Psalm 150 – End: Summary of God’s Praises & Non-Canoncial Psalms

1 Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary: praise him in the firmament of his power.

2 Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness.

3 Praise him with the sound of the trumpet: praise him with the psaltery and harp.

4 Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs.

5 Praise him upon the loud cymbals: praise him upon the high sounding cymbals.

6 Let everything that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD.

An exhortation to praise God with all sorts of instruments.  Praising God in His sanctuary with everything that has breath.

Non-Canoncial Psalms 

Cave 3
The Copper Scroll was found in this cave in 1952. This was the only scroll photographed in situ.
The Copper Scroll is on display in the Amman Museum and lists 63 treasures hidden in the Judean wilderness and Jerusalem area.
Cave 7 (right), 8 (left)
Everything found in Cave 7 was in Greek, including a copy of the book of Exodus.

The cave collapsed shortly after the scrolls were hidden.

In Cave 8 archaeologists discovered a mezuzah, fragments of Genesis, fragments of Psalms, and dozens of squares of small leather strips.

The worker who lived here had the job of making these strips.

Among the ancient texts of the Bible scholars they sometimes encounter psalms not found in the Hebrew Bible.  A Syriac medieval Psalter includes five Apocryphal psalms numbered 151 to 155.  Psalm 151 also appears in numerous ancient versions (Greek, Latin, Ethiopic, and others).

Cave 11 of Qumran contained Hebrew versions of Ps 151, 154, and 155, and several others non-canonical psalms were discovered in caves 4 and 11.  This gives rise to the obvious question of whether these psalms were overlooked and should have been included in the Scriptures.

Psalm 151 is a pseudo-autobiographical account of the early life of David drawn from 1 Samuel, although the Hebrew version also includes some material not found in the Greek.

The Hebrew of Ps 151 includes, “The mountains do not testify to him [the LORD], and the hills do not tell [of him].  The trees praise my words and the flocks [praise] my deeds.”

Perhaps those lines were edited out of the Greek version on the grounds that they were unorthodox or simply made no sense.  Some of the non-canonical psalms have borrowed from the Biblical psalms and maintain their poetic conventions. 

Randall Price holding the sealed jar from Qumran.
An article set to appear in the journal Archaeometry reveals that it contains gypsum, a soft mineral used to make plaster.

For example, Ps 154 and 155 are pleas to God for help and are analogous to the Biblical Ps 1, 62, and 63Psalm 155 opens with the words: “LORD, I have called to you; hear me,” in the tradition of Ps 61:1 and 63:1. 

The reason these psalms were not included in the Bible is simply that they were written too late.  Their presence at Qumran and elsewhere indicates that liturgists continued to create songs of praise in imitation of the psalms after the canon had closed. 

In fact, we even see psalm-like songs of praise in the New Testament (e.g., Lk 1:46-55).

Psalm 149 – Praise by a New Song

1 Praise ye the LORD. Sing unto the LORD a new song, and his praise in the congregation of saints.

2 Let Israel rejoice in him that made him: let the children of Zion be joyful in their King.

3 Let them praise his name in the dance: let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp.

4 For the LORD taketh pleasure in his people: he will beautify the meek with salvation.

5 Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds.

Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand;

7 To execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people;

8 To bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron;

9 To execute upon them the Judgment written: this honor have all his saints. Praise ye the LORD.

The church is particularly bound to praise God.  Praising the Lord with our mouth in the church meeting and executing Judgment with the Lord in the kingdom.

Psalm 148 – Praise of the Whole Creation

1 Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the LORD from the heavens: praise him in the heights.

2 Praise ye him, all his angels: praise ye him, all his hosts.

3 Praise ye him, sun and moon: praise him, all ye stars of light.

4 Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens.

5 Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created.

6 He hath also established them for ever and ever: he hath made a decree which shall not pass.

7 Praise the LORD from the earth, ye dragons, and all deeps:

8 Fire, and hail; snow, and vapor; stormy wind fulfilling his word:

9 Mountains, and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars:

10 Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl:

11 Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all Judges of the earth:

12 Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children:

13 Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven.

14 He also exalteth the horn of his people, the praise of all his saints; even of the children of Israel, a people near unto him. Praise ye the LORD.

All creatures are invited to praise their Creator.  Praising the Lords with all creation and all creatures.

Psalm 147 – Praise of the People of God

1 Praise ye the LORD: for it is g   ood to sing praises unto our God; for it is pleasant; and praise is comely.

2 The LORD doth build up Jerusalem: he gathereth together the outcasts of Israel.

3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.

4 He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names.

5 Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.

6 The LORD lifteth up the meek: he casteth the wicked down to the ground.

7 Sing unto the LORD with thanksgiving; sing praise upon the harp unto our God:

8 Who covereth the heaven with clouds, who prepareth rain for the earth, who maketh grass to grow upon the mountains.

9 He giveth to the beast his food, and to the young ravens which cry.

10 He delighteth not in the strength of the horse: he taketh not pleasure in the legs of a man.

11 The LORD taketh pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his mercy.

12 Praise the LORD, O Jerusalem; praise thy God, O Zion.

13 For he hath strengthened the bars of thy gates; he hath blessed thy children within thee.

14 He maketh peace in thy borders, and filleth thee with the finest of the wheat.

15 He sendeth forth his commandment upon earth: his word runneth very swiftly.

16 He giveth snow like wool: he scattereth the hoarfrost like ashes.

17 He casteth forth his ice like morsels: who can stand before his cold?

18 He sendeth out his word, and melteth them: he causeth his wind to blow, and the waters flow.

19 He sheweth his word unto Jacob, his statutes and his Judgments unto Israel.

20 He hath not dealt so with any nation: and as for his Judgments, they have not known them. Praise ye the LORD.

The church is called upon to praise God for His peculiar graces and favors to His people.  In the Hebrew this Psalm is joined to the foregoing.  Praising the Lord with a vision of His purpose for Jerusalem and Zion.

Psalm 146 – Personal Praise of the Just

 1 Praise ye the LORD. Praise the LORD, O my soul.

2 While I live will I praise the LORD: I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being.

3 Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.

4 His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

5 Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God:

6 Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth forever:

7 Which executeth Judgment for the oppressed: which giveth food to the hungry. The LORD looseth the prisoners:

8 The LORD openeth the eyes of the blind: the LORD raiseth them that are bowed down: the LORD loveth the righteous:

9 The LORD preserveth the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down.

10 The LORD shall reign forever, even thy God, O Zion, unto all generations. Praise ye the LORD.

An exhortation to praise God for His  benefits.  Praising the Lord while we have our being.