Psalm lxxix. (Qui regis Israel.)
Notes & Commentary:
Ver. 1. Testimony,
or instruction, (Calmet) and proof of the psalmist's faith. (Haydock) --- Psalm. Vatican Septuagint, St. Augustine,
&c., add, "for (or against) the Assyrian:" whence some have inferred that it relates to the captivity of Israel. But as
Benjamin is also mentioned, it seems rather to speak of the captives of Babylon, (Calmet) or of all Jews and Christians
in distress. (Berthier) --- The faithful pray for the coming of the Messias, ver. 2, 4, 16. (Haydock) (Fathers) (Calmet)
Ver. 2. Joseph.
He mentions these two as persons dear to God. All the tribes were equally led away captives, and the distinction of kingdoms
was not regarded. (Calmet) --- All Israel is denoted by Joseph, who composed two tribes, having the double portion; (Worthington;
Menochius) and ruling in Egypt. (Bellarmine)
Ver. 3. Manasses.
These three tribes followed the ark in the desert, (Numbers ii. 18.) and might better see the majesty shining over it. (Worthington)
(Calmet) --- Let all be united once more in the divine service. (Muis) --- Samaria, and Jerusalem in part, were in the tribes
of Ephraim and Benjamin, (Menochius) and Manasses occupied both sides of the Jordan. (Haydock)
Ver. 4. Saved.
This chorus occurs three (Worthington) or four times. (Calmet) --- With God's grace, we shall be able to act virtuously. (St.
Jerome) --- Thou canst easily rescue us from our misery. Be pleased to send us the Messias, thy substantial image, 2 Corinthians
iv. 4., and Colossians i. 15. If thou assist us, we may co-operate to obtain salvation. (Worthington)
Ver. 6. Measure.
Hebrew shalish, "three-fold." (St. Jerome) --- The capacity of this measure is not determined. It might be the seah,
or the third part of an epha, which would be very abundant, speaking of tears; though small to contain the earth, Isaias xl
12. (Calmet) --- Penitents must eat little. (St. Jerome) --- Yet their sorrow must be moderated by hope. (Eusebius) See Osee
ix. 4. (Calmet) --- God punishes so as not to destroy us. (Worthington)
Ver. 7. At
us. See Psalm lxxviii. 4. (Haydock) --- Such was the condition of Jeremias, xv. 10. (Calmet) --- Hebrew, "have scoffed
among themselves." Chaldean and St. Jerome agree with us. Scorn is more difficult to bear than poverty. Hence to comfort himself,
the psalmist repeats, O God, &c. (Berthier)
Ver. 9. Vineyard.
Thy Church and people. (Worthington) (Isaias v. 1., Osee x. 1., and Matthew xx. 2.)
Ver. 10. Sight.
Hebrew, "Thou didst dig before it," (Montanus) making the ground ready. (Calmet) --- The cloud went before the Israelites.
(Worthington) --- Land of promise. (Haydock)
Ver. 11. God.
The highest cedars were surpassed by the branches, or even by the smallest shoots (arbusta) of this vine. (Haydock)
--- Most powerful nations were forced to submit to David. (Theodoret) --- The Israelites were exceedingly multiplied, (Worthington)
and enjoyed the fruits of the country, Micheas iv. 4. (Calmet)
Ver. 12. River
Euphrates, from the Mediterranean, Red, and Indian seas. (Haydock) (Deuteronomy xi. 24.)
Ver. 13. It?
Thou hast withdrawn thy protection. The temple is destroyed, and all plunder with impunity, because thy vineyard has not rendered
good fruit, Jeremias ii. 21.
Ver. 14. Singular.
The wild boar, which does not go with other beasts. Nabuchodonosor is here designated, (Calmet) or Salmanasar, and all persecutors,
(Berthier) particularly the devil, who goes about like a roaring lion, [1 Peter v. 8.] and stirs up his agents to disturb
the world. Hence the enemy becomes more cruel than any wild beast. (Worthington)
Ver. 16. And
look down upon "the Messias," (Chaldean) the true vine, John xv. 1., and Matthew xxi. 33. (Calmet) --- Of man,
is not in Hebrew, only, ver. 18. (Haydock) --- Some perfection was wanting in the Church of the Old Testament.
Ver. 17. Things
set on fire, &c. So this vineyard of thine, almost consumed already, must perish if thou continue thy rebukes. (Challoner)
--- Things, would imply that incensa is in the neuter plural. But this is not the case in Septuagint or Hebrew.
(Berthier) --- St. Jerome has succensam, "Look down upon the vine or root, (17) burn up and without any branches.
Let them perish at," &c., who have thus treated it. (Haydock)
Ver. 18. The
man of thy right hand. Christ, (Challoner) where he sits, (Calmet) being as man in the highest place of heaven,
Matthew xxvi. 64., and xii. 32. (Haydock) --- Who else could redeem Israel? (Calmet) --- Zorobabel was only a figure of Him.
(Haydock) --- Christ's birth was miraculous, (Menochius) and he was appointed by the right hand of God to do great
things; and, as man, is moved to take compassion on the distresses of his people. (Berthier)
Ver. 19. From
thee. This is our fixed determination for the future. (Haydock) --- Will call. Hebrew, "Shall be called by thy
name," (St. Jerome; Haydock) thy people. (Symmachus) (Calmet) --- But the Vulgate is equally correct, invocabimus.
(Montanus) (Protestants) (Haydock)