Psalm 150

Praise El in his holy place; * praise him in his fortress dome!
    Praise him for his might; * praise him as his greatness deserves!
        Praise him with trumpet blasts; * praise him with harp and lyre!
        Praise him with tambour and dance; * praise him with strings and pipe!
    Praise him with resounding cymbals; * praise him with clanging cymbals.
Let everything that breaths * praise Yah.


150:0 This is Psalm 150 and the last in the whole book. After exhorting above to praise God for his justice carried out against the wicked by the saints, here he exhorts them to sing praise for the mercy to be shown to the pious as if it has already been shown. And that is way God is most strongly praised. So the title Hallelu-Yah is very fitting.

The Psalm has two parts: (1) an invitation to praise God, (2) the manner of praising him: "with the sound of trumpet". The invitation to praise is (1) first made, with the reason for praising, the glory given to the saints generally, (2) that given to some saints particularly: "in the firmament".

1. Praise ye the Lord in his holy places/saints:
Praise El in his holy place;

150:1.1 The idea is: Above I exhorted you to praise God for the justice he worked against the wicked through his saints, and now I am telling all is elect, or rather, all his creatures, to praise the Lord in his saints, to whom he shows so much mercy -Wis 4:15 Grace and mercy await his chosen ones, and his providence is with his holy ones, whose souls he drew from the dangers of the world to himself -Wis 3:1 The souls of the just are in the hand of God and torment will not touch them. -Deut 33:3 All the saints are in your hands. After taking them into his hand, he wonderfully glorified them -Ps 68:36 God is wonderful in his saints.

praise ye him in the firmament of his power.
praise him in his fortress dome!

150:1.2.1 Here is give the reason why special saints should praise God. The Psalmist (1) first invites them to praise God for the glory given to Christ, (2) secondly for the glory given to the angels: "for his mighty acts", (3) thirdly for that given to the elect among humans: "according to the multitude". The idea is: Praise him in his saints, and praise him in the firmament, that is, for the glory given to the firmament of his power, that is, God's power, while the firmament is Christ, the head. He is a firmament causally and essentially: (1) causally -2 Sam 22:19 Yahweh became my support- (2) essentially -Ps 72:16 He will be a firmament on the land, on the highest mountains (Vul). -Sir 43:1 The firmament of the heaven is beautiful.

Likewise, power is said both ways: (2) causally -1 Sam 22:2 Yahweh is my rock and my stronghold. (2) essentially -Rom 1:20 From the creation of the world, the invisible mysteries of his power and divinity have been seen, recognized through his creatures.

2. Praise ye him for his mighty acts:
Praise him for his might;

150:1.2.2 The idea is: Praise God for the glory given to the man Christ, and also praise him in his powers, that is, for the glory given to the angelic powers, which belong to him by creation and confirmation in glory. These very powers also praise God for this glory. -Prayer of Manasses 1:15 I will praise you always all the days of my life, because all the powers of heaven praise you.

praise ye him according to the multitude of his greatness.
praise him as his greatness deserves!

150:1.2.3 The very language shows that his is an invitation to praise God for the glory given to all the elect. The idea is: Praise God for the glory given to Christ and the holy angels, and also praise him according to the multitude of his greatness, that is, according to the glory that extends to the whole multitude of the elect, from different places and different conditions in this world. Also the multitude of God's greatness is shown in the salvation of men, who so miserably collapsed in the first man -Eph 2:4-5 Because of the great love he had for us, when we were dead by our sins, he raised us to life with Christ. -Lam 3:22 By the mercy of Yahweh we were not finished, for his kindness does not fail.

150:2.1 Here the Psalmist shows the manner of praising. He (1) first does this, and (2) secondly shows that God is worthy of this praise: "let every spirit". The first part presents eight ways of praising God.

The Psalm could be divided differently: (1) an invitation to praise God for the glory given to the saints, (1) first in general, and (2) secondly in particular, with regard to the glory given (1) to the Virgin Mother, and (2) to the holy angels: "praise him in his powers", (3) and to all the elect: "according to the multitude". And these have their subdivisions. But let us first talk about the Blessed Virgin. The idea is: I said that you should praise God in his saints. So begin with the glory of Mary: Praise him in the firmament of his power. She is called a firmament -Ez 1:26 Beyond the frmament above their heads there was what seemed like a sapphire, in the form of a throne. She is a firmament of power because, when everyone else was shaking in their faith at the hour of the passion, she persevered with firm power -Luke 1:35 The power of the Most High will overshadow you. Praise him in his powers. This refers to the angels, and has already been commented on.

150:2.1.1 Praise him according to the multitude of his greatness. This is for the glory given to the elect among humans, and this part is divided according to the division of the elect, (1) first, the holy Patriarchs. The multitude of God's great goodness shines especially in them, since they are the founders of the Faith, Christ took his flesh from them, made promises to them, took them from limbo and brought them to heaven. So for this multitude of greatness, he should be praised, as David praised -1 Chron 29:10-11 In the presence of the whole assembly David blessed Yahweh. David said, "May you be blessed Yahweh, God of Israel our ancestor, for eveer and forever! Yours, Yahweh, is the greatness, the power, the splendor, length of days and glory.

