Here is more information about The Cithara Sanctorum, which recorded the performance of Psalm 22 posted earlier:
The Niagara Psalter
2 weeks ago
Wykonanie Psalmu 22 według Psałterza Poznańskiego.
Agata Polaszek & Mate.O.
Agata Polaszek: śpiew, gitara klasyczna, lira korbowa, psalterium
Tekst: Tomasz Kruczek - Psałterz Poznański, 2013
Melodia: Psałterz Genewski, wydanie z roku 1562
Aranżacja: Agata Polaszek
Mix: Mirek Stępień
Performance of Psalm 22 from the Psalter Poznanski.
Agata Polaszek & Mate.O.
Agata Polaszek: vocals, guitar, hurdy-gurdy, psaltery
Text: Thomas Kruczek - Psalter Poznanski, 2013
Melody: Geneva Psalter, edition of 1562
Arrangement: Agata Polaszek
Mix Mirek Stepien
The enemies referred to here are enemies of the cause of God, who lay hands on us for the sake of God. It is therefore nowhere a matter of personal conflict. Nowhere does the one who prays these psalms want to take revenge into his own hands. He calls for the wrath of God alone (cf. Romans 12:19). Therefore he must dismiss from his own mind all thought of personal revenge; he must be free from his own thirst for revenge. Otherwise, the vengeance would not be seriously commanded from God.
The quest to escape authority has been a persistent feature of the modern world, animating liberals and Marxists, Westerners and non-Westerners alike. Yet what if it turns out that authority is intrinsic to humanity? What if authority is characteristic of everything we are and do as those created in God's image, even when we claim to be free of it? What if kings and commoners, teachers and students, employers and employees all possess authority?
This book argues that authority cannot be identified with mere power, is not to be played off against freedom, and is not a mere social construction. Rather it is resident in an office given us by God himself at creation. This central office is in turn dispersed into a variety of offices relevant to our different life activities in a wide array of communal settings. Far from being a conservative bromide, the call to respect authority is foundational to respect for humanity itself.
"In this timely and highly valuable book, Koyzis exposes the problems and points the way to solid, balanced answers. The subtitle of We Answer to Another sums it up: 'Authority, Office, and the Image of God.' Humans have been created in the image of God and called to serve the Creator—the One to whom we are ultimately accountable. To exercise a responsibility is to hold an office of real authority as servant-stewards of one another. We can thus participate in holding one another accountable to the responsibilities of those offices. Sound old-fashioned? It's the most contemporary word of wisdom we and our neighbors throughout the world need to hear today!"
—James W. Skillen, President Emeritus, Center for Public Justice
"Liberal societies, regarding themselves as premised on the generative moral autonomy of the individual, have a constitutive problem with authority—freedom needs no justification, only authority. In this highly illuminating, wide-ranging, and exceptionally clear book, David Koyzis shows how this view not only destabilizes authority but actually diminishes our humanity. Authority is not autonomy but 'responsible agency,' exercised individually and corporately in many diverse human settings—'offices'—that arise from our being created in God's image. Recovering authority as 'answering to another' makes us more, not less, human."
—Jonathan Chaplin, Director of the Kirby Laing Institute for Christian Ethics, Cambridge
Trinity Hymnal contains a marvelous, albeit imperfect, collection of hymns and psalms. . . . What precious, enduring truth revealed in the Old Testament is missing from this catalog and thus absent from our current hymnal? . . .
One member of the Psalter-Hymnal Composition Committee wrote of his conviction that God nowhere directs his people—either in the Old or the New Testament—to sing all the biblical psalms in worship. This view has been the overwhelming consensus within the OPC since her founding, and I concur in it. But a few years ago, without concerted or church-wide discussion, the General Assembly suddenly decided to abandon this consensus. This is what I mean by speaking of the Psalter-Hymnal project as a radical one. A founding member of our church recently called it “revolutionary”!
Rather than embracing the “total psalmody” view of a Psalter-Hymnal, I’m convinced we ought to continue our venerable practice of using carefully selected metrical psalms, psalm versions, and paraphrases for sung praise and prayer in our corporate worship, along with scripturally faithful hymns.
Why? Briefly—and maybe too bluntly—not all the psalms as originally written are suitable for corporate Christian praise and prayer. . . .
The Old Testament points us to Christ. But the Psalms, and the rest of the Old Testament, were written before the incarnation of the uncreated Son of God, prior to his earthly life and ministry of humble obedience and love, and before his death on the cross as an atoning sacrifice, his glorious resurrection, and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the church. Our Lord Jesus, both in his teaching and in his way of life, revealed the fullness of God’s will for us.
It is true that the Psalms are the songbook of an obsolete covenant—in the same sense that the Ten Commandments are the law of an obsolete covenant—and the whole Old Testament itself is an obsolete covenant! And yet, Paul writes that “all Scripture [the whole obsolete testament] is breathed-out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16–17). Furthermore, there is not a single sentiment in the Psalms that is not echoed in the New Testament as well. . . .
Why should we sing all 150 psalms? Because it is right and proper to sing God’s word back to him. This is why our congregation sings versions of Deuteronomy 6, Habakkuk 3, Jonah 2, Joel 2, Zephaniah 3, Zechariah 9, Micah 7, and the songs of Daniel, Zechariah, Mary, Simeon, Hannah, Deborah, and Moses (Ex. 15). Too often we assume that the songs of the church are “prayers,” but in fact, the songs of the church may also be where the church takes up the Word of God on our lips and sings it back to him. After all, many psalms are not “prayers,” but recitations of the mighty deeds of God. Singing is not just the “prayers of the people,” but also the admonition of the Word of God!
