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Archives of Previous Studies

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August 22, 2019

Psalm 142: Sharing Our Worries With God

In our study of Psalm 142 tonight, we begin by noting how the Hebrew of the psalm is much later than David even though it claims to be a psalm of David and how the psalmist sees his present distress in the life of David.  We then do the same and discuss honestly sharing our complaints, difficulties, and pain with God.  We see how the psalmist, Jeremiah, and even Jesus Himself does this all the while completely trusting in God.  We also note some of the messianic overtones of the psalm, explore how our suffering and deliverance can be important to others, and conclude by considering the bounty of God toward us and our great hope in Him.


February 28, 2019

Psalm 40:2-14,17-18: Many Shall See and Trust

We cover quite a number of topics in this involved Psalm.  We discuss its background, why certain imprecatory verses are omitted in the Breviary, and how to view those imprecatory verses and psalms.  We examine possible contexts and how new and alive God's presence was to David and should be to us.  We examine evangelization through our example in difficulties and how this is a reason for embracing trials with joy.  We point out the important differences between the Masoretic Text and Septuagint in this psalm and its messianic nature.  We digress into the account of Saul and the Amalekites and the subject of loving obedience being more important than sacrifice.  We spend considerable time looking at the reference to this psalm in Hebrews 10 and its relationship to the New Covenant.  We touch on sharing our faith but also doing so discretely.  We look at examples of how sin can blind us and conclude with the importance of seeing our neediness before God can do great things in us.


January 3, 2019

Psalm 110: God Exalts His Christ

We begin our study of this of this historically messianic psalm with thoughts on the love of the Father for the Son.  We explore Christian and Jewish understandings of the "adoni", the lord to whom the LORD speaks.  We explain some of the cultural allusions in the psalm and spend quite some time on Melchizedek, the priesthood of Jesus, and the references to Psalm 110 in the Letter to the Hebrews.  We conclude examining the shift in perspective at the end of the Psalm and the somewhat enigmatic conclusion.


July 19, 2018

Psalm 48: God Delivers Zion

Tonight's study examined Psalm 48 as a response to God's miraculous deliverance of Jerusalem from the overwhelmingly superior Assyrian army.  We spent some time addressing how God's perspective on physical life and death may be different from ours as well as the different understandings of love and hate between Hebrew and Christian thought.  We touch briefly upon the geography of Jerusalem and some of the common metaphors used in this psalm.

In the unrecorded second half, we prayed the Thursday Morning Office from the 13th week of Ordinary Time.


May 31, 2018

Psalm 95: Rejoice Before God our Maker and Listen to His Voice

Tonight's study covers most of Psalm 95 including its place in the Divine Office, its context, and its abrupt shift of mood.  We examine the novelty of the view of God as creator of all nature and review the historical background in Exodus and Numbers.  We touch upon the idea of God forgiving sins and at that same time exacting punishment.  Finally, we begin an examination of the use of this psalm in the Book of Hebrews.


May 24, 2018

Introduction to Psalms and the Divine Office

This evening's study introduces the Psalms, discusses Liturgy and communal prayer, and introduces the Liturgy of the Hours as an example of using the Psalms in communal prayer.


May 17, 2018

Introduction to The Psalms

In the short first half of tonight's study, we address the question, "do we have to suffer to learn to love God?"

In the second half, we begin our introduction to the book of Psalms including structure, origin, editing, challenges in translation, and, very importantly, what does it mean when we say the Bible is the Word of God.




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