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Home > Fathers of the Church > Expositions on the Psalms (Augustine) > Psalm 28

Exposition on Psalm 28

Of David himself.

1. It is the Voice of the Mediator Himself, strong of hand in the conflict of the Passion. Now what He seems to wish for against His enemies, is not the wish of malevolence, but the declaration of their punishment; as in the Gospel, Matthew 11:20-24 with the cities, in which though He had performed miracles, yet they had not believed on Him, He does not wish in any evil will what He says, but predicts what is impending over them.

2. Unto You, O Lord, have I cried; My God, be not silent from me Psalm 27:1. Unto You, O Lord, have I cried; My God, separate not the unity of Your Word from that which as Man I am. Lest at any time Thou be silent from me: and I shall be like them that go down into the pit. For from this, that the Eternity of Your Word ceases not to unite Itself to Me, it comes that I am not such a man as the rest of men, who are born into the deep misery of this world: where, as if You are silent, Your Word is not recognised. Hear, O Lord, the voice of my supplication, whist I pray unto You, while I hold up my hands to Your holy temple Psalm 27:2. Whilst I am crucified for their salvation, who on believing become Your holy temple.

3. Draw not My Soul away with sinners, and destroy me not with them that work iniquity, with them that speak peace with their neighbours Psalm 27:3. With them that say unto Me, We know that You are a Master come from God. John 3:2 But evil in their hearts. But they speak evil in their hearts.

4. Give unto them according to their works Psalm 27:4. Give unto them according to their works, for this is just. And according to the malice of their affections. For aiming at evil, they cannot discover good. According to the works of their hands give Thou unto them. Although what they have done may avail for salvation to others, yet give Thou unto them according to the works of their wills. Pay them their recompense. Because, for the truth which they heard, they wished to recompense deceit; let their own deceit deceive them.

5. For they have not had understanding in the works of the Lord Psalm 27:5. And whence is it clear that this has befallen them? From this forsooth, for they have not had understanding in the works of the Lord. This very thing, in truth, has been, even now, their recompense, that in Him whom they tempted with malicious intent as a Man, they should not recognise God, with what design the Father sent Him in the Flesh. And the works of His hands. Nor be moved by those visible works, which are laid out before their very eyes. You shall destroy them, and not build them up. Let them do Me no hurt, nay, nor again in their endeavour to raise engines against My Church, let them anything avail.

6. Blessed be the Lord, for He has heard the voice of My prayer Psalm 27:6.

7. The Lord My Helper and My Protector Psalm 27:7. The Lord helping Me in so great sufferings, and protecting Me with immortality in My resurrection. In Him has My Heart trusted, and I have been helped. And My Flesh has flourished again: that is, and My Flesh has risen again. And of my will I will confess unto Him. Wherefore, the fear of death being now destroyed, not by the necessity of fear under the Law, but with a free will with the Law, shall they who believe in Me, confess unto Him; and because I am in them, I will confess.

8. The Lord is the strength of His people Psalm 27:8. Not that people ignorant of the righteousness of God, and willing to establish their own. Romans 10:3 For they thought not themselves strong in themselves: for the Lord is the strength of His people, struggling in this life's difficulties with the devil. And the protector of the salvation of His Christ. That, having saved them by His Christ after the strength of war, He may protect them at the last with the immortality of peace.

9. Save Your people, and bless Your inheritance Psalm 27:9. I intercede therefore, after My Flesh has flourished again, because You have said, Desire of Me, and I will give You the heathen for Your inheritance; Save Your people, and bless Your inheritance: for all Mine are Yours. John 17:10 And rule them, and set them up even for ever. And rule them in this temporal life, and raise them from hence into life eternal.

About this page

Source. Translated by an anonymous scholar. From Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, First Series, Vol. 8. Edited by Philip Schaff. (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1888.) Revised and edited for New Advent by Kevin Knight. <http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1801028.htm>.

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