Sir Charles Jones (New Album Alert!)

Опубликовано08.11.2018 в 15:04АвторTekazahn






Sir Charles Jones My Everything

Performance note The Psalms have been sung to the glory of the all holy, transcendent God in temple, synagogue and Christian church for century upon century. Though piously described as The Psalms of David in The Book of Common Prayer, we can doubt personal Davidic authorship without questioning that many Psalms date back to the early years of the Israelite monarchy and in their original form were used in the worship of the First Temple at Jerusalem built by King Solomon just over nine hundred years before the birth of Jesus Christ.

From the beginning, most of the Psalms were probably composed for choral use with instrumental accompaniment. Vestigial choral and orchestral directions are still to be found in the Psalter as printed in the Bible. The worship of the Christian Church grew out of the Synagogue and Second Temple in which the Psalter remained central. It was the normal practice of Paul to attend the Synagogue on his missionary journeys Jesus himself regularly shared in the worship of the Synagogue eg Luke 4.

Our Lord and his Apostles therefore used the Psalms as an essential part of their regular corporate worship of God. The Psalms were also part of their personal vocabulary of prayer. Jesus echoes Psalms 22 and 31 in his words from the Cross: In using the Psalter in the services of the Church we are therefore at one with those who have worshipped the one true God for almost three thousand years.

And we are at one with the Lord of the Church, Jesus Christ, for whom the Jewish Psalter was a treasury of familiar liturgical hymns and a vehicle of prayer at the deepest moments of suffering. Over the centuries, Christians have indeed seen the Psalms as the prayer of Christ and our use of them as uniting us to him.

For all the Fathers of the Church, Christ was mysteriously present in and through the recitation or singing of the Psalms. For this reason the whole Church has always made the Psalter a major part of its official prayer, most especially the offices of Morning and Evening Prayer, by whatever name they have been known, and in whatever language they have been said or sung.

For this reason, through singing the Psalms we are not only joined to Christ but also with Christians throughout history and throughout the world today as each morning and evening the Church offers its one sacrifice of praise. Admittedly, some Psalms do not seem particularly edifying as instruments of prayer. The blessing of those who beat the brains of a Babylonian baby against the stones seems less than Christian Psalm Another solution was advocated by C S Lewis, who not only argued that we must see the Psalms in their historical and often primitive setting but also that the same feelings of resentment and revenge are also found in our hearts.

It is best that the whole of us is brought to God, not only in praise and thanksgiving, but also even in frustration, anger and eventual penitence, rather than trying to hide our true self from God, our neighbour, or ourselves.

Another apparent problem for moderns is the fact that the God of the Psalms is very much a God of nature and a God of battles: Modern western man has come to regard God as subjective rather than objective; at best a fulfilment of religious emotion and aspiration.

Or God is recognised only in the horizontal, human plane of our interpersonal relations. Note the songs and choruses of recent decades which point to God-in-our-neighbour.

True as this is, it is not the whole truth. For the Hebrew mind, God is always the author of all that is and everything that happens. If, on the contrary, we permit the idea of God to be reduced to our emotions or even to the service of others, we devalue ourselves and our neighbour. Only a transcendent Creator can give transcendent worth to his creatures.

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If we are really all that is, man has neither meaning, purpose nor destiny. But how do we use the Psalms liturgically? When Archbishop Thomas Cranmer translated and adapted the Medieval Service Books he spread the Psalter over a month rather than a week. The Alternative Service Book spreads the Psalms to five times a year.

At other times in Christian history other permutations have been devised.

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In some monastic communities the whole Psalter was said or sung in one day! Only recently, however, have scholars come to ask radical questions about the principle of using the whole Psalter in its biblical order, recitatio continua.

In fact this was not how the Psalms were used in the earliest daily choral office. The developing monastic communities in East and West subsequently invented the continuous recitation of the Psalter and this eventually displaced the earlier thematic system almost everywhere. In recent months an office book has been published with the encouragement of the Liturgical Commission of the Church of England which reintroduces the principle of thematic psalmody Celebrating Common Prayer, Mowbray, The sensitive extension of thematic psalmody, even if it does not replace continuous psalmody entirely, would be a great enrichment of liturgical provision for cathedrals and parish churches.

Modern versions are of great value in discovering the meaning of the Hebrew Psalms, where the old may be obscure, but they cannot compare with the euphony and poetic beauty of Coverdale. Anglican use of newer translations for the choral recitation of the Psalter is very rare indeed and it is surely appropriate to use the texts for which most of the chants were actually composed.

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Moreover, Coverdale translated his Psalter from the Latin rather than the Hebrew. At first sight this may seem a disadvantage. But this traditional Latin text was based upon the Greek version of the Psalter and consequently reflects a much earlier and in some places more authentic Hebrew text than that now extant.

Conservatism in translations of the Psalter is notorious. When St Jerome translated the Hebrew Psalter for the Vulgate it was never fully accepted for liturgical use because the earlier Latin version, based on the Greek Septuagint, was already treasured and memorised.

The Psalms have always been sung. All derive from a common stock. Anglican chant, itself originally a harmonised variant of Western plainsong, can thus be seen to be intimately related to the wider tradition of the singing of the Psalms by Jew and Christian. Though it should be remembered that such harmonisation of plainsong is not exclusive to England or Anglicans! Anglicans possess here a unique blend of objectivity and emotion.

When it was first published in , The Cathedral Psalter, edited by Sir John Stainer and others, provided the standard to which others aspired, both in publication and performance. Now, over a century later, the tradition continues and history is repeating itself.

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Performance note The Psalms have been sung to the glory of the all holy, transcendent God in temple, synagogue and Christian church for century upon century. Though piously described as The Psalms of David in The Book of Common Prayer, we can doubt personal Davidic authorship without questioning that many Psalms date back to the early years of the Israelite monarchy and in their original form were used in the worship of the First Temple at Jerusalem built by King Solomon just over nine hundred years before the birth of Jesus Christ.


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