the meaning which is not
revealed to us that it has. Thus, to say that the closed _mem_[266] of
Isaiah signifies six hundred, has not been revealed. It might be said
that the final _tsade_ and _he deficientes_ may signify mysteries. But
it is not allowable to say so, and still less to say this is the way of
the philosopher's stone. But we say that the literal meaning is not the
true meaning, because the prophets have themselves said so.


I do not say that the _mem_ is mystical.


Moses (Deut. xxx) promises that God will circumcise their heart to
render them capable of loving Him.


One saying of David, or of Moses, as for instance that "God will
circumcise the heart," enables us to judge of their spirit. If all their
other expressions were ambiguous, and left us in doubt whether they were
philosophers or Christians, one saying of this kind would in fact
determine all the rest, as one sentence of Epictetus decides the meaning
of all the rest to be the opposite. So far ambiguity exists, but not


If one of two persons, who are telling silly stories, uses language with
a double meaning, understood in his own circle, while the other uses it
with only one meaning, any one not in the secret, who hears them both
talk in this manner, will pass upon them the same judgment. But if
afterwards, in the rest of their conversation one says angelic things,
and the other always dull commonplaces, he will judge that the one spoke
in mysteries, and not the other; the one having sufficiently shown that
he is incapable of such foolishness, and capable of being mysterious;
and the other that he is incapable of mystery, and capable of

The Old Testament is a cipher.


There are some that see clearly that man has no other enemy than lust,
which turns him from God, and not God; and that he has no other good
than God, and not a rich land. Let those who believe that the good of
man is in the flesh, and evil in what turns him away from sensual
pleasures, [_satiate_] themselves with them, and [_die_] in them. But
let those who seek God with all their heart, who are only troubled at
not seeing Him, who desire only to possess Him, and have as enemies only
those who turn them away from Him, who are grieved at seeing themselves
surrounded and overwhelmed with such enemies, take comfort. I proclaim
to them happy news. There exists a Redeemer for them. I shall show Him
to them. I shall show that there is a God for them. I shall not show Him
to others. I shall make them see that a Messiah has been promised, who
should deliver them from their enemies, and that One has come to free
them from their iniquities, but not from their enemies.

When David foretold that the Messiah would deliver His people from their
enemies, one can believe that in the flesh these would be the Egyptians;
and then I cannot show that the prophecy was fulfilled. But one can well
believe also that the enemies would be their sins; for indeed the
Egyptians were not their enemies, but their sins were so. This word,
enemies, is therefore ambiguous. But if he says elsewhere, as he does,
that He will deliver His people from their sins, as indeed do Isaiah and
others, the ambiguity is removed, and the double meaning of enemies is
reduced to the simple meaning of iniquities. For if he had sins in his
mind, he could well denote them as enemies; but if he thought of
enemies, he could not designate them as iniquities.

Now Moses, David, and Isaiah used the same terms. Who will say then that
they have not the same meaning, and that David's meaning, which is
plainly iniquities when he spoke of enemies, was not the same as [_that
of_] Moses when speaking of enemies?

Daniel (ix) prays for the deliverance of the people from the captivity

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