Friday, April 15, 2016

The Strength of My Salvation

Continuing my posts of patristic texts coinciding with this Sunday’s Psalm study.

King David in Prayer - Pieter de Grebber
I say to the Lᴏʀᴅ, You are my God;
    give ear to the voice of my pleas for mercy, O Lᴏʀᴅ!
O Lᴏʀᴅ, my Lord, the strength of my salvation,
    you have covered my head in the day of battle.
Grant not, O Lᴏʀᴅ, the desires of the wicked;
    do not further their evil plot, or they will be exalted!  (Ps 140:6-8)

“For my part, on the contrary, I scorned all human things and dedicated myself to You.  I know You are Lord and God, and I await help from You.”  The repetition comes from a person of faith and longing: “In You, I place the hope of salvation, You alone being strong enough to provide salvation.  I learned this by experience, when I submitted to single combat with Goliath, and when I was engaged in battle with the Philistines, You protected me with Your aid as a shield.  Do not grant to the one hankering after my slaughter the realization of their desire.… They direct every thought to my murder, so do not strip me of Your providence lest You provide them with an occasion for deceit.”

Theodoret of Cyrus, Commentary on the Psalms 140.3-4

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