Book Notes: Theophan’s Commentary on Psalm 118: verse 9

Psalm 118Psalm 118:
A Commentary
by Saint Theophan the Recluse

(1815-1894)
by Saint John of Kronstadt Press, 2014
Goodreads
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STROPHA 2:

Beth = house: it describes what house we should prepare for the commandments, where and how to make them at home within ourselves.

v.9 = how human nature, in youth (before corruption) is a house for the commandments

Then it describes various faculties of the soul:

v.10 = the will

v.11 = the heart

v.12 = the mind

v.13 = the spoken word

v.14 = the senses, taste

v.15 = reason

v.16 = memory

I am really amazed at how Theophan can interpret the verses and see so much structure in them, that he can apply to spiritual life. This is really brilliant. Obviously, this is not modern exegesis, but the traditional exegesis is nourishing and life-giving.

VERSE 9:
Wherewithal shall a young man correct his ways?
By keeping Thy words.

Follow the commandments to give proper direction to impulses. Because our first years affect our whole life. Like a bridle for a young horse (cf. Theodoret). Otherwise, long and hard battle later on.

To keep = to put into practice (Augustine)

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