repayment of that people whose example we follow. We must survey with the heart's eye the statement at the end of the psalm, that we must direct ourselves with total concentration of mind towards the Lord's justifications, living within His law. If we have obtained temporal blessings, as Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and the rest of the faithful who flourished with copious resources did, we must none the less concentrate on the means by which we can be guided to the kingdom of heaven. The things which make the world seem attractive have no place in eternity. We must remember that this is the second of the psalms 49 which in relating the miracles conferred on the Jews announce the future sacraments of the Christian people by the figure of allegory, which says one thing but means another. 50
I. Alleluia. Observe once more the return to us of alleluia-joys. This is a brief instruction that we must sing to the Lord with rejoicing throughout the psalm. But let us observe that we find no change in the heading, or in the reason for it, from the previous one. The heading is Alleluia, the reason is confession, which is wondrously and exceedingly fruitful for praising the Lord. How many mouths has this theme opened? With it Moses and the men, and his sister Mary with the women, celebrated the crossing of the Red Sea in God's praise. 1 With it Deborah sang out in happy exultation; 2 many of the prophets too poured forth various songs in proclaiming so great a miracle, and rightly, for these miracles attest the mysteries of the entire redemption of men. We are delivered from the Egyptians when by God's gift we are freed from the works of the devil. We cross the Red Sea when we receive the sacrament of baptism. We are fed in the desert when through the dispensation of divine grace we get our fill from the bestowal of the good things of this world. We are led to the land of promise when through the gift of heavenly devotion we enter the blessed native land. It is right, then, that this theme should be often repeated and proclaimed, for it is adorned with the foreshadowing of such great marvels.