Friday, January 28, 2011

Psalms

My readings this morning took me to Psalm 6. I ended up reading the introduction to Psalms, in the ESV Study Bible, where I read this:


These songs cover a wide range of experiences and emotions, and give God’s people the words to express these emotions and to bring these experiences before God. At the same time, the psalms do not simply express emotions: when sung in faith, they actually shape the emotions of the godly. The emotions are therefore not a problem to be solved but are part of the raw material of now-fallen humanity that can be shaped to good and noble ends. The psalms, as songs, act deeply on the emotions, for the good of God’s people. It is not “natural” to trust God in hardship, and yet the Psalms provide a way of doing just that, and enable the singers to trust better as a result of singing them. A person staring at the night sky might not know quite what to do with the mixed fear and wonder he finds in himself, and singing Psalm 8 will enrich his ability to respond.


I loved the phrase that the Psalms "shape the emotions of the godly. The emotions are therefore not a problem to be solved but are part of the raw material of now-fallen humanity that can be shaped to good and noble ends". Let's not be people who deny or hide our emotions, but take them to God in faith and with an attitude of trust and confidence in Him.

Simon.

1 comment:

Ron Bailey said...

There is a good IVP Acacdemic book entitled How to read the Psalms that gives quite an insight into the different kinds and patterns of psalms. It is a bit academic but very readable. You can get it on Amazon.. http://www.amazon.co.uk/How-Read-Psalms/dp/0877849412/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1296242443&sr=1-1

there is also a Kindle Version