INSIGHT FROM THE BOOK OF PSALM
The Book of Psalms was written to Israel as a nation, but the book has been used for devotion, prayer, and praise by believers down through the centuries. This book was known as the hymn book of Israel. The word “Psalms” means “songs to the accompaniment of a stringed instrument.” It is the prayer and praise book of the Bible. Prayer, praise, intercession, and confession are all part of true worship.
I ) TYPES OF PSALMS:
- Psalms of Instruction: The word “Maschil” in the title means these and other Psalms are to be used for instruction or teaching. (Psalms 32, 44, 52, and 78 are examples.)
- Psalms of Adoration: In these Psalms God’s greatness, mercy, love, and power are the theme. (See Psalms 8, 29.)
- Psalms of History: These recall historical events of the nation of Israel. (See Psalms 78, 105 and 106.)
- Psalms of Supplication: Making requests of God. (An example is Psalm 86.)
- Psalms of Thanksgiving: An example is Psalm 18.
- Imprecatory Psalms: The word “imprecatory” means cursing. These Psalms are not for personal revenge nor is bad language used. As a prophet of God, the writer speaks out against sin and the enemies of God. (Examples of these are Psalms 35, 55, 58, 59, 69, 83, 109, 137 and 140.)
- Confession Psalms: Examples are Psalms 6, 32, 38, 51, 102, 130 and 143.
- Messianic Psalms: These Psalms, or portions of them, give prophecies relating to the coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. They are recorded on the next page to enable your further study.
- ii) How to Use Psalms IN YOUR spiritual discipline
The Bible directs us to use the Psalms in numerous ways in our spiritual disciplines:
- When believers gather together, we are to bring a psalm:
How is it then, brethren? Whenever you come together, each of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification. (1 Corinthians 14:26)
- We are to teach and admonish one another with psalms:
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. (Colossians 3:16)
- The psalms are to be part of our regular conversation:
Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord. (Ephesians 5:19)
- The psalms provide a divine hymn book, from which we are to sing to God:
Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him; talk of all His wondrous works! (1 Chronicles 16:9)
- We are instructed to shout psalms to Him:
Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; let us shout joyfully to him with psalms. (Psalm 95:2)
- Various psalms also provide tremendous prayer models. For example, the prayer of repentance in Psalm 51:
1 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness; according to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.
4 Against You, and You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Your sight–
III) BENEFITS OF PERSONALIZED PSALMS
- Personalized Psalms” enables you to use the psalms in these and other Scriptural ways in personal and group devotions. Each psalm is edited in the first person, enabling you to converse directly with God in your worship experience. The title of each personalized psalm is a personal, positive declaration of prayer, praise, or power drawn from that specific psalm. Even Psalms targeting evil nations take on new meaning when you come into agreement with righteous judgment on the enemies of God. “Imprecatory” psalms are those which call down judgment on the enemy. In the
New Testament we are told to love our enemies (Matthew 5:44). This is not a conflict, however. When we read or pray imprecatory psalms, we are not exhibiting a hateful attitude but we are praying regarding God’s final judgment of the world and evil. These should never be used to pray against someone you do not like. These psalms should be used as declarations against evil–not people–but against the powers of the enemy that motivates wickedness.
- The Personalized Psalms are intended to be used rather than simply read. First, make the positive confession with the title of the Psalm, then use the psalm to lift your own prayer, praise, or declaration to God. Experiment by praying, singing, and shouting psalms to God as the Bible directs. Take time to meditate on each psalm.
- The Personalized Psalms are designed to move you beyond a mere perusal of the psalms into personal possession of this rich treasury of God’s Word.