Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Nota Bene

Isidore, Sententiae 1.2.2

The second sententia of the second chapter of Book 1 of Isidore’s Sententiae deals with the divine omnipotence.

Text and Translation

Omnipotentia divinae maiestatis cuncta potestatis suae inmensitate concludit, nec evadendi potentiam eius quis aditum invenire poterit, quia ille omnia circumquaque constringit. Cuncta enim intra divini iudicii omnipotentiam coartantur, sive quae continenda sunt ut salva sint, sive quae amputanda sunt ut pereant. Nullatenus ergo posse effugi Deum quempiam. Qui enim non habet placatum, nequaquam evadet iratum.

The omnipotence of the divine majesty embraces all things with the immensity of its own power, nor will anyone be able to discover a way of escaping his might, because he binds all things on every side. For all things are confined within the omnipotence of the divine judgment, whether the things that are to be kept together fast in order that they may be saved, or the things that are to be cut off in order that they may perish. To no extent, therefore, can anyone escape from God. For he who does not have him pacified will in no way escape him angered.1


  1. In general, this is pretty straightforward: God’s omnipotence is, well, omnipotent, embracing all things, with no possibility of a creature avoiding it. This applies both to the saved and the lost.
  2. There are a couple of syntactical oddities again. In the penultimate sentence, there is once more no finite verb; posse must be read as though it were one (the PL editors insert dicimus in parentheses). In addition, effugi, a passive infinitive, is treated as deponent, and thus as having active meaning (the PL editors read effugere, which has some manuscript support).


  1. The translation is my own, after the text of Cazier.

By E.J. Hutchinson

E.J. Hutchinson is Assistant Professor of Classics at Hillsdale College.

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