by Jeff Ritchie
On a visit to Pakistan a decade ago I learned that the Presbyterian Church of Pakistan had translated the Psalms into songs that could be sung in the heart language of most of the believers (Punjabi). This may have been a legacy of the early Presbyterian missionaries who were singing the metrical Psalms in their countries of origin. By putting the Psalms to music, Reformed and Presbyterian believers in Pakistan effectively internalized the “prayer book of the Bible.” I was impressed.
In another former mission field of the American Presbyterian Church, Egypt, I saw the lips of older believers moving when the scriptures were read in worship. These believers had memorized the scriptures, especially the Psalms, through constant reading and hearing of the Word of God. Again, I was impressed.