But the Scripture has been opened since the Passion; since those who from then on have understood it, consider and discern in what way the prophecies must be interpreted.8° I 13 2. Read the Scripture within ‘the living Tradition of the whole Church’. According to a saying of the Fathers, Sacred Scripture is 81 written principally in the Church’s heart rather than in documents and records, for the Church carries in her Tradition the living memorial of God’s Word, and it is the Holy Spirit who gives her the spiritual interpretation of the Scripture (‘. . . according to the spiritual meaning which the Spirit grants to the Church’8’). 114 3. Be attentive to the analogy offaith.82 By ‘analogy of faith’ we mean the coherence of the truths of faith among themselves and 90 within the whole plan of Revelation.

The senses of Scripture

515 According to an ancient tradition, one can distinguish between two senses of Scripture: the literal and the spiritual, the latter being subdivided into the allegorical, moral and anagogical senses. The profound concordance of the four senses guarantees all its richness to the living reading of Scripture in the Church.

116 The literal sense is the meaning conveyed by the words of Scripture and discovered by exegesis, following the rules of sound interpretation: ‘All other 110 senses of Sacred Scripture are based on the literal.’8~ 117 The spiritual sense. Thanks to the unity of God’s plan, not only the text of 1101 Scripture but also the realities and events about which it speaks can be signs.


The allegorical sense. We can acquire a more profound understanding of

events by recognizing their significance in Christ; thus the crossing of the Red Sea is a sign or type of Christ’s victory and also of Christian Baptism.8~


The moral sense. The events reported in Scripture ought to lead us to act

justly. As St Paul says, they were written ‘for our instruction’.8~


The anagogical sense (Greek: anagögi, ‘leading’). We can view realities and

events in terms of their eternal significance, leading us toward our true homeland: thus the Church on earth is a sign of the heavenly Jerusalem.86
U I 18 A medieval couplet summarizes the significance of the four senses:

The Letter speaks of deeds; Allegory to faith;
The Moral how to act; Anagogy our destiny.8~

‘It is the task of exegetes to work, according to these rules, ards a better understanding and explanation of the meaning of