The Psalms (English and Hebrew streams)

Programme module

The psalms are the most quoted Old Testament book in the New Testament and hugely influential in the church's worship. This class focuses on different kinds of psalm genres and how to interpret them, including psalms of lament (e.g., Psalm 3) and psalms of imprecation (e.g., Psalm 137), and we explore what we learn about the life of faith through these texts. We also look at the book of psalms as a whole, and how they tell the story of Israel from David (Books 1-2) through exile (Book 3) to restoration (Book 5). The reign of God over all things (Book 4) is the central message of hope for ancient Israel and for new covenant believers today.

"The psalms are one of the first books Christians turn to for help in prayer, but it can be surprisingly difficult to make sense of what we find there. Should we pray like the Psalmists, and ask God why he has abandoned us? And how do we see Jesus prefigured in the psalms? In this class, we go deep into the life of faith as the journey from Psalm 1 to Psalm 150 mimics the journey of the Christian, from lament to total praise. We learn how to weep with those who weep and rejoice with those who rejoice, and we see Christ prefigured as that ultimate Israelite who remained faithful in lament for our sakes.”

Eric Ortlund

Module tutor