March 29, 2017: Day 88 – Psalm 88

Well, if yesterday I wanted a lament, today I surely do not.  I’m feeling great!  But boy do we get a lament in Psalm 88.  It is one of the most gut wrenching psalms that we have in the entire psalter.  The despair in the voice of the author is palpable.  What strikes me the most about this psalm is his many references to death in a whole variety of nuances.  

Let’s look at the different words that he uses to describe death: Sheol (it is often used synonymously for Hell as well.  But that is a mischaracterization.  Sheol is simply the place where people go when they die, according to the Old Testament.  It is interesting that in the Old Testament there isn’t a place where people go where there is the weeping and gnashing of teeth or where Christ is with them in eternity.  The conception of heaven and hell doesn’t become more defined until the New Testament and John Milton much, much later.), pit, among the dead, grave, the regions dark and deep, shades, and land of forgetfulness.  There is enough there to make you think that he thought about death often.

Here’s to hoping that the next psalm speaks more about joy than death.  

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3 Responses to March 29, 2017: Day 88 – Psalm 88

  1. Dot Rineer says:

    “Last Chance” – Andrew Osenga, Sandra McCracken, & Jeremy Casella

    https://youtu.be/9cwkrll88l0

    I was curious to see who Heman the Ezrahite was (credited to writing this Psalm). Interesting to read that Heman was a grandson of Samuel. Not only a songwriter & musician, but a wise, respected man.

    • kcooper says:

      Great call Dot. If people wanted to pursue Heman and read more about him you can see him in I Chronicles 25. Thanks again for that important piece of information.

  2. Kathy Eisenhauer says:

    Such a shame that Christ does not enter the picture until much later. Though we have people who did believe in God back then, it always seemed to me that God still always seemed so far away. We are blessed that we not only have God, but have Christ in us, not just around us. We are blessed that we can choose to believe in the hope Christ gives us for healing and redemption.

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