On the Psalms 16 Feb 2018 - Part 28
Begin Psalm 40 (Tuesday at Sext) “While you keep your body whole, Shed forth Your peace upon the soul. Two thoughts form the hymn, set the tone of this hour. Psalm 40 is a prayer against temptation in illness. Psalm 41 (Tuesday at Sext) is a cry of longing for heaven, true home of the soul. Homesick for God. This song, a jewel of biblical poetry, was sung by the Jews of the captivity to express their intense longing for their homeland and their temple. Since the fall, earth has become a land of exile for us, and we look and long for our heavenly home. The sinner also suffers this nostalgia for true joy, his home and union with God. ” Roman Breviary. (Ps. 40) 1. That is to say, Blessed is he who reflects with care on Christ in his poverty, he will find him to have been poor from choice, not from necessity, and chose it to enrich us through the same poverty. Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms. (Ps. 41) 1. Love is a fiery affection, and, therefore, cannot be restrained, but breaks forth in words and sighs. To express his love somehow, David compares himself to a thirsty stag, saying, “As the hart panteth after the fountains of waters;” a most happy and expressive simile.” Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Illustrated) (p. 196).
On the Psalms 23 Feb 2018 - Part 29
Friday 23 February 2018: Complete Psalm 41 from v 7. Begin Psalm 42 “Ardent Desire for the House of God” Tuesday at Lauds. “Longing for the Temple” “Ps. 42, the third part of the wonderful elegy from the days of exile (Ps. 41, 42), leads the soul from the depths of the sinfulness to the mystical mount of Calvary.” Roman Breviary. 1 “David, severely pressed by Saul, or tempted by demons, and having no human succour to fall back upon, appeals to God as a judge: ‘Judge me, O God,’ for I have no one else to seek justice of but of you; ‘and distinguish my cause from the nation that is not holy’; and take cognizance of the charge brought against me by an unholy people.” St. Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms, p. 201.
On the Psalms 02 March 2018 - Part 30
Psalm 43 Begin with Verse 1)“A prayer in Time of Affliction Past Mercies Inspire Present Courage” (Tuesday at None) “Time of Deepest Crisis” Roman Breviary. 1 “God’s people under persecution, and groaning in affliction, brings to his recollection the wonderful things God was wont to do for the defense of his faithful, and wonders how he now seems to have deserted them, thereby hoping to move him to mercy. “O God,” says the prophet, speaking in the person of the Church, or the martyrs of both Testaments, “we have heard with our ears,” he might have said “we have heard,” simply, but he adds, “with our ears,” to express the greater certainty. St. Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Illustrated) (p. 202). Begin with Verse 10. Psalm 44: (Wednesday Matins) “The Marriage Song of the Redeemers” “The psalm is a prophetic wedding song for the mystic nuptials of Christ and the Church: Jesus is Bridegroom, the bride is the Church and the soul.” Roman Breviary. THE EXCELLENCE OF CHRIST’S KINGDOM AND THE ENDOWMENTS OF HIS CHURCH EXPLANATION OF THE PSALM. Verse 1 This verse forms a preface to the rest of the Psalm. In it the prophet tells us that the whole proceeded from the mere inspiration of the Holy Ghost, without any cooperation on his part. Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Illustrated) (p. 209).
On the Psalms 09 March 2018 - Part 31
Friday 9 March Begin with Psalm 44: (Wednesday Matins) “The Marriage Song of the Redeemers” “The psalm is a prophetic wedding song for the mystic nuptials of Christ and the Church: Jesus is Bridegroom, the bride is the Church and the soul.” Roman Breviary. THE EXCELLENCE OF CHRIST’S KINGDOM AND THE ENDOWMENTS OF HIS CHURCH EXPLANATION OF THE PSALM. Verse 1 This verse forms a preface to the rest of the Psalm. In it the prophet tells us that the whole proceeded from the mere inspiration of the Holy Ghost, without any cooperation on his part. Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Illustrated) (p. 209).
