And see, if it goes up by the way of its own land to Bethshemesh, then he has done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that struck us: it was by chance that it happened to us.
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George Leo Haydock
Way. Josephus observes, that they stationed the kine at three lane ends; (Haydock) and, as we may infer from the Hebrew (ver. 12,) rather with their heads turned from Bethsames. But, by this conduct, did they not tempt God? Some believe that He inspired them on this occasion, (Estius) that even his enemies might be convinced, (Haydock) the grace of prophecy being frequently granted to wicked men, like Balaam: others believe that He gave success to their plan, though it was dictated by superstition. Even the devil sometimes speaks the truth. (Mendoza) (Calmet)
People frequently use to pitch upon signs, to which God often assented, Proverbs xvi. 33., (Menochius) and Genesis xxiv. 14. (Haydock) ...
For this reason he [Paul] says, “To the Jews I became as a Jew, to those without law, as one without law, to those that are under the law, as under the law.” Thus God does too, as in the case of the wise men, he does not conduct them by an angel, nor a prophet, nor an apostle, nor an evangelist, but how? By a star. For as their art made them conversant with these, he made use of such means to guide them. So [he does] in the case of the oxen that drew the ark. “If it goes up by the way of his own coast, then he has done this great evil to us,” as their prophets suggested. Do these prophets then speak the truth? No; but he refutes and confounds them out of their own mouths. - "Homilies on Titus 3" ...