Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Case study -- singing Psalm 25

For Pastor Ted's 6-part series on humility, I thought we should sing a particularly psalm each time -- both to reinforce the major themes of the series, to give voice to our response in prayer, and with hopes that the congregation might learn it.

So we chose Psalm 25. It covers the sober thing prayer is, what to pray for, holy arguments in prayer, and reasons to encourage our praying. We sing it each time before the preached word.

Psalm 25
Meter: 6 7s
Tune: Mt. Zion (I really considered using the tune for "O great God" -- but I knew I wanted that hymn also in this series. Of the other 6 7s tunes we know,, this one seemed best.
Note: the psalm in Hebrew is in acrostic form ("A to Z" as it were). See how the hymn-writer found a way to approximate that in this version
Note: This is more of a paraphrase of Psalm 25. The tension still remains how to sing the entire psalm -- if we keep to a metrical form (rather than free-form chanting) -- and not have it take entirely too long to sing. Churches who sing from published psalters ordinarily do not sing the entire psalm at one time.

Verse 1:
All my soul to God I raise
Be my guardian all my days
Confident in hope I rest
Daily prove your path is best
Ever work in me your will
Faithful to your promise still

Verse 2:
Graciously my sins forgive
Help me by your truth to live
In your footsteps lead me Lord
Joy renewed and hope restored
Knowing every sin forgiven
Learning all the ways of heaven

Verse 3:
Mercies manifold extend
Not as judge but faithful friend
O my Savior hear my prayer
Pluck my feet from every snare
Quiet peace be mine at last
Rest from all my guilty past

Verse 4:
Sheltered safe when troubles fret
Trusting God I triumph yet
Undismayed in him I stand
Victor only by his hand
Worship homage love and praise
All my soul to God I raise

Author: Timothy Dudley-Smith
Copyright: ©1984 Hope Publishing Co.

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