The Book
of Psalms

summaries and outlines

Gideon

Book of Psalms Summary

The Book of Psalms is a collection of prayers, poems, and hymns that focus the worshiper’s thoughts on God in praise and adoration. Parts of this book were used as a hymnal in the worship services of ancient Israel. The musical heritage of the psalms is demonstrated by its title. It comes from a Greek word which means "a song sung to the accompaniment of a musical instrument." [Source: https://www.gotquestions.org/Book-of-Jeremiah.html]

The Bible - Numbers

Title

The titles “Psalms” and “Psalter” come from the Septuagint (the pre-Christian Greek translation of the OT), where they originally referred to stringed instruments (such as harp, lyre and lute), then to songs sung with their accompaniment. The traditional Hebrew title is tehillim (meaning “praises”; see note on Ps 145 title), even though many of the psalms are tephilloth (meaning “prayers,” including laments).


hebrew_writing

Author and Date of Writing

The book has multipl authors - David, Asaph, the Sons of Korah, Solomon, Heman, Ethan, Moses and unknown authors.

The book was written between the time of Moses (probably about 1440 BC) and the time following the Babylonian exile (after 538 BC).



[Source: King James Bible Study Notes]

Psalms Outline

I. Book I (Ps 1–41)

  1. Introduction (Ps 1–2)
    1. The Way of the Righteous and the Wicked, Psalm 1:1-6
    2. The Reign of the Lord’s Anointed, Psalm 2:1-12
  2. The Only Source of Human Confidence (Ps 3–14)
    1. Laments for deliverance (Psalm 3–7)
      1. Save Me, O My God, Psalm 3:1-8
      2. Answer Me When I Call, Psalm 4:1-8
      3. Lead Me in Your Righteousness, Psalm 5:1-12
      4. O Lord, Deliver My Life, Psalm 6:1-10
      5. In You Do I Take Refuge, Psalm 7:1-17
    2. The glory of God bestowed on human beings, Psalm 8:1-9
    3. Laments for deliverance (Ps 9–13)
      1. I Will Recount Your Wonderful Deeds, Psalm 9:1-20
      2. Why Do You Hide Yourself?, Psalm 10:1-18
      3. The Lord Is in His Holy Temple, Psalm 11:1-7
      4. The Faithful Have Vanished, Psalm 12:1-8
      5. How Long, O Lord?, Psalm 13:1-6
    4. The folly of rejecting God (Psalm 14:1-7)
  3. Human Security in Relationship With God (Ps 15–24)
    1. Requirements for access to God (Psalm 15:1-5)
    2. Refuge in God (Psalm 16:1-11)
    3. Vindication from God (Psalm 17:1-15 and Psalm 18:1-50)
    4. God’s glory revealed in creation and in the law (Psalm 19:1-14)
    5. Vindication from God (Psalm 20–22)
      1. Trust in the Name of the Lord Our God, Psalm 20:1-9
      2. The King Rejoices in the Lord’s Strength, Psalm 21:1-13
      3. Why Have You Forsaken Me?, Psalm 22:1-31
    6. Refuge in God (Psalm 23:1-6)
    7. Requirements for access to God (Psalm 24:1-10)
  4. Laments and Divine Responses (Psalm 25–33)
    1. “Remember, Lord, your great mercy and love” (Psalm 25:1-22)
    2. Lament of one who avoids sin (Psalm 26:1-12)
    3. Confidence in the Lord in the face of enemies (Psalm 27:1-14)
    4. Lament of one going “down to the pit” (Psalm 28:1-9)
    5. The mighty Lord who “blesses his people with peace” (Psalm 29:1-11)
    6. Thanksgiving of one rescued from going “down to the pit” (Psalm 30:1-12)
    7. Lament to the Lord in the face of enemies (Psalm 31:1-24)
    8. Blessedness of one whose sins are forgiven (Psalm 32:1-11)
    9. The Lord remembers “those whose hope is in his unfailing love” (Psalm 33:1-22)
  5. Instruction in Wisdom and Laments Over Wickedness (Psalm 34–37)
    1. Instruction in godly wisdom (Psalm 34:1-22)
    2. Laments over the wicked (Psalm 35:1-28 and Psalm 36:1-12)
    3. Instruction in godly wisdom (Psalm 37:1-40)
  6. Laments to God Psalm 38–41
    1. Do Not Forsake Me, O Lord, Psalm 38:1-22
    2. What Is the Measure of My Days?, Psalm 39:1-13
    3. My Help and My Deliverer, Psalm 40:1-17
    4. O Lord, Be Gracious to Me, Psalm 41:1-13

