Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.
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Augustine of Hippo
4. "Let us prevent His face by confession" (ver. 2). Confession hath a double meaning in Scripture. There is a confession of him who praiseth, there is that of him who groaneth. The confession of praise pertaineth to the honour of Him who is praised: the confession of groaning to the repentance of him who confesseth. For men confess when they praise God: they confess when they accuse themselves; and the tongue hath no more worthy use. Truly, I believe these to be the very vows, of which he speaketh in another Psalm: "I will pay Thee my vows, which I distinguished with my lips." Nothing is more elevated than that distinguishing, nothing is so necessary both to understand and to do. How then dost thou distinguish the vows which thou payest unto God? By praising Him, by accusing thyself; because it is His mercy, to forgive us our sins. For if He chose to deal with us after our deserts, He would find cause only to condemn. "O come," he said therefore, that we may at last go back from our s...
Come. Earlier than usual, (Menochius) before the day be far spent; præoccupemus, to show our diligence in prayer, (Haydock) and to obtain God's favour, as Aman was first at the palace of Assuerus, Esther vi. 4.
This sentence has probably determined the Church to place it at the beginning of matins. (Calmet)
Let not others get before us in performing this duty. (Haydock)
We cannot prevent God's grace by an good works, since without it we can do nothing (Worthington) as we ought. (Council of Trent)
Thanksgiving. St. Jerome literally, "in confession. "(Haydock)
The same word, exomologesei, is used for sacramental confession; (Berthier) and this, or at least contrition, (Haydock) ought to go before our expressions of praise, Ecclesiasticus xv. 9. (Theodoret) (St. Jerome)
The prophet exhorts us both to lament and to praise. (St. Augustine) (Berthier)
Psalms and music. (Worthington) ...