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HAYDOCK CATHOLIC BIBLE COMMENTARY ON THE OLD TESTAMENT



PSALM 106

 

PSALM CVI.  (CONFITEMINI DOMINO.)

All are invited to give thanks to God for his perpetual providence over men.

 

Ver. 1.  Alleluia.  S. Aug. repeats this word.  But it occurs in the Heb. &c. at the end of the preceding psalm, of which this is a continuation, shewing how God pardoned his people, and delivered them from captivity, (C.) and mankind from sin.  H.  Fathers  Bert. --- Glory.  Lit. "confess" your sins, thay you may praise God, (Ps. cv.  H.) and adore his mercy and providence. W.

 

Ver. 2.  Countries.  The Jews from Babylon, and all who were redeemed by Christ.  C. --- He was promised immediately after the fall.  W.

 

Ver. 3.  Sea.  Heb. miyam, for which we should read imim "the right," denoting the south.  C. --- But the sea, or ocean, is properly used in the same sense.  Bert. --- The Ammonites, Philistines, Syrians, and Idumeans, from these four quarters, often reduced the Israelites to servitude, under the judges.  Houbig. --- From all parts, the Jews of the ten tribes returned in the reigns of Darius and Alexander.  C.  Diss. --- But the texts which are applied to this event speak rather of the conversion of the Gentiles, which the prophet has here in view.  Bert. --- None are excluded from the benefits of this redemption, but by their own fault.  W.

 

Ver. 4.  Habitation.  So were the Jews distressed at Babylon, (C.) as many are forced to wander in the world, and all are involved in sin.  W.

 

Ver. 5.  Hungry.  As both Jews and Gentiles were for the word of God, (Amos viii. 11.) when Christ appeared.  H. --- Their wants cried aloud, (S. Aug.) though they sought him not.  Isai. lxv. 1.  Bert. --- Those who call upon God are relieved by him, in the manner which is most for their welfare.  W.

 

Ver. 8.  Mercies.  We are unworthy to open our mouths.  This chorus is repeated, (v. 15. 21. 31.) by the people, after the Levites had sung the intermediate sentences.  C. --- The v. 6. 9. 13. 19. are of the same nature, and refer to different sorts of calamities.  Bert. --- All the benefits of God, proceeding from his mercy, and not from man's deserts, praise him.  W.

 

Ver. 10.  Darkness.  This second allegory represents the condition of the captives, and of mankind, before Christ's coming.  C. --- The former enjoyed some liberty, Jer. xxix. 5. --- But the latter were most miserable, (Matt. ix. 15.  Lu. iv. 18.) and of these the words are most naturally explained.  Bert.

 

Ver. 11.  Exasperated.  Heb. "changed, or frustrated."  This is the source of all misery, (C.) as calamities are commonly inflicted on account of sin.  W.

 

Ver. 12.  Labours.  There were slaves of various descriptions: some were confined to hard labour, and chained down at night.  C.

 

Ver. 14.  Bonds.  Of their passions.  See S. Aug.  Conf. viii. 11.  H.

 

Ver. 17.  Iniquity.  Making them alter their conduct.  Hebrew seems less correct: "they are foolish on account of their way, and they," &c.  Illness is sent to punish sin.  Job xxxiii. 19.  Matt. ix. 2.  Jo. v. 14.  C.

 

Ver. 20.  Word.  Jesus Christ, according to the prophetical sense, adopted by the Fathers, (S. Atha. or. 3. &c.) though it literally implies, that at God's command the sick were healed.  Matt. viii. 7. --- This allegory again represents the state of captivity.  C.

 

Ver. 22.  Praise.  Instead of victims.  Ps. xxvi. &c.

 

Ver. 23.  Down to the sea, &c.  Captivity is here compared to a tempest.  C. --- The apostles carry the tidings of salvation to all places.  Persecutions are raised; but God grants peace to his Church under Constantine.  Euseb.

 

Ver. 24.  Deep.  The fury of tempests.  Various nations, and the treasures of the deep.  M.

 

Ver. 26.  Heavens.  So Virgil says:

                            Tollimur in cælum curvato gurgite & iidem

                            Subductâ ad Manes imos descendimus undâ.  Æn. iii.

 

Ver. 27.  Up.  They knew not how to proceed.  Ambiguis ars stupet ipsa malis.  C.

 

Ver. 29.  Breeze.  Heb. "silence, or calm."

 

Ver. 30.  For.  Even to Jerusalem.  C.

 

Ver. 31.  Men.  We must thank God for having enabled us to repent, v. 8.  W.

 

Ver. 33.  Wilderness.  God caused his people to pass through the Red Sea, and the Jordan, to possess the fruitful country of Chanaan, part of which had been cursed for the crimes of the Sodomites.  H. --- He has punished Babylon, (Jer. xxv. 12.) made a straight road from his people, (Is. xxxv. 8.) and enabled them to cultivate their country again, v. 41.  C. --- The synagogue has been abandoned, and the Church chosen.  Bert. --- The power of God is displayed, who caused the land of promise to be more fertile for his people, which is now very barren.  W.

 

Ver. 34.  Barrenness.  Or "saltness."  H. --- He alludes to the environs of Sodom.  Gen. xiii. 10. and xix. 24.  W.

 

Ver. 37.  Of birth.  A plentiful crop, facient fruges germina.  S. Jer.  C. --- Abundance of fruit shall grow in some places, while others are punished on account of sin.  W.

 

Ver. 40.  Princes.  Jochonias was humbled, (H.) and exalted, with Daniel, &c.  4 K. xxv. 27.  Others explain it of Nabuchodonosor and Baltasar, who were reduced to the state of ignominy and death.  C. --- The Jews experienced the greatest  miseries at the last siege of Jerusalem.  Bert.

 

Ver. 41.  Sheep.  The Gentiles took the place of the obstinate Jews.  S. Aug.

 

Ver. 42.  Mouth.  The psalmist saw Babylon before its ruin, (C.) at least in spirit.  God's judgment strengthen virtue, and repress the wicked.  H.  The propagation of the gospel put to silence the oracles of the pagans.  Bert.

 

Ver. 43.  Lord.  This is the part of wisdom, and deserves our serious consideration, (H.) as Osee (xiv. 10.) and our Saviour admonish.  Matt. xi. 15. and xiii. 9.  Mar. iv. 9. &c.

 

 








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