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Proclaiming the Psalms

We live in what has been termed the "age of the Spirit," where our grandparents lived in the "age of the Word." Today, Christian expression has more to do with feeling than thinking; that is, we are more likely to seek a kinesthetic experience of union with God than to assert particular doctrinal formulas that describe our relationship with God. Into the middle of our experiential pursuit of God, however, intrude the Psalms. Neal Plantinga, senior research fellow at the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, a center devoted to renewing Christian Worship, says the Psalms are full of "a confident and significant statement of what is true of God and the world." In an hour-long presentation at the 2014 Calvin Symposium on Christian Worship, Plantinga said that proclamations do not express feelings; the Psalmists do not say "I wish that God were in charge," or "I feel that God wants to take care of me." Rather, in the Psalms you read declarative statements of certain knowledge that "The Lord reigns," and "The Lord is my shepherd." Access the 1-hour audio recording to listen in as Plantinga  explores what the Psalms have to say about God, the world, and their relationship. For more on effective proclamation of Scripture, see our feature article, "Best Resources for Sermons."

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