St-Basil-the-Great[Following on from here….]

‘Sing to the Lord a new canticle’ (Psalm 32:3). That is, not in the antiquity of written word, but in the newness of the spirit serve God.

He who understands the law not in a corporeal sense, but who becomes acquainted with its spiritual meaning is the one who sings the new canticle.

For, the ancient aged testament has passed and the new renewed canticle of the teaching of the Lord has succeeded, which revives our youth like an eagle, when we destroy the exterior man and are renewed day by day.

But, he who ‘strains forward to what is before’ (Phil. 3:13) always becomes newer than he was formerly. Therefore, becoming always newer than he was, he sings a newer canticle to God.

But according to custom, that is said to be newer which is admirable or which has recently come into existence. If, then, you relate the wondrous manner and the whole surpassing nature of the Incarnation of the Lord, you will sing a newer and an unusual canticle;

and, if you go on through the regeneration and renewal of the whole world which had grown old under its sin, and proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection, you thus sing a canticle both new and recent.

‘Sing well unto him with a loud noise’ (Ps. 32:3). Hear the command. ‘Sing well’ with unwavering mind, with sincere affection. ‘Sing with a loud noise.’

Like certain brave soldiers, after the victory against the enemy, pour forth hymns to the Author of the victory. ‘Take courage’ it is said, ‘I have overcome the world’ (John 16:33).

What man is capable of fighting against the evil one, unless, fleeing to the protection of the power of our Commander in chief, by our faith in Him we smite our enemy and shoot him with arrows? Therefore, ‘sing well with a loud noise.’

But, the loud noise is a certain inarticulate sound, when those who are fighting side by side in a war shout out in unison with each other. Sing, then, in harmony and in agreement and in union through charity.

Now, what should those say who are singing? ‘That the word of the Lord is Right’ (Ps. 32:4).

Therefore, he first summons the righteous to praise, since the Word of the Lord is righteous and is destined to be glorified, who ‘was in the beginning with God and was God’ (John 1:1).  The Father, then, is righteous; the Son is righteous; the Holy Spirit is righteous.

Basil the Great (330-379): Homily 15 (on Psalm 32[33]), 2-3,  from Saint Basil: Exegetic Homilies, translated by Agnes Clare Way, Catholic University of America Press (The Fathers of the Church, vol. 46), pp. 230-231.

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