The Psalms: Structure, Content and Message

The Psalms: Structure, Content and Message

The Psalms: Structure, Content and Message

The Psalms: Structure, Content and Message

Synopsis

Introduction: A Call to Praise The Community Psalm of Lament (CL) The Community Psalm of Narrative Praise (CP) The Individual Psalm of Lament (IL) The Individual Psalm of Narrative Praise (IP) The Psalm of Descriptive Praise of Hymn (H) Creation Psalms Liturgical Psalms Royal Psalms Enthronement Psalms Wisdom Psalms Psalm 119 Conclusion: Psalm 90 The Psalms and Christ Selected Bibiography

Excerpt

Bless the Lord, O my soul;
and all that is within me, bless his holy name!

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits (Ps. 103:1-2).

What sort of call is this? An unknown person, with a world view, environment, and life-style infinitely distant from ours, used these words to raise a call that was primarily selfaddressed. But this summons has the remarkable capacity to evoke an echo in those who hear it. It is a call to praise the holy name. It is a personal name, the personal name of a god, like that of any other god in any other of the many ancient religions which have now passed from the scene; it is the name Yahweh which is called upon in this 103rd psalm and in other psalms as well. These are psalms which belong to a religion far removed from us, and this is a call to praise a God who seems distant, too.

Nevertheless something happens when we read these words today, when we learn to follow this summons to praise a God . . .

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