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Psalm 9 (and others): God’s Grand Story and the Communion Cross

This interpretation of portions of Psalm 9 and various other psalms was created and submitted by Barbara Sartorius Bjelland and focuses on how God’s grand story of redemption of all creation is woven into the psalms.

Psalm 9


Barbara Bjelland _ Psalm 9_645x366

See handout at the bottom of the article

How does this psalm piece interpret the psalms?  
These images tell God's grand story of creation, the fall, redemption, and the new creation. At the Center is Christ on the cross, by whom God redeemed all things. Several psalms are used that point toward the incarnation, culminating in the atonement, in which we head the voice of Christ. Scenes from the life of Christ were chosen that deepen our understanding of the Christian sacrament of Communion. In Communion we "proclaim the Lord's death until he comes" (1 Cor. 11:26, RSV). Communion tells the story of God's work in the past, present, and future, which is all foreshadowed in the psalms. This psalm interpretation is vital for current ministry contexts. We can be inspired to carry on kingdom work today when we remember that God will restore all things at last. We are encouraged as we keep the face of Christ and the story of God’s redeeming work before us. In my interpretation, Christ and humanity are presented with multicultural artwork. This multicultural vision is vital in order to take steps against racism and to communicate God’s welcome for all people.  

The Last Supper was a celebration of the Passover meal. At this meal, Jesus and his disciples prayed and sang psalms that acknowledged God as the Creator of all things. The animals, trees, and mountains in my images indicate that God plans to restore all things. In the ascension image, water flows from the city of God as Christ enters God’s glorious kingdom. This speaks of the blessings that flow down to us, the justice we work to restore, and the sense in which we are already ascended with Christ to glory. In the last image, God’s people are blessed as they commune with Christ together in unity. In these divisive days, we need a vision of God’s beauty in Christ and the unity of God’s people so that all peoples may “feast on the abundance of (God’s) house (Ps. 36:7 8).”  

Liturgical Suggestions:

This psalm interpretation can be used as a printed or digital visual in worship or in Christian faith formation. It can be used as a sermon or discussion starter. The last page includes a prayer for the close of worship or of a small group or class. 

Copyright Information:

Art: © 2020 by Barbara Sartorius Bjelland  
Used by permission.  
Contact: Barbara Sartorius Bjelland, 1410 Fisk Rd SE, Grand Rapids, MI, 49506

View the handout