3. Praise him with the sound of trumpet:
Praise him with trumpet blasts;

150:2.1.2 This is an invitation to praise God for the glory given to the Apostles. The idea is: Praise him according to the multitude of his greatness, and also with the sond of trumpet, the trumpet sound of the Apostles and their glorious preaching, or the glory given to the Apostles who were trumpet sounds, since the greater preachers were called trumpets -Num 10:2 Make two silver trumpets. Or they could be any pair sent out to preach, as the Gloss says about Luke 10:1 He sent them out two by two ahead of him. And that was to demonstrate the perfection of charity, according to Gregory.

praise him with psaltery
praise him with harp

150:2.1.2 This is for the glory given to those signified by the harp. Who are these, but the Evangelists who gave full instruction on moral behavior? That is the harp that chases away the devil -1 Sam 16:23 David would take a harp and play; Saul would then be soothed.

and harp.
and lyre!

150:2.1.3 That is for the glory given to the Holy Innocents. The lyre sounds sweet, and what is sweeter than for the completely innocent ones to die for the one who is completely innocent, and to bear witness to him? Those innocents are referred to in Revelation 14:2-4 I heard lyre players playing on their lyres, and they sang a new song which none could learn except the forty-four thousand bought from the earth, who are virgins. -Rev 15:3 They sang the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb.

4. Praise him with timbrel
praise him with tambour

150:2.1.4 This is for the college of martyrs, who were stretched out in martyrdom like a drum skin -Jer 31:4 Virgin of Israel, once more in your best attire and with your tambourines.

and choir
and dance

150:2.1.5 This is the glory given to the choir, that is, of the sacred virgins, who properly make of a choir that causes rejoicing. Therefore the above passage of Jeremiah (31:4) adds: with your tambourines you will go out dancing gaily. -2 Sam 6(?) David danced to seven choruses and sacrificed cows as he brought the ark of the covenant of the Lord. These seven choruses can be the seven ways of conferring virginity, or the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit which preserve virginity which has been received.

praise him with strings
praise him with strings

150:2.1.6 That is for the glory conferred on the holy Confessors, for they were strings well tuned by mortification of the flesh and dried from the dampness of concupiscence. For these praise is due -Dan 13:63 Hilkiah and his wife gave thanks to God for their daughter Susanna, and so did her husband Joakim and all his relations, because she had been acquitted of anything dishonorable.

and organs.
and pipe!

150:2.1.7 That is for the glory given to the holy Doctors, who are rightly compared to an organ. In an organ different sounds are made from different pipes, giving a melody with harmony. So the doctors take statements from the Old Testament, Prophets, Solomon, and the New Testament, sometimes from the Epistles or the Apocalypse, making one harmonious melody. These are referred to in 1 Chronicles 23:4-5 These were chosen and distributed to ministries in the house of Yahweh: gatekeepers, those who praised Yahweh on instruments. They carried these about, because doctors must practice what they preach -Mat 5:19 Whoever does what he teaches will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

5. Praise him on high sounding cymbals:
Praise him with resounding cymbals;

150:2.1.8 A preacher who calls people to the heavenly banquet is called a cymbal. But there are two kinds of preachers: (1) Some preach, inviting by word and by deed, and these are sound good. (2) Others invite by the exultation of their heart and are cymbals of jubilation. For the glory given to both, the Psalmist urges: Praise him with resounding cymbals, that is, for the glory given to the preachers who with love do what they exhort others to do, lest they become self-destroying cymbals -1 Cor 13:1 If I speak with the languages of men and angels, but do not have love, I have become a booming gong or a clashing cymbal. They should not belong to those who will say on the last day, (cf. Mat 7:22) "Did we not preach in your streets and work miracles in your name?" Amen. I say to you, I do not know you.

praise him on cymbals of joy:
praise him with clanging cymbals.

150:2.1.9 That is in the glory and for the glory of those who preach him with gladness of heart, for that is how God wants to be served -2 Cor 9:7 God loves a cheerful giver. Of these it is said in 1 Esra 3:10 The priests in their robes stood forward with trumpets, and the Levites, the sons of Asaph, with cymbals, to praise Yahweh according to the ordinasnces of David king of Israel. They chanted praise and thanksgiving to Yahweh because for Israel they said, he is good, and everlastng in his faithful love. -2 Chron 5:11-13 The priests sang to the accompaniment of cymbles.

let every spirit praise the Lord. Alleluia.
Let everything that breaths praise Yah. Hallelu-Yah!

150:2.2 Here the Psalmist shows who must specially praise in this way. And these are spiritual, not carnal, people. The idea is: He should be praised in the foregoing ways, and every spirit, that is, everyone living spiritually and spiritually serving God, not following the flesh -Phil 3:3 We are the circumcision, who serve God spiritually and glory in Christ Jesus- should praise the Lord for these good things; this is not the job of the flesh or the sinner -Sir 15:9 Unseemly is praise on a sinner's lips. -Dan 3:86 Spirits and souls of the just, bless, praising and glorifying, the Lord. Praise and exalt him forever. But if flesh is made spiritual, it should be glad and rejoice -Ps 84:3 My heart and flesh cry out: God, my living God. So let every spirit praise, here in the present, and especially in the future, when everyone will totally go over to praise of God. To this state may he lead us who is blessed for infinite ages upon ages. Amen.