The book of Psalms, also known as "the Psalter", a collection of many poems and hymns from ancient Israel and Judah.

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Does the Bible mention unicorns?

I was reading Psalm 22 (from this question) and I found this verse: Psalms 22:21 (KJV) Save me from the lion's mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns. When I switched ...
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Pre-Christian, Jewish interpretation of Psalm 22

How was Psalm 22 understood by Jewish tradition before the birth of Jesus? Was it interpreted messianically? What pre-Christian sources discuss Psalm 22?
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“You are gods” in John 10:30-36

In John 10:30-36 (NASB), Jesus responds to an accusation of blasphemy by quoting the Old Testament: 30I and the Father are one.” 31The Jews picked up stones again to stone Him. 32Jesus ...
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To what extent is Psalm 51:4 poetic exaggeration?

The context of Psalm 51 is clear: To the choirmaster. A psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet went to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba. These events are described in 2nd Samuel ...
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Translation of “Selah” (סֶלָה‎)

What is the current scholarly opinion on the possible translations for "Selah" (סֶלָה‎) as used in the Psalms?
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Why are the Psalms broken into five books?

The Psalms in most English Bibles are divided into five sections or books: 1-41, 42-72, 73-89, 90-106, and 107-150 Psalms 41, 72, and 89 end with the double amen, while 106 and 150 end with "Praise ...
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Are the Psalms superscripts misplaced?

I recently ran across a theory that a portion of the superscripts of many psalms was intended as a postscript to the prior psalm. In that arrangement, לַמְנַצֵּ֥חַ (lamnaṣṣēaḥ; to the choirmaster) + ...
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Does the Bible say the Earth is flat?

I have found so much gossip on the Net and no Biblical verses that clearly support the 'flat earth' notion. I know Job spoke of the 'circle of the Earth' and other very interesting aspects of the ...
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How should we understand David’s name at the beginning of the Psalms?

Many† of the Psalms begin with some variation of: מִזְמ֥וֹר לְדָוִ֑ד LXX: Ψαλμὸς τῷ Δαυιδ ESV: A psalm of David However, as mentioned in Part (2) of this answer about Psalm 72:20, the ...
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How should Psalm 22:16 read?

Psalm 22:16 seems textually quite difficult. The NET for example reads: Yes, wild dogs surround me – a gang of evil men crowd around me; like a lion they pin my hands and feet. Yet, they note that ...
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Comparison of English word “fool” in original Hebrew and Greek

Question is based on this comment on Christiantity SE. In the OT, the word fool is apparently used to describe atheists: The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” Psalm 14:1 and Psalm ...
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Was nûn deleted from Psalm 145 in the Masoretic Text?

Psalm 145 is an acrostic of the Hebrew alphabet, except that in most of the MT manuscripts verse 13b is missing along with therefore the letter nûn. The ESV renders it like this: Your kingdom is an ...
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Blessed is the man who WALKS NOT or HAS NOT WALKED?

I noticed in studying the Psalms that Psalm 1 in the old Coverdale text reads, "Blessed is the man that hath not walked in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stood in the way of sinners, and hath not sat ...
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What is meant by “inherit the earth”?

What is meant by "[X] shall inherit the earth"? This phrase is found countless times in the scripture (cf. Psalm 37:11, Matthew 5:5), but should this be interpreted as a physical possession of land? ...
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What is the usage in Psalm 23 of “through” the valley of the shadow of death?

I heard a preacher talk about Psalm 23:4: Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. ...
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Where did that camel come from?

Psalm 13, verse 6, second hemistich, reads: אָשִירָה לַיהוָה, כִּי גָמַל עָלָי Which is to say, "I will sing to G-d, because there is a camel upon me." Can anyone offer a hermeneutic ...
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Interpretation of Psalm 12:6-7

I'm doing a personal Bible study on the KJV Only doctrine. KJVO advocates point to Psalm 12:6-7 as evidence for the inerrancy of the KJV (or the source manuscripts used by them). The words of the ...
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Temple in Psalm 138

The first verse of Psalm 138 is clearly stating David as author of the Psalm. In verse 2 it says: I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your unfailing love and your ...
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Are the five books of Psalms somehow related to the Pentateuch?

On another question, Mike Bull suggests that there is a link between the five fold structure of the Psalms and that of Torah. I know he is not the only one to have suggested this before, but I'm ...
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What is the judgment in Psalm 1?

The ending of Psalm 1 provides great hope for those who delight in the instruction of the Lord: Not so the wicked; rather, they are like chaff that wind blows away. Therefore the wicked ...
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What is the meaning of “rod and staff” (Psalm 23)?

I am under the impression that the "rod and staff" are actually one physical item. That is, that on one end was a kind of hook (staff) that was used to aid one's duty as a Shepard and on the other end ...
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Psalm 34:20 applied to Jesus' crucifixion

When we read about the crucifixion in John 19:31-37, it is written that Jesus' legs were not broken to speed up his death. The author claims this fulfilled Psalms 34:20, which reads: he protects ...
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What is Paul's advice on anger?

Paul writes: Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil.—Ephesians 4:26-27 (ESV) The first issue I see is that the first clause ...
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What does “The psalms of David are ended” refer to?

Psalm 72 ends with the words: The prayers of David the son of Jesse are ended. Yet after this a number of Psalms, especially many of the Psalms of Ascent are attributed to David (I think ...
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Peter's Psalm quotations in Acts 1:20

In Acts 1:20, Peter quotes Psalm 69:25 and Psalm 109:8: 20“For it is written in the Book of Psalms, “‘May his camp become desolate, and let there be no one to dwell in it’; and “‘Let ...
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What does “The LORD said to my Lord” mean in Psalm 110?

This phrase has perplexed me a little bit. It's a psalm that was quoted by both Jesus (Matt 22:44, Mark 12:36, Luke 20:42) and Peter (Acts 2:34). Psalm 110:1 ESV The LORD says to my Lord: “Sit at ...
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Why is there an “extra” verse at the end of Psalms 25 and 34?

As far as I can tell, all of the acrostic Psalms (9-10, 25, 34, 37, 111, 112, 119, 145) end appropriately after taw, although many of them are missing various letters.* Psalms 25 and 34 both have an ...
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Meaning of “Sing to the Lord a new song”

In Psalm 33:3, it reads: Sing to him a new song; play skilfully on the strings, with loud shouts. This is most certainly not the first time I've read these words; they seem to be a common ...
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Is there an allusion to Psalm 22 in John 19:30, ‘It is finished’?

The allusions to Psalm 22 in the Gospel accounts of Jesus' crucifixion are well-known and have been discussed on BH.SE on several occasions. I recently ran across the claim (e.g. in a blog and a JETS ...
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How is Psalm 34 linked to 1st Samuel 21?

The annotation of Psalm 34 (ESV) reads: Of David, when he changed his behavior before Abimelech, so that he drove him out, and he went away. Clearly this is a reference to 1 Samuel 21:10-15 ...
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Why is the dividing of clothes considered the fulfillment of scripture?

In John 19:24 it's written: “Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.” This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled that said, “They ...
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Authorship of the LXX of Psa. 24:1

Some time ago, while writing a research paper, I was reading the LXX of Psa. 24:1. The Hebrew text states, לְדָוִד מִזְמוֹר ליהוה הָאָרֶץ וּמְלוֹאָהּ תֵּבֵל וְיֹשְׁבֵי בָהּ This is translated ...
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Not singing the songs of Zion/Yahweh's song in Psalm 137

The first colophon (or first two colophons, perhaps) of Psalm 137 reads, 1 By the waters of Babylon, there we sat down and wept, when we remembered Zion. 2 On the willows there we hung up ...
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David's righteousness in the Psalms

In the Psalms, there are several places where David portrays himself as righteous and blameless. For example, Psalm 26: 1Vindicate me, O Lord, for I have walked in my integrity, and I have ...
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What is the intended image of “pierced my hands and feet” in Psalm 22:16?

I sometimes struggle to understand how some of the NT authors describe OT passages as messianic prophecies. One of these is from the 22nd Psalm. Psalm 22:16 NASB (emphasis added) For dogs have ...
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Why does Psalm 103:8 use the dual form of אַפַּ֣יִם (anger)?

In Psalm 103:8 we read: אֶ֖רֶךְ אַפַּ֣יִם וְרַב־חָֽסֶד Why is אַפַּ֣יִם (anger) in its dual form?
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How should רָגַז be translated in Psalm 4?

A quick survey of English translations of Psalm 4:4 shows that there is little agreement about how ragaz should be rendered: NIV In your anger do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your ...
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How can one determine that a passage is “programmatic”?

I've seen it commonly said that Psalm 1 and 2 are to be considered "programmatic" for the Psalms. I've seen mention of the same for Luke 4 and Luke(-Acts). For example, Gordon Wenham writes: This ...
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Does Jesus misquote Psalm 8:2?

But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying out in the temple, "Hosanna to the son of David!" they were indignant, and they said to ...
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How can Ephesians 4:8 be a quote/translation of Psalms 68:18?

In Psalms we have: You ascended on high, leading a host of captives in your train and receiving gifts among men, even among the rebellious, that the Lord God may dwell there. (Psalms 68:18, ...
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Psalm 51:5 CEV vs ESV

How can we determine which translation is more close to the original message? Clearly "the day I was born" vs "mother conceive me" paints a completely different picture - and arguably, a different ...
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Psalms, Hymns, Songs: What are the meanings of these words Biblically?

Verses in Question Let the word of Christ 18 dwell in you richly, teaching and exhorting one another with all wisdom, singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, all with grace 19 in your hearts ...
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Are Psalms 23 and 24 both by David according to their prefixes?

Psalm 23 begins with the annotation: מזמור לדוד While Psalm 24 begins with a similar, but slight different one: לדוד מזמור Yet both are marked in the NET (and elsewhere) as "A psalm of David". I ...
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Why are Hebrew verbs in the “perfect” form so often translated as present tense in modern translations?

Why are Hebrew verbs in the "perfect" form so often translated as present tense in modern translations? For example in Psalm 119:47 : וְאֶשְׁתַּֽעֲשַׁ֥ע בְּמִצְוֹתֶ֗יךָ אֲשֶׁ֣ר אָהָֽבְתִּי׃ ...
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What is the valley of the shadow of death?

Psalm 23 says "yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil" (ESV, NIV). What is that? Is it a real place or a metaphor? If it's a metaphor, how should we understand ...
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Who are the people of God in Psalm 100?

Psalm 100:3 seems to express a covenant formula, denoting a relationship between God as his particular people. Similar to the formula elsewhere of, "I will be your God, you shall be my people." (e.g. ...
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Who are the “divine beings” in Psalm 82?

We read in Psalm 82: I had taken you for divine beings, sons of the Most High, all of you; but you shall die as men do, fall like any prince.—Psalm 82:6–7 (NJPS) Some ...
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What are the “shields of the earth”?

The end of Psalm 47 reads: God reigns over the nations;    God sits on his holy throne. The princes of the peoples gather    as the people of the God of Abraham. ...
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Do the righteous flourish or perish?

For example: Psalm 92:12 (KJV) 12 The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. compared to: Isaiah 57:1 (KJV) 1 The righteous perisheth, and no ...
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How is the Septuagint interpretation of Psalms 40:6 reconciled with the Hebrew text?

The ancient Hebrew and Greek versions of Psalms 40:6 are quite different. The Hebrew version says 'my ears you have opened' whilst the Greek LXX has 'a body you restored to me'. Furthermore in Hebrews ...