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36

Part One

form of preaching, but always in such a fashion that they have told us the

honest truth about Jesus.”

101

127

The fourfold Gospel holds a unique place in the Church, as

is evident both in the veneration which the liturgy accords it and in

the surpassing attraction it has exercised on the saints at all times:

There is no doctrine which could be better, more precious

and more splendid than the text of the Gospel. Behold and

retain what our Lord and Master, Christ, has taught by his

words and accomplished by his deeds.

102

But above all it’s the Gospels that occupy my mind when I’m

at prayer; my poor soul has so many needs, and yet this is

the one thing needful. I’m always finding fresh lights there,

hidden and enthralling meanings.

103

The unity of the Old and New Testaments

128

The Church, as early as apostolic times,

104

and then con-

stantly in her Tradition, has illuminated the unity of the divine plan

in the two Testaments through typology, which discerns in God’s

works of the Old Covenant prefigurations of what he accom-

plished in the fullness of time in the person of his incarnate Son.

129

Christians therefore read the Old Testament in the light of

Christ crucified and risen. Such typological reading discloses the

inexhaustible content of the Old Testament; but it must not make

us forget that the Old Testament retains its own intrinsic value as

Revelation reaffirmed by our Lord himself.

105

Besides, the New

Testament has to be read in the light of the Old. Early Christian

catechesis made constant use of the Old Testament.

106

As an old

saying put it, the New Testament lies hidden in the Old and the

Old Testament is unveiled in the New.

107

130

Typology indicates the dynamic movement toward the

fulfillment of the divine plan when “God [will] be everything to

everyone.”

108

Nor do the calling of the patriarchs and the exodus

from Egypt, for example, lose their own value in God’s plan, from

the mere fact that they were intermediate stages.

101

DV

19.

102 St. Caesaria the Younger to St. Richildis and St. Radegunde,

SCh

345, 480.

103 St. Thérèse of Lisieux,

ms. autob.

A 83v.

104 Cf.

1 Cor

10:6, 11;

Heb

10:1;

1 Pet

3:21.

105 Cf.

Mk

12:29-31.

106 Cf.

1 Cor

5:6-8; 10:1-11.

107 Cf. St. Augustine,

Quaest. in Hept.

2, 73: PL 34, 623; cf.

DV

16.

108

1 Cor

15:28.

1154

2705

1094

489

681

2055

1968