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SERMON ON THE PARALYTIC (Homilia eis ton paralytikon ton epi ten kolymbethran) Translated by ANTHONY A. STEPHENSON University of Exeter England INTRODUCTION [(IYRIL'S SINGLE EXTANT sermon is found in only two manuscripts so far edited, B (Bod!, Roe 25, xi s.) and R (Paris, B. N. graec. 1447 [Regius 2030; ca. 1100)),. There is a lacuna in B, but R is apparently entire. The evidence, on balance, strongly favours the Cyrilline authenticity of the Sermon. The silence of the monk Alexander and the Armenian tradition,l which know only the Lenten Lectures and the Letter to Constantius, is not very significant, for, unlike the catechetical lectures, the Sermon had no special interest for the Armenian Church and, unlike the Letter, it had no public interest. A comparison with the Lenten Lectures strongly suggests authenticity, for the differences in style between the two works are explained by their different subjects, and the distinction drawn in Cat. 13.9 between the method of the Lenten Lectures and the devotional mode of the ordinary sermon (d. Procat. II), with its mystical/allegorical (theoretike, not "speculative") exegesis, prepares us for exactly what we find in the Sermon. When in the Lenten Lectures Cyril yields to his attrait, we find there passages very like the Sermon, notably Cat. 13.30-31 and 10.13, which summarizes many of the themes of the Sermon. A difficulty, however, arises from the reference to "our Father's teaching" in chapter 20. Touttee, assuming that on Sundays there were several sermons preached by presbyters in ascending order of seniority, the bishop preaching last, assumed that Cyril was senior presbyter. But Cyril was not ordained presbyter until 1 The Armenian life is published by E. Bihain, Le Museon 76 (1963) 341-48 (cf. 333-38 for Cyril's literarY activity). For the monk Alexander, see above p. 145. 207 208 ST. CYRIL OF JERUSALEM after Serdica (A.D. 342), and in the last years before Bishop Maximus' death in 348/9 relations between them were probably strained.2 But see notes to chapter 20. The Sermon resembles the Lenten Lectures in its anti-Jewish polemic, but its attitude to sex and marriage in chapters 10-12, where the imagery of the Song of Songs is taken to apply to the Passion, is more negative than in Cat. 4.24-26. Cyril's text apparently lacked John 5.4, since there is no reference to the angel, but apparently included verse 3b (d. ch.9). The text of the Sermon, like that of the Mystagogical Lectures , is rather extensively corrupt and presents the translator with many troublesome problems. For an appraisal of the sermon, see Vol. 1 (FOTC Vol. 61) pp.6-11. 2 Vol. 1 (FOTe Vol. 61), pp. 21, 22. SERMON ON THE PARALYTIC A sermon of our Blessed Father, Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem, on the Paralytic at the POOll (1) Wherever Jesus appears, there is salvation. If He sees a revenue officer .sitting in his office, He makes him an apostle and evangelist. Laid in the grave, He raises the dead to life.2 He bestows sight on the blind, hearing on the deaf.3 When, as now, He visits the public baths, it is not out of interest in the architecture,4 but to heal the sick. (2) By the Sheep Market in Jerusalem there used to be a pool with five colonnades,5 four of which enclosed the pool, while the fifth spanned it midway. Here large numbers of sick would lie (unbelief also was rife among the Jews),.6 The physician and healer of both souls and bodies showed fairness in choosing this chronic sufferer to be the first recipient I John 5.2, 3, 5-14. For the absence of verse 4, see above, p. 208. There had also been a reading from St. Paul to the Romans; see below at n.66. 2 Cf. Matt. 27.53. 3 Cf. ch. 9 fin., and Cat. 10.5. 4 As the Greeks specialized in temples, so the Romans' great architectural achievement was their baths. The baths of Caracalla occupied, with their gardens and gymnasia, over thirty-three acres. The five colonnades or porches of John 5.2 suggest that the Pool of the Sheep Market (?) was a public bath. 5 As R has "there was the Sheep Pool," our two MSS reproduce the same divergence as the New Testament MSS. The pool is probably to be identified with the trapezoidal double pool of St...


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