Psalm 105(3), 30 August 2020

In this third occurrence of Psalm 105, after the first six verses we then move on to hear the experiences of Jacob and the descendants of Abraham as slaves and refugees in Egypt.

23 Then Israel came to Egypt;
    Jacob lived as an alien in the land of Ham.
24 And the Lord made his people very fruitful,
    and made them stronger than their foes,
25 whose hearts he then turned to hate his people,
    to deal craftily with his servants.
26 He sent his servant Moses,
    and Aaron whom he had chosen.

Regrettably, host nations to this day feel obliged to treat refugees harshly. Is it fear, deterrence or just prejudice? The pitfalls of tribalism and discrimination seem to come up in the psalms time and time again these last few weeks. The message of the Psalter returns just as frequently to divine standards of justice and equity, probably in recognition that this human failing is endemic and needs constant correction.

🎵

Recent posts on Psalm 105 offered these settings:

26 July 20:

  • a harmonised quote from the first part of a setting for five voices by Lassus
  • a home-grown refrain
  • Confitemini Domino, the setting by Orlando di Lasso referred to above

9 August 20: an instrumental treatment on the Genevan setting.

So it may be time for a change. Several versions of the Anglican setting appear online; most are by cathedral choirs, the sound quality being rather diffuse. Contemporary songs also abound, although many may not strike the listener as engaging. The webmaster has recorded the version heard by South Woden members in their online worship these four weeks of Psalm 105’s return, but this will not be here imposed on other readers. So the following clip is chosen largely for its lilt and voices in harmony.

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