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Seventh Sunday after Trinity

Augustine on Psalm XXXIV

O LORD of Hosts, who art the author and giver of all good things; Graft in our hearts the love of thy Name, increase in us true religion, nourish us with all goodness, and of thy great mercy keep us in the same; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Historical Note: Source: Collect composed by Bishop Gelasius of Rome (492-496), in 1549 Cranmer revised the collect to begin with "Lord of all power and might." His "true religion" reminds one of James' epistle and "pure religion KJV [James 1:27]

O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.

1 Samuel xxi. 10, Psalms 32, 36 | 33,34 , Romans vi. 19 & St. Mark viii. 1

Homily of Augustine on Psalm XXXIV

Comment Grace be unto you and Peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Today's psalm is one near and dear to centurions of the Early Church. They would of likely heard it in many places of worship during the Eucharist

as the Communion Hymn. The introduction credits the psalm to the time recorded in our Old Testament lesson of 1st Samuel when David feigned madness to avoid death or imprisonment at the hands of the king of his enemies to whom he fled from Saul. Some scholars think the early scribes did this because of the Hebrew word for "taste" is of the same root for the word that means "pretended to be insane." The first time that Brother Paul and I had communion together we used this as the gradual before the Gospel because that is what the Early Church used. I would commend that you do so too from time to time. Why was Psalm 34 selected by the Church? because of two reasons I think, the lesser of which is the salvation theme of deliverance in the hymn, closely tied to the reason for the Great Thanksgiving: Jesus' salvation for his elect, but primarily for the verse that reads,

O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that
trusteth in him.

Augustine managed to address both the tradition of the Early church as seeing this verse point to the Body and Blood of our Lord, and also the incident recorded in 1st Samuel. He wrote

Now will He speak openly of the same Sacrament, whereby He was carried in his Own Hands. "O taste and see that the Lord is good". Doth not the Psalm now open itself, and show thee that seeming insanity and constant madness, the same insanity and sober inebriety of that David, who in a figure showed I know not what, when in the person of king Achis they said to him, How is it? When the Lord said, "Except a man eat My Flesh and
drink My Blood, he shall have no life in him"? And they in whom reigned Achis, that is, error and ignorance, said; what said they? "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?" If thou art ignorant, "Taste and see that the Lord is good:" but if thou understandest not, thou art king Achis: David shall change His Countenance and shall depart from thee, and shall
quit thee, and shall depart.

We all need to take Augustine's words to heart.
Finally, I encourage all to read again an Exhortation to Holy Communion here finis

Released by Primus Pilus
Legio Christi-Ecclesia Militans
"Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another" [St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans 14:19]


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