II. Book II (Ps 42–72)

  1. Three Laments and a Royal Psalm (Psalms 42–45 [see the parallel section Psalms 69–72])
    1. Why Are You Cast Down, O My Soul?, Psalm 42:1-11
    2. Send Out Your Light and Your Truth, Psalm 43:1-5
    3. Come to Our Help, Psalm 44:1-26
    4. Your Throne, O God, Is Forever, Psalm 45:1-17
  2. Hymns Celebrating Zion, the City of God (Psalm 46–48)
    1. God Is Our Fortress, Psalm 46:1-11
    2. God Is King over All the Earth, Psalm 47:1-9
    3. Zion, the City of Our God, Psalm 48:1-14
  3. The Proper Posture Before God (Psalm 49–53)
    1. Trust in God and not oneself (Psalm 49:1-20)
    2. Sincerity and blamelessness (Psalm 50:1-23)
    3. A pure heart and steadfast spirit (Psalm 51:1-19)
    4. Righteousness and faithfulness (Psalm 52:1-9)
    5. The fool rejects these things (Psalm 53:1-6)
  4. Laments Over the Enemies of God and His People (Psalms 54–64)
    1. The Lord Upholds My Life, Psalm 54:1-7
    2. Cast Your Burden on the Lord, Psalm 55:1-23
    3. In God I Trust, Psalm 56:1-13
    4. Let Your Glory Be over All the Earth, Psalm 57:1-11
    5. God Who Judges the Earth, Psalm 58:1-11
    6. Deliver Me from My Enemies, Psalm 59:1-17
    7. He Will Tread Down Our Foes, Psalm 60:1-17
    8. Lead Me to the Rock, Psalm 61:1-8
    9. My Soul Waits for God Alone, Psalm 62:1-12
    10. My Soul Thirsts for You, Psalm 63:1-11
    11. Hide Me from the Wicked, Psalm 64:1-10
  5. Praise and Thanksgiving for God’s Blessing (Psalms 65–68)
    1. 1. Praise for God’s abundant provision (Psalm 65:1-13)
    2. 2. Thanksgiving for God’s saving acts (Psalm 66:1-20)
    3. 3. Praise for God’s righteous rule (Psalm 67:1-7)
    4. 4. Praise for God’s saving acts (Psalm 68:1-35)
  6. Three Laments and a Royal Psalm (Psalm 69–72 [see the parallel section Psalm 42–45])
    1. Save Me, O God, Psalm 69:1-36
    2. O Lord, Do Not Delay, Psalm 70:1-5
    3. Forsake Me Not When My Strength Is Spent, Psalm 71:1-24
    4. Give the King Your Justice, Psalm 72:1-20

III. Book III (Ps 73–89)

  1. Laments Informed by Wisdom and Safeguarded by Praise (Psalms 73–78)
    1. Wisdom based on individual experience (Psalm 73:1-28)
    2. Lament over God’s apparent rejection (Psalm 74:1-23)
    3. Praise to God, the righteous Judge (Psalm 75:1-10 and Psalm 76:1-12)
    4. Lament over God’s apparent rejection (Psalm 77:1-20)
    5. Wisdom based on communal experience (Psalm 78:1-72)
  2. The God Who Saves From Enemies (Psalm 79–83)
    1. Lament over enemy invasion (Psalm 79:1-13 and Psalm 80:1-19)
    2. God will deliver when his people are faithful (Psalm 81:1-16)
    3. Lament over enemy invasion (Psalm 82:1-8 and Psalm 83:1-18)
  3. God’s Love for Zion as a Basis for Hope (Psalm 84–89)
    1. Yearning for restored fellowship with God (Psalm 84–86)
      1. My Soul Longs for the Courts of the Lord, Psalm 84:1-12
      2. Revive Us Again, Psalm 85:1-13
      3. Great Is Your Steadfast Love, Psalm 86:1-17
    2. Celebration of God’s special love for Zion and its citizens (Psalm 87:1-7)
    3. Yearning for restored fellowship with God (Psalm 88–89)
      1. I Cry Out Day and Night Before You, Psalm 88:1-18
      2. I Will Sing of the Steadfast Love of the Lord, Psalm 89:1-52

