Augustine. Exposition on the Book of Psalms. Schaff, Philip (editor). New York: Christian Literature Publishing Co, 1886. Nicene and Post-Nicene Church Fathers: Series 1: Volume VIII. Re-published 2014, Catholic Way Publishing. Kindle electronic edition, ISBN-13: 978-1-78379-372-3.
Psalm 95 is a psalm of praise. Augustine sees it as a song calling God's people to praise God in the safety God gives them. The joy is a righteous joy which lasts forever (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335527, par. 2). A question which Augustine thinks important is where God's people are ocming from, to whom they draw near, and what they were far from (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335533, par .2). The coming near is not a matter of location but of desires and habits. To be far form God is to be unlike Him.
Verse two speaks of the means of coming before God. It is through confession. Augustine observes that confession in the Scripture may refer to a statement of our belief in God or to an admission of our guilt (Augustine Psalms, loc. 3355433, par. 4). Augustine is clear that although we are all guilty of sin we do not need to be excluded from the songs of praise to God. We still make a joyful noise to the Lord (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335553, par. 5). He illustrates this idea at some length, using various characters from Scripture.
Verses four and following speak of God's rule overall things. Here Augustine mentions Christ as the corner stone, joining the wall of the circumcised and the uncircumcised (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335578, par. 6).
The majesty of God, then, calls us to fall down before him (v. 6). It is only in God that we can be restored. Augustine is clear that we have reason to trust in God. "The thing created hath no slight confidence in Him who created it, and that in no indifferent fashion, but according to His own image and likeness" (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335589, par. 8). The particular nature of the creation is what motivates hope in God.
As the Psalm moves to its conclusion, in verse eight, we are to hear God, by not hardening our hearts. Augustine calls Christians to have their hearts softened so as to hear from God (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335604, par. 10). Verse nine sets the reader apart from the Israelites who provoked God's anger in the wilderness. The wilderness experience, which lasted 40 years, showed the steadfast pattern of Israel (v. 10). Augustine considers 40 in the Bible to indicate a fulness of time (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335614, par. 12). Verse 11 then speaks of God's promise to his peopke, but a negative promise. They would not enter the promised land. Augustine finds this a note which should provoke fear. God swore by himself that the people would not enter (Augustine Psalms, loc. 335625, par. 13). Augustine's comments also end on this serious note. The warning holds true. We must not harden our hearts.