Book Notes: Theophan’s Commentary on Psalm 118: verse 82

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

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

VERSE 82:
Mine eyes have grown dim with waiting for Thine oracle;
they say: When wilt Thou comfort me?

Oracle = God’s promise

When wilt Thou comfort me?
= “This expresses the strength of desire, not the weakening of hope”.
This is also about the soul that is seeking salvation in the Lord.

Theophan mentions here another possible context when this verse can apply:

” Complete forgiveness is pronounced to the penitent in the sacrament of penance. Yet the feeling of forgiveness, or the inner assurance that sins have been forgiven, does not come quickly. It is proper for the contrite spirit to cry, when wilt thou comfort me?
p. 202

I had never read about this, and definitely not in connection with this verse. This sounds like coming from his personal experience, doesn’t it?

“Seek, pray, wait”
p.203

“He who gives delays the giving in order to make the receiving more agreeable, and that what has been received may be kept with more vigilance.”
p.203

According to St. Ambrose, this is about the soul which pines for the grace of contemplation.

“All of God’s mysteries are revealed in the word of God, but they are comprehended only when grace lets them be comprehended. Suddenly, the mind sees in a word that which it did not see before, even though it had many times before read and meditated on it.”
p.203

I really like how he understands this verse in several contexts, all seeming to come from a lived monastic experience for sure.

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