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101. Ceremonial Precepts of the Old Law

1. The ceremonial precepts of the Old Law were divinelydetermined ways of giving God proper external worship. Now, theduty of worshiping God, outwardly as well as interiorly, rests onman as a moral obligation. Hence, the ceremonial precepts weredeterminate applications of the moral law.

2. The fullness of revelation had not been made when theOld Law was promulgated. Hence, it was fitting that the ceremoniesprescribed in the Old Law should look forward to that fullness:they should have a figurative and prophetic meaning; they shouldprophetically refer to Christ and His Church and the way to heavenopened by the Christian dispensation. And so indeed they do.

3. The Old Law had many ceremonial precepts to instructand guide the people, and to counteract their tendency toidolatry.

4. The ceremonies of the Old Law may be classified underfour heads: sacrifices; sacred things (tabernacles, vessels,instruments of worship); purifying preparations for divine worship(sometimes called consecrations or sacraments); and observanceswith reference to special food, vestments, actions, etc.

"The supreme perfection of man in this life is to be so united to God that all his soul with all its faculties and powers are so gathered into the Lord God that he becomes one spirit with him, and remembers nothing except God, is aware of and recognises nothing but God, but with all his desires unified by the joy of love, he rests contentedly in the enjoyment of his Maker alone."
St Albert the Great

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"God has no need of men."
St Philip Neri

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"God gives us some things, as the beginning of faith, even when we do not pray. Other things, such as perseverance, he has only provided for those who pray."
St Augustine

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