For the gold and the silver are the good men, but the gold are the better men and silver the less good men. In the same way the wood and the earth are the wicked men, but he earth are the worse men while the wood are the less evil men.
Consequently he designates a diversity regarding use, so that the good are vessels of honor, as it were deputed for honorable use; the evil are earth and wood, as it were deputed for dishonor, that is, vile use. In the same way among men, some, namely the saints, are as it were precious vessels....But some are useless vessels, namely the evil.
[Thomas Aquinas, Commentaries on St. Paul's Epistles to Timothy, Titus, and Philemon, Baer, tr. St. Augustine's Press (South Bend, IN: 2007) p. 121.]