discretion to follow what he chooses in what we have thought worth suggesting in this or in other novel matters.
So far in the conclusions to the four preceding psalms which have sung the Lord's praises, we have stated the purpose with which they have been framed: all of them seem set up to prepare us for those that follow. The very order of the psalms is seen to denote a marvellous arrangement of topics. It was fitting to begin with the commands of the divine proclamation, to turn next to the world's recalcitrance which we must avoid, and thirdly to speak of the assembly of the Church; fourthly, the psalm now ended has bidden the gathered Jerusalem to hymn the Lord's praises, for it has been delivered from the various dangers of this world, and as we know is established in eternal rest. So he appends the message that the most holy band, gathered from the regions of the world, should rejoice in threefold exultation, so that in this most holy activity the grace of the Trinity may shine forth everywhere.
I. Alleluia. This part of our prayer is confined to a few syllables, but when we meditate on it, it grows ever wider. When the mind's eye gazes on it, it ejaculates the sweetest ideas of a novel kind. When uttered by the reader, it is a proclamation of praise, but when the people respond with it, it is a hymn. Thus the single word, though appearing unchanged in itself, encapsulates so diverse a mystery. This psalm is to be handled carefully, for the prophet by mention of a few creatures impresses on all of them that they must sing the Lord's praises. Those with reason and understanding must do this with their own faculties, whereas those lacking understanding or thought must do it through those which praise the Lord's works with the wisest reflection.