On the Psalms 16 March 2018 - Part 32
Complete Psalm 44 (from verse 11); Psalm 45 (Wednesday at Matins) “Confidence in God” “My Daily Psalm Book.” “A Mighty Fortress is our God!” “Under the image ‘of the city of God,’ Jerusalem, and the following two psalms picture the kingdom of God invincibly fortified and firmly entrenched in the Church and in the soul. ‘The gates of hell shall not prevail against it.’ (Mt. 16:18) The Church will never be vanquished by the devil—this our great consolation. The individual Christian, too, may be a rock, like Peter, upon which Christ can build His kingdom. To fill that role, he prays here for perseverance. Psalm 45 has an exceptionally fine poetical development.” Roman Breviary, Vol. I p 396-7 THE CHURCH, IN PERSECUTION, TRUSTETH IN THE PROTECTION OF GOD EXPLANATION OF THE PSALM 1 The soldiers of Christ overcome temptation as often by flight as by patience. When they must fly, God is their safest “refuge;” when they have to suffer; God is their “strength” and support; in both cases he is “their helper in troubles,” by affording a refuge when they fly, and enabling them to conquer when they stand.” Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Illustrated) (p. 219).
On the Psalms 23 March 2018 - Part 33
Friday 23 March Begin with Psalm 45 Verse 6. “He now expresses in plain language what he had hitherto expressed in figurative, namely, the ruin of the enemies of the Church, and the universal and lasting peace consequent thereon. He used the words earth and mountains before; he now speaks more clearly of nations and kingdoms. ‘Nations were troubled,’ because their dissolution was approaching, ‘and kingdoms were bowed down,’ tumbled from their glory, laid prostrate; ‘he uttered his voice’; God thundered from heaven, ‘and the earth trembled.’ This destruction of the kingdoms of the world was more clearly predicted by Daniel, chap. 2, where he says that the kingdom of Christ ‘shall consume all these kingdoms, and itself shall stand forever,’ which has been explained by the Apostle, 1 Cor 15, when he says, ‘Afterwards the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God and the Father, when he shall have abolished all principality, and authority, and power.’” Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Illustrated) (pp. 221-222).
On the Psalms 06 April 2018 - Part 34
Friday 6 April - Psalm 47 Wednesday at Matins: “The Church: the Strong City of God.” My Daily Psalm Book. “Kingdom unconquerable!... Jerusalem is besieged, but she is wonderously delivered . This is the figure of the Church and of individual souls in the truest and fullest sense.” Roman Breviary, p. 398 “GOD IS GREATLY TO BE PRAISED FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF HIS CHURCH EXPLANATION OF THE PSALM 1 The prophet, being about to praise a certain edifice, commences by praising the architect, and says that in the holy city the wonderful skill and wisdom of God, who built it, is truly displayed.” Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Illustrated) (p. 226).
On the Psalms 13 April 2018 - Part 35
Friday 13 April Psalm 48 Wednesday at Matins: “A Lesson for Those Who Envy the Prosperity of the Wicked.” My Daily Psalm Book. “The End of All...This is a didactic poem; in the spirit of the Old Testament it attempts to solve the riddle of the prosperity of the godless. The chief theme is the nothingness of riches; many cannot use them to lengthen his life, and when he dies he has not to leave them behind. “We Christians, fortunately, have a much more satisfying answer to this riddle. As we pray this psalm, we should be more and more conscious of the nothingness of riches. Avarice is form of idolatry--- we will notserve the wicked mammon. ‘how hard it is for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven’ (Mt. 19:23) The parable of Dives and Lazarus might serve as an illustration of this psalm” Roman Breviary, Vol II, p 399. “THE FOLLY OF WORLDLINGS WHO LIVE ON IN SIN, WITHOUT THINKING OF DEATH OR HELL EXPLANATION OF THE PSALM 1– 2 This preface to the Psalm is written with a view to arrest the attention of the reader, by informing him that the matter to be treated of concerns all mankind, both present and future. The whole human race is, therefore, summoned to hear it; and as no known place could contain such a multitude, nor could the voice of any speaker reach them, we must only take it for granted that the prophet foresaw that his Psalms would be spread over the world, and to the end of time; and, therefore, that he was warranted in summoning all nations and people to hear him.” Saint Robert Bellarmine. A Commentary on the Book of Psalms, p. 230.