Psalm 119

Note: This post re-introduces the longest psalm, sections of which arise in the next two weeks. Subsequent posts will look more closely at sections as they appear in the Lectionary, starting with Aleph then He on the following Sunday. Psalm 119 has at its heart the 'law', or the premises principles, and promises of God. At 176 … Continue reading Psalm 119

Psalm 15, 29 Jan 17

Psalm 15 (text here>) this week, probably used as an introit or gradual, asks who may dwell in God’s ‘tent’ or ‘holy hill’. The remaining verses provide a checklist of rather challenging qualifiers, from the grand ‘live blameless’ to the nitty-gritty of ‘take no bribes’. The challenge is really encouraging the reader continually to seek to connect with sources of divine presence … Continue reading Psalm 15, 29 Jan 17

Psalm 27, 22 Jan 2017

This psalm offers encouragement in difficult times, weaving together two contrasting but commanding threads. First is the imagery of light, beauty and goodness. Calling to mind references to the 'light of the world' (John 8:12) and 'light upon my path' (Psalm 119:105), it is a theme found in many psalms. Many readers will be familiar with the opening verse: "God is my light and … Continue reading Psalm 27, 22 Jan 2017

Psalm 59

In Psalm 59 as in many others, context and time are important. The situation is referred to in the introduction: To the leader: Do not destroy. Of David. A Miktam, when Saul ordered his house to be watched in order to kill him. The phrase "Do not destroy", like "Miktam", is obscure but may mean … Continue reading Psalm 59

Psalm 58

David is certainly angry in Psalm 58, primarily against rulers who are wicked, unjust and violent. Although this poem does not appear in the Lectionary, this feature alone makes it entirely relevant in today's world as an expression of indignation and as a prayer for improvement in the rule of law and equity. However, anger can lead … Continue reading Psalm 58