In your kindness give me life,
to keep the decrees you have spoken.
1 The Paralipomena are 1/2Chronicles. These two books of the OT that follow the two books of Kings (III/IV Kgs, according to LS) correspond to the Hebrew title “Facts or words of the days.” For the Jews, they formed a single book that occupies the last place in their canon. In the Greek translation of the LXX and the Latin translation by Jerome, the Chronicles were called Paralipomena, a term that means “what was omitted in the [preceding] tradition.” The complete title given by Jerome was: “Chronicle of all sacred history” and it indicates with relative precision the content of the book.
2 On the attribution of the two books of Ezra, see note 9 on page. 18.
3 Alexander the Great (356-323 B.C.), son of Philip, King of Macedon and disciple of Aristotle, was the conqueror and organizer of an empire that extended from the eastern part of the Mediterrenean Sea (Greece and Egypt) up to India (cf. 1Mc 1:1-9; 6:2) establishing what was called the “Hellenic civilization.” Some passages of Daniel's prophecies probably refer to him and to his kingdom (cf. Dn 2:40-41; 7:7; 11:3-4). The historiography that has seen in Hellenism the age of “conversion” to the Jewish-Christian religion has also included therein the Latin culture and philosophy of the first centuries of the Christian era.
4 The Interpretation of the Bible in the Church sheds light on this theme: “The Bible closely unites to the narratives of the history of salvation numerous instructions on how to behave: commandments, prohibitions, juridical prescriptions, exhortations and prophetic invectives, advices of the wise. One of the tasks of exegesis is to clarify the scope of this abundant material and thus to prepare the work of moral theologians.” (no. 39)
5 These “counsels” are the three religious vows of obedience, chastity and poverty, as will be said on p. 153.
6 Here reference is made to the Shema Israel (“Hear, Israel”), the prayer that makes up the profession of the Hebrew faith. It is made up of three Biblical passages (Dt 6:4-9; 11:13-21; Nm 15:37-41) that proclaim the unity of God, the commandment to love him above all things, the meditation of his laws and the observance of the prescriptions of the phylacteries (tefillim), of mezuzah (biblical passage placed in a pouch and fixed at the door beams) and of the seams of clothes, as “memorials” of the will of God. The Shema is recited everyday, morning and evening, and its first verse is said even by the dying.
7 It is now Ps 119.
8 Cf. Jn 21:15-17: “Feed my lambs... feed my sheep...”
9 Dt 28:1-4,15-19.
10 LS shows “Luca 1, 68-80,” (Lk 1:68-80) but the passage quoted ends with verse 79.