Because God so loved the world in all ages and nations, he gave us the God-breathed Psalms. And those Psalms are songs. That is the red-hot conviction that pervades my newly published book 150 Questions about the Psalter, recently released from Crown and Covenant Publications. In other words, God wants his people singing, and specifically, He wants them singing the Word of God — the Psalms in the heart of the Holy Bible. This oft-forgotten practice has the potential to restore confessional unity to the church, as well as to imbue the church with the rugged, God-centered faith that pervades the Psalter.
Imagine what a blessing it would be to join your voice with the saints of old, to sing the very words that the apostles John, Peter, or the Paul sang while they were alive on earth! Imagine singing the songs that Jesus himself taught were “about Me” (Luke 24:27, 44). Imagine joining your voice with Jesus’ as he hung in agony and faith upon the Cross to accomplish the salvation of his people … with the Psalter upon his lips (Psalm 22)!
Unfortunately, it is this author’s experience that many devout Christians know little about the origins, development, or early Christian devotion to singing of the Psalter. That’s why I wrote this little 100-page companion to the the metrical Psalter for those just getting started in singing God’s songs. It is designed to complement the growing number of psalters, cds, and tune libraries now available online.
If you are (or ever have been) new to the practice of singing the Psalms, you know it can be a kinda overwhelming experience. This companion booklet seeks to simply and comprehensively introduce God’s song book in a question-and-answer format that will give a family, a student, or an entire church lots of new information about the songs that God wrote.
The booklet is laid out in 150 precise questions and answers. These questions, in turn are laid out in seven sections: Introducing the Psalter, Christ in the Psalter, The Arrangement of the Psalter, Meditating on the Psalter, Singing the Psalter, and The Majesty of the Psalter. In addition, seven brief appendices encapsulate the content of the Psalter around various key themes including The Life of David in the Psalms, A Messianic Book of Worship, A Cry to God for Justice (the imprecatory psalms), The Psalter in the New Testament, Martin Luther’s Favorite Psalms, A Trinitarian Outline of the Psalter, and Arranging the Psalter in Your Head.
The book can be used with any metrical psalter, but is specifically keyed to the 2009 Book of Psalms for Worship published by Crown and Covenant. May the Lord be pleased to restore the primacy of his Word in the church’s song!