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Bible Commentaries

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Lamentations

- Lamentations

by George Haydock

THE LAMENTATIONS OF JEREMIAS.

INTRODUCTION.

In these Jeremias laments in a most pathetic manner the miseries of his people, and the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple, in Hebrew verses, beginning with different letters according to the order of the Hebrew alphabet. (Challoner) --- In the first chapter the order is exactly observed, but in the three next phe comes before ain, either for some mystery to us unknown, or by the derangement of transcribers, who perhaps thought that those verses were better connected, as they seem to be, (Calmet) though this is not very clear. (Haydock) --- In such pieces the sentiments of a pensive heart are poured out without much connection. (Worthington) --- The Greeks style this word Greek: threnoi, and Hebrew kinoth, or lamentations. (Haydock) --- St. Jerome, (2 Paralipomenon xxxv. 25.) thinks it was the first composition of Jeremias, and sung at the death of Josias. (Worthington) (St. Jerome, in Zacharias xii. 11.) --- The eulogy of the king seems to belong to him rather than to Sedecias, chap. iv. 20. (Calmet) --- Yet it might afterwards be applied to the latter, (Haydock) and to the ruin of Jerusalem, Ecclesiasticus xlix. 8. (St. Jerome, Pref.; Theodoret, &c.) --- The city is represented standing, and sometimes in ruins. Chap. v. seems to have been written after the rest, ver. 4, 18. (Calmet) --- It is not acrostic like them. The prophet alludes to the wretched condition of the Jews, after the murder of their Messias; and hence the Church makes use of the lamentations on the anniversary of our Saviour's passion, inviting all sinners, both Jews and Gentiles, to repent: "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, be converted to the Lord thy God." (Worthington) --- Many passages are applicable to a soul fallen into sin, as the commentary under the name of St. Jerome, (Haydock) compiled by Rabanus, (Du Pin) shews. (Haydock)