Psalm 125

Imagine you are a Jewish pilgrim, 3000 years ago, heading up to Jerusalem for the Passover. Up ahead, upon the mount called ‘Zion,’ towers the ancient and mighty fortress city of Jerusalem. The sight is inspiring and the stories of the scores of armies that had tried unsuccessfully to penetrate its great walls immediately come … Continued

Psalm 123

Psalm 123 is a communal lament in a particularly desperate tone. This is not just a pious expression of humility but the cry of a man on behalf of a people who are feeling humiliated, possibly in some military context. He says that they have been ridiculed continuously by arrogant men and have been completely … Continued

Psalm 121

Psalm 121 is a psalm of ascents. This group of psalms were traditionally sung by pilgrims in the regular ‘ascent’ to Jerusalem for the sacred feasts. It celebrates the covenant relationship with God. The hills being spoken of here are specifically those of mount Zion (Jerusalem). Jerusalem, with the temple in its midst, was the … Continued

Psalm 117

Psalm 117 rings forth the universal imperative for all people to live the way human beings were made to live: as vessels of praise to God. Here is the great vision to which the worship of the psalms naturally looks: that one day all the peoples and nations of the earth would bow the knee … Continued

Psalm 116b

Psalm 116, the first half of which appeared on our album, ‘Light of Life,’ is a thanksgiving psalm. It is the type of psalm that was itself present as an offering alongside some kind of formal thank offering in the temple. The psalm was presented as a testimony to declare to the congregation gathered what … Continued

Psalm 116

Psalm 116 is a testimonial and thanksgiving psalm. It is a psalm of public edification and it is also a psalm of self-edification. The psalmist is not only seeking to glorify God before others but he is seeking to bolster his own love for God and trust in God by recalling what God has done. … Continued

Psalm 114

This Psalm is a celebration of the exodus event. One of the roles of the psalms, and this is the case also with this one, was to help generation after generation remember and reflect on the acts of God in the past. God speaks through what God does and therefore he repeatedly tells his people … Continued

Psalm 99

Psalm 99 picks up a theme that was important to the Jews particularly during and after the Babylonian exile (586-537 BC). It speak about God’s sovereignty over all the nations. In this period the Jews were a very small and seemingly insignificant people group in the midst of vast and powerful empires at war with … Continued

Psalm 96

Psalm 96 is a call to praise God and celebrate his victorious reign over the earth in anticipation of his coming to judge the world. This psalm appears to have been part of David’s song of celebration during the bringing up of the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem. David’s song recorded in 1 Chronicles … Continued

Psalm 95

The movement of Psalm 95 is interesting in the sense that it moves from a mood of exuberant praise to one of solemn warning. The first part of the psalm is a call to reverent joyful worship. Reverence is a key factor here since what is being highlighted is the greatness of God. The appeal … Continued

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