Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary, 1859 edition.

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Psalm 144

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Psalm cxliv. (Exaltabo te Deus.)

Notes & Commentary:

Ver. 1. Praise. The remaining seven psalms relate to the praises of God, to intimate that this occupation ought to be our glory, both in time and in eternity, as all were created for that purpose. (Ven. Bede) --- This is the seventh of the alphabetical psalms, the four last of which are only recognized by St. Jerome as perfect. See Psalm xxiv., xxxiii., xxxvi., cx., cxi., and cxviii. Yet here the ver 14., which should commence with N, is wanting in Hebrew, though it was probably there at first, as it is in the Greek and Latin, (Worthington) as well as in the Syriac and Arabic. (Calmet) --- Hence it appears, that our versions ought not always to be corrected by the Hebrew, which might be rendered more perfect by a collation with them. (Worthington) --- The Jews assert, that whoever reads this psalm thrice-a-day, may be sure of obtaining heaven, provided, says Kimchi, that his heart accompany his words. The new baptized used to recite it in thanksgiving, for having received the body and blood of Christ. (St. Chrysostom) --- Ferrand supposes that this psalm was composed after the captivity. But there seems to be no ground for this supposition, and the author had probably no particular event in view. (Calmet) --- My king. On whom I entirely depend. (Berthier) --- And ever. St. Jerome, "and after," (Haydock) both in time and in eternity. Christ is styled king, to whom the nations were promised; (Psalm ii.) and David gives the highest honour to the blessed Trinity. (Worthington) --- David still praises God by the mouths of the faithful, as also in heaven.

Ver. 3. End. Hebrew, "finding out," because he is infinite. (Berthier) (Job v. 9.)

Ver. 4. And. Hebrew, "to generation." The vocation of the Gentiles is insinuated. (Calmet)

Ver. 5. And shall. Hebrew, "and I shall relate the words of thy wonders," (St. Jerome) or "shall meditate on," &c. (Pagnin) (Haydock) --- Yet our version is more followed. (Calmet)

Ver. 6. Acts. Miracles which strike people with awe, (Worthington) such as those which overwhelmed the Egyptians, &c. (Theodoret) (Calmet) --- And shall. Hebrew, "and shalt," &c. But Chaldean (St. Jerome) read more naturally with the Septuagint.

Ver. 7. Justice. Or mercy. (St. Chrysostom) (Calmet) --- They shall approve of thy judgments. (Haydock)

Ver. 8. Patient. Hebrew, "slow to anger," which is more expressive. (Berthier)

Ver. 9. Works. The people of Israel (ver. 10., and Psalm lxxxix. 18.; Ferrand) and all mankind, who are all invited to embrace the true faith, and the mercy of God. (Calmet) --- The effects of mercy shine forth above all his other works, in the redemption, and in the recalling of sinners, when they have gone astray. (Worthington) --- This sense is good, but not literal. His mercy extends to all. (Berthier) --- Yet he punishes the reprobate for ever, chastising their works. (St. Augustine)

Ver. 10. Works. They shew his power, and excite us to praise him. (St. Jerome)

Ver. 12. Thy. Hebrew, "his." But the Septuagint read more correctly, with the Chaldean, &c. --- Men. The Gentiles, to whom the saints, (Berthier) or converted Jews preached. (Haydock)

Ver. 13. Ages. The kingdom of God in his Church is very magnificent, but not so much as in heaven. (Worthington) --- The. Hebrew, Chaldean, Aquila, St. Jerome, &c., omit this verse, which is necessary to complete the alphabet. It probably commenced with Namon, "Faithful." (Calmet) --- The Septuagint could not insert it by inspiration, as they were only interpreters. (Berthier) --- It was consequently in their Hebrew copies. (Houbigant)

Ver. 14. Lifteth. Hebrew, "upholdeth all who are falling." (Haydock) --- No one can stand or rise without God. (Berthier) --- He is ready to lift up every one. (Worthington)

Ver. 15. Hope. For sustenance, Psalm cxxii. 2., and Matthew vi. 26.

Ver. 16. Blessing. Abundantly (Calmet) "satisfieth the desire" (Protestants; Haydock) even of brute beasts, giving to all what is requisite. (Worthington)

Ver. 17. Just. Before, his fidelity was notices, ver. 13. (Haydock)

Ver. 18. Truth. Observing his commandments, Matthew vii. 21. (Theodoret)

Ver. 19. Will. He will obey their voice; (Josue x. 14.) or rather he will grant their requests (Calmet) of eternal happiness. (Berthier)

Ver. 21. Flesh. Every human being, though even the least favoured, must praise God, as all have received much from him. (Haydock)

Bible Text & Cross-references:

A psalm of praise, to the infinite majesty of God.

1 Praise, for David himself.

I will extol thee, O God, my king: and I will bless thy name for ever; yea, for ever and ever.

2 Every day I will bless thee: and I will praise thy name for ever; yea, for ever and ever.

3 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised: and of his greatness there is no end.

4 Generation and generation shall praise thy works: and they shall declare thy power.

5 They shall speak of the magnificence of the glory of thy holiness: and shall tell thy wondrous works.

6 And they shall speak of the might of thy terrible acts: and shall declare thy greatness.

7 They shall publish the memory of the abundance of thy sweetness: and shall rejoice in thy justice.

8 The Lord is gracious and merciful: patient and plenteous in mercy.

9 The Lord is sweet to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.

10 Let all thy works, O Lord, praise thee: and let thy saints bless thee.

11 They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom: and shall tell of thy power:

12 To make thy might known to the sons of men: and the glory of the magnificence of thy kingdom.

13 Thy kingdom is a kingdom of all ages: and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.

The Lord is faithful in all his words: and holy in all his works.

14 The Lord lifteth up all that fall: and setteth up all that are cast down.

15 The eyes of all hope in thee, O Lord: and thou givest them meat in due season.

16 Thou openest thy hand, and fillest with blessing every living creature.

17 The Lord is just in all his ways: and holy in all his works.

18 The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon him: to all that call upon him in truth.

19 He will do the will of them that fear him: and he will hear their prayer, and save them.

20 The Lord keepeth all them that love him: but all the wicked he will destroy.

21 My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord: and let all flesh bless thy holy name for ever; yea, for ever and ever.