Undoubtedly this psalm too refers to the end of the world, when the scattered people of Israel are gathered into a single race, so that there may be one flock and one shepherd. 18 What a happy era it will be, when the living stones, more precious than any pearls, are assembled into the building of heaven and into eternal blessedness! Then the toil of each individual saint will be most sweet; grief will win them consolation, persecution will gain them eternal rest, devoted poverty will bestow on them the kingdom of heaven, and in the world to come they will rejoice that they endured all their oppressive sufferings here. Grant, O Lord, endurance of ills here, so that You can make our joy enduring in heaven.
12. Alleluia. We return to the familiar Alleluia, but we are by no means weary of repeating it. It bears a taste which we always seek, a hearing which does not bore us, an understanding obtained without toil. Such honour is paid to this word that though it is buried in the Hebrew language it has clearly been left untranslated into any other. Greeks, Latins, Chaldaeans, Syrians, Persians, Arabs, all nations of the world retain it; all devotion to the Godhead reveres the dignity of the word with sacred piety. No-one considers it inappropriate or absurd; all hymn their joys proclaimed by the sweetness of this expression. So let us sing it with pure hearts, and concentrate on it with all our strength, so that the sweetest sound registered by our bodily ears may be matched by the heart's sincerity with which it is uttered.
In the first section the prophet briefly addresses Jerusalem the heavenly city, urging that now that it is safely established among its citizens, it should praise the Lord with continuing joy. In the second, he recounts at greater breadth with mystical references the great kindnesses which the Lord's devoted pity has bestowed on His people.