The Flow of the Psalms: Discovering Their Structure and Theology

The Flow of the Psalms: Discovering Their Structure and Theology

by O. Palmer Robertson


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For centuries the book of Psalms has been read as a random collection of individual poems with no discernible pattern of intentional arrangement. Augustine referred to the organization of the psalms as a “mighty mystery.” Recent Old Testament studies insist that each psalm is not to be interpreted in view of its position in the overall book or by the psalms that border it. Yet O. Palmer Robertson shows that there is a clear redemptive-historical progression that develops throughout the five books of the psalms. In addition, structural elements such as the placement of acrostic psalms, strategic couplings of a Messianic psalm with a Torah psalm, and the grouping of psalms by topics indicate an intentional structuring. The uncovering of these various elements enables the lover of the psalms to get a grasp on the whole of the Psalter along with a fuller appreciation of each individual psalm.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781629951331
Publisher: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing
Publication date: 05/26/2015
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 518,257
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

O. Palmer Robertson (ThM, ThD, Union Theological Seminary, Virginia) is the founder of Consummation Ministries. Previously, he was director and principal of African Bible University in Uganda and taught at Reformed Theological Seminary, Westminster Theological Seminary, Covenant Theological Seminary, and Knox Theological Seminary. He has also served for many years as a teaching elder in various pastoral roles.

Table of Contents

Foreword Walter C. Kaiser Jr. ix

Editor's Preface xiii

Acknowledgments xv

Analytical Outline xvii

1 Introduction 1

2 Basic Structural Elements in the Psalms 8

3 The Redemptive-Historical Framework of the Psalms 23

4 The Flow of the Book 50

5 Book I (Psalms 1-41): Confrontation 53

6 Book II (Psalms 42-72): Communication 84

7 Book III (Psalms 73-89): Devastation 122

8 Book IV (Psalms 90-106}: Maturation 147

9 Book V (Psalms 107-150): Consummation 183

10 Concluding Observations 238

Select Bibliography 267

Index of Scripture 273

Index of Subjects and Names 295

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