Bible Author Who: Wrote more of the Bible than: Peter, James, Jude, Jonah, Amos, Micah, Joel, Malachi, Nahum, Zephaniah, Obadiah, Habakkuk, Haggai
PSALM 78 “Can God prepare a table in the wilderness?” (v. 19) “Again and again they tempted God, and limited the Holy One of Israel” (v. 41) “He chose David…to shepherd Jacob His people” (70-72) Who Wrote This? ASAPH
What do we know aboutAsaph?
Who is Asaph? Wrote 12 Psalms Psalm 50 Psalms 73-83 Wrote 2nd Longest Psalm
Heartfelt Cries “Surely have cleansed my heart in vain” (73:13) “Why have you cast us off forever?” (74:1,10) “Has God forgotten to be gracious?” (77:9) “How long Lord? Will you be angry forever?” (79:5) What did Asaph see that caused him to write these words?
Who is Asaph? Life spans one of most important periods in Israel’s History From King David, to Solomon to Reheboam & Jereboam
David Appointed Men overService of Song (1 Chr. 6) “Now these are the men whom David appointed over the service of song in the house of the Lord… …Heman (v.33) …Asaph (v.39) …Ethan (v.44)”
300 years later King Hezekiah refers to Asaph • 2 Chronicles 29:30 “King Hezekiah… commanded the Levites to sing praise to the Lord with the words of David and Asaph the seer. So they sang praises with gladness and they bowed their heads and worshipped”
What do we know about Asaph? David appointed Asaph as a director of song when he brought the Ark to Jerusalem (1 Chron. 6:31,39) At least 20 years old at this point (must be 20 to serve as Levite 1 Chr. 23:24) Left to serve before the Ark in music (1 Chron. 16:37) Possibly put David’s psalms to music (1 Chr. 16:7) would have been personally acquainted with context of David’s psalms
What do we know about Asaph? Solomon appointed Asaph as a director of song when he brought the Ark to the New Temple (2 Chron. 5:2,11-14) Context of Psalm 74, 79 indicate he was alive during early years of King Rehoboam (1 Kings 14:25-26) and subsequently King Jeroboam
Life span of Asaph At least 20 when appointed to serve when ark brought to Jerusalem during David’s 10th year of reign 20 plus 30 more yrs of David’s reign Plus 40 yrs of Solomon’s reign Plus at least 5 yrs of Rehob.’s reign 20 + 30 + 40 + 5 = aprx. 100 years
Why is all of this significant? Imagine all that Asaph witnessed! Gives insight to understanding context of his Psalms
Importance of Historical Context Real Events Real People Real Application Written for our admonition (1 Cor. 10:11)
Psalm 73:1-3f “My feet had almost stumbled; my steps had nearly slipped. For I was envious of the boastful, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked” What did Asaph see that almost caused him to stumble?
Psalm 74 “The enemy damaged everything in the sanctuary, your enemies roar in the midst of your meeting place…lift up axes…set fire to your sanctuary” When did Asaph see this happen?
Psalm 79 “They have laid Jerusalem in heaps. The dead bodies of your servants…their blood they have shed” When did Asaph see this happen?
Egypt King Shishak attacked Jerusalem 5th yr of Rehoboam (2 Chron. 12:1-8) 1200 chariots 60,000 horsemen 400,000 footmen (Josephus) “carried off the treasures of the temple of the LORD and the treasures of the royal palace. He took everything”
Imagine what Asaph Witnessed Rise of David’s golden age Fall of David/Bathsheba Revolt of Absalom Acq. personally w/context of David’s Psalms Building of Solomon’s temple Solomon’s apostasy (idolatry, wives) Murder of brother Zechariah (Mt. 23:35) Divided Kingdom: Rehob. & Jerob. King Shishak of Egypt attack on Jerusalem, plundering of Temple (1Ki. 14:25-26; 2 Chron. 12:9-10, Josephus) Relatives killed in Egypt’s attack
Importance of Worship Men who were Trained 288 trained, skilled (1 Chr. 25:1-7) Men who invoked Praise Prophesy, Thanks, Praise, Commemorate, celebrate (1Chr.16:4) Psalms-inspired Songbook Sing Psalms hymns spir.songs (Eph.5:19)
Importance of Worship I will learn to sing With purpose, intent With joy and thanks With praise
God is Faithful • Even when: • World is falling apart • Others are unfaithful • Suffer, lose loved ones • Don’t understand why things are happening
GOD IS FAITHFUL 50:3 God shall come and not keep silent 73:17f Surely you set the wicked in slippery places 76:3 Break the arrows of the enemy 77:14 You are the God who does wonders 78:19 Can provide a table in the wilderness I will remember, go to sanctuary, sing, praise, trust,