If we keep vigil in church, David [the author of the psalms] comes first, last and central. If early in the morning we want songs and hymns, first, last and central is David again. If we are occupied with the funeral solemnities of those who have fallen asleep, or if virgins sit at home and spin, David is first, last and central. O amazing wonder! Many who have made little progress in literature know the Psalter by heart. Nor is it only in cities and churches that David is famous; in the village market, in the desert, and in uninhabitable land, he excites the praise of God. In monasteries, among those holy choirs of angelic armies, David is first, last and central. In the convents of virgins, where are the communities of those who imitate Mary; in the deserts where there are men crucified to the world, who live their life in heaven with God, David is first, last and central. All other men at night are overcome by sleep. David alone is active, and gathering the servants of God into seraphic bands, he turns earth into heaven, and converts men into angels.
Judging among divine pretenders,
in council God his verdict renders:
“How long,” says he, “shall wickedness
be favoured over righteousness?
Give justice to the poor and needy,
rescue the helpless from the greedy.
Treat widows as is right and fair,
defend all orphans in your care.
“Blindly you grope about and stumble,
while earth's foundations start to crumble.
Gods you may think yourselves to be,
yet you shall taste mortality.
Like earthly kings whose days are numbered,
death's claim on you will not be cumbered.”
Rise up, O God, and judge the earth,
to you the nations owe their birth.
They replied, “The man questioned us carefully about ourselves and our kindred, saying, ‘Is your father still alive? Do you have another brother?’ What we told him was in answer to these questions. Could we in any way know that he would say, ‘Bring your brother down’?”A decade ago the group produced another album called To the Black Land.
All of Scripture is given to us for “teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness” which, of course, includes the Book of Psalms. We can certainly study the psalms, learn from them, be corrected by them, and be trained by them for righteousness, just like the rest of the Scriptures. But the Psalms are unique – they are the hymnbook of the people of God, and they are meant to be sung. Join us on this exciting journey as we learn to sing the Word!
What do you mean by the phrase "nonpsalmic worship"?
When people give up using the Psalms, they often invent poor substitutes—songs, prayers, or poems that have a bit of Christian emotion and a bit of doctrine, but nonetheless lack the Psalter's depth, passion, and rich variety of expression. If one tries to do without the Psalms, there is an identifiable blank at the heart of things.
How can the Psalms transform us?
Within the Jewish and Christian traditions, you get your worldview sorted out by worship. The Psalms are provided to guide that worship. When we continually pray and sing the Psalms, our worldview will actually reconfigure according to their values, theology, and modes of expression.
Your ancestors slept in a way that modern sleepers would find bizarre – they slept twice. . . . The existence of our sleeping twice per night was first uncovered by Roger Ekirch, professor of History at Virginia Tech.
His research found that we didn’t always sleep in one eight hour chunk. We used to sleep in two shorter periods, over a longer range of night. This range was about 12 hours long, and began with a sleep of three to four hours, wakefulness of two to three hours, then sleep again until morning.
References are scattered throughout literature, court documents, personal papers, and the ephemera of the past. What is surprising is not that people slept in two sessions, but that the concept was so incredibly common. Two-piece sleeping was the standard, accepted way to sleep.
But Samson lay till midnight, and at midnight he arose and took hold of the doors of the gate of the city and the two posts, and pulled them up, bar and all, and put them on his shoulders and carried them to the top of the hill that is in front of Hebron (Judges 16:3).
At midnight the man was startled and turned over, and behold, a woman lay at his feet! (Ruth 3:8)
At midnight I rise to praise you, because of your righteous rules (Psalm 119:62).
Therefore stay awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or in the morning (Mark 13:35).
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them (Acts 16:25).
During this waking period people were quite active. They often got up, went to the toilet or smoked tobacco and some even visited neighbours. Most people stayed in bed, read, wrote and often prayed. Countless prayer manuals from the late 15th Century offered special prayers for the hours in between sleeps.
Making due allowance for circumstances, the brethren will rise during the winter season, that is, from the calends of November till Easter, at the eighth hour of the night [between 12 and 1 am]; so that, having rested till a little after midnight, they may rise refreshed.
Bert had a particular concern for the faithful use of the biblical Psalms in public worship, and frequently took up the challenge of versifying many lesser-known Psalms for inclusion in volumes of congregational song. These texts reveal Bert’s passionate commitment to the Psalms and a large-scale view of God’s peaceable kingdom which comes through Jesus Christ.
The Psalms, which form the biggest book in the Bible, were clearly meant to be sung, and the Bible gives many exhortations for us to sing them. This is most clearly seen in the Psalms themselves: “Sing to him, sing psalms to him; talk you of all His wondrous works” (Psalm 105:2); “Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; Let us shout joyfully to him with psalms.” (Psalm 95:2); “Sing unto the Lord with the harp; with the harp, and the voice of a psalm” (Psalm 98:5). . . .
One of the most striking things about the Psalms is that perhaps more than any other book of the Bible, they establish the antithesis, with wickedness on one side and righteousness on the other. This is seen clearly in very first Psalm which divides between on the one hand, the blessed man who “walks not in the counsel of the ungodly” and on the other hand the ungodly man who is “like the chaff which the wind drives away.” The righteous man, it goes on to say, is like “a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season,” in contrast to “the way of the ungodly (which) shall perish.”