Old Testament The Books of Poetry © John Stevenson, 2009
Problem God as… Man as… Job Sovereign On his face before God Book Psalms Prayer & Worship Holy Before the throne of God Proverbs Conduct All-wise Receiving instruction Pain & suffering Ecclesiastes Meaning & significance Creator Under the sun Song of Solomon Love Lover of His people In a love relationship
Poetic Literature Wisdom Literature Job Proverbs Ecclesiastes Psalms Song of Solomon
Wisdom Literature Poetic Literature Narrator is viewed as the wise voice of experience Touch the heart Touch the mind Narrator is viewed as a normal man Focus on human emotion Focus on wisdom Love for God and for others Living before God and with others
Job The Book of Suffering
The Story • The Heavenly Challenge • Job’s Calamities • Satan’s Second Accusation • Job’s Continuing Endurance • Job’s Three Friends
The Cast of Characters • Job • Mrs. Job • God • Satan • Three Friends • Eliphaz • Bildad • Zophar • Elihu
Overview of the Book of Job Chapters 3-31 Chapters 33-37 Chapters 38-41 Chapter 42 Chapters 1-2 Job’s three friends Elihu’s speeches God speaks Historical epilogue: Job Restored Dialogue & Discourse Historical prologue: Job Tested Prose Section Poetry Section Plain language Highly ornate Written in pure Hebrew Contains many expressions characteristic of Chaldaean
When God Finally Speaks... • He does not give Job any answers to his questions • He does not give Job any comfort in his situation
Job 38:1-3 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said, "Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Now gird up your loins like a man, and I will ask you, and you instruct Me!
Job 38:4-7 "Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding, who set its measurements, since you know? Or who stretched the line on it? On what were its bases sunk? Or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?"
Job 40:1 Then the LORD said to Job, "Will the faultfinder contend with the Almighty? Let him who reproves God answer it."
Job 42:1-2 Then Job answered the LORD, and said, “I know that Thou canst do all things, And that no purpose of Thine can be thwarted.”
Job 42:5-6 "I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear; but now my eye sees Thee; therefore I retract, and I repent in dust and ashes."
Job 42:7 And it came about after the LORD had spoken these words to Job, that the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, "My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends, because you have not spoken of Me what is right as My servant Job has.
Job 42:8-9 “Now therefore, take for yourselves seven bulls and seven rams, and go to My servant Job, and offer up a burnt offering for yourselves, and My servant Job will pray for you. For I will accept him so that I may not do with you according to your folly, because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has.”
Lessons from Job • God is both all-loving and all-powerful • There are no simple answers • Expression of grief & trouble is appropriate, but not to pass judgment on God • God is in control, even when it is not obvious to our eyes • God has a purpose in what he allows, even if we do not know what it is
Lessons from Job • Tragedy can serve as a wake-up call • God has not remained distant from us in our pain • Job is about God’s condemnation Will you really annul My judgment? Will you condemn Me that you may be justified? (Job 40:8). God was condemned in Christ.
Psalms The Hymnbook of God
Characteristics of the Psalms • A thousand years of history • Musical instruments • Quoted in New Testament • Relates our response to God • A “sensory” book
What are the different types of Psalms? • Praise Psalms • Songs of Thanksgiving • Royal Psalms • Wisdom Psalms • Psalms of Remembrance • Psalms of Lament • Imprecatory Psalms
Psalm 1 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night.
Psalm 1:3 • And in whatever he does, he prospers. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither;
Psalm 2:1-2 Why are the nations in an uproar, And the peoples devising a vain thing? The kings of the earth take their stand, And the rulers take counsel together Against the LORD and against His Anointed.
Psalm 2:6-7 6 But as for Me, I have installed My King Upon Zion, My holy mountain." 7 I will surely tell of the decree of the LORD: He said to Me, 'Thou art My Son, Today I have begotten Thee.
Psalm 2:8-9 8 'Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Thine inheritance, And the very ends of the earth as Thy possession. 9 'Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron, Thou shalt shatter them like earthenware.'"
The title Elohim is used much more than is the name Yahweh
Psalm 42:1-3 1 As the deer pants for the water brooks, So my soul pants for Thee, O God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God; When shall I come and appear before God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night, While they say to me all day long, "Where is your God?"
Psalm 42:4 These things I remember, and I pour out my soul within me. For I used to go along with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God, With the voice of joy and thanksgiving, a multitude keeping festival. • You cannot rest on yesterday’s experiences • Mutual support & encouragement
Psalm 42:5 Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him For the help of His presence.
Psalm 45:1 For the choir director; according to the Shoshannim. A Maskil of the sons of Korah. A Song of Love. My heart overflows with a good theme; I address my verses to the King; My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
Psalm 45:7-8 7 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated wickedness; Therefore God, Thy God, has anointed Thee With the oil of joy above Thy fellows. 8 All Thy garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia; Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made Thee glad.
Focus upon Israel, Jerusalem and the Temple
Psalm 89:1-2 Maskil of Ethan the Ezrahite. I will sing of the lovingkindness of the LORD forever; To all generations I will make known Your faithfulness with my mouth. 2 For I have said, “Lovingkindness will be built up forever; In the heavens You will establish Your faithfulness.”
Psalm 89:3-4 I have made a covenant with My chosen; I have sworn to David My servant, 4 I will establish your seed forever And build up your throne to all generations. Selah.
Psalm 100:1-3 1 Psalm for Thanksgiving. Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth. 2 Serve the LORD with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing. 3 Know that the LORD Himself is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
Psalm 100:4-5 4 Enter His gates with thanksgiving, And His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him; bless His name. 5 For the LORD is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting, And His faithfulness to all generations.
Psalm 110:1 A Psalm of David. The LORD says to my Lord: “Sit at My right hand, Until I make Thine enemies a footstool for Thy feet.”
The Hallel The Psalms of Praise Psalms 113-118 (Sung at Passover)
Psalm 118:21-23 21 I shall give thanks to Thee, for Thou hast answered me; And Thou hast become my salvation. 22 The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief corner stone. 23 This is the LORD's doing; It is marvelous in our eyes.
Psalm 120:1-2 1 A Song of Ascents, of David. I Was glad when they said to me, "Let us go to the house of the LORD." 2 Our feet are standing Within your gates, O Jerusalem,
Psalm 120:3-4 3 Jerusalem, that is built As a city that is compact together; 4 To which the tribes go up, even the tribes of the LORD-- An ordinance for Israel-- To give thanks to the name of the LORD.
Psalm 134:1-3 1 A Song of Ascents. Behold, bless the LORD, all servants of the LORD, Who serve by night in the house of the LORD! 2 Lift up your hands to the sanctuary, And bless the LORD. 3 May the LORD bless you from Zion, He who made heaven and earth.
The Value of the Psalms • A Commentary of the Old Testament • Liturgy for Worship • A Pattern for Prayer • Wisdom for Living