Psalm 78: A Catechism for the People of Israel

(72 verses, 6:05 to read)


What I am about to  READ

  • This Psalm is a summary of the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, and even includes some of Joshua, Judges and 1 Samuel.


  • 1-8: Exhortation to listen, proclaim to the next generation, and continually repent of their own stubbornness and rebellion by hearing the stubbornness and rebellion of their fathers
  • 9-66: A pattern of the Lord showing mercy and redemption as well as showing wrath against sin and rebellion opposed to His word.
  • 67-72: God’s promise that He will continue to shepherd and guide His People.


  • As the heads of our households should teach the faith using the summary of the Bible, the Small Catechism, so the heads of the Israelite households should “tell the coming generations” (vs. 4) the faith using this Psalm as a summary of the glorious works of God, their father’s faith as well as their father’s unbelief.


  • “Yet”, “but”, “they forgot.”  How many times do these words creep into this Psalm and the Christian life?  This Psalm indeed is the life of the Christian, full of repentance and faith in our Lord’s mercy. Our Lord had redeemed us through the innocent suffering and death of His beloved Son, He gives us his Spirit through His Word, He is gracious and merciful,  and “yet” we are full of doubt in His Word and we sin, “but” we still worry, “we forget” His benefits and slide into pride or despair.  And “yet,” “but”, “He continues” to be gracious merciful and forgiving.  He shepherds us and guides us back to His promises and forgiveness.
 Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Post below, or join the conversation in our Facebook group: or if reading on facebook, check out the blog:
Christopher Stout, Pastor of Mount Calvary Lutheran Church, Kannapolis, NC & Abundant Life Lutheran Church, Charlotte, NC

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