Archive for the ‘Scottish Psalter’ Category

Psalm 147

August 17, 2008

For those who enjoy music – for those who are merry – for who simply wish to worship God – here’s a beautiful rendition of the first part of Psalm 147 – feel free to sing along:

It is a comely thing to Praise God,

-TurretinFan

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Celebrating the Release of Prisoners

July 14, 2008

Today the French celebrate “Bastille Day,” a day on which the rebellious mob of the French Revolution overwhelmed the security of France’s most famous prison, the Bastille, and released its prisoners. I have a proposal this year to remember on this day God’s gracious act of regeneration. It is a bit incongruous, I suppose to liken the Sovereign setting free the rebels, as opposed to the rebels overthrowing the sovereign, but perhaps the irony will provide a much-needed reminder of the work of our Most High King!

Isaiah 42:6-7
6I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; 7To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house.

It is by regeneration that our eyes are opened. It is by regeneration that our bondage to sin is broken, and the shackles of slavery to the flesh are shattered. It is the Holy Spirit working in regeneration that opens our eyes to the truth, so that we believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.

Isaiah 49:8-9
8Thus saith the LORD, In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of salvation have I helped thee: and I will preserve thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, to establish the earth, to cause to inherit the desolate heritages; 9That thou mayest say to the prisoners, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Shew yourselves. They shall feed in the ways, and their pastures shall be in all high places.

This again has the same concept. I should point out that both passages have a double fulfillment. A first fulfillment was in the return of Judah from Babylon. The second and greater fulfillment is in our salvation from sin.

Zechariah 9:11 As for thee also, by the blood of thy covenant I have sent forth thy prisoners out of the pit wherein is no water.

As you can see, the prophet Isaiah is not alone in describing God’s work of salvation in such terms. It is the Holy Spirit that regenerates, but he does so on the basis of the blood of the covenant: the blood symbolized in the water of baptism.

This is not simply my teaching, but the teaching of Peter the Apostle, who wrote by divine inspiration:

1 Peter 3:18-22
18For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: 19By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; 20Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. 21The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ: 22Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.

So then, we may glorify God singing Psalm 102:

Psalm 102:19-22
19For he hath looked down from the height of his sanctuary; from heaven did the LORD behold the earth; 20To hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death; 21To declare the name of the LORD in Zion, and his praise in Jerusalem; 22When the people are gathered together, and the kingdoms, to serve the LORD.

Here’s one proposed metered version from Scottish Metrical Psalter:

19
He from his sanctuary’s height
hath downward cast his eye;
And from his glorious throne in heav’n
the Lord the earth did spy;

20
That of the mournful prisoner
the groanings he might hear,
To set them free that unto death
by men appointed are:

21
That they in Sion may declare
the Lord’s most holy name,
And publish in Jerusalem
the praises of the same;

22
When as the people gather shall
in troops with one accord,
When kingdoms shall assembled be
to serve the highest Lord.

Praise be to our Gracious Prison-Breaking Savior!

-TurretinFan

The Mighty God Will Not Remain Silent Forever

June 7, 2008

Psalm 50 – Metrical Version (Scottish Metrical Psalter)

(Meter: SMD and the words are well set to the tune Diademata, which I promise you sounds much better sung in 4 parts than midi’d, though that’s the only “instrumental” form I could find)

1    The mighty God, the Lord,
hath spoken, and did call
The earth, from rising of the sun,
to where he hath his fall.

2 From out of Sion hill,
which of excellency
And beauty the perfection is,
God shined gloriously.

3 Our God shall surely come,
keep silence shall not he:
Before him fire shall waste, great storms
shall round about him be.

4 Unto the heavens clear
he from above shall call,
And to the earth likewise, that he
may judge his people all.

5 Together let my saints
unto me gather'd be,
Those that by sacrifice have made
a covenant with me.

6 And then the heavens shall
his righteousness declare:
Because the Lord himself is he
by whom men judged are.

7 My people Isr'el hear,
speak will I from on high,
Against thee I will testify;
God, ev'n thy God, am I.

8 I for thy sacrifice
no blame will on thee lay,
Nor for burnt-off 'rings, which to me
thou offer'dst ev'ry day.

9 I'll take no calf nor goats
from house or fold of thine:
10 For beasts of forests, cattle all
on thousand hills, are mine.

11 The fowls on mountains high
are all to me well known;
Wild beasts which in the fields do lie,
ev'n they are all mine own.

12 Then, if I hungry were,
I would not tell it thee;
Because the world, and fulness all
thereof, belongs to me.

13 Will I eat flesh of bulls?
or goats' blood drink will I?
14 Thanks offer thou to God, and pay
thy vows to the most High.

15 And call upon me when
in trouble thou shalt be;
I will deliver thee, and thou
my name shalt glorify.

16 But to the wicked man
God saith, My laws and truth
Should'st thou declare? how dar'st thou take
my cov'nant in thy mouth?

17 Sith thou instruction hat'st,
which should thy ways direct;
And sith my words behind thy back
thou cast'st, and dost reject.

18 When thou a thief didst see,
with him thou didst consent;
And with the vile adulterers
partaker on thou went.

19 Thou giv'st thy mouth to ill,
thy tongue deceit doth frame;
20 Thou sitt'st, and 'gainst thy brother speak'st,
thy mother's son dost shame.

21 Because I silence kept,
while thou these things hast wrought;
That I was altogether like
thyself, hath been thy thought;

Yet I will thee reprove,
and set before thine eyes,
In order ranked, thy misdeeds
and thine iniquities.

22 Now, ye that God forget,
this carefully consider;
Lest I in pieces tear you all,
and none can you deliver.

23 Whoso doth offer praise
me glorifies; and I
Will shew him God's salvation,
that orders right his way.

The whole psalm is rich with gospel call, but today, as I read through, verse 21 especially struck me.

Verse 21 is talking about mankind’s tendency to confuse longsuffering with apathy. God endures the heinous sins of men, not because he doesn’t care about sinfulness, but for his own higher reasons. But we, like any two year old, imagine that if God doesn’t punish us immediately for our sins, it means he doesn’t really care: he’s not really offended by them or perhaps they don’t bother him that much.

How wrong we are to think that way.

Judgment is delayed, but it is coming.

You can liken our life of sin as taking items off a grocery shelf and eating them, thinking that the grocer doesn’t see us. But guess what: the checkout line is coming, and there is going to be a tally of everything that was taken off the shelf. A mere grocer might miss kumquat here or there, but God will have a full list of everything we have done wrong.

Moreover, as a dear Christian brother pointed out to me, while I was discussing this with him, we can turn to verse 22 to see what happens next.

Punishment

There will be punishment for those who sin, and yet that we may not be the recipients of the punishment due our sins. Now, while you have time, repent of your sins and trust in Christ. As 14-15 exhort, call on God in this, your time of trouble, and beg him for mercy. For there is no one more merciful than God. Thus, be one of those in verse 23 who praise and glorify God, to whom God grants salvation.

-TurretinFan

Psalm 103

April 26, 2008

For those who enjoy music – for those who are merry – for who simply wish to worship God – here’s a beautiful rendition of Psalm 103 – feel free to sing along:

Bless God and don’t forget his grace!

-TurretinFan


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