The Old Testament Introduction, Volume III: Psalms and WisdomSVS Press
Includes bibliography and index.
The psalms' importance to Christians cannot be overstated, since more of the church's services as well as private prayers are drawn from them than from any other part of scripture, yet, as Fr Paul Tarazi shows in this conclusion to his Old Testament Introduction trilogy, it is impossible to understand them merely by reading English translations.
Fr Tarazi provides the reader with essential background in the language, history, and culture of those who first wrote, used, and edited these psalms, leading to sometimes surprising new understandings of common terms such as "king," "God," "Lord," and "righteousness." Along the way, he explains how and why the psalms were used in prayer, and what we can learn about prayer itself. His discussion of Wisdom literature illuminates the very concept of "scripture," and that, in turn, leads to an in-depth explanation of how the Old Testament and the New Testament do, indeed, make up a single, unified Christian Scripture, in which the Old Testament has an essential role not inferior to the New Testament.
The Author:The Rev. Dr. Paul Nadim Tarazi is Professor of Old Testament at St Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary.