Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for January 13th, 2012

GO TO PART VII

I. Identifying praise poetry

a. Introductory note:There can be many more various sub-genre of Psalms (Messianic, Royal Psalms, Creation Psalms, etc), but for the purpose of this course in dealing with the broader genre of Scripture, some of the sub-genre can be seen as a type of praise poetry.

i. Some of the praise hymns include declarative praise (thanksgiving) and descriptive praise.[1]

ii. Some of the forms of Psalms can also be divided into further sub-genre groups.

iii. Of course, there might be Psalms in the Psalter that does not fit in neatly into the categories given.

b. Definition: “Praise is primarily a reciting of the attributes of God and of acts of God, and then praising God for both.”[2]

c. Two broad types of Praise and their elements

i. Declarative Praise

1. Definition: “These psalms are called songs of thanksgiving or declarative psalms, because the psalmist was praising God by publicly declaring his mighty deeds.”[3]

2. “Such psalms expressed joy to the Lord because something had gone well, because circumstances were good, and/or because people had reason to render thanks to God for his faithfulness, protection, and benefit.”[4]

3. Elements[5]

a. Proclamation to Praise God

b. Summary statement

c. The Report

d. The Praise

4. Sub-genres of Declarative Praise:

a. Individual thanksgiving

Examples: Psalms 18, 30, 32, 34, 40, 66, 92, 116, 118, 138.[6]

b. Community thanksgiving

Examples: Psalms 65, 67, 75, 107, 124, 136.[7]

ii. Descriptive Praise

1. Definition: These are Psalms “praising God primarily by describing his character, with a focus on the attributes of God—who he is and what he is like—these psalms are frequently called hymns of praise or descriptive psalms.”[8]

2. “These psalms, without particular reference to previous miseries or to recent joyful accomplishments, center on the praise of God for who he is, for his greatness and his beneficence toward the whole earth, as well as his own people.”[9]

3. Elements[10]

a. Call to praise

b. Cause for praise

c. Call to praise again

4. Sub-genres of Descriptive Praise:

a. Creation Psalms

Examples: Psalms 8, 19:1-6, 104, 148[11]

b. Enthronement Psalm

i. These “speak of a future coming of the LORD to his people or to the earth, or that speak of a future rule of the LORD over Israel or over the whole earth”[12]

ii. Examples: Psalms 47, 93, 95-99[13]

II. Principles in interpreting praise poetry

a. All the principles in Session Six apply here as well.

b. Identify whether the Psalm is a Descriptive or Declarative Psalm.

i. Is the Psalm about God’s attribute?  If so, what does it say?

ii. Is the Psalm about what God has done? If so, what does it say?

iii. Note:Why knowing the genre is half the battle in interpretation

1. Attempting to identify the sub-genre means looking for important elements within the text.

2. By identifying the elements, the elements show what the text mean.

c. If possible, see if the Psalm fit into the appropriate sub-genre within the Descriptive or Declarative Psalm.

i. Similar to the note given above, testing to see if the Psalm has a sub-genre will be fruitful in helping the reader to interpret the Psalm more fully.

d. If the Praise is declarative, try to identify the historical context.[14]

i. Not always easy, especially in the Psalms.

ii. These answer the question more richly of what God has done that is worthy of praise.

e. Concentrate on what the text teach about who God is.

i. It is always important to be theo-centric in our interpretation.

ii. Praise is not so much of what God has done, but who Yahweh is.

iii. Within those Psalm, often there is not much details given of exactly what Yahweh has done; rather, there is more detail of who Yahweh is.[15]

f. The why is the what of praise

i. The Psalms sometimes gives the reason for the writing of the Psalm.

ii. This reason is also the content, or the what, that is being praised about God.


[1] Keith Essex, Bible Exposition 502 Syllabus, 46.

[2] Kenneth L. Barker, “Praise” Cracking Old Testament Codes, (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company), 218.

[3] Ibid, 222.

[4] Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart., How to Read the Bible for All its Worth, (Grand Rapids: Zondervan), 194.

[5] Modified from Keith Essex, Bible Exposition 502 Syllabus, 46.

[6] Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart., How to Read the Bible for All its Worth, (Grand Rapids: Zondervan), 195.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Kenneth L. Barker, “Praise” Cracking Old Testament Codes, (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company), 219.

[9] Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart., How to Read the Bible for All its Worth, (Grand Rapids: Zondervan), 195.

[10] Modified from Kenneth L. Barker, “Praise” Cracking Old Testament Codes, (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company), 221.

[11] Kenneth L. Barker, “Praise” Cracking Old Testament Codes, (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company), 221; and Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart., How to Read the Bible for All its Worth, (Grand Rapids: Zondervan), 195

[12] Kenneth L. Barker, “Praise” Cracking Old Testament Codes, (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company), 220.

[13] Ibid, 219.

[14] Kenneth L. Barker, “Praise” Cracking Old Testament Codes, (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company), 227.

[15] Idea as taught by Professor Keith Essex, of The Master’s Seminary.

 

GO TO PART IX

Advertisements

Read Full Post »