Book Notes: Theophan’s Commentary on Psalm 118: verses 98-99

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

(1815-1894)
by Saint John of Kronstadt Press, 2014
Goodreads
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VERSE 98:
Above my enemies hast Thou made me wise
in Thy commandment, for it is mine for ever.

His devotion to the commandments has dispelled blindness.
Blindness comes from:
– fascination with the charms of this world
– confusion of thoughts
Then we walk toward evil and fall

But knowing the commandments (a knowledge based on life) “lights up all the paths of life” (p.230).

for it is mine for ever:

“Such a determination keeps the mind always undivided, not allowing any hesitation” (p.231)
Determination unto death if needs be.

VERSE 99:
Above all that teach me have I gained understanding,
for Thy testimonies are my meditation.

Through following the commandments, the Lord has given him not only more wisdom (v.98), but also more understanding.
Extraordinary examples of Paul taken to the 3rd heaven; of the Apostles at Pentecost.

But the Prophet was granted that through his study of God’s testimonies (Thy testimonies are my meditation) with faith and prayer.

“The labor of study and delving deeply into the testimonies prepares, but grace, in the hour of prayer, completes the learning, enlightening the mind through contemplation and imprinting what it sees upon the heart. Any other learning is external; only this kind is internal, spiritual, divine, and bearing many fruits.”
pp.232-233

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