Psalms Book of Ketuvim

The Psalms Book

Psalms Book

photo by Eric Lam

The Psalms or the Psalms Book is the first text of the Ketuvim of the Jewish Bible Tanakh. The Psalms Book is a compilation of beautiful poems that deal with human problems and sorrows. The original name of the book was “Tehillim”, a Hebrew term that literally translates to “praise songs”. The English title “Psalms” from the Psalms Book has its roots in Psalmoi, the Greek title for Septuagint, which also means “songs of praise.” There are a total of 150 poems in the Psalms book, many of whose authorship is attributed to King David. However, most modern Biblical scholars do not accept King David as the author of these poems. As far as the date of composition of this text, there is enough to suggest that the Psalms book was written over a period of five centuries.

There are five sections that make up the entire length of the Psalms Book; each of these five sections ends with a doxology or a benediction. The five sections of the Psalms book are comprised of the following chapters: Book 1 (Psalms 1 to 41), Book 2 (Psalms 42 to 72), Book 3 (Psalms 73 to 89), Book 4 (Psalms 90 to 106) and Book 5 (Psalms 107 to 150). A lot of the Psalms have individual superscriptions or titles that range from just a single word to lengthy comments. There also seems to be present plenty of musical directions that are addressed to the “choirmaster” or “leader”. Some of them include statements like “the tune of lilies” and “with stringed instruments”.

There are themes that are covered in the psalms book. Hymns are songs of praise that are sung to admire God’s creation. They usually open with an invocation of praise, then go on to describe the motive or reason for the praise and then finally conclude with a reiteration of the invocation. The Hymns are further divided into enthronement psalms, which celebrate enthronement of Yahweh (YHWH) as the divine king and the Zion psalms which praises Mount Zion as God’s home in Jerusalem. The eschatological hymns explore ideas of a future judgment or restoration.

Some of the psalms are communal laments that discuss the lamentation of a nation due to some communal disaster. Both individual and communal laments are present but they do not always include elements like an address to the God, a description of the suffering, accusation of the people responsible for such suffering, admission of guilt or protestation of innocence, a yearning for divine assistance and guidance, faith in God’s provision, anticipation of a divine response, as well as a thanksgiving song.

The Royal Psalms focus on matters such as coronation of the king, marriages and battles. There are no mentions of any specific king, and the origins and use of these psalms remain a mystery. The individual laments focus on the sorrows of the individual person who is uttering them. These usually start by invocating Yahweh and goes on to the actual lamentation, ask for help and frequently end with a hope for a better future. Finally, the individual thanksgiving psalms show the psalmist thanking God for being relieved from personal problems and traumas.

Psalms Book of Ketuvim Chapters

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 25
Chapter 26
Chapter 27
Chapter 28
Chapter 29
Chapter 30
Chapter 31
Chapter 32
Chapter 33
Chapter 34
Chapter 35
Chapter 36
Chapter 37
Chapter 38
Chapter 39
Chapter 40
Chapter 41
Chapter 42
Chapter 43
Chapter 44
Chapter 45
Chapter 46
Chapter 47
Chapter 48
Chapter 49
Chapter 50
Chapter 51
Chapter 52
Chapter 53
Chapter 54
Chapter 55
Chapter 56
Chapter 57
Chapter 58
Chapter 59
Chapter 60
Chapter 61
Chapter 62
Chapter 63
Chapter 64
Chapter 65
Chapter 66
Chapter 67
Chapter 68
Chapter 69
Chapter 70
Chapter 71
Chapter 72
Chapter 73
Chapter 74
Chapter 75
Chapter 76
Chapter 77
Chapter 78
Chapter 79
Chapter 80
Chapter 81
Chapter 82
Chapter 83
Chapter 84
Chapter 85
Chapter 86
Chapter 87
Chapter 88
Chapter 89
Chapter 90
Chapter 91
Chapter 92
Chapter 93
Chapter 94
Chapter 95
Chapter 96
Chapter 97
Chapter 98
Chapter 99
Chapter 100
Chapter 101
Chapter 102
Chapter 103
Chapter 104
Chapter 105
Chapter 106
Chapter 107
Chapter 108
Chapter 109
Chapter 110
Chapter 111
Chapter 112
Chapter 113
Chapter 114
Chapter 115
Chapter 116
Chapter 117
Chapter 118
Chapter 119
Chapter 120
Chapter 121
Chapter 122
Chapter 123
Chapter 124
Chapter 125
Chapter 126
Chapter 127
Chapter 128
Chapter 129
Chapter 130
Chapter 131
Chapter 132
Chapter 133
Chapter 134
Chapter 135
Chapter 136
Chapter 137
Chapter 138
Chapter 139
Chapter 140
Chapter 141
Chapter 142
Chapter 143
Chapter 144
Chapter 145
Chapter 146
Chapter 147
Chapter 148
Chapter 149
Chapter 150