The book of the 🎼Psalms is probably the best known part of the Old Testament (OT). It is a collection of 150 poems or songs by various authors and it is divided into five books (similar to the Pentateuch).
David wrote 73 Psalms. They are mainly to be found in the first, second and fifth book. Twelve Psalms bear the name of Asaph, the conductor of David’s choir of the temple (1 Chronicles 16:7; 2 Chronicles 29:30). Asaph’s Psalms are Psalms 50; Psalms 73; Psalms 74; Psalms 75; Psalms 76; Psalms 77; Psalms 78; Psalms 79; Psalms 80; Psalms 81; Psalms 82; Psalms 83.
Ten Psalms are written by the sons of Korah (Psalms 42; Psalms 44; Psalms 45; Psalms 46; Psalms 47; Psalms 48; Psalms 49; Psalms 84; Psalms 85; Psalms 87), two by Solomon (Psalms 72; Psalms 127), one each by Moses (Psalms 90), Ethan (Psalms 89) and Heman (Psalms 88). The remaining 50 Psalms bear no author’s name.
The following Psalms are also ascribed to David in the New Testament (NT): Psalms 2 (Acts 4:25) and Psalms 95 (Hebrews 4:7). Together with the Psalms that bear David’s name they add up to 75 , which means David has written exactly half of all the Psalms.
David was very suitable for this. He was an able poet, player (of an instrument) and singer (1 Samuel 16:18; 2 Samuel 23:1). He was filled with the Spirit of God (1 Samuel 16:13; 2 Samuel 23:2) and had gone through many experiences with God in his life of faith.
Many references of Scripture tell us that David was very active in spiritual poetry and music (e. g. 1 Samuel 18:10; 2 Samuel 1:17-18; 2 Samuel 6:5; 1 Chronicles 6:31; 1 Chronicles 16:7; 1 Chronicles 25:1; 2 Chronicles 7:6; 2 Chronicles 29:30; Ezra 3:10; Nehemiah 12:24; Nehemiah 12:36; Nehemiah 12:45; Amos 6:5).
In some places David mentions the occasion or the reason for the composition of a Psalm in the heading: Psalms 3; Psalms 7; Psalms 18; Psalms 34; Psalms 51; Psalms 52; Psalms 54; Psalms 57; Psalms 59; Psalms 60; Psalms 63; Psalms 142. One of these occasions is described in 2 Samuel 22. This is where we find a nearly word-by-word parallel to Psalms 18. #thebibleproject
Psalms 90 is probably the oldest psalm: “A prayer of Moses the man of God”. Moses lived in the 15th century BC. Most of the Psalms however have been written at the time of David who introduced the singing in the temple (1 Chronicles 25). At the time of Hezekiah (2 Chronicles 29:25-30) reference is made to that (“.according to the commandment of David”) and to the Psalms of David and Asaph.
These psalms therefore had already been joined to a sort of collection. The last Psalms were written in the days of Ezra (5th century BC). Psalms 137 clearly refers to the Babylonian captivity. According to many researchers it was Ezra, the priest and scribe, himself who completed the final collection of the Psalms (Ezra 3:10).