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HAYDOCK CATHOLIC BIBLE COMMENTARY ON THE OLD TESTAMENT



WISDOM 16

 

CHAPTER XVI.

 

Ver. 1.  Things.  Sept. "therefore by similar things they," &c.  H. --- The Egyptians were punished for their idolatry by beasts, though they worshipped them, (H.) being infested with insects, frogs, locusts, &c. (C. xii. 23.  Ex. viii. and x.  C.) and seeing their first-born perish for their cruelty.  W.

 

Ver. 2.  Meat.  The second time, God gave them in his anger: but still he dealt favourably with his people, (Ex. xvi. 13.  Num. xi. 7.  C.) punishing them as a father, for their amendment.  W.

 

Ver. 3.  They indeed desiring food, &c.  He means the Egyptians; who were restrained even from that food which was necessary, by the frogs and the flies that were sent amongst them, and spoiled all their meats.  Ch. --- Ex. viii. 3.  C. --- These.  The Israelites.  Ch. --- New meat.  Quails.  M.

 

Ver. 6.  Sign of salvation.  The brazen serpent, an emblem of Christ our Saviour; (Ch.) and of the obedience which they should shew to God's commands.  C. --- The sign could have no inherent value; but, as a token of God's favour, was the means of curing the people.  W.

 

Ver. 12.  Plaster, malagma.  The remedy ordained by God was not  naturally efficacious.  C. --- "Every wound of the soul has its medicine in the Scriptures."  S. Aug.  Psalm xxxvi.

 

Ver. 17.  The fire had more force.  Viz. When the fire and hail mingled together laid waste the land of Egypt.  Ex. ix.  Ch. --- This destroyed the useful cattle, but not such as infested the Egyptians.  W. --- The water seemed to nourish the flames.  3 K. xviii. 39.

 

Ver. 18.  Mitigated.  The Egyptians could not banish the insects with fire and smoke, (Jans.) or the storm sent by God, did not exterminate the sciniphs, which had caused the magicians to acknowledge a miracle.  Ex. viii. 18.  The frogs and flies were already gone.  Ib. 11. and 31.  C.

 

Ver. 20.  Angels.  See Ex. xvi.  W. --- If angels stood in need of food, they could have nothing more delicious.  So water is styled honey, to denote its excellence.  Ps. lxxvii. 25.  Lev. xx. 24.  Joel iii. 18. --- Taste.  These expressions are figurative.  C.

 

Ver. 21.  Sustenance.  Lit. "substance," which some explain (C.) of God himself preparing this delicious food.  Naz. or. xlix. --- Liked.  So that if a person wished to eat an egg, &c. the manna became one, without altering its appearance, which is the case in the blessed Eucharist.  Valentia, 4 disp. 6. &c. --- But this opinion supposes a continued miracle, which seems not necessary, and it is generally believed that the taste alone was changed, which S. Aug. and others restrain to God's faithful servants, otherwise the Hebrews could not have been disgusted with manna.  Num. xi. 6. and xxi. 5.  To these it was therefore simply manna.  But the others found in it whatever they could desire.  S. Greg. Mor. vi. 9. --- Yet according to others, (H.) both enjoyed the same privilege.  M. --- We cannot account for men's fancies.

 

Ver. 26.  Word.  Deut. viii. 3.  Matt. iv. 4.  Fruits, of themselves, could not support man.  C.

 

Ver. 28.  Light.  Those who desire to receive any favour must seek it with diligence, as the manna was to be gathered before sun-rise.  Clarius.  C.

 

Ver. 29.  Water.  The ungrateful and negligent shall find their hopes frustrated, (C.) as well as the wicked, who expect salvation (W.) without a change of manners.  H. --- Ingratitude stops the fountain of grace.  M.

 

 








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