|Ezekiel 1: Nicolaus de Lyra super Bibliam, Italy ca. 1402.|
John Rylands Library Latin MS 30
Continuing this little series on reflections from St Bede that seem particularly apposite to our times.
St Bede focuses in on the restoration of the sheep gate and the fishgate - pointing out that sheep and fish are symbols of the faithful entering in - and notes that though many leaders fall along the way, Christ has guaranteed that some will always point us to the true way:
...For he saw that both the faith and the works of teachers, through which it was proper that others should be rescued from the waves of this corruptible life and brought into the Holy Church, would be thrown to the ground by attacks of the ancient enemy - that is, would be deprived of celestial joys through an appetite for earthly pleasures. ...he saw that both the outer works and the inner hearts of the neglectful were going to be overthrown by the devil's warfare.
But since the Lord lifts up those who are dashed down, Nehemiah relates that this same Fish Gate, after a long period of ruin, was restored because, even though occasionally some preaches fall through sinning, nevertheless up to the end of the world there will be no lack of those who, following in the place of their precedessors, open the gates of righteousness through the Lord's aid by preaching to the faithful and living well. (On Ezra and Nehemiah, Trans DeGregorio, pg 166)