Bible Commentaries

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Psalms 144

Verse 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 his 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.

Verse 3

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

Verse 4

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

Verse 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)

Verse 6

Acts. Miracles hhich 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.

Verse 7

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

Verse 8

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

Verse 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)

Verse 10

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

Verse 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)

Verse 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)

Verse 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)

Verse 15


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

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

Verse 16

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

Verse 17

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

Verse 18

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

Verse 19

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

Verse 21

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

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Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 144". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". 1859.