IV. Book IV (Ps 90–106)

  1. God as a Faithful Dwelling Place Throughout All Generations (Psalm 90–100)
    1. From Everlasting to Everlasting, Psalm 90:1-17
    2. My Refuge and My Fortress, Psalm 91:1-16
    3. How Great Are Your Works, Psalm 92:1-15
    4. The Lord Reigns, Psalm 93:1-5
    5. The Lord Will Not Forsake His People, Psalm 94:1-24
    6. Let Us Sing Songs of Praise, Psalm 95:1-11
    7. Worship in the Splendor of Holiness, Psalm 96:1-13
    8. The Lord Reigns, Psalm 97:1-12
    9. Make a Joyful Noise to the Lord, Psalm 98:1-9
    10. The Lord Our God Is Holy, Psalm 99:1-9
    11. His Steadfast Love Endures Forever, Psalm 100:1-5
  2. God’s Love and Justice in Israel’s Past and in Present Need (Psalm 101–106)
    1. I Will Walk with Integrity, Psalm 101:1-8
    2. Do Not Hide Your Face from Me, Psalm 102:1-28
    3. Bless the Lord, O My Soul, Psalm 103:1-22
    4. O Lord My God, You Are Very Great, Psalm 104:1-35
    5. Tell of All His Wondrous Works, Psalm 105:1-45
    6. Give Thanks to the Lord, for He Is Good, Psalm 106:1-48

V. Book V (Ps 107–150)

  1. God’s Redemption, Culminating in Prophecies Concerning the Messiah (Psalm 107–110)
    1. Let the Redeemed of the Lord Say So, Psalm 107:1-43
    2. With God We Shall Do Valiantly, Psalm 108:1-13
    3. Help Me, O Lord My God, Psalm 109:1-31
    4. Sit at My Right Hand, Psalm 110:1-7
  2. The “Egyptian Hallel” (Psalm 111–119)
    1. Great Are the Lord’s Works, Psalm 111:1-10
    2. The Righteous Will Never Be Moved, Psalm 112:1-10
    3. Who Is like the Lord Our God?, Psalm 113:1-9
    4. Tremble at the Presence of the Lord, Psalm 114:1-8
    5. To Your Name Give Glory, Psalm 115:1-18
    6. I Love the Lord, Psalm 116:1-19
    7. The Lord’s Faithfulness Endures Forever, Psalm 117:1-2
    8. His Steadfast Love Endures Forever, Psalm 118:1-29
    9. Your Word Is a Lamp to My Feet, Psalm 119:1-176
  3. Songs of Ascent With Two Appendices (Psalm 120–137)
    1. Songs of ascent (Psalm 120–134)
      1. Deliver Me, O Lord, Psalm 120:1-7
      2. My Help Comes from the Lord, Psalm 121:1-8
      3. Let Us Go to the House of the Lord, Psalm 122:1-9
      4. Our Eyes Look to the Lord Our God, Psalm 123:1-4
      5. Our Help Is in the Name of the Lord, Psalm 124:1-8
      6. The Lord Surrounds His People, Psalm 125:1-5
      7. Restore Our Fortunes, O Lord, Psalm 126:1-6
      8. Unless the Lord Builds the House, Psalm 127:1-5
      9. Blessed Is Everyone Who Fears the Lord, Psalm 128:1-6
      10. They Have Afflicted Me from My Youth, Psalm 129:1-8
      11. My Soul Waits for the Lord, Psalm 130:1-8
      12. I Have Calmed and Quieted My Soul, Psalm 131:1-3
      13. The Lord Has Chosen Zion, Psalm 132:1-18
      14. When Brothers Dwell in Unity, Psalm 133:1-3
      15. Come, Bless the Lord, Psalm 134:1-3
    2. Appendix One: hymns associated by the Jews with the songs  ascent (Psalms 135–136)
      1. Your Name, O Lord, Endures Forever, Psalm 135:1-21
      2. His Steadfast Love Endures Forever, Psalm 136:1-26
    3. Appendix Two: A lament for Zion from exile (Psalms 137)
      1. How Shall We Sing the Lord’s Song?, Psalm 137:1-9
  4. Davidic Psalms Framed by Thanksgiving and Praise (Psalms 138–145)
    1. Thanksgiving to the Lord for deliverance (Psalm 138:1-8)
    2. An acknowledgment of no escape from the Lord (Psalm 139:1-24)
    3. Laments for deliverance (Psalm 140–144)
      1. Deliver Me, O Lord, from Evil Men, Psalm 140:1-13
      2. Give Ear to My Voice, Psalm 141:1-10
      3. You Are My Refuge, Psalm 142:1-7
      4. My Soul Thirsts for You, Psalm 143:1-12
      5. My Rock and My Fortress, Psalm 144:1-15
    4. Hymn of praise to the Lord (Psalm 145:1-21)
  5. Five Hymns Serving as the Doxology for the Entire Psalter (Ps 146–150)
    1. Put Not Your Trust in Princes, Psalm 146:1-10
    2. He Heals the Brokenhearted, Psalm 147:1-20
    3. Praise the Name of the Lord, Psalm 148:1-14
    4. Sing to the Lord a New Song, Psalm 149:1-9
    5. Let Everything Praise the Lord, Psalm 150:1-6
Adapted from: NIV Study Bible, Copyright © 1985, 1995, 2002, 2008, 2011 by Zondervan.