Psalm 29 through Time and Tradition

By Lowell K. Handy (editor)

A collection of essays exploring the ways in which Psalm 29 has been used and understood in both the Jewish and Christian traditions throughout the ages.

ISBN: 9780227173633


Psalm 29, a sacred text in Jewish and Christian Bibles, has been understood in a variety of ways through time and in different traditions. This volume presents a sample of the use and meaning derived from a single biblical text. From the earliest translations to contemporary African Independent Churches, this psalm has been an integral part of synagogue and church; but what it has meant and how it is used is a fascinating journey through human culture. Not only the understanding of the written word, but also the liturgical use and the musical adaptations of a biblical text are considered here.

This is a book for anyone – scholar, student, or laity – with an interest in the Bible in its many contexts.

Additional information

Dimensions229 × 153 mm


Trade InformationJPOD

About the Author

Lowell K. Handy is an indexer/analyst at the American Theological Library Association. He is the author of Among the Host of Heaven, Entertaining Faith, and Jonah’s World. He is also the editor of The Age of Solomon and co-editor of The Pitcher Is Broken.

Other Contributors:
David Tuesday Adamo, Professor and Dean of Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Kogi State University
Emily Brink, Senior Research Fellow, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, Calvin College
Stacy Davis, Assistant Professor, Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, Indiana
Jeffrey Gibson, Lecturer in Humanities and Religious Studies, Harry S. Truman College and Columbia College, Chicago
Esther Menn, Professor of Old Testament, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
Dennis Pardee, Professor, Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago
Nancy Pardee, Adjunct Instructor, Saint Xavier University
Bert Polman, Professor and Chair of Music, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, Calvin College
Paul S. Russell, Academic Dean, St Joseph of Arimathea Anglican Theological College
David Fox Sandmel, Crown Ryan Professor of Jewish Studies, Catholic Theological Union
Brooks Schramm, Associate Professor of Biblical Studies, Lutheran Theological Seminary, Gettysburg


List of Contributors

1. Introduction
     Lowell K. Handy
2. Adapting Psalm 29 through Translation
     Brooks Schramm
3. Echoes of “the Voice”: Psalm 29 in the Fathers
     Jeffrey B. Gibson
4. Psalm 29 in Jewish Psalms Commentary (Midrash Tehillim): King David’s Instructions for Synagogue Prayer
     Esther Menn and David Sandmel
5. The Psalms and Psalm 29 among Syrian Christians
     Paul S. Russell
6. Not Elijah’s God: Medieval Jewish and Christian Interpretation of Psalm 29
     Stacy Davis
7. Luther and Calvin Read Psalm 29
     Lowell K. Handy
8. The Liturgical Use of Psalm 29
     Bert Polman
9. Singing Psalm 29 Faithfully
     Emily R. Brink
10. Gods of Glory Ought to Thunder: The Canaanite Matrix of Psalm 29
     Dennis Pardee and Nancy Pardee
11. Psalm 29 in African Indigenous Churches in Nigeria
     David Tuesday Adamo

Index of Proper Names


Endorsements and Reviews

This book provides a fascinating sample of the insights to be gained through the application of reception history to a specific biblical text … The span of the articles is encompassing, treating interpretation of Psalm 29 by early and medieval rabbis, the church fathers and medieval Christianity, Syrian Christianity, Luther, Calvin, and indigenous churches in Nigeria … Overall, this is an impressive and engaging collection of essays, well-rounded and informative to both scholars and lay readers.
Alan J. Hauser, Appalachian State University

If you think you know all there is to know about Psalm 29, read this book! If you think that the true meaning of this or any other piece of Scripture is finite, knowable only by experts (ecclesiastical or otherwise), and eternal – by all means read this book! The essays are focused, informative, interesting, useful, and reader-friendly. Recommended for multiple readerships and settings, from AP high school courses to Elder Hostel programs.
W. Boyd Barrick, Montana State University-Billings

This fascinating and illuminating collection of essays comes by way of a manifesto as well as a case study in working at reception criticism. One comes away from encountering Gregory of Nyssa or Augustine among many, wonderfully enriched and with a broader vision as to how the Bible can be read.
Paul Ballard, in Theological Book Review, Vol 23, No 2

This anthology is successful in broadening awareness of the different perspectives and insights to be mined from various faith traditions, especially those different from that of the reader. … a concrete example of biblical interpretation through the centuries.
Daniel Watson, in The Expository Times, Vol 124, No 5

Each essay was able to identify an assortment of difficulties in the psalm, showing how particular communities either smoothed over problematic areas, or adapted the psalm to fit their needs. … overall the volume accomplished what it set out to do; namely, give the reader a general sense of different interpretive environments throughout history, while at the same time allowing Psalm 29 to serve as an example of how these environments interacted with a specific text.
Andrew C. Witt, in Reviews in Religion & Theology, Vol 20, Issue 2