Sunday Nights with the FYM —
In our Teen LifeGroup each week, we are studying through the book of Psalms. Here are some of the types of Psalms that we have looked at so far: Torah Psalms, Blessing Psalms, Complaint Psalms, & Royal Psalms. Other types of Psalms that we will look at include: Trust Psalms, Penitential Psalms, Thanksgiving Psalms, Oracle Psalms, Taunt Psalms, and Pilgrim Psalms.
Torah Psalms: Unlike many psalms that read like private, even intimate journal entries, Torah psalms sound more like decrees, edicts, and commands. But hidden within these decrees are words of instruction. Some part wisdom, others share testimonies. Torah psalms often take a look at what went on in history and what’s going on presently, then compare and contrast the two for the benefit of the listener or reader. Psalms that we read through included Psalm 1, 32, 47, 105, and 127.
Blessing Psalms: These are a clear reminder of the incredible blessings God bestows on the world—sunshine, rain, crops, mountains, streams, and so on. The list is infinite. In addition to the psalms that list God’s many blessings, there are numerous psalms that describe those who are blessed. In every case, the blessed ones are in a daily, intimate, and obedient relationship with God. Psalms that we read through included Psalm 1, 20, 65, 67, and 128.
Complaint Psalms: These are the poems of doom and gloom—that are usually prayers of either an individual or a community in distress. Some of the most descriptive metaphors in the book of Psalms are found in these anguished cried. Complaint Psalms all have certain consistent features: Address and appeal; Description of distress; Complaint against God; Petition; Motivation for God to hear; Accusation against the adversary; Call for redress; Claims of innocence; Confessions of sin; Professions of trust; Vows to praise for deliverance; Calls of praise; and Motivations of praise. The pattern can shift from one psalm to another, but by looking for the things listed above, it’s easy to see that the bottom line is always the same—no matter how bad things may be, no matter how futile things may seem, God will always listen to what we have to say. Psalms that we read through included Psalm 31, 44, 69, and 140.
Royal Psalms: For years, Israel wanted just one thing from God—an earthly King. They didn’t care that God was already their king or the He was watching over them. They wanted a human being that they could see, touch, bow down to, and so on. And so when God finally granted their desire and established the monarchy, the people had some very strong emotions and reactions. Those are reflected in the Royal Psalms. They were written for a variety of reasons—to honor a King, to celebrate a coronation, to proclaim a King’s mighty deeds, and more. But when we read these today, some of them seem to be speaking of Christ. In fact, Christ himself often quoted these psalms and implied that they’d been written about Him. Psalms that we read through included Psalm 2, 20, 45, 72, 99, and 110.
“Remember who you are and whose you are.”
~ Michael Rector