5 Reasons to Write a Wisdom Psalm (and How to Do It)

One day while I was meditating on the message of Psalm 1 that those who follow God’s instructions will be blessed in ways that those who don’t miss out on, I started thinking about my own life and the lives of those I knew. I’d seen couples who made forgiving an essential part of marriage […]

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6 Best Books on Psalms for Prayer and Understanding

One of the delights of deciding to write a book on the Psalms is the excuse to read many books on them. Here are the six best books on Psalms I’ve found, ordered from broadest appeal to narrowest. They’ll enhance your prayer life and deepen your understanding of these prayer songs. By the way, the […]

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Does God send good people to hell?

A reader asks this about good people: There seem to be a lot of good people doing kind things out there; it’s hard to believe they will be condemned to hell because the only way there is Jesus. I reconcile myself with knowing my Savior is 100% good. But does God send good people to […]

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God’s Hidden Blessings

Our twenty-one-year-old Green Machine (aka Honda Accord) won’t pass the next California smog test, so we’re car shopping. (We save oodles of money by driving a car till it or Sacramento calls it quits. Since I don’t commute, that can take years.) As we drove into the big parking lots with rows of shiny cars, […]

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What’s So Good about Royal Psalms?

What is a royal psalm anyway? And why should we care? Just as today we hear many types of songs—love songs, anthems, lullabies, ballads, odes, rap and more—so the ancient Hebrews heard many types of psalms—royal psalms, wisdom songs, laments, thanksgiving songs, hymns, confidence songs, and more. Knowing a psalm’s type helps us know how to […]

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Psalm 2: Hope in the Midst of Injustice

Terrorists murder and maim. Con artists bilk the elderly. The rich exploit the poor. Abusers scar children. The promiscuous mock the chaste. Liars lock the innocent behind bars. Those who’ve sworn to uphold justice overturn it. What is our hope in the midst of injustice? Psalm 2 tells us. It’s a psalm originally composed for […]

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Art as Worship

Whether you consider yourself to be artistic or not, you can worship God through art. It doesn’t have to be a masterpiece, for God sees the heart: “For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have” (2 Corinthians 8:12). Worship is an […]

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How to Understand Psalms

I used to dislike the Book of Psalms because the psalms kept repeating themselves instead of proceeding point-by-point to a nice conclusion in the first line of the last stanza. After all, essays put the main point in the first sentence of the last paragraph. That’s why we call it a “conclusion.” The psalms didn’t […]

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Seven Tips & Tricks to Memorize Psalms

By Jean E. Jones @JeanEstherJones Did my last post, Why Memorize Psalms? 10 Good Reasons, leave you wondering just how anyone would go about memorizing psalms? Now, I know people who can read a long passage a few times and it’s memorized. I’m not like that. So when I decided to memorize some psalms, I […]

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Why Memorize Psalms? 10 Good Reasons

When I first read Gorden Wenham’s careful and convincing chapter in Psalms as Torah that the Psalms were meant to be memorized, I asked myself, “So why haven’t you memorized any psalms?” Answer: I find memorizing long passages difficult—very difficult! But I’d recently read a book on memory tricks, so I resolved to give it […]

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Psalm 137 and Dashing Babies on Rocks

What does Psalm 137:8-9 mean: “O daughter of Babylon, doomed to be destroyed, blessed shall he be who repays you with what you have done to us! Blessed shall he be who takes your little ones and dashes them against the rock!”? Why would a supposedly righteous person use such an awful image? How can […]

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Trying to Turn Things into What They’re Not

When I was a child, I tried to turn a Chihuahua into Lassie. I wanted a dog like Lassie, that heroic TV collie who had long orangish/brown fur, bits of black around her perky ears, and a huge white mane that fluffed softly from her chest and was always clean and brushed. Every week I […]

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