Pilgrim Psalms

Pilgrim Psalms

The "Psalms of Ascent," also known as the "Pilgrim Psalms" or "Songs of Degrees," are a collection of psalms in the Biblical Psalter, specifically Psalms 120 to 134. This designation, found in the titles of each of these psalms, refers to their pilgrim nature. The Psalms of Ascent were likely recited or sung by Israeli pilgrims as they traveled to Jerusalem for major religious festivals like Passover, Shavuot, or Sukkot.

A key feature of these psalms is their focus on journeying, spiritual growth, and the longing for closeness with God. They include themes such as protection, hope, joy, and often feature Jerusalem as a symbolic place of meeting with God. These psalms continue to be used in various religious traditions and are part of liturgical practices in many Christian and Jewish communities.

In My Distress I Cried Unto the Lord (Psalm 120)

Psalm 120 is the first of the fifteen Psalms of Ascent (Psalms 120-134). It's a short psalm, expressing a cry for deliverance and peace in the midst of distress and falsehood. The psalm starts with the psalmist expressing his deep distress and how he turns to the Lord for deliverance. In his...


I lift up my eyes to the mountains (Psalm 121)

Psalm 121 is a song of ascents, part of a group of Psalms 120-134 traditionally sung by Jewish pilgrims as they ascended to Jerusalem for the three major festivals. This particular psalm encourages believers to trust in the Lord for protection and provision. The passage shifts the focus from human...


I was glad when they said to me: Let us go to the house of the Lord! (Psalm 122:1-9)

Psalm 122 is a part of the Songs of Ascents, which is a collection of psalms (Psalms 120-134) sung by pilgrims as they ascended to Jerusalem for the three major Jewish festivals. Psalm 122, attributed to David, expresses joy and reverence for Jerusalem as a place of worship and divine...


I lift up my eyes to you (Psalm 123)

Psalm 123 is a short but profound passage within the Songs of Ascents, which were songs sung by pilgrims as they made their journey to Jerusalem for the major Jewish festivals. This psalm, specifically, is a prayer for mercy, expressing deep dependence on God. The text is a plea for God's mercy...