Original Research

Universal justice: Poetic-affective criticism of Psalm 28

Armand Barus
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 44, No 1 | a2809 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v44i1.2809 | © 2023 Armand Barus | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 25 January 2023 | Published: 30 August 2023

About the author(s)

Armand Barus, Amanat Agung Theological Seminary, West Jakarta, Indonesia


The central message of Psalm 28 has been successfully revealed by utilising poetic-affective criticism. Poetic-affective criticism is a new method in reading lament psalm by focusing on various aspects, such as lament, feeling, the concept of God and changes in textual mood. Applying poetic-affective criticism to Psalm 28 through the study of its various aspects (lament, feeling, the concept of God and changes in textual mood) enables us to find its central message. Universal justice is inherently embedded in the universe. Violation against this universal justice brings about self-destruction to those standing against it.

Intradisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary implications: The conclusion reached by this article implies that there is a point of contact between Christianity and other religions. Non-Christian religions, though foggy and distorted, contain to a certain extent God’s Torah which was given to preserve the unity of society harmoniously thus creating an awareness of orderliness of the universe, and an appreciation that there is God who created and sustained the universe.


lament psalms; poetic-affective criticism; Hebrew poetry; universal justice, karma.


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