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Psalm singers will want to visit Sing: A Resource for Singing the Psalms, the website of Dr. Timothy Tennant, president of Asbury Theological Seminary, and his wife, Julie. All 150 metrical psalms are paired with suggested tunes, which are found at the top of each psalm. For example, Psalm 94 is set to the tune Kingsfold.
The authors share that “this resource grew not only out of their theological and musical training, as well as their deep love for the Scriptures, but also out of a very personal experience of encountering God through singing the Psalms together daily.”
The website is easy to navigate, and provides excellent resources and helpful tips for believers wishing to include psalm singing in their personal and family worship.
(HT: John Rakshith Prabhakar)
For more than a year I preached at the evening services of a congregation that sings only the Psalms in worship. Among my many happy memories are meeting young children who sang the psalter outside of public worship to the musical recordings of New Song, a student group from Geneva College that sings the Psalms a cappella. The children’s enthusiasm for New Song led me to purchase Psalms of Praise Volume 1 and Volume 2. What a joy to find children whose musical tastes were shaped by the Psalter and traditional tunes! We shouldn’t underestimate the capacity of children to learn at an early age great music and to commit large portions of scripture to memory.
I enthusiastically sing the Psalms, both in private and public worship. Therefore, I am grateful to live in a time when new resources encouraging their use appear regularly.
My friend John brought to my attention the iPhone/iPad app for the RPCNA’s The Book of Psalms for Worship. If you are unfamiliar with tunes in the Psalter, the app enables you to view printed metrical psalms while singing along to suitable tunes. The obstacle of not knowing the tune is overcome.
Many books and articles extol the benefits of Psalm singing. Dr. Terry Johnson makes the case with clarity and brevity.
Let me add another benefit of singing the Psalms: it promotes a pace of reading the text suitable for understanding, reflection, and prayer.
During my four years at Sewanee, Mr. Theron Myers taught the Sunday School I attended at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. At the time he was in his mid to late 80s. Each class was a feast from God’s word. His learning was considerable and his life applications always timely. Mr. Myers recommended readers use the King James Bible because its Elizabethan language does not lend itself to skimming, and slows down the pace at which modern American Christians read the text.
The singing of Psalms does the same. In addition to its other many other benefits, Psalm singing forces worshippers to take a step back from the frantic pace of modern life as they come before God with the songs of prayer he has graciously provided in his infallible word.
If you need assistance in learning to sing the psalms, this app will prove a valuable resource.