READING THROUGH THE BIBLE: 2008 - 2010
The Book of Psalms
March 2010


The Psalms have 150 chapters.
If you read 3 chapters a day
you will finish the book in 50 days
 
 
Psalms is the longest book in the entire Bible. 150 chapters. Don't be daunted by the number of chapters, nor the many subjects and events covered in them. They cover many topics from biblical prophecy to conditions such as great victories of believers, wisdom, severe discouragement, fear and depression. The Hebrews both read and would sing the Psalms.
 
Apostle Paul in fact tells the church at Ephesus and Colossae TO SING using ---

Psalms
- The book of Psalms
Hymns - Songs written using words or passages from the Scriptures
Spiritual songs - Songs given to us by the Spirit spoken in Tongues
 

(Ephesians 5:19 and Colossians

 
We could easily spend a year in the book of psams and hardly scratch the surface of what we could draw from each one. Since our goal is to read through the Bible, I will share an overall way of seeing each psalm to make it easier to read through and glean from each one.
 
It is very simple because we know first of all that the first words are generally the most important to meditate on to get understanding. They introduce what the chapter is about.
 
The psalms were written by different Hebrew authors including Moses, Solomon, King David and Asaph. They are drawn from books of the Bible we have already read and many point us to New Testament Scriptures. Various verses from the Psalms can be found in New Testament books but first, let's take psalm one, just the first two verses:
 

1. Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.

2. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

The very first psalm tells us who the entire book of psalms is written to---The BLESSED.
In this first psalm it describes the blessed and puts them in opposite light of the wicked. This psalm tells us how the blessed walk in the blessings of God. We avoid walking (living the same way) as the sinner, ungodly and scorners. HOW?

Delight in God's Law (Torah)

For us that must of course include the New Testament but the Old Testament writers did not have the New Covenant to complete God's revelation to us.  The first five books of the Bible are considered the Torah and remain such, even after the New Testament letters were given. It is important to remember this because much of the Old Testament pertains exclusively to the nation of Israel.

How do you become one who delights in God's Word?

By meditating in it day and night. This goes beyond reading, into study, and deep thinking about we've read and studied. God's Word transforms us. God's Word is ever before the blessed helping us keep the ways of the Lord. Then it becomes our delight!

The rest of the Psalm reveals the ultimate state of the blessed and the final destination of both the blessed and the wicked. Finally, notice the more we delight in His Word, the more we prosper.

Let's take another.  Psalm 2

This psalm is a portion of biblical prophecy and points to the nation of Israel and the coming Messiah. It includes New Testament believers in Christ who have become a part of the commonwealth of Israel in believing on the Messiah as Saviour and Lord.

Old Testament writers wrote what the Lord was saying but many things were left a mystery to them. The Bible even says they without us could not be made perfect (See Hebrews 11:40)

1 Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?

2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying,

3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.

We know from these verses the writer speaks of Israel. We see this happening before our eyes today concerning Jerusalem and all of Israel. God reveals the hearts of the nations that surround it and what their intent is. The rest of the Psalm gives even clearer insight and shows the outcome of the End Times.

What is wonderous for the Church in the earth that we read here is God's response. God is speaking to His Anointed, our Lord Jesus Christ and therefore the Church is included in the Father's words to Christ. 

He says ask (pray) and I will give you the heathen for your inheritance and the UTTERMOST PARTS OF THE EARTH FOR THY POSESSION.  See Acts 1 and 2.

ACTS 1:8

But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the UTTERMOST PART OF THE EARTH.

How does God release us to accomplish and fulfill this prophetic call spoken in the Old Testament to His Son our Saviour? ASK  meaning PRAY. This could not have been fulfilled in Old Testament times since Jesus had not yet come and be crucified for all men, raised from the dead and exalted back to the right hand of the Father in order to send the Holy Spirit to indwell us.

Without the Holy Ghost we could not fulfill the great commission though many throughout the histroy of the church have tried and sadly, continue to do so today.

After the Great Commission is fulfilled Psalm 2 reveals it will be time for God to deal with the nations and leaders of the world who rejected His Son. It is amazing that we live in a time of seeing these things fulfilled!

Finally it says of the BLESSED in Psalm 2:12 --

BLESSED are all they that put their TRUST in HIM. Trust = The Blessings of God

The New Testament quotes the Psalms more than any other Old Testament book which qualifies it's prophetic position in the Scriptures. It is far more to us than a place of comfort.

References in the New Testament, I found over a 100 and stopped. But here are just a few key places where they are mentioned and their purpose under the New Covenant.

BIBILICAL PROPHECY

Luke 20:42
Luke 24:44
Acts 1:20
Acts 13:33
Acts 13:35

Romans 15:9
Hebrews 1:5
Hebrews 1:10-12
Hebrews 10:5-7
Revelation 19:15

EDIFICATION OF THE CHURCHES

1 Corinthians 14:26
Ephesians 1:22
Ephesians 5:19
Colossians 3:16
James 5:13
1 Peter 5:7
Revelation 2:26

A good Study Bible will have references to the Old Testament where the Psalms are mentioned. Taking time to highlight the references as you read and study will deepen your time with the Lord in the Word as you see the Scriptures connect from Old to New. There is nothing like it. That is why the Book of Psalms is worthy to be called  "Praises."