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Gunkel classified the psalms into various categories or types (Germ.gattungen) by trying to identify the general situation in life (Germ.Gunkel concluded that most of the psalms were postexilic.Many scholars have followed this form critical approach in their study of the Psalms as well as in other portions of the Old Testament.Students of the psalms sometimes refer to those without writer information in their titles as anonymous or "orphan" psalms. "An analogy between the Psalter and a contemporary hymnbook is instructive. These smaller collections include songs of ascent (Pss. Undoubtedly the Psalter was in its final form by the close of the Old Testament canon, namely, by 400 B. The fivefold division may have been an intentional attempt to replicate the fivefold division of the Torah (Law, Pentateuch), which was the foundation of Israelite life and faith.The ones that do contain this information refer to the following writers. David composed at least 73 psalms, mostly in the first two books of the Psalter (i.e., Pss. Many modern hymns arose as a result of a specific event in the life of a hymn writer, but the event remains hidden (at least without historical research) from the person who sings the song today. So may Josiah, another reforming king of Judah (640609 B. In terms of subject matter, the psalms deal with selected events of that millennium (1400450 B. They provide us with the thoughts and feelings of those who went through the experiences recorded, especially their God-directed thoughts and feelings.Claus Westermann, following Mowinckel, took a more mediating position and simplified the types of psalms into two: psalms of lament and psalms of praise.
However, some of the titles of the individual psalms do contain information about the writers.
Consequently the numbering of the verses in the Hebrew and English Bibles is often different, the first verse in the Septuagint and English texts usually being the second verse in the Hebrew text, when the psalm has a title. Two examples are the city name "Dan" in Genesis, and the city name "Rameses" in Exodus. This is because some translations, such as the Protestant English versions, come from the Masoretic (Hebrew) text.
Some critics of the Psalms have concluded that the titles are not reliable. Others, such as the Roman Catholic English versions, followed the Latin Vulgate translation, which was based on the Septuagint (Greek) text. Those David composed would have originated between about 1020 and 975 B. Asaph was a contemporary of David, so we can date his in approximately the same period.
Psalm , for example, seems to mark the end of a collection of David's psalms that antedated the Psalter we now have, but which editors incorporated into the larger work. ) all organized temple singing, and may have had a hand in compiling some of the psalms. Saints of all ages have appropriated this collection of prayers and praises in their public worship and private meditations." The psalms are all prayers written in Hebrew poetry. Thus parallelism alone is not a sufficient criterion to define poetry. The most frequent types of parallelism are the following: In synonymous parallelism, the writer repeats the thought of the first line in the following line (e.g., 1:2; 24:1-3; 25:4).
Psalm 1 appears intended to introduce this collection and, probably later, the entire Psalter. "The leading characteristic of poetry is terseness or conciseness. Wherever there is a high proportion of parallel lines, however, we can be certain that we are dealing with a poetic passage. Antithetic parallelism is the reverse: the second line expresses a contrasting thought compared to the first line (e.g., 1:6; 20:8; 37:9).