Psalms Old and New

Exegesis, Intertextuality, and Hermeneutics

Psalms Old and New

Exegesis, Intertextuality, and Hermeneutics

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Reading the Book of Psalms in its original context is the crucial prerequisite for reading its citation and use in later interpretation, including the New Testament writings, argues Ben Witherington III. Here he offers pastors, teachers, and students an accessible commentary to the Psalms, as well as a reasoned consideration of how they were heard and read in early Christianity. By reading “forward and backward,” Witherington advances the scholarly discussion of intertextuality and opens a new avenue for biblical theology.

“A rare treasure . . . a triumph!”
—Philip Jenkins | Baylor University

“A gold mine of exegetically-grounded biblical theology.”
—Craig Evans | Houston Baptist University



1. Tuning Up: An Introduction to the Psalter
2. The Psalter in Early Judaism
3. Psalter Book 1 (Psalms 1–41): The Agony and Ecstasy
4. Psalter Book 2 (Psalms 42–72): True Confessions
5. Psalter Book 3 (Psalms 73–89): Asaph’s Answers
6. Psalter Book 4 (Psalms 90-106): New Songs and an Old Law
7. Psalter Book 5 (Psalms 107–150): The Songs of Praise and Pilgrimage
8. The Song Remains the Same

Appendix A: Psalms References in the Nestlé-Aland Novum Testamentum Graecae, 28 th edition
Appendix B: LXX or Old Greek, Hebrew Bible or MT?
Appendix C: Gospels, Acts, and Psalms Chart


A clear yet probing summary of ancient and modern scholarship.

Witherington’s new work on Psalms Old and New is a fresh breath to scholars-who-are-pastors and pastors-who-are-scholars. The first several introductory chapters and the work on Book 1 of the Psalter is a clear yet probing summary of ancient and modern scholarship. His work on Psalm 2 should be read by every pastor. I tell my students, if they want to memorize only one Psalm…forget about Psalm 23 and turn your attention to the power found in Psalm 2 and all its NT occurrences. Dr. Witherington throughout the volume addresses Psalms not principally according to their Genre-model (praise, lament, etc.) but rather appropriating the Psalms that serve the Church today in grasping an early Christian understanding of a Christological Psalter. The Christ-event changes everything. 

Rev. Dr. David F. Smith | Dean, Wesley Seminary at Indiana Wesleyan University

Product Info

  • Publisher Fortress Press
  • Age/Grade Range Adult
  • Dimensions 6 x 9
  • Pages 400
  • Paperback ISBN 9781506420578
  • eBook ISBN 9781506420585
  • Publication Date June 15, 2017