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By David C. Mitchell

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Extra info for The Message of the Psalter: An Eschatological Programme in the Book of Psalms (JSOT Supplement Series)

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The first major commentary of the century is that of Kirkpatrick (1902), which displays a broad mastery of the ancient literature. As regards the arrangement of the Psalter, he notes concatenation and suggests that the temple hymnbook theory is insufficient. 142 As regards headings, he states: While however the titles cannot be accepted as giving trustworthy information in regard to the authorship of the Psalms, they are not to be regarded as entirely worthless... 143 His view of the five-book division is typically cautious: '...

Ps. 1), A Psalm of Asaph (Ps. 73), A Prayer of Moses (Ps. 90), and Let the Redeemed of the Lord say (Ps. ' 62 No date is given for this saying, but its marked similarity to Hippolytus' statement below suggests the existence of this idea early in the first millennium. Early Jewish and rabbinic writers commonly regard the Psalms as future-predictive. The daily Amidah, dating from the second temple period,63 views David as an eschatological prophet. Referring probably to 1 Sam. 1-7, it states: 'Fulfil in our time the words of your servant David, so that men are again ruled in justice and in the fear of God.

A Review of Psalms Interpretation 43 The idea that the Psalter was purposefully arranged was also disputed. Indeed, after the headings fell, it was defenceless, for the headings and doxologies, demarcating groups of psalms, had always been the best evidence for internal structure. The Psalter came to be regarded instead as 'only the remains of the lyric poetry of the Israelites' and to suggest they were 'an anthology of lyrics' was 'misleading in the highest degree'. 118 Instead of being purposefully redacted, the Psalter was said to have grown into its present form by a process of accretion whereby groups of psalms were successively suffixed to one another.

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