In the second volume of his three-volume commentary on the book of Psalms, Old Testament scholar John Goldingay provides fresh commentary on Psalms 42–89. He considers the literary, historical, and grammatical dimensions of the text as well as its theological implications. The Book of Psalms is the Bible’s book of prayer and praise that provides us with language and guidance for our communion with God. It provides a vital link between humanity and God—“a link that we ignore to our impoverishment,” says John Goldingay.
In this volume, Goldingay seeks to let the Psalms speak their own message and address Christian thinking, theology, and spirituality without being subjugated to a particular way of reading the New Testament. Each chapter of the commentary proper contains the author’s translation of the psalm, showing in English some of the salient features of the Hebrew text. An interpretation of the psalm, section by section, follows. Goldingay concludes each chapter with theological reflection that helps readers discover the contemporary relevance of the message of each psalm. This resource also includes a glossary of the vocabulary of Psalms 42–89, noting how certain words are used to convey critical concepts. This insightful commentary will bring the Psalms to life for a new generation of students.
This resource is both scholarly and readable, presenting an historical, theological, and applicable survey of the riches of Wisdom literature. In the Logos edition, each Scripture passage links to your favorite translation, and is easy to study side-by-side with your other commentaries. You can search by topic or Scripture with split-second results!
“The line begins to suggest a point that will be elaborated: people who keep in their *mind the fact that they will be going to Jerusalem for the festival are thereby reminded not only that Yhwh dwells there but also that the Yhwh who dwells there is the real God who is also a strength and protection to people who live far away. The fact that Yhwh dwells in Jerusalem does not mean that people who live in Hebron or Lachish are beyond Yhwh’s sphere of influence. The journey to Jerusalem to meet with Yhwh there actually reminds people of that. So it is not so bad not to be among the people who actually live in Jerusalem and can worship in the temple all the time.” (Pages 592–593)
“A series of noun statements thus puts the emphasis on factual statements about God rather than on the human attitude of trust or faith; what matters is not whether you have faith but whether what you have faith in is trustworthy.” (Page 67)
“bidden will be that God sits on high—very high, indeed, high above the heavens” (Page 196)
“But this is not a template that psalms closely follow; and Ps. 88 is exceptional in its selectivity in relation to it.8 After the opening address to God and plea for God to listen, it is simply lament and protest. The other elements in the template—even prayer for God to act, as well as either a declaration of innocence or an expression of penitence—are conspicuous by their absence. ‘There is no petition that did not move at least one step on the road to praise,’ Claus Westermann declares.9 Psalm 88 seems to be an exception. It focuses resolutely on telling God how bad things are and feel. If it has a design in relation to Yhwh, it is that stated in v. 2, to get God to listen. Everything serves that end. Perhaps it reckons that if that can be achieved, then all else will follow.” (Page 644)
A welcome resource for those interested in the Psalms from the perspective of faith. . . . Well informed, theologically sensitive, and will serve well the audience(s) for which it is intended.
—Jerome F. D. Creach, assistant professor of religion, Barton College
Once again, John Goldingay has given us exemplary scholarship that will serve both church and academy very well indeed. The commentary is filled with mature theological insights, fresh ideas, and thoughtful reflections for contemporary appropriation. The clear and imaginative introduction alone is worth the price of the book.
—Terence E. Fretheim, Elva B. Lovell Professor of Old Testament, Luther Seminary
John Goldingay has been at Fuller Theological Seminary since 1997 and currently serves as the David Allan Hubbard Professor of Old Testament in the School of Theology. Before coming to Fuller, Goldingay was principal and a professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at St. John’s Theological College in Nottingham, England. He is the author of several books, including Old Testament Theology vol. 1, After Eating the Apricot, and Models for Scripture, as well as commentaries on Daniel, Isaiah, and Psalms. He holds membership in the Society of Biblical Literature and serves on the editorial board for the Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies.