Blessed and praised be YHWH, the God who loves and protects His servants: A Semitic Biblical Rhetorical Analysis of Psalm 34 and its relationship with 1 Peter

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Waldecir Gonzaga
Doaldo Ferreira Belem


Psalm 34 reveals a beautiful, thematic unity in the psalmic text about the glory of YHWH. The vocabulary used for the poetic construction of this declaration of total trust in the hands of God, as the one who rescues His people and protects them (v.23), has captivated Jewish and Christian readers throughout the centuries. It strongly survives in liturgies, meditations, and individual prayers. Its impact on Christianity is evident in the biblical text, as the entirety of verses 13-17 is quoted in 1 Peter 3:10-12. Therefore, the synchronic method of Semitic Biblical Rhetorical Analysis will be used, identifying verses 12-13 as the central and essential part of Psalm 34. The method also explains why such an extensive quote in 1 Peter plays such a central role throughout the letter—hence the exegetical commentary focuses on this 'combined use.' Complementing the former with preliminary steps of the Historical-Critical Method not only helps to historically situate the psalm but also provides significant pastoral considerations on how believers of all generations find communion, especially in times of adversity. Thus, the psalmist invites in verse 9 to 'taste and see that YHWH is good.'

Psalm YHWH Exegesis Semitic Biblical Rhetorical Analysis Use of the Old Testament by the New Testament 1 Peter Blessed Praised


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Article Details

Author Biographies

Waldecir Gonzaga

Doutor em Teologia Bíblica pela Pontifícia Universidade Gregoriana (Roma, Itália) e Pós-Doutorado pela FAJE (Belo Horizonte, Brasil). Diretor e Professor de Teologia Bíblica do Departamento de Teologia da PUC-Rio; coordenador do Grupo de Pesquisa “Análise Retórica Bíblica Semítica” credenciado junto ao CNPq.  Currículo Lattes:

Doaldo Ferreira Belem, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro

Doutor e Mestre em Teologia Área Bíblica pela Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil. Professor de Teologia do FIBE, participando em dois grupos de pesquisa credenciados junto ao CNPq: “Tradição e literatura bíblica” e “Análise Retórica Bíblica Semítica”. E-mail: Currículo Lattes: