Who? | Author & Audience
There are many authors, including Moses, David, Solomon, Asaph, the sons of Korah and some anonymous authors.
When? | Dates
Psalms were likely written between 1440-430 BC
Where? | Setting
As Psalms were written over about 1000 years, their locations and settings vary greatly.
What & Why? | Outline & Purpose
Book One (Ps. 1-41)
Mostly from David
Book Two (Ps. 42-72)
From the sons of Korah (Ps. 42-49)
From Asaph (Ps. 50)
From David (Ps. 51-71)
From Solomon (Ps. 72)
Book Three (Ps. 73-89)
From Asaph (Ps. 73-83)
From the sons of Korah (Ps. 84-88)
From Ethan the Ezrahite (Ps. 89)
Book Four (Ps. 90-106)
From Moses and anonymous authors (Ps. 90-100)
From David (Ps. 101-106)
Book Five (Ps. 107-150)
Combination of David, anonymous authors, and ascents.
How? | Application
The book of Psalms is a praise and worship book for God’s people that teaches God is worthy of all praise, honor, glory and worship in all circumstances.
Psalms displays that God will defend His people against their enemies in the ways and times that He knows is right.
Psalms expresses that being in a relationship with God is the key to joy and security in life.
There are several different types of Psalms:
Emphasize that God is King
Uses phrases such as “the Lord reigns”
Addresses God’s role and Creator, Savior and Coming One
Psalms of Zion:
Focuses on Jerusalem using its endearing name, Zion
Emphasizes God’s choice for the city as His Holy temple
Poems that confess sins to, ask for and receive forgiveness from the Lord
Poems of praise to God for renewal of relationships and forgiveness
Often focuses on the same issues throughout Proverbs
Provides clear descriptions of the differences between righteous and wicked
Addresses God’s blessing and curses, focusing primarily on righteous living
Includes some focus on the Torah, identifying the beauty, truth and sufficiency of God’s Law
Includes some focus on creation and history
Often calls for believers to praise God, identifying Him as Creator and Savior
Seeks renewed commitment to God, often in times of disorder and rebellion
Prayers that ask God to curse the wicked, often believed to conflict with the gospel but actually reflect God’s abhorrence for sin and evil
Also called the joyful and prophetic Psalms
Were a part of the Passover celebration in Judaism
Focus on the events of God delivering the Israelites from Egypt
Point toward Jesus as our Savior and Deliverer
Praise God, His character, and His divine saving works