The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
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Augustine of Hippo
4. "The ungodly are not so," they are not so, "but are like the dust which the wind casteth forth from the face of the earth" (ver. 4). "The earth" is here to be taken as that stedfastness in God, with a view to which it is said, "The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance, yea, I have a goodly heritage." With a view to this it is said, "Wait on the Lord and keep His ways, and He shall exalt thee to inherit the earth." With a view to this it is said, "Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth." A comparison too is derived hence, for as this visible earth supports and contains the outer man, so that earth invisible the inner man. "From the face of" which "earth the wind casteth forth the ungodly," that is, pride, in that it puffeth him up. On his guard against which he, who was inebriated by the richness of the house of the Lord, and drunken of the torrent stream of its pleasures, saith, "Let not the foot of pride come against me." From this earth pride cast forth him who ...
Not so. Hebrew, "but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. "(Haydock)
They are inconstant (St. Jerome) in the good resolutions which they sometimes form. (Haydock) (Job xxi. 18.)
The good corn remains, but they are tossed about by every wind, and their memory perishes with all their children and effects. (Calmet)
They yield to the slightest temptation. (Worthington) ...
The next point after the prophet had set forth the man's perfect happiness was for him to declare what punishment remained for the ungodly. Thus there ensues: The ungodly are not so, but are like the dust which the wind drives away from the face of the earth. The ungodly have no possible hope of having the image of the happy tree applied to them; the only lot that awaits them is one of wandering and winnowing, crushing, dispersion and unrest; shaken out of the solid framework of their bodily condition, they must be swept away to punishment in dust, a plaything of the wind. They shall not be dissolved into nothing, for punishment must find in them some stuff to work on, but ground into particles, imponderable, unsubstantial, dry, they shall be tossed to and fro, and make sport for the punishment that gives them never rest. Their punishment is recorded by the same Prophet in another place where he says: I will beat them small as the dust before the wind, like the mire of the streets I wi...