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The biblical psalms are perhaps the most commented-upon texts in human history. They are at once deeply alluring and deeply troubling. In this addition to the acclaimed Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible, Ellen Charry offers a theological reading of Psalms 1-50, exploring the various voices in the poems to discern the conversation they engage about God, suffering, and hope as well as ways of community belonging. The commentary examines the context of the psalms as worship--tending to both their original setting and their subsequent Jewish and Christian appropriation--and explores the psychological dynamics facing the speaker. The book includes a foreword by William P. Brown.
The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible advances the assumption that the Nicene creedal tradition, in all its diversity, provides the proper basis for the interpretation of the Bible as Christian scripture. The series encourages readers to extend the vital roots of the ancient Christian tradition to our day.
Brazos enlists leading theologians to read and interpret Scripture for today, just as the church fathers, the Reformers, and other orthodox Christians did for their times and places. Each volume is designed to serve the church—providing a rich resource for preachers, teachers, students, and study groups—and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of theological interpretation of Scripture.
This volume is available for purchase individually, or as part of the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible (27 Vols.) - BTC.
"There is no better person to explore the doctrinal richness of the Psalms than Ellen T. Charry...Charry is familiar with not only the history of doctrine but also the history of interpretation of the book of Psalms. Furthermore, she knows Hebrew quite well (and several times provides her own translation of key verses), has interacted carefully with recent Psalms scholarship, and is constantly attentive to the pastoral dimensions of the Psalms in terms of what they have taught and may continue to teach people and communities of faith...Charry's volume is consistently in conversation with the doctrinal tradition and with major voices in the history of interpretation of the Psalms...Charry's volume will have wide appeal and usefulness. It will certainly be of interest to biblical scholars, especially those who focus on the Psalms, along with those who view biblical interpretation as something more than an academic exercise...This volume will undoubtedly be of great value to pastors, priests, rabbis, and religious educators whose vocation is all about theological pedagogy." - J. Clinton McCann Jr., Review of Biblical Literature
"Designed to serve the Church and further Biblical theology, the Brazos Commentary Series approaches Biblical texts, informed by doctrine from the Nicene tradition. Charry's book rises to the occasion, with frequent and elucidating references ranging from the Church Fathers...to modern commentators on the Psalms...She also incorporates Jewish traditions richly...Her sensitivity to religious traditions other than her own cultural background is evident...Charry challenges the reader's assumptions and strives to broaden perspectives...With an elegant writing style and many incisive insights from her own studies, Charry considers the Hebrew thoughtfully and closely...and makes various lively connections with other 'Older Testament' texts...There is plenty of material here both to inspire afresh those who know the Psalms well, and to entice further those who would like to get to know them better." - Megan Daffern, Expository Times
"I commend Charry's commentary for pastors, teachers, and those interested in Christian spirituality...Charry's work uniquely contributes to the commentary literature on the Psalms. She focuses on the theology of the Psalms rather than their historical-grammatical context, as many other commentaries do. The commentary thus fills a theological gap within the body of commentary literature on the Psalms." - Wyatt A. Graham, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society
"This poetically sensitive, theologically thoughtful commentary succeeds in interpreting Psalms for the twenty-first century church...[Charry] honors the psalms' evocativeness by using linguistic and historical information to enrich, rather than constrain, our imagination about their relevance...I applaud Charry's informed, open-hearted commentary and her recognition that there is more than one right way to read each psalm. I recommend her commentary as a useful companion for studying, praying, and preaching the psalms." - Marti J. Steussy, Interpretation
"[Charry's] close reading of Pss 1-50 results in literary insights and sensitive structural analysis...The commentary would be particularly useful for the preacher on account of its literary, psychological, and historical insights...The commentary is stimulating and worth consulting for a fresh perspective alongside technical commentaries." - Daniel C. Owens, Trinity Journal
"A worthy example of contemporary theological commentary on the Bible, an approach that is gaining influence today." - Dianne Bergant, CSA, The Bible Today
Ellen T. Charry (PhD, Temple University) is Margaret W. Harmon Professor of Theology at Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, New Jersey. She is the author of numerous articles and several books, including God and the Art of Happiness. Charry has served on the editorial boards of the Scottish Journal of Theology and Pro Ecclesia and currently serves as an editor-at-large for The Christian Century.