Hello, and welcome to the Exploring the Psalms blog! Every fortnight we’ll be looking at a different short psalm (15 verses or less with psalms selected in random order), asking what the psalm is about, how it works and what it means. The emphasis is on careful or ‘close’ reading of the Bible text, noticing patterns, repetition, images and the like – but always asking why these features are there and how they contribute to the psalm’s message.
The psalms have always been relevant – to their original writers in their particular historical circumstances, to believers who have lived in the 2500 years of intervening history, to the Lord Jesus, and to us today. They help us express both the glorious moments and the tragedies of life, and they show us how to bring all of these before God, framing them in terms of our relationship with Him.
Although I often compare other versions (especially the ESV), I’ve chosen to base the blog on the KJV translation even though it’s now very old. That’s because a) it often captures the Hebrew quite literally so it’s useful for understanding what’s going on ‘underneath’, b) its phrases are memorable and it’s a good translation, and c) I like it! I’d like to thank the Christadelphian Office for hosting the blog, and my daughter Eden for finding an image which captures the essence of an aspect of each psalm often through a visual of today. Earlier versions of one or two of these posts originally appeared as articles in The Testimony magazine, and I’m grateful for permission to publish revised versions here. This is not a comprehensive commentary, but I do hope it’s an enjoyable and useful ‘exploration’ of the psalms.