Sunday, March 18, 2007

Psalms - by P. C. Craigie

What a joy it was to stumble over the Word Commentary on Psalms by my too briefly known teacher and friend, Peter Craigie. Reading his introduction to the series and his overview of the first 50 Psalms has put my psalmic house in a new order. I even know a bit about Ugarit and the first music (recorded here) - a find just discovered a few years before Peter's untimely death in 1985. I think I will review all my translations to date for he writes often and clearly about structure - the very thing I have sought. I was pleased to note in the introduction that I had discovered many of the things he was pointing out - and all by myself! So it shows that a careful reading can yield its own fruit. We can be helped by scholars but it is not a scribal necessity.

What a shock it was to me, today, only a day later, to attend a nearby parish (familiarizing myself with the local Anglican landscape) and to see the omission of the Psalm. There was not even one Psalm in the liturgy, though there was mention by the guest speaker of a native dance based on Psalm 91. How will the Lord inhabit the praises of the people if they omit Psalms? I was led to believe, in brief conversation during the peace with the director of music whom I happen to know, that this is their habit. Well, this needs pondering. I have to admit also that I did not stay after the peace when I discovered this. I was too much in shock.

1 comment:

Henry Neufeld said...

That reminds me. I need to get that series in on interlibrary loan, one volume at a time!