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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

The Return of the King: Messianic Expectation in Book V of the Psalter
Snearly, Michael K.

London: Bloomsbury, 2016 pp. 248. $112.00

Series Information
Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies, 624


Description: The clear structure of psalm groups in Psalms 107-150 can be interpreted as signaling a renewed hope in the royal/Davidic promises. Each psalm group of Book V is organized around a theme or key word that is related to the royal/Davidic hope in the earlier sections of the Psalter: Psalms 107-118; Psalm 119; Psalms 120-137; Psalms 138-145; Psalms 146-150. These words and themes figure prominently at the major seam psalms of the Psalter Ė Psalms 1-2 and 89. Thus, the content and subject matter at the end of the Psalter is integrally related to the content and subject matter at the beginning. The editorial-critical method used by Snearly is an extension of the method used by David M. Howard, Jr. in The Structure of Psalms 93-100. Snearly also draws from recent insights in the fields of poetics and text-linguistics in order to establish a linguistically based foundation for reading the Psalter as a unified text. The methodology emphasizes parallel features, with special focus on key-word links. This method advances editorial criticism by not only discerning links within a group but also showing that those links do not occur with the same frequency outside of the group.

Subjects: Bible, Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, Writings, Literature, Methods, Literary Approaches, Psalms

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Review by Richard Bautch
Published 2/9/2017
Citation: Richard Bautch, review of Michael K. Snearly, The Return of the King: Messianic Expectation in Book V of the Psalter, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2017).


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