Haydock Catholic Bible Commentary
The hidden things of the son. The humility and sufferings of Christ, the Son of God; and of good Christians, who are his sons by adoption; and called hidden things, with regard to the children of this world, who know not the value and merit of them. (Challoner) --- It may also signify, "to Ben, the master of music, over the young women." See 1 Paralipomenon xv. 18. (Calmet; Menochius) --- These authors have joined almuth, which St. Jerome, &c., read as two words, "on the death of the son." Protestants, "upon Muth Labben." David might allude to the death of Absalom, or of some of his other children. But he has his Son, Christ, the conqueror of death and hell, principally in view, as this psalm sings of victory over nations. His incarnation and the afflictions of Christians are hidden in God. (Worthington) --- Lamnatseach has generally a preposition, l, al, &c., after it, which might induce us to prefer rendering "death," before "secrets or young women." (Haydock) --- But al may be understood, as it is found [in] Psalm xlv., where all have, "for the secrets." In Hebrew, this psalm is divided (Berthier) at ver. 22nd, and formerly it seems at the 17th. (Calmet) --- This division is arbitrary, and of no consequence for the understanding of the psalms. (Berthier) --- It would be well if there were no more serious controversy between Catholics and Protestants. The Jews agree with neither. Some unite the 1st and 2nd, as Kimchi does the 114th and 115th. (Amama) --- What is here rendered a psalm for David, is the same in the Hebrew and Septuagint as has been before expressed of David, Psalm iii. (Haydock)
Praise and thanks, or I will confess. (Worthington) --- To thee. Hebrew, "to the." David had received many favours from God, and he has testified his gratitude, and shewn how we ought to praise God, (St. Jerome; Calmet) with soul and body. (Berthier; Worthington) --- Wonders; victories gained over the neighbouring nations, so that Israel was at peace and liberty to transport the ark to Sion, 1 Paralipomenon xv.
Back; routed. After Saul's family was taken off, none durst oppose David. They saw that the Lord had set him on the throne. (Calmet) --- Only after his sin, rebels began to molest him. (Haydock) --- The Fathers explain this of the devil and his agents. (St. Jerome) --- God repelleth the enemy, when man is not able to resist. (Worthington)
Justice, or rightly. (Calmet) --- God alone always discerns what is just. (St. Chrysostom) --- Man overcomes the devil, with the assistance of God's grace. (Worthington)
Name, or destroy them. The name is often put for the thing itself. Yet many of those nations who once made such a noise, are now quite forgotten. No traces of them can be found. (Haydock) --- The Egyptians and Chanaanites had been exterminated. (Calmet) --- Ever, for all eternity, as long as God shall reign, ver. 8, 40, or Psalm x. 16. This shews that he speaks of the latter times, and of the final destruction of idolatry, by the preaching of apostolic men, (Berthier) and by the last fire. For some will be so infatuated as to uphold it[idolatry] even to the end. (Haydock) --- We have even reason to fear that it[idolatry] will again become more general, (Pastorini; Apocalypse) as faith shall decrease. Jesus Christ and his apostles gave it however (Haydock) a mortal wound, so that in the fifth age[century] many of its mysteries were quite forgotten. (Theodoret; Sts. Augustine and Jerome) (Calmet) --- They took the towns, or the souls, of many from the strong-armed, Luke xi. 21. (Berthier) --- All sinners may be here styled Gentiles, because they were generally wicked. If their reputation survive here for a while, it will certainly perish in the future world. (Worthington)
Swords. "My enemies have sunk under the sword." (Syriac) (Haydock) --- Frameæ is a German word for "javelins," pointed with iron, which they might either throw, or use in close fight. (Tacitus) --- It is often put for a sword. Et martii frameam. (Juvenal xiii.) --- The weapons of the enemy being exhausted, they are forced to yield. --- Their. Hebrew, &c., "the." --- Noise, as swiftly. These fierce nations are fallen like a huge Colossus. (Calmet) --- Hebrew, "they themselves," or "with them." --- Cities, &c.
In judgment. St. Jerome, "to judge." (Haydock)
World. This globe must give place to new heavens and earth, (Berthier) after its inhabitants have been judged. (Haydock) --- Justice. Men may be corrupt judges, but God cannot. (Worthington)
PSALM IX. (CONFITEBOR TIBI DOMINE.)
The church praiseth God for his protection against her enemies.
Poor. Hebrew ladac, "the oppressed," (St. Jerome) "broken with grief." (Calmet) --- Tribulation. God's assistance is requisite both in prosperity and adversity. He generally manifests his power only, when all human succour proves useless. (Haydock) --- Thus he acted at the Red Sea, and when he sent delivers to Israel. Our Saviour came at the time appointed, when he was most wanted. (Theodoret) (Galatians iv. 4.) (Calmet) --- "We are often oppressed with tribulation, and yet it is not the due time; that so we may be helped by the desire of being set free." (St. Gregory) --- Thus the delay is for our advantage. (Worthington)
Know, with love. Such are always heard. What wonder if others be rejected, who flee from God? (St. Chrysostom and St. Augustine) (Calmet) --- The learned often trust too much to their own knowledge, whereas God has made choice of the simple, Matthew xi. 25. (Berthier)
Ways, (studia) "favours," (Haydock) works, &c. (Calmet) --- This was done by the apostles. (St. Augustine) --- Men ought chiefly to study the precepts of God. (Worthington)
Their, may be omitted, as it would seem to refer to the Gentiles. God declares that he will demand the blood of all that shed it without authority, Genesis ix. 5. (Haydock) --- He had punished the Chanaanites, &c., for their cruelty, as he did afterwards the persecutors of his Church. If the names of Herod, Nero, &c., be infamous in history for their sanquinary proceedings, they are not less so on account of the judgments which God exercised upon them, even in this world. (Calmet) See Lactantius, de Mort. Persec. (Haydock) --- God avengeth the blood of his martyrs. (Worthington)
Enemies. Israel has been so long under oppression.
Death, from the most imminent dangers. (Haydock) --- Daughter. In the places where the inhabitants of Sion assembled, (Berthier) or publicly in the Church. (Worthington) --- In hell, the damned would wish to die. (Theodoret) --- The gates of death may also signify sin, (Origen) and the bad example of parents. (St. Jerome)
Hid. These are the enemies of salvation. (Berthier) --- The nations which had oppressed the Jews found their fortifications and arms turned against themselves, (Calmet) which is often the case of the wicked. (Worthington)
Hands. Caught in the very act, so that he cannot deny the crime. Here we find in Hebrew (Calmet) higaion sela, which St. Jerome renders, "by meditation for ever." (Haydock) --- Septuagint, Symmachus, and some Latin copies, "a canticle of the psalm's division," Greek: diapsalmatos. Here perhaps the psalm ended. (Calmet)
Hell; shall die, or be lost. (Convertantur.) Literally, "Let," &c. But it may be properly explained as a prediction, or menace. (Haydock) --- "Those who are devoid of God's justice, return to the dominion of the devil." (Robertson, Lexic.) --- Zeal, and not revenge, prompts David to speak thus. (Worthington)
Not perish. Hebrew does not express the negation, but it must be understood. (Berthier) --- Protestants supply it from the former part of the verse. The expectation of the just will not be frustrated.
Man. Hebrew enosh, (Haydock) "weak," sinful "man." (Berthier) -- Gentiles, or all notorious sinners. The Jews despised the Gentiles, as the Romans did all barbarians. (Worthington)