One of the distinctives in our worship is that we include the Book of Psalms in our singing. We recognize that this is an uncommon practice, but we believe it is advantageous for several reasons. We are singing God's Words back to HIm. It is a wonderful way to store God's Word in our minds and for teaching one another in God's truth (Col. 3:16).
The Psalms also speak to every Christian experience, whether it is of joy, grief, trust, confusion, confidence or repentance. They are, as once remarked, “an anatomy of all parts of the soul.”
Tim Keller writes, "The psalms also help us see God—God not as we wish or hope him to be but as he actually reveals himself. The descriptions of God in the Psalter are rich beyond human invention. He is more holy, more wise, more fearsome, more tender and loving than we would ever imagine him to be. The psalms fire our imaginations into new realms yet guide them toward the God who actually exists. This brings a reality to our prayer lives that nothing else can. Left to ourselves, we will pray to some god who speaks what we like hearing, or to the part of God we manage to understand. But what is critical is that we speak to the God who speaks to us, and to everything that he speaks to us. . . . What is essential in prayer is not that we learn to express ourselves, but that we learn to answer God."
Basil of Caesarea (329-379 AD) once wrote of the book of Psalms, "In them is a complete theology; the prediction of the advent of Christ in the flesh, the threatening of judgment, the hope of resurrection, the fear of chastisement, promises of glory, revelations of mysteries; all, as in some great public storehouse, are treasured up in the Book of Psalms."
We should sing the Psalms because ultimately they lead us to Jesus (Luke 24:44). They do so in different ways.
We read passages that speak to His sufferings (Psalm 22; 34:20; 35:19; 41:9; 69:21) and other passages that celebrate the glories of Christ (Psalm 2, 16:10; 68:18; 110:1; 118:22) in fulfilling the Lord's promised work of salvation.
Jesus Himself draws attention to the book of Psalms more often than any other book in the Old Testament Scriptures.
To learn more about singing psalms in worship, you can view an electronic copy of the psalms set to metrical form below or download the Sing Psalms app.