Discourses against Judaizing Christians

By Saint John Chrysostom; Paul W. Harkins | Go to book overview

DISCOURSE VIII

GONE IS THE FASTING [927] of the Jews, 1 or rather, the drunkenness of the Jews. 2 Yes, it is possible to be drunk without wine; it is possible for a sober man to act as if he is drunk and to revel like a prodigal. If a man could not get drunk without wine, the prophet would never have said: "Woe to those who are drunk not from wine;" 3 if a man could not get drunk without wine, Paul would never have said: "Do not be drunk with wine." 4 For he said this as if there were a possibi‐

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1
If Discourses IV-VIII constitute a series, this sermon would have been given after the Ten Days of Penitence and the Monday following Sukkot, probably in the year 387. Cf. Introd. III 25.'Given the content of the sermons already delivered, what now remains is to reclaim and rehabilitate those who have fallen into the Judaizing trap.
2
In Disc. 1.2.5 the Jews' hardness of heart came from a gluttony and drunkenness which made them reject Christ's yoke when they should have been fasting; now their fasting is untimely and an abomination (cf. Disc. 1.2.6). Those who fasted in Isaiah's day (cf. Is 58.4-5) should have been properly contrite instead of drunk with anger; now when the Jews fast, they dance in the marketplace and go to licentious excesses. Their pretext is that they are fasting, but they act like men who are drunk (cf. Disc. 1.2.7). Note that their drunkenness does not come from wine.
3
Cf. Is 29.9. The chapter deals with the Assyrians' assault on Jerusalem, but the invaders will fail because of Yahweh's protection. In her blindness and drunkenness (which makes her stagger, but not from strong drink) Jerusalem refuses to believe God's revelation that she will be saved. F. Moriarty, JBC 16:49, says that Judah's moral lethargy and persistent refusal to listen to conscience will inevitably lead to the loss of all moral sense.
4
Eph 5.18.

-205-

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Discourses against Judaizing Christians
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • The Fathers of the Church *
  • The Fathers of the Church *
  • Discourses against Judaizing Christians *
  • Contents v
  • Preface ix
  • Select Bibliography xiii
  • Abbreviations xvii
  • Discourses against Judaizing Christians *
  • Introduction xxi
  • Discourse I 1
  • Discourse II 35
  • Discourse III 47
  • Discourse IV 71
  • Discourse V 97
  • Discourse VI 147
  • Discourse VII 177
  • Discourse VIII 205
  • Indices 243
  • Generalindex 245
  • Index of Holy Scripture 273
  • The Fathers of the Church Series 287
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