Focusing on the second part of Psalm 113 in today's general audience, in the Paul VI Hall in the Vatican, the Pope spoke about the temptation to idolatry and it’s contrast with worship of the true God.
John Paul II said that "after an initial word addressed to the Lord to bear witness to His glory, the chosen people describe their God as the omnipotent creator. ... 'The idols of the people' are in immediate contrast to the true God, adored by Israel.”
“Idolatry is a temptation for all of humanity in all ages. An idol is something inanimate, the work of men's hands, a lifeless cold statue," he said.
"After this blunt criticism of idols," continued the Pope, "the psalmist expresses a sarcastic wish: 'May those who make idols and put faith in them be like them.' ... Those who adore the idols of wealth, power and success lose their dignity as a human person."
The Holy Father said that "those who are faithful to the Lord know that the living God is their 'help' and their 'shield.'”
“They are presented in three categories,” he continued, “First, there is the 'house of Israel,' the entire people, the community which gathers in the temple to pray. Then there is the 'house of Aaron' represented by priests, guardians and announcers of the divine word, called to preside at worship.”
“Finally, there are those who fear the Lord, those who are genuine and constant. ... The divine blessing descends upon those three classes of true believers. According to biblical understanding, it is a source of fertility," said the Pope.