Monday, September 4, 2017

Psalm 127 verse 5 - Thus shall the man be blessed, that fears the Lord

Blessing of the faithful
 Les Très Riches Heures du duc de Berry,
musée Condé, ms.65, f.56r. 
Verse 5 of Psalm 127 takes us back to the first of the steps on the ladder of humility, fear of God.

Ecce sic benedicétur homo, * qui timet Dóminum.
Ecce sic benedicetur uiro qui timet Dominum. 

 δο οτως ελογηθήσεται νθρωπος  φοβούμενος τν κύριον
Ecce (behold) sic (as) benedicétur (he shall be blessed) homo (the man) qui (who ) timet (he fears) Dóminum (the Lord)

benedico, dixi, dictum, ere 3  to bless, with dat. or ace; to praise, bless, give thanks to (God);  to be well pleased with, to take pleasure in
homo, inis, m (1) man, a human being. (2) mortal man as compared with God. (3) man, person, individual

Behold, thus shall the man be blessed that fears the Lord.
Behold, thus shall the man be blessed that fears the Lord.
Behold, so shall the man be blessed, who feareth the Lord.
Lo, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the LORD.
Lo, thus shall the man be blessed that feareth the Lord.
Let a man serve the Lord, such is the blessing that awaits him.
Indeed thus shall be blessed the man who fears the Lord.

Notwithstanding the Knox translation, 'Ecce sic benedicetur'  is arguably best interpreted as part of a blessing formula rather than an admonition  to serve the Lord; it is a statement about the consequences of our orientation towards the Lord.

Cassiodorus notes that this verse of the psalm opens a new section:
He passes to the second section, in which with the most holy devotion he asks for a benediction on those fired to every good exertion by fear of the Lord. This is to make us realise how profitable is this fear over which the holy blessing is redoubled.
He suggests that this verse points to:
...the perfect end of the blessed man who fears the Lord. The words: Thus shall every man be blessed, as was clearly explained earlier, means "Thus shall every man deserve to be blessed who fears his Maker, who ceases to tremble at empty threats, who is filled with chaste fear of the Lord." Observe the order of words. He begins with: Behold, thus shall every man be blessed, and so that wanton fools should not appropriate this blessing, he added: That feareth the Lord.

Psalm 127
Canticum graduum.

1 Beáti omnes, qui timent Dóminum,* qui ámbulant in viis ejus.
Blessed are all they that fear the Lord: that walk in his ways.
2  Labóres mánuum tuárum quia manducábis: * beátus es, et bene tibi erit.
2 For you shall eat the labours of your hands: blessed are you, and it shall be well with you.
3  Uxor tua sicut vitis abúndans: * in latéribus domus tuæ.
3 Your wife as a fruitful vine, on the sides of your house.
4  Fílii tui sicut novéllæ olivárum: * in circúitu mensæ tuæ.
Your children as olive plants, round about your table.
5  Ecce sic benedicétur homo, * qui timet Dóminum.
4 Behold, thus shall the man be blessed that fears the Lord.
6  Benedícat tibi Dóminus ex Sion: *  et vídeas bona Jerúsalem ómnibus diébus vitæ tuæ.
5 May the Lord bless you out of Sion: and may you see the good things of Jerusalem all the days of your life.
7  Et vídeas fílios filiórum tuórum: * pacem super Israël.
6 And may you see your children's children, peace upon Israel.
Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui Sancto.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost
Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper, et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

And for the next part, continue on here.

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