Context And Analysis Of Psalm 34

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Context and analysis of Psalm 34
The Book of Psalms went though many changes during history and scholars believe that it “reached its final form by 200/190 B.C.E”. It is also believed that the last editors had a “sapi-ential background” and that this factor influenced the final arrangement of the psalms. Many scholars suppose therefore that superscriptions to the psalms were added in second moment. Of the 73 so called “Davidic psalms” found in the Book of Psalms thirteen have a caption re-ferring to specific episodes of King David’s life: Psalm 34 is one of these. This psalm is usu-ally included in the thanksgiving psalms and intended to be used after a time of “persecution and difficulty”. But, above all, Psalm 34 is a wisdom poem in which …show more content…

The purpose Psalm 34 is patently “to encourage a par-ticular group of followers of YHWH to remain true to their principles since they were the true righteous, the followers of YHWH who would be protected and blessed by him”. This par-ticular group is the so-called “corpus piorum” , i.e. those who are upright as opposed to the wicked. These upright are described as “the humble” (anawim), “those who fear him (YHWH)”, “the man who takes refuge in him”, “his holy ones”, “those who seek YHWH”, “sons” (a common way of the wisdom teacher to address his pupils), “the righteous”, “the broken-hearted”, “those crushed in spirit”, and “his servants”. As already mentioned, this is a wisdom psalm and as such its ultimate purpose is to indicate the way to happiness.
The superscription of Psalm 34 is: “Of David, who altered his sanity before Abimelech, so that he drove him out, and he went away”. Scholars believe that “since it is a note on the poem, written in terse prose” it was added later during “the process of editing the Psalter… by… a ‘Davidising’ editor”. But the first problem in connection with information is that the only in-cident in the Bible that can be related to this heading seems to be that of David in front of King Achish (not Abimelech) which is found in 1 Samuel …show more content…

The community is meant to “grow… and become the corpus piorum continually apostrophized by the poet with diverse designations such as ‘the humble’ (vv. 2, 6), 'those who fear the Lord' (vv. 7, 9), 'the saints’ (v. 9), 'the righteous' (vv. 15, 19, 21) and 'the servants of God’ (v. 22)” .
The psalmist is aware of being part of the corpus piorum and this influences the way he prays not only for himself but for the whole community as one body. Here the concept of “fear of YHWH” (the beginning of wisdom) is prominent. The psalmist faith allows him to perceive with his senses the goodness of the YHWH. “Taste and see that the Lord is good” shows that those who belong to God and seek his good pleasure are able to perceive God’s presence in all things, while the wicked see evil everywhere.
Verse 11 proclaiming that “young lions suffer want and hunger, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing” inclines to believe that those who trust in their own strength will end up with nothing while those who trust in the Lord will be satisfied: only God can satisfy since “a human heart brimming over with joy in the goodness of

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