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HAYDOCK CATHOLIC BIBLE COMMENTARY ON THE OLD TESTAMENT



TOBIAS 4

 

CHAPTER IV.

 

Ver. 1.  When.  Gr. and Heb. and the old Vulg. (C.) "That very day Tobit remembered the money which he had deposited with Gabael...and said within himself, I begged for death; why do I not call Tobias, my son that I may declare it to him before I die?  And calling him, he said: Son, if I die, bury me, and despise not thy mother."  H. --- He gives him fourteen instructions, in imitation of Moses and David.  3 K. ii. W.

 

Ver. 3.  Life.  S. Aug. (Conf. x. 34) cries out, "O Light, which Tobias had in view, when these corporal eyes being closed, he taught his son the way of life."

 

Ver. 5.  By me.  Gr. adds, "in the same sepulchre," like the patriarchs.  Pope Leo decreed: statuimus unumquemque in sepulchro suorum majorum jacere.

 

Ver. 7.  Substance.  Be not liberal of another’s property.  Gr. adds, "and let not thy eye be envious, when thou givest alms."  Do it generously.  C. --- The same doctrine of the reward of good works, occurs Dan. iv. 24.  W.

 

Ver. 9.  Little. God regards the affections more than the gift.  C.

 

Ver. 11.  Sin, provided faith, &c. be not wanting.  M. --- When the Scripture seems to attribute salvation to one virtue, to faith, repentance, &c. it always presupposes that the heart is free from all mortal guilt.  H. --- Alms deeds may procure a fresh supply of graces.  M. --- Darkness, or hell, which is thus represented.  Matt. viii. 12. and xxii. 13.  Eph. vi. 12.

 

Ver. 12.  Give it, with true charity.  1 Cor. xiii. 3.  C.

 

Ver. 13.  Crime, or any commerce with another. H. --- Gr. and Heb. add, conformable to the law, (Ex. xxxiv. 16.)  "And take not a strange woman, who may not be of thy father's tribe, as we are the sons of the prophets, Noe, &c...All these married from among their brethren, and were blessed in their children, and their seed shall inherit the land."  H.

 

Ver. 14.  Perdition of the angels, of Adam, &c.  C.  Gen. iii. 5.  M.

 

Ver. 15.  At all, after sunset.  Deut. xxiv. 14.

 

Ver. 16.  Another.  Behold the grand maxim of fraternal charity.  Matt. viii. 12.  Alex. Severus was so much pleased with it, that he had it often repeated by a herald, and inscribed on public edifices.  What thou wouldst not have done to thee, do not thou to another.  Lamprid. --- Gr. and Heb. add a caution against drunkenness and drunken companions.  Fagius has another against revenge; and the old Vulg. "give not way to wickedness."

 

Ver. 17.  Eat.  Gr. "give." --- Naked.  Gr. adds, "give in alms all thy superfluities, And let not thy eye repine," &c. as v. 7.  H.

 

Ver. 18.  Burial, or sepulchre. See Bar. vi. 26.  Eccli. vii. 37. and xxx. 18.  The Jews followed this custom, which was common to the pagans, but from very different motives.  The latter supposed that the souls fed on such meats.  The Jews, and afterwards Christians, did it to feed the indigent, that they might pray for the deceased.  These feasts were sometimes abused, and on that account forbidden by S. Ambrose, to whose authority S. Monica submitted.  S. Aug. Conf. vi. 3.  See Const. Apost. viii. 24.  C. --- Just man, who may be supposed to have died in God's peace.  H. --- It is of no service to pray and give alms for the damned. ---  Wicked, so as to encourage their evil conduct.  M. --- Works of mercy extend to the dead.  W.

 

Ver. 20.  Abide.  Gr. "prosper," (M.) or "be directed.  For every nation has not counsel: but this same Lord bestows all good things.  And whensoever he will, he humbles, as he pleases.  And now, my son, remember my commands, and let them not be effaced from thy heart.  Now, also, I make known unto thee the ten talents of silver, which I deposited with Gabael," &c.  H.

 

Ver. 21.  And I.  The Gr. &c. take no notice of this, (C.) nor of the following verse.  H. --- The virtuous dispose of their temporal effects by will, &c.  W.

 

Ver. 23.  We lead.  Gr. "if we grow poor. Thou hast much if thou fear," &c.

 

 








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