Moses by John August Swanson. Image from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, Tenn. Original source © 1983 by John August Swanson.
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Preaching Series on Psalms (2 of 5)
Preaching Series on Psalms Commentary
by Rolf Jacobson
[This is Week 2 of a 5-week preaching series on Psalms.]
Preaching text: Psalm 13; accompanying text: John 6:35-40
A Prayer for Help (also called "a lament psalm")
Psalm 13 is a prayer for when the bottom drops out. It is a prayer for help -- which is the most common type of psalm. Roughly 1/3 of the psalms are prayers for help. These psalms are cried "out of the depths" (130:1) or when "the waters have come up to my neck" (69:1). As such, these psalms give expression to the deepest moments of human pain. But they do so in a way which claims the promise of God's presence in the midst of our suffering and also the promise that the God-who-is-with-us will preserve us from evil and bring us to a new day when the sun will rise and light will dawn. An important part of these psalms are the expressions of anger, confusion, questioning, and despair: "How long, O Lord?" The heart of this type is "the ask" -- the request for help. Here, the ask is "answer me" and "give light to my eyes" (v. 3). These psalm also express trust ("I ...
| Bible Text
2019-20 Worship resources
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
NL276: Preaching Series on Psalms
June 18, 2017
This is the podcast for the Narrative Lectionary's 5-week preaching series on the Psalms (June 11-July 9, 2017), featuring Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Kathryn Schifferdecker, and Craig Koester. Podcast recorded at Luther Seminary, Saint Paul, Minn.