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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 61

Haydock's Catholic Bible CommentaryHaydock's Catholic Commentary

Verse 1

Idithun, to sing. (Worthington) --- He was one of the chief musicians under David, 1 Paralipomenon xxv. 3. The psalm may be explained of David, persecuted by Absalom, (Calmet) of the Machabees, (Theodoret) &c., or of Christ, and his Church. (Calmet) --- St. Jerome considers it a piece of excellent morality, (Calmet) and this may suffice, without referring it to any historical fact. (Berthier)

Verse 2

Subject. The just is resigned, though he feel like other men. David found a sort of resentment against the rebels, arising in his breast, which he presently repressed, by the thought of God’s will, 2 Kings xii. 11. (Calmet) --- He fears nothing, because his soul is subject to God. (Worthington) --- Hebrew, "silent." (Haydock)

Verse 4

Fence. This may refer to the persecutors, who resembled a leaning wall. (Berthier) (Isaias xxx. 13.) (Calmet) --- Protestants, "ye shall be slain all of you, as a bowing wall shall ye be," &c. He threatens them with speedy destruction, (Haydock) or represents to them the baseness of attacking a man ready to fall. (Calmet) --- He informs them, that their attempts will be in vain, though they be very numerous, and he himself apparently so weak. (Worthington)

Verse 5

Price. Septuagint, St. Hilary, &c., "my honour." They wish to dethrone me, and to represent me as unfit to govern. --- I ran. Septuagint Greek: edramon, "they ran" likewise, as Hebrew implies, and as the Greek Fathers generally explain it. David thought proper to flee, that he might be at a distance from traitors, 2 Kings xv. 14. His enemies sought this destruction. (Calmet) --- They wished to deprive him of the reward of his labours; but he ran more earnestly. --- Blessed. Flattery is very dangerous. (Worthington)

Verse 8

God. The multiplicity of titles shews the prophet’s love. See Apocalypse v. 12. (St. Augustine, Confessions i. 4.) (Berthier)

Verse 9


The prophet encourageth himself and all others to trust in God, and serve him.

All. Hebrew, "always, O people." Septuagint seem to have read, adoth, for heth. --- For ever. Here Selah is translated, (Berthier) though it is not in Septuagint, &c. David exhorts his followers to address themselves to God, with compunction and confidence. (Calmet)

Verse 10

Liars. They are so vain and light, that if they are put into the scales, they will be found to be of no weight; and to be mere lies, deceit, and vanity. Or, they are liars in their balances, by weighing thing by false weights, and preferring the temporal before the eternal. (Challoner) (Proverbs xi. 1., and xx. 10.) --- They give false judgments; be not concerned; God is our protector. (Calmet) --- God’s servants strive to draw others to the practice of virtue. (Worthington) --- All sinners (Haydock) will not outweigh vanity itself. (Menochius)

Verse 11

Them. Let the rich assist their needy brethren; and you, my followers, beware of enriching yourselves, by unjust rapine, during this civil war. (Calmet) --- Raise your thoughts to something better. (St. Augustine)

Verse 12

Once, by the generation of his word, (St. Augustine) or when he promulgated the law, Exodus xx. 6. (Berthier) --- God’s word is invariable, (Worthington; Job xxxiii. 14.; Menochius) and will be put in execution. (St. Ambrose) (Tirinus) --- This he has often inculcated. (Vatable) (Job xxxix. 35.) Amos (i. 3.) uses three and four, in the same sense. (Calmet)

Verse 13

Works. We must therefore refrain from every injustice. (Haydock) --- God spoke once by Moses, and again by his own Son. Both the Testaments confirm the certainty of rewards and punishments, (Berthier) as God is able and willing (Worthington) to execute his decrees. Luther, followed by the Dutch, translates, "as he merits;" to which expression, concerning the just, Amama objects. (Haydock)

Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 61". "Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/hcc/psalms-61.html. 1859.
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