Sharon Chace

Bit by Bit Biblical Poems

August 2, 2023
Psalm 104, a stand alone poem, is an ancient affirmation of the goodness of creation. Regard for animals connects past and present.

Fourth Blog

Psalm 104 is a psalm for our time.

A portion of Psalm 104

14 You cause the grass to grow for the cattle
    and plants for people to cultivate,
to bring forth food from the earth
15     and wine to gladden the human heart,
oil to make the face shine
    and bread to strengthen the human heart.
16 The trees of the field are watered abundantly,
    the cedars of Lebanon that he planted.
17 In them the birds build their nests;
    the stork has its home in the fir trees.
18 The high mountains are for the wild goats;
    the rocks are a refuge for the coneys. (rabbit or pika)

Psalm 104 shows the power of translating prose into poetry and addresses ecological concerns of our day.

The author turns the prose of Genesis 1:1-24a into poetry that heightens the theme of the goodness of creation. Even the sea serpent Leviathan who is usually up to no good is portrayed as playful. Through poetry, the story of God seeing creation as good flows musically. Also a feeling of the ineffable is stronger.  You might want to read the entire psalm and write down your favorite two parallel lines.

The biblical author is not an ecologist like a contemporary scientist of environmental issues. . However, as an ancient theologian he sees the interconnectedness of God’s creation. This psalm shows a high regard for animals as equal to humans. Respect for animals is important for the thriving of both animals and humans in my opinion.

Throughout the entire psalm, the author sustains his vision of God’s good creation.

Wishing you peace in the peaceful reign of God,



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For new readers: My goal is to present information about biblical poetry in short, readable pieces. The motto is “Bit by bit, insights lit.” Blogs will generally be 200 words or less; not counting the biblical quotation. The plan is to send 2 blogs per month for a total of 10-12 essays.