Book Notes: Theophan’s Commentary on Psalm 118: verses 53-54

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

(1815-1894)
by Saint John of Kronstadt Press, 2014
Goodreads
orthodox-cross

VERSE 53:
Despondency took hold upon me
because of the sinners who forsake Thy law.

Increase of irreverence and universal depravity –> grief. And consolation from it in verse 54.
Joy when sinners start repenting. Concerned about the healing of others.
Indifference to impiety reveals weak moral and religious feelings.

When this happens, society is in a state of epidemic.
p.149
Seeing how lots of people refuse to take simple measures for the sake of others in time of our epidemics, no wonder epidemics is spreading at the level of the moral and spiritual life.

To be zealous about God’s glory and the reign of goodness and light, is the duty of all who recognize that therein lies the true happiness of man, human societies, and humanity.
p.149

VERSE 54:
Thy statutes were my songs
in the place of my sojourning.

It was distressing to see the overflow of evil and ungodliness around me. But I was comforted by Thy statutes.
p.150

Sojourning: because of difference of spirit in him and in the world.
That’s also why the Church encourages to sing hymns. Singing spiritual songs dissipates the spirit of this world — hence importance to memorize psalms and songs.
To sing God’s statutes, we need to renounce all earthly cares (cf. sojourning. Cf. also the moment we sing about “laying aside all earthly cares in the Cherubinic hymn, right before the Great Entrance).

orthodox-crossPLEASE SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS ABOUT THESE NOTES
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