Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Psalm 5: verses 4b-7a


Psalm 5 is used in several different contexts in the Office, but the message of verses 4 to 7 is simple and important at all times: repent, and turn away from sin lest we perish.  A suitable message to ponder before the start of the New Year!

Verse by verse notes

The second section of Psalm 5 warns us of the necessity of conversion.

4b: Quóniam non Deus volens iniquitátem tu es because you are not a God that wills iniquity
5: Neque habitábit juxta te malígnus: neque permanébunt injústi ante óculos tuos.  Neither shall the wicked dwell near you: nor shall the unjust abide before your eyes.
4b: quóniam (because) non (not) Deus (God) volens  (wishing) iniquitátem (iniquity/wickedness) tu (you) es (you are) 5 Neque (neither) habitábit (he will live/dwell) juxta (near) te (you) malígnus (the wicked [man] neque (neither) permanébunt (they will endure/abide/remain) injústi (the unjust) ante (before) óculos (eyes) tuos (your)

Knox translates this rather poetically as: No evil thing claims thy divine assent; with thee baseness cannot dwell; nor rebellion hold its ground at thy coming. 

volo, volui, velle, to will, wish, desire; to have pleasure or delight in, to love, hold dear, desire
iniquitas, atis, f iniquity, injustice, sin.
juxta, prep, with acc, near, close to, at hand. according to; adv., near, close to, by the side of.
malignus, a, um adj.,evil, malicious, malignant; subst., malignus, i, m., an evil-doer, a malicious or wicked person
permaneo, mansi, mansum, ere 2, to remain, abide, continue, endure.
injustitia, ae, f (injustus), injustice, iniquity, sin..

What are we to meditate on during this early watch?  Surely the necessity of conversion.  In this life, both good and evil flourish within the Church (and without it) and we are encouraged to love the sinner even while hating the sin, in the hope that the sinner will yet repent. Cassiodorus, for example, quotes Ezekiel as saying "On whatever day the wicked man turns from his wickedness, all his wickedness will be forgotten."  All the same, the moment of judgment does ultimately come, for is perfect good and evil cannot co-exist with him.


6. Odísti omnes, qui operántur iniquitátem: perdes omnes, qui loquúntur mendácium. You hate all the workers of iniquity: you will destroy all that speak a lie
Odísti (you hate) omnes (all) qui (who) operántur (they have worked) iniquitátem (iniquity) perdes (you will destroy) omnes (all) qui (who) loquúntur (they have spoken) mendácium (a lie).

odi and odivi, odisse; other forms, odirem, odiens; to hate. 
operor, atus sum, are, to work, do, carry inot effect, cause, administer
perdo, didi, ditum, ere 3, to destroy.
loquor - to speak, talk, say, tell, mention, utter
mendacium, ii, n. a lie, lying, falsehood


There are two kinds of sins that are specifically mentioned here, as the object of God's hatred - evil actions, and pernicious lies.  For these sins, the consequence of God's justice is not just exclusion from his presence but also punishment.

7a: Virum sánguinum et dolósum abominábitur Dóminus: The bloody and the deceitful man the Lord will abhor.
Virum (the man) sánguinum (blood/bloody/bloodthirsty) et (and) dolósum (treacherous/deceitful) abominábitur  (he will detest/abhor) Dóminus (The Lord)

Vir sanguinum is a very literal reproduction of the Hebrew phrase, and means a bloodthirsty man, a man of bloody deeds.

vir, viri, m., a man, any human being
sanguis, mis, m., blood. .
dolosus, a, um  full of craft or guile, deceitful, treacherous; deceiving, lying.

The other category of sinner singled out here is those who live a lie - saying one thing, giving our commitment to it in words, but then maliciously or through sloth and neglect failing to follow through. St John Chrysostom warns us to be particularly on the look out for wolves in sheep's clothing: 

"He refers here to the murderer, the schemer, the fraud, the one who has one thing on his lips and other things in his heart, the one who is a wolf in sheep's clothing, than whom nothing could be worse. In other words, while measures could be taken against an enemy in the open, the one who conceals his wickedness and yet practices evil is not easily detected and commits many crimes. Hence Christ too bids us be on the alert when they come: "They come to you in sheep's cloth­ing, but inwardly they are rapacious wolves."

Psalm 5: Verba mei auribus

Vulgate
Douay-Rheims
In finem, pro ea quæ hæreditatem consequitur. Psalmus David.
Unto the end, for her that obtains the inheritance. A psalm for David.
1 Verba mea áuribus pércipe, Dómine, * intéllege clamórem meum.
Give ear, O Lord, to my words, understand my cry
2. Inténde voci oratiónis meæ: * Rex meus et Deus meus
Hearken to the voice of my prayer, O my King and my God
3  Quóniam ad te orábo: * Dómine, mane exáudies vocem meam.
For to you will I pray: O Lord, in the morning you shall hear my voice
4  Mane astábo tibi et vidébo: * quóniam non Deus volens iniquitátem tu es.
In the morning I will stand before you, and I will see: because you are not a God that wills iniquity.
5  Neque habitábit juxta te malígnus: * neque permanébunt injústi ante óculos tuos.
Neither shall the wicked dwell near you: nor shall the unjust abide before your eyes.
6  Odísti omnes, qui operántur iniquitátem: * perdes omnes, qui loquúntur mendácium.
You hate all the workers of iniquity: you will destroy all that speak a lie
7  Virum sánguinum et dolósum abominábitur Dóminus: * ego autem in multitúdine misericórdiæ tuæ.
The bloody and the deceitful man the Lord will abhor.  But as for me in the multitude of your mercy,
8  Introíbo in domum tuam: * adorábo ad templum sanctum tuum in timóre tuo.
I will come into your house; I will worship towards your holy temple, in your fear.
9  Dómine, deduc me in justítia tua: * propter inimícos meos dírige in conspéctu tuo viam meam.
Conduct me, O Lord, in your justice: because of my enemies, direct my way in your sight.
10  Quóniam non est in ore eórum véritas: * cor eórum vanum est.
For there is no truth in their mouth: their heart is vain.
11  Sepúlcrum patens est guttur eórum, linguis suis dolóse agébant, * júdica illos, Deus.
Their throat is an open sepulchre: they dealt deceitfully with their tongues: judge them, O God
12  Décidant a cogitatiónibus suis, secúndum multitúdinem impietátum eórum expélle eos, * quóniam irritavérunt te, Dómine.
Let them fall from their devices: according to the   multitude of their wickednesses cast them out: for they have provoked you, O Lord.
13  Et læténtur omnes, qui sperant in te, * in ætérnum exsultábunt: et habitábis in eis.
But let all them be glad that hope in you: they shall rejoice for ever, and you shall dwell in them.
14  Et gloriabúntur in te omnes, qui díligunt nomen tuum: * quóniam tu benedíces justo.
And all they that love your name shall glory in you. For you will bless the just.
15  Dómine, ut scuto bonæ voluntátis tuæ * coronásti nos.
O Lord, you have crowned us, as with a shield of   your good will.
You can find the next set of verse by verse notes on the psalm here.

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