Psalm 77
Haydock Catholic Bible Commentary
Asaph. David composed this, to declare the rights of Juda to the throne, in preference to the tribe of Ephraim, (Lyranus) which had kept possession of the ark a long time; which was henceforth to be on Mount Sion. (Haydock) --- It seems to relate to the times of Asa, who reunited several of the other tribes to his dominion, (2 Paralipomenon xv. 8.; Calmet) and contains a moral instruction, delivered in the person of Christ, (ver. 2.; Eusebius; Berthier) and submitted to the attentive consideration of the faithful. (Worthington) --- Law. Given to Moses, (Berthier) and sanctioned by the divine authority. (Haydock) --- The law, and the people were not David's, but God's, in whose name he speaks. (St. Gregory in Job ii.) (Worthington)

Propositions. Deep and mysterious sayings. By this it appears, that the historical facts of ancient times, commemorated in this psalm, were deep and mysterious; as being figures of great truths appertaining to the time of the New Testament. (Challoner) --- St. Matthew (xiii. 35.) has, things hidden from the foundation of the world. Hebrew minni kedem, "from of old." St. Jerome, "ancient riddles." (Haydock) --- Mashal and chidoth, "parables and enigmas." frequently denote things very plain, but spoken in a sententious poetic style, Numbers xxiii. 7. (Calmet) --- The facts, &c., of the Old Testament, prefigured the mysteries of the New. (Worthington)

Fathers. Christ might thus speak as man, and he enforces tradition in the strongest terms. (Berthier) --- Only some things were written. (Worthington) --- The most ancient and universal mode of instruction, was by word of mouth. (Haydock)

Testimony. The tabernacle, (Eusebius) or the law which notifies his will. (Calmet) (Menochius) --- He also thrice required the Israelites to perpetuate the memory of what he had done for them, by instructing their children, Deuteronomy iv. 9., and vi. 7., and xi. 19. Both the written and the unwritten word must be carefully preserved, 2 Thessalonians ii. 14. God had freely chosen Abraham, and given him the law of circumcision; as he directed his posterity by the mouth of Moses. (Worthington)

That, &c. This was the end of all the laws and monuments of religion, (Calmet) to increase our confidence, (Worthington) gratitude, and observance of our duty. (Haydock)

Fathers. Some were virtuous, like Moses, Josue, Samuel, &c., ver. 3., and 5. (Berthier) --- But the majority proved faithless. (Haydock) --- To God. Or did not confide in him, or know that without God's grace, no good can be done. (St. Augustine) (Berthier) --- Abraham instructed his house, (Genesis xviii.) and David his subjects, that they might avoid bad example. The same advice regards Christians, 1 Corinthians x. (Worthington)

Battle. Many of this tribe were cut off by the men of Geth, (1 Paralipomenon vii. 21.; Chaldean; Geier.) as they fought without God's command, Numbers xiv. (Worthington) --- They did not defend the ark against the Philistines, though they seemed more bound to do so than the rest, since it was brought from their city, Silo, and they also set the others a pattern of infidelity; (1 Kings iv.; Abenezra) whence they are singled out likewise by Osee. (Berthier) --- The famous victory of Abia against Jeroboam may be also designated, 2 Paralipomenon xiii. (Calmet) --- This had not yet taken place, no more than (Haydock) their captivity, under Salmanazar, which is enigmatically foretold. After this reproach, the whole body of the Israelites is condemned, ver. 10. (Berthier)

Taneos. Hebrew Tsohan, (Haydock) which means, "spreading," either because the plagues spread from this capital, or because it was in a plain, (Berthier) or very extensive, (Haydock) on the eastern branch of the Nile, in the Delta. (Calmet) --- Here Moses wrought his wonders. (Worthington)

Vessel. Literally, "bottle," like walls on either side.

By day. Literally, "of the day." (Haydock) --- But this is the real import of the Greek. The same cloud (Calmet) was both luminous and obscure. When the light side was turned towards Israel, the Egyptians were in darkness. (Haydock) --- The eternal Son of God guided this pillar, and the Israelites tempted him, (ver. 18., and 1 Corinthians x., and Exodus xiii. 21.; Berthier) forgetting their baptism or initiation in the service of God. (Haydock)

Deep. Water was so abundant, and followed them in streams, 1 Corinthians x. 4. (Calmet) --- The first miraculous grant of water was at Horeb, the second at Cades, ver. 20. (Berthier)

Desires. Literally, "souls," as if they were dying for hunger, though they had plenty of manna, Numbers xi. 4. (Calmet)

Ill. Hebrew, "against," (Numbers xi.; Calmet) still distrusting in God's power. (Menochius)

Bread. Including all sorts of food. (Worthington) --- Table. Hebrew, "flesh." It is true we have water and manna, but we want something more solid and agreeable. (Calmet)

Haydock Catholic Bible Commentary

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