Heidegger's Bible Handbook: Psalms: Detailed Outline of Book 1

12. The Order of the Psalms somewhat disturbed after Psalm 10 in the Greek and Latin. The arguments of the individual Psalms. A Synoptic Table of the book, and its Interpreters, ancient, Reformed, Lutheran, Roman Catholic, Hebrew.


Moreover, since the individual Psalm are complete works, an analysis of the sort that we have given hitherto on the others books does not obtain in the case of the Psalms. Neither may we make another order, than that which the series and number of the Psalms supplies. In which, nevertheless, a variety is to be observed between the Hebrew Codex and the Greek and Latin Codices. More particularly, Psalm 9 and 10, separated in the Hebrew Codex, and conjoined in the Greek and Latin. Whence arises the diversity of numbering from Psalm 10 to Psalm 147, which the Greeks and Latins divide into two Psalms, namely, Psalm 146, which extends from verse 1 to verse 11; and Psalm 147, from verse 12 to the end; and thus they also fulfill the number of one hundred and fifty Psalms. But, with these things dismissed, we will now attempt briefly to elicit the abridged arguments of the individual Psalms.


1. David describes the contrary ends of the pious and impious, the blessedness of the former, and his manner of pursuing it (verses 1-3), and the character and ruin of the latter (verses 4, 5), and the contrary cause of blessedness and misery (verse 6).

2. David sets forth the vain efforts of the enemies of Christ against Him (verses 1-3), the speech of Jehovah or the Father concerning the anointing of His Son as King (verses 4-6), and the speech of the Anointed one, in which He triumphs in the will of the Father making Him King (verses 7-12).

3. David, having complained concerning the multitude of his enemies (verses 1, 2), and having testified of his consolation and immovable trust in God (verses 3-6), closes the hymn with prayer and doxology (verses 7, 8).

4. David, seeking an audience with God (verse 1), prepares words for his rivals (verses 2-5); and also, asking grace of God, he testifies to his trust in God (verses 6-8).

5. David, humbly imploring audience (verses 1-3), prays agains the enemies of the Church (verses 4-12).

6. David, in his straits and in the sense of Divine wrather most humbly praying to God (verses 1-7), scoffs at his enemies, and testifies of his confidence that he will be heard (verses 8-10): Penitential I.

7. David seeks from God a gracious liberation from his Adversary (verses 1-5), and prays against his enemies, that God by His solemn judgment might attend unot them, and make his innocence evident to the whole world (verses 6-9); and he testifies of his confidence concerning his own liberation, and the overthrow of his enemies (verses 10-17).

8. With the Majesty of Jehovah proclaimed (verse 1), David illustrates the same in a variety of ways, with the state of Christ’s humiliation and exaltation brought in (verses 2-8); and he proclaims it again (verse 9).

9. David celebrates God on account of his victories, and, declaring his own affection (verses 1-10), he then exhorts the Church and people of God, that it also should celebrate God as the author of such victories (verses 11, 12); he then solicits God on his own behalf against the enemies of the Church (verses 13-20).

10. The Church of God, pressed down with a grievous yoke, complaining of the delay of Divine help against the wicked (verses 1-11), prays to God, that, with His hand uplifted, He would bring help against the wicked (verses 12-15); and he testifies of his confidence and joy, on account of the present help of God and the enemies now restained (verses 16-18).

11. David, consoling himself against his enemies (verse 1), sets forth various arguments for his consolation (verses 2-7).

12. David complains of the multitude of hypocrites and evil-doers, and the straits and paucity of the pious (verses 1-4), to which the Lord promises help (verse 5), with believers testifying that they acquiesce in His salvation (verses 6-8).

13. David, complaining of his most miserable condition (verses 1, 2), implores God as Defender (verses 3, 4), and at the same time, relying upon the goodness and salvation of God, rouses himself (verse 5), and expresses a vow to God (verse 6).

14. David, bewailing the impiety and native corruption of mankind (verses 1-4), asks for liberation from the tyranny of the wicked (verses 5-7).

15. To David, asking of God, who then are going to be the blessed inhabitants of Heaven (verse 1), God sets forth the character traits of the heirs of heavenly glory (verses 2-5).

16. David, as a Prophet (Acts 2:30), in the person of Christ, and so Christ Himself (thus Saint Peter, Acts 2:25-32, Saint Paul, Acts 13:35, 36, Saint Augustine, Jerome, Theodoret, and the whole chorus of the ancients, and among the more recent, Piscator, Alting, and a number of others), praying for liberation from His death struggle (verse 1), having been heard by God, declares His confidence concerning the fruit of his death, the resurrection of His body, and eternal glory (verses 2-11).

17. David supplicates God, that He might assert the righteousness of his cause against his enemies, of whose insolence he complains (verses 1-12); and, calling for Divine vengeance upon them (verses 13, 14), he prayers for a showing of the face of God to him in this, and the sight of it in the next life (verse 15).

18. David, testifying of his intimate love towards God on account of the manifest blessings of the same (verses 1-3), proclaims the present help of God in the straits and passages of death (verses 4-19), and profusely praises the same, avenging him according to his righteousness and integrity (verses 20-45), and celebrates Him with thanksgiving (verses 46-50).

19. David, with Divine documents set forth through the works of nature (verses 1-6), and of grace (verses 7-9), testifies of his love for God’s word (verses 10, 11), deplores his infirmities (verse 12), and implores God for their remission, preservation from pride, and a favorable answer (verses 13, 14).

20. The Church, commending their King to God in pious prayers (verses 1-5), and professing its hope concerning his victories (verses 6-8), implores Divine help (verse 9).

