Original Research

’n Moontlike interpretasie van Psalm 40: Gerald H. Wilson se navorsing oor die samehang van die Psalmbundel

P. Styger, D.J. Human
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 38, No 2 | a431 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v38i2.431 | © 2004 P. Styger, D.J. Human | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 August 2004 | Published: 01 August 2004

About the author(s)

P. Styger, Sentrum vir Bedryfswiskunde & Informatika, Potchefstroomkampus, Noordwes-Universiteit, South Africa
D.J. Human, Dept. Ou-Testamentiese Studies, Fakulteit Teologie, Universiteit van Pretoria, South Africa

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A possible interpretation of Psalm 40: Gerald Wilson’s research on the coherence of the Psalter

A paradigm shift in the study of the Bible has been evident since the 1970s. Biblical texts are currently being examined as literary and canonical units. This approach resulted in the Psalter being studied as a coherent unit. Wilson’s pioneering research laid the foundation for the study of the Psalter as a book. In this article a brief discussion of the results of Wilson’s research will be given. It will also be indicated how Psalm 40 can possibly be interpreted according to Wilson’s findings. Psalm 40 is a unique psalm in the sense that it presents the contents of the Psalter in a nutshell. The contents of Psalm 40 imply the following: the poet experienced deliverance and salvation by doing the will of God and praying persistently. Likewise, everyone identifying with the distress related in Book One of the Psalter will experience God’s deliverance. The aim of the intended message communicated by Psalm 40 is not merely to describe the poet’s suffering, but rather to offer encouragement to the oppressed or distressed by explaining that God indeed answers prayers in difficult times – a thought also expressed in other psalms.


Psalm 40; Interpretive Possibilities; Psalms; Coherent Whole; Gerald H Wilson


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