On Not Teaching Everything You Know

Two years ago I wrote among sixty-seven articles one, the eighteenth, on the Eucharist, in which I wrote many things with a view rather to the times than to the thing itself. For not even Christ could praise enough the faithful steward of His word who in due season sets meat before the household of his Lord; of whom He speaks with admiration in Matt. 24:45: "Who," that is, how great, "is the faithful and wise steward to whom his lord hath entrusted his household to give them food in due season?" I determined, therefore, unceasingly so to dispense the word as to reap the greatest harvest for my Lord. For who would not cast off a servant who should proceed to plough the ground in the dead of winter and to sow seed in it? These things are to be done in the spring time. So I made many concessions at that time to the tender minds of those for whom I wrote, but all for their edification. After the example of Christ I distributed and kept in store as well; for after He had instituted the Eucharist, He said [Jn. 16:12-23] that He had yet many things which must be told to the disciples, but they could not bear them then; therefore He determined to keep them until the coming of the Holy Spirit. When, therefore, kind reader, you come upon some things here which you have not seen in my earlier writings, or some things said more plainly here than elsewhere, and some things said differently, do not be astonished. I did not wish to give food when the time was unseasonable, or to cast pearls before swine [Mt. 7:6].

source: Ulrich Zwingli, "Commentary On True and False Religion" (1525) tags: Discernment, Teaching