Ever since the Reformation many Bible translators (from Calvin onwards) sought to translate the Hebrew text of the psalms not only into the “common tongue” (to be read by Christians in their own language), but to do so in such a way that their translation scans and rhymes like normal poetry. Their aim was to create "singable psalms" - which could be used with normal hymn tunes. These translations are often called “metrical psalms.”
Probably the best known example is Psalm 23 which, rather tragically, we tend only to sing at funerals nowadays. Here’s the first verse (the traditional tune is called “Crimond”). You might know it:
The Lord's my shepherd: I'll not want;
he makes me down to lie
in pastures green: he leadeth me
the quiet waters by.
If you wanted to further investigate these "singable Psalms" here are three recommended collections:
It’s our habit in gathered worship each Lord’s Day to read a Psalm together. (We do this for many reasons – not least to obey the command in Ephesians 5:19 to “address one another with psalms”). The psalms are also a wonderful gift for private devotion and worship at home.
Below you'll find a growing collection of lyric videos with both words and music. They're great to learn, and to sing along. They will help get God's word into both our heads and hearts. A practical note: the audio quality is better if you "download" rather than play through the website's own media player.
Andrew Grey, 05/04/2020