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War Psalms of the Prince of Peace: Lessons from the Imprecatory Psalms Paperback – May 1, 1991

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 126 pages
  • Publisher: P & R Publishing (May 1, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0875520936
  • ISBN-13: 978-0875520933
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #545,141 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Christian Book Previews on February 20, 2006
Format: Paperback
Thank you, James E. Adams, even though I had never heard of you before. I found your book by chance. By chance? No way! The Lord slipped War Psalms of the Prince of Peace into my hand, and then into my heart. Yes, of course I agree with Paul that all of Scripture is God-breathed and useful, but up until I read War Psalms I steered clear of those difficult Imprecatory Psalms. You know the kind: the ones that tend to say things like, "Let his days be few; and let another take his office. Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow" (Ps. 109:8-9). Or, "Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones" (Ps. 137:9). And then along comes War Psalms and, bingo-why-hadn't-I-thought-of it before, those Psalms became wonderful messages from my Lord.

This is one of those simply presented books which takes you easily into the deep things of God. Missionary, pastor, theology professor, and author, James Adams does not present some new and fancy thought. Just browse through the bibliography at the end of War Psalms and you will realize that the ideas Adams presents have been part of Christian thought from earliest church history.

The study starts with a look at the puzzles these particular Psalms present, searches for where they come from and who actually is praying them, sees our Lord as the instigator, looks at how they are quoted plentifully in the New Testament, and considers how we can use, pray, and preach these Psalms. Each chapter ends with questions for group study or individual thought. Several appendices add more information: our duty towards our enemies, sermon summaries, index to the Imprecatory Psalms, and New Testament references.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Geoffrey S. Robinson on August 6, 2008
Format: Paperback
I bought this book based on good reviews and it came from within the Reformed theological traditions. I wasn't disappointed.

It attempts to take the imprecatory psalms seriously. It doesn't pass them off as being bad morality we shouldn't follow. It doesn't try to place them as Old Covenant ethics instead of from a new, better way.

The author's resolution, and it is a grand insight, is that these psalms are the prayers of Christ Himself. He makes a strong case. And I think he is right. However, I don not think these are only Christ's psalms. The best critique of this book I have found is an honors thesis which can be found online by John Day.

The basic takeaway from that work is that there are curses in other sections of the Bible which aren't Christ's prayers. Peter with Simon the Sorcerer and Paul in Galatians come to mind. Given these passages, I would go with a both-and approach. The imprecatory psalms are Christ's prayers to the Father and we can make the psalms are own. As could the original authors. But they find their ultimate fulfillment in the Messiah.

Now, beyond that, this book also acts as a tour guide. It helps introduce you to the imprecatory psalms so you can make them your own. It is incredibly valuable and will add to your understanding of the Messiah-centric nature of the Psalms and the Old Testament in general, not just the imprecatory psalms.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 22, 2000
Format: Paperback
Our modern liturgies are weak and insipid because we neglect the Scriptures in general and the Psalms in particular. We especially neglect the "nasty psalms" that are so "mean" like Psalm 2, Psalm 58, Psalm 59, and Psalm 137.
Yet these are the very Psalms persecuted Christians and first the Jews of course have prayed for centuries.
Why pray them? Because, Jesus said "Ask,Seek,Knock". God hears them and avenges His people.
In our conscienceless society we don't believe that because "nobody" is sinful or needs punishment...unless it's a bible believing Christian of course.
If you believe in prayer, get the book and pray these psalms. They're the perfect liturgy for our freewheeling society.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Chosenrebel on October 31, 2001
Format: Paperback
James Adams has done a great service to the body of Christ. This is an excellent discussion of the theology of the imprecatory psalms with much practical help and exhortation. This book will open your eyes to not only the psalms but much of the New Testament and the Lord's prayer in particular. It's only real down side is that there is not author or Scripture index for the book itself. ...
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By J. van Woerden on November 7, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book is a great help to all who believe in the verbal inspiration of Scripture and that God is love, but are puzzled by the strong language of the imprecatory Psalms. The book is giving me a better and deeper understanding of God's Word.
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