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date: 20 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Although each psalm is a separate poem, scholars have observed relationships among them. For instance, there are collections assigned to individuals such as King David, the sons of Korah, and Asaph. The ancient rabbis identified four doxologies that apparently divide the Psalter into five books and concluded that Moses and David have five books each, indicating that they were aware of the existence of intentional editing. In The Editing of the Hebrew Psalter (1985), Gerald H. Wilson argued that the five-book arrangement is intentional and purposeful. This article examines Wilson’s assumption that the Psalter has been purposefully shaped and looks at Books I–V, focusing on how the shape of the Psalter invites readers to observe key aspects of its content such as keywords, concepts, themes, or affirmations. It also considers Psalms 1–2 and analyzes the literary shape of the Psalter itself as a major context for interpretation.

Keywords: Psalter, editing, Gerald H. Wilson, Psalms, literary shape, King David

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