commands, so that we may deserve to obtain the rewards. We have a Lord who is both devoted by nature and most generous in the gifts of His mercies. Who would hesitate to make requests of Him who is offended if He is not entreated? So let us all as one bless the Lord, and let us hymn His works with the exultation of song. What a sacrilege it would be, since every creature is bidden to bless the Lord, if man who is known to have been created in His image and likeness ceased to praise Him! We have heard with what virtues the blessing of the Lord is associated; it is especially apt for the chaste, the most humble, and those who perform the Lord's other commands. So all that is debased is excluded from our midst. The entire malice of the world is expelled. Our tendencies are better governed. The devil is shut out with his followers. So once we have heard of this great gift, let us be filled with abundant hope, bless the Lord with pious works, and sing to our Maker with righteous deeds. When the Judge makes His selection, he will not reject us if He knows that we have performed His commands here on earth.
i. A psalm of David. We have often said that psalm denotes those actions of men which in their worth are directed towards an understanding of things divine. The instrument which has the specific name of psalm 1 is fashioned to represent this; it has a drum on top in which the sweetest melody is controlled with tuneful sound. David is added merely as spokesman. But clearly the whole narrative is to be told of the Lord Christ, who in the beginning made heaven and earth. The psalm has been designed with an arrangement allowing you to grasp that certain things are said here which you realise were left unsaid in the book of Genesis. So we shall offer a literal explanation of appropriate acts, and offer a spiritual understanding, derived from our predecessors, of matters which can offer knowledge of our faith. We should therefore be eager and ready to listen, for that most eloquent person father Augustine declares 2 that we should carefully study and most scrupulously discuss this psalm.