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Psalm 111

Epiphany 4B

Psalm 111 is a shook-up bottle of champagne when the cork flies off: it is effervescent, effusive, and thus it is delightfully over the top in most every way.  It’s one of those poems that tempts one to plant tongue firmly in cheek to ask the psalmist, “Don’t hold back: tell us what you really…

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Psalm 111

Proper 23C

In a recent sermon commentary on another psalm, I observed that although the poetry of the Psalms and the wisdom literature of Proverbs or Ecclesiastes are distinct in terms of biblical literary genre, there is a lot of crossover between the Books of Psalms and Proverbs.  Psalm 111 is another example of this with its…

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Psalm 111

Proper 15B

We almost certainly do not study the works of the Lord enough.  Psalm 111 is not one of the better known poems in the Hebrew Psalter but it packs a powerful punch of praise and adoration.  Just generally it is a meditation on God’s works in both creation and redemption.  It celebrates the mighty things…

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Psalm 111

Epiphany 4B

Psalm 111 is the first of several Hallel Psalms, so named because they begin with the Hebrew words, Hallel (praise) and Yah (a shortened version of Yahweh).  Again and again, God’s people are called to praise their covenant making and keeping God.  But there are times in life when the Hallel’s get stuck in your…

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Psalm 111

Proper 23C

Psalm 111 introduces a series of Hallel Psalms (111-117), so named because the Hebrew of each Psalm begins with Hallelu Yah, “Praise Yahweh.” Indeed, Psalm 111 and 112 are twin Psalms, almost Siamese twins, because they are connected in so many ways. Any casual reader can see that the last verse of Psalm 111 is…

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Psalm 111

Proper 15B

Comments and Observations While God’s modern sons and daughters sometimes seem in a hurry to learn what the Scriptures expect of people, Psalm 111 focuses our attention on the Lord.  In fact, only its verses 1 and 10 even directly speak to or about people, while only verse 2 even alludes to them. That’s certainly…

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Psalm 111

Epiphany 4B

You don’t have to read many sermons to notice that at least some pastors are vulnerable to a kind of moralism that focuses on the “do’s” and “do not’s” of the Christian faith. We sometimes want to leap right to what God wants people to do before contemplating who that God is and what God…

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