Psalm 117 – “Call to Praise”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
The psalmist calls upon the nations of the world to praise God.

II. Photo
The psalmist addresses the nations of the world: “Praise the Lord, all you nations; extol Him, all you peoples!” (v. 1)

III. Select Verses    
(The entire psalm)
1-2: Praise the LORD, all you nations; extol Him, all you peoples, for great is His steadfast love toward us; the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Hallelujah.

IV. Outline
1. Call to praise
2a. Rationale
2b. Postscript

V. Comment
Psalm 117 is the shortest psalm in the psalter and scholars such as Gunkel speculate that it is merely an addendum to Ps. 116. Yet, others such as Gerstenberger believe that it is an individual unit and draw support from the short songs of Miriam (Ex 15:21) and the Israelite women (1 Sam 18:7):

  • And Miriam chanted for them: “Sing to the LORD, for He has triumphed gloriously; Horse and driver He has hurled into the sea.”
  • The women sang as they danced, and they chanted: “Saul has slain his thousands; David, his tens of thousands!”

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Gerstenberger, Erhard. Psalms Part 2 and Lamentations (Forms of Old Testament Literature; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2001).

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