21. The Church, extolling the Divine help and honor furnished for the King (verses 1-7), exhibits the punishments of his enemies (verses 8-12), and implores God’s help for the future (verse 13).

22. David, in the person of the suffering Christ, complaining of the Divine desertion of Him and help delayed (verses 1-8), implores God’s help in the greatest straits and persecutions of enemies (verses 9-21), and gives thanks for the gracious liberation, and Spiritual Kingdom bestowed upon Him (verses 22-31).

23. David, explaining the spiritual satiety of believers, whereby through God they enjoy the true Shepherd (verse 1), acknowledges the same Shepherd’s acts, feeding, oversight, and defense (verses 2-5), and finally testifies of his confidence in His mercy (verse 6).

24. David, vindicating for God the right and propriety of the whole world (verses 1, 2), teaches who in the external assembly of the Church are true members of the same (verses 3-6); he exhorts the powers of the world, that they subject themselves to the Kingdom of Christ, and promptly admit Him as King (verses 7-10).

25. David, deprecating his shame from enemies, and testifying to his confidence in God (verses 1-3), seeks the guidance of God (verses 4, 5), and the remission of the sins of youth (verses 6, 7); he celebrates the goodness and mercy of God as Teacher and guide (verses 8-14), and implores liberation from his enemies (verses 15-22).

26. David, appealing to God in his cause against his enemies (verses 1, 2), recalls his own innocence (verses 3-8), and deprecates the judgments of God administered against the impious (verses 9-12).

27. David, in the greatest danger testifying of his faith in God (verses 1-3), sets forth his most ardent desire to sit in the house of God (verses 4-6), and with fervent prayers entreats from God gracious guidance, and defense against enemies (verses 7-12); finally, he testifies of his hope (verse 13), and at the expectation of God revives (verse 14).

28. David, pressed by altogether degenerate enemies, prays to God for his salvation (verses 1-5), gives thanks to God for the hearing of his prayers (verses 6-8), and prays for the whole Church (verse 9).

29. David, rousing the sons of the mighty to celebrate God (verses 1, 2), attests to the glory of God from the evidences of the voice of God being heard (verses 3-9), of the flood (verse 10), from the strengthening and blessing of the people (verse 11).

30. David, with thanks given to God for liberation (verses 1-4), exhorts the people to sing Psalms to God because His anger is of brief duration (verse 5), and commemorates his case, his repentance, and his mourning turned into dancing by God, and celebrates God (verses 6-13).

31. David, deprecating his confusion (verse 1), prays to God for salvation, direction, and deliverance from plots (verses 2-4), testifies of his faith in God (verses 5, 6), and gives thanks for deliverance (verse 7, 8); he again asks for deliverance from enemies (verses 9-13), testifies of his faith in God (verses 14-18), gives thanks (verses 19-22), and excites to the love of, and confidence in, God (verses 23, 24).

32. David, locating blessedness in the remission of sins (verses 1, 2), confirms the same by his own experience (verses 3-7); and, informing the faithful of God’s care of men (verse 8), of the duty of obedience (verse 9), and of God’s judgment (verse 10), he invites the just to shout joyfully (verse 11): Penitential II.

33. David commends the praise of God (verses 1-3), with His wonderful works brough in, wrought according to the order, or beyond the order, of nature (verses 4-11); then he explains the cause, parts, and signs of blessedness (verses 12-19), and testifies of his confidence in the help and goodness of God (verses 20-22).

34. David celebrates God, and exhorts the Church to celebrate Him after his example (verses 1-3); with arguments brought from the blessings bestowed upon himself and all believers through prayer, the protection of the pious, and the goodness of God (verses 4-8), he urges the fear of God (verses 9-11), the keeping of the tongue and peace (verses 12-14); he sets forth God’s providence, truth, and constancy in preserving and redeeming from evil (verses 15-22).

35. David, seeking the help and protection of God as shield against his enemies and wicked disputants (verses 1-6), sets forth his injuries, most unjustly received, and their perfidious hypocrisy (verses 7-21), and again implores God’s judgment and contention with them (verses 22-28).

36. David sets forth the malice of the wicked (verses 1-4), and conversely the goodness and righteousness of God (verses 5-9); he prayes for the salvation and prosperity of the people and himself (verses 10-12).

37. David, dissuading from envy of the impious (verses 1, 2), urges faith in Jehovah (verses 3-7), meekness (verses 8-15), αὐτάρκειαν/self-sufficiency and beneficence (verses 16-26), uprightness (verses 27-33), the integrity of faith in God (verses 34-40).

38. David, pressed by most grievous evil, confesses his sins (verses 1-4), complains of the infirmity of his body and soul, bereavement, and the wickedness of his enemies (verses 5-14); and, turning toward God, he humbly implores His help (verses 15-22): Penitential III.

39. David, with his intention of keeping silence set forth (verses 1, 2), reports the reason for the breaking of his silence (verse 3), and asks from God, that He might show his end to him (verses 4-6), remit his sins (verse 7, 8), and withdraw his strokes (verses 9-13).

40. David, or rather Christ in the person of David, by the example of His own libertation from death rouses believers to place their faith in God (verses 1-4); and, with arguments brought for the continuation of grace to the Church, and with a prayer of gratitude expressed (verses 5-10), He asks God to continue His grace and protection in adversities, and to confound enemies (verses 11-17).

41. David, praying God’s blessing and grace upon the pious, who, moved with pious συμπαθείᾳ/sympathy towards one, feel for him (verses 1-3), commemorates his prayers offered in sickness and the injuries endured from friends and enemies (verses 4-9), and celebrates the blessing of his restoration with worthy εὐχαριστίᾳ/ thanksgiving (verses 10-13).

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