References to: Tim Finlay and Jim Herst

Types of Psalms - Part 2
One coronation psalm proclaims, "The Lord will extend your mighty scepter from Zion; you will rule in the midst of your enemies. Your troops will be willing on your day of battle" (Psalm 110:2-3). Illustration by Larry Salk

Royal Psalms

Scholars often refer to some of the psalms as "royal" psalms.

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The Lord Is My Shepherd

One of the best-loved passages in the Bible is Psalm 23. Its simple affirmation of complete trust and confidence in God has inspired countless people from generation to generation.


Psalm 23 relies on two familiar metaphors for its effectiveness: God as Shepherd and God as Host. This combination would have been particularly effective to its Hebrew audience, since the shepherd motif was closely related to the host motif in ancient Near Eastern thought.

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Psalms: When You Talk to God
A Hebrew scribe writes on papyrus (above). Scrolls of papyrus were often stored in clay jars for protection (Jeremiah 32:14) and were frequently sealed (Revelation 5:1). Papyrus is translated as "paper" in 2 John 12.
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Exploring Psalms
David plays the kinnor, or lyre. This is the most frequently mentioned instrument in the Bible, found in 42 places. It is often called a harp (1 Samuel 16:23) and was the favorite instrument of the Hebrews. It was played mainly in worship services, but also at banquets and celebrations for government occasions (1 Samuel 10:5).
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David and Uriah: Are You Losing Faith?

Reading between the lines: David and Uriah

The story of David, and the books of Samuel in general, are considered by many scholars to be, aesthetically, the best biblical narrative. One reason is the large quantity of speech and dialogue. The Bible tends to avoid formal character portraits, so characters come alive through their speech. Nowhere does this happen better than in the story of David.

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Samuel and Saul

Birth of Samuel: 1 Samuel 1:1-2:11

The book of 1 Samuel begins at a time when the judges still ruled Israel. Samuel was Israel’s last judge and the first priest and prophet to serve during the time of a king. Samuel’s mother was Hannah, a godly woman who had long prayed for a son. Each year she went with her husband, Elkanah, to Shiloh to worship and sacrifice to God (1 Samuel 1:3-5). Shiloh, about 20 miles north of Jerusalem, was the center of religious worship in Israel’s early history (see Joshua 18:1 and Judges 21:19).

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Exploring 1 & 2 Samuel

What’s in a name?

Samuel and SaulIt may seem strange that the books of Samuel are named after a figure who is less prominent than Saul and David in the latter half of 1 Samuel and who does not even appear in 2 Samuel. But we must remember that Samuel (Hebrew: Shemu’el, meaning "name of God" or "heard of God") was the last judge of Israel and anointed the nation’s first two kings, Saul and David.

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Ruth: Naomi and Ruth

Naomi and Ruth: Ruth 1

“In the days when the judges ruled, there was a famine in the land, and a man from Bethlehem in Judah, together with his wife and two sons, went to live for a while in the country of Moab. The man’s name was Elimelech, his wife’s name Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Kilion” (verses 1-2).

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