Cassiodorus, Explanation of the Psalms - Vol. 3

By Cassiodorus; P. G. Walsh | Go to book overview

COMMENTARY ON PSALM 139

I. Unto the end. A psalm ofDavid. Though this heading is seen to be explained in the previous psalm, we are not reluctant to repeat briefly what we know is always salutary for us to hear. Unto the end denotes the Lord Christ; as Paul says: For the end of the law is Christ, unto justice to everyone that believeth. 1 Let us lift up our hearts to Him with all our strength, for in this psalm as by the voice of a herald we are forewarned that He comes as a Judge, fearful and almighty but also devoted and the object of great longing.


Division of the Psalm

Holy Church speaks throughout the psalm. In the first section she entreats the Lord that He may deign to free her from the wicked devil who seeks to undermine the devotion of the faithful people with many deceits and traps. In the second, she begs not to be consigned to that most evil tempter, now that she is certainly delivered from bitter dangers by His protection. In the third, she says that vengeance at the future judgment will visit those who afflict His poor with senseless disturbances.


Explanation of the Psalm

2. Deliver me, O Lord, from the evil man:from the unjust man rescue me. In her awareness of the extent of the sufferings of her members through the devil's hostility, mother Church anxiously cries to the Lord who alone can overcome Satan's wickedness, and begs for deliverance from his manifold temptation so that she may no longer be wearied and yield to him. We have learnt from the gospel-evidence that the evil man stands for the devil, for it says: Now the evil man is the devil. 2 The devil is deservedly so styled, for he is stained with the contagion of sins, so that he is no longer described as an angel of heaven but as a man of earth; the two expressions replace and interchange with each other, and even today we both call a wicked man a devil, and contrariwise as we have just demonstrated we call the devil

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Cassiodorus, Explanation of the Psalms - Vol. 3
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Ancient Christian Writers - The Works of the Fathers in Translation *
  • Cassiodorus: Explanation of the Psalms *
  • Contents v
  • Commentary on Psalm 101 i
  • Commentary on Psalm 102 18
  • Commentary on Psalm 103 29
  • Commentary on Psalm 104 49
  • Commentary on Psalm 105 65
  • Commentary on Psalm 106 82
  • Commentary on Psalm 107 95
  • Commentary on Psalm 108 102
  • Commentary on Psalm 109 116
  • Commentary on Psalm 110 125
  • Commentary on Psalm III 131
  • Commentary on Psalm 112 137
  • Commentary on Psalm 113 141
  • Commentary on Psalm 114 150
  • Commentary on Psalm 115 155
  • Commentary on Psalm 116 160
  • Commentary on Psalm 117 162
  • Commentary on Psalm 118 174
  • Commentary on Psalm 119 259
  • Commentary on Psalm 120 265
  • Commentary on Psalm 121 270
  • Commentary on Psalm 122 277
  • Commentary on Psalm 123 281
  • Commentary on Psalm 124 287
  • Commentary on Psalm 125 291
  • Commentary on Psalm 126 296
  • Commentary on Psalm 127 301
  • Commentary on Psalm 128 306
  • Commentary on Psalm 129 311
  • Commentary on Psalm 130 316
  • Commentary on Psalm 131 321
  • Commentary on Psalm 132 332
  • Commentary on Psalm 133 337
  • Commentary on Psalm 134 341
  • Commentary on Psalm 135 351
  • Commentary on Psalm 136 359
  • Commentary on Psalm 137 365
  • Commentary on Psalm 138 371
  • Commentary on Psalm 139 386
  • Commentary on Psalm 140 392
  • Commentary on Psalm 141 399
  • Commentary on Psalm 142 406
  • Commentary on Psalm 143 413
  • Commentary on Psalm 144 422
  • Commentary on Psalm 145 432
  • Commentary on Psalm 146 438
  • Commentary on Psalm 147 444
  • Commentary on Psalm 148 449
  • Commentary on Psalm 149 457
  • Commentary on Psalm 150 461
  • Notes 471
  • Indexes 525
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