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Memorizing the Psalms 042811
Sometimes, I‘ve considered memorizing the Psalms. The memorization of Bible verses in general has fallen into disfavor, even among children. When I was a child I remember trying to win some small reward for successfully memorizing short verses for Sunday School.
Even when Bible verses were memorized, few memorized the Psalms. I think we may have overlooked their beauty and power. I like to remember that they were sung in worship in the first temple in Jerusalem, and the second , etc. And it is good sometimes to connect to that heritage of spiritual discipline and practice.
But there is current and modern need for these simple songs of adoration and praise for God.
Psalm 16 is a good place to start—it is shorter than many Psalms. Maybe my brain will ease into this exercise better if I start slow.
1Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
2I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.”
3As for the holy ones in the land, they are the noble, in whom is all my delight.
4Those who choose another god multiply their sorrows; their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out or take their names upon my lips.
5The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot.
6The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; I have a goodly heritage.
7I bless the Lord who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me.
8I keep the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
9Therefore my heart is glad, and my soul rejoices; my body also rests secure.
10For you do not give me up to Sheol, or let your faithful one see the Pit.
11You show me the path of life. In your presence there is fullness of joy; in your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Song of Solomon 2:8-15
8The voice of my beloved! Look, he comes, leaping upon the mountains, bounding over the hills. 9My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Look, there he stands behind our wall, gazing in at the windows, looking through the lattice. 10My beloved speaks and says to me: “Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away; 11for now the winter is past, the rain is over and gone. 12The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. 13The fig tree puts forth its figs, and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.
14O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, in the covert of the cliff, let me see your face, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely. 15Catch us the foxes, the little foxes, that ruin the vineyards— for our vineyards are in blossom.”
2Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with thanksgiving. 3At the same time pray for us as well that God will open to us a door for the word, that we may declare the mystery of Christ, for which I am in prison, 4so that I may reveal it clearly, as I should.
5Conduct yourselves wisely toward outsiders, making the most of the time.
The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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