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In most printed Tehillim I've seen there are several verses included that one should say before (Tehillim 95:1–3) and after (Tehillim 14:7 and 37:39–40) completing the recitation of the Tehillim.

Are these verses only recited when completing the entire Book, or also said if one is only reciting a portion of the Tehillim?

For example:

  • If one starts from the beginning, but does not intend to finish the whole Book, does he:

    1. say only the verses preceding the recitation (since he started, but did not complete the Book)
    2. say neither sets of verses (since they are only recited when intending to, and actually completing the entire Book)
    3. say both the verses preceding and following the recitation (since the verses are not connected to reciting the Whole Book, but reciting Tehillim in General)
  • what if one recites random chapters (i.e. not starting at the beginning and not concluding at the end), such as when saying the specific chapters when praying for a sick person?

  • What if one is reciting the entire Book over the course of time (i.e. doing the monthly or weekly cycle). Does he recite the preceding verses before starting the first Chapter, and the following verses when completing the last Chapter (at the end of the week or month)?

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2 Answers

The Lubavitcher Rebbe wrote regarding reciting the verses before and after Tehilim (from a "Ksav Yad" (handwritten note) printed in Kfar Chabad Magazine issue 789, and quoted in Likut Hanhogos Chasidiyos pg 47 - my own translation):

I never heard . . (although it is printed in several Tehillims) and therefore I am not able to instruct in this regard. In any regard, one could say that by the Tehillim recited after prayer it is not necessary to say "Lechu Neranenu", as this does not fit with the reality for he has just prayed and sang so what is "Let us go out (and sing)"? Therefore, perhaps it should not be recited.

I.e. the Rebbe says he is unsure what the actual practice is, but certainly does not think it makes sense to say it in the daily Tehillim following Shachris.

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The Mishnah Brurah (581:3) says to say בזכות מזמורי תהלים שקראנו לפניך.

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my guess is that the Mishna Berura is referring to the language of the Yehi Ratzon said after Tehillim - hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=43521&pgnum=111 - (i.e. instead of saying "in the merit of the Sefer I recited" say "in the merit of the chapters I recited"). This does not address the two sets of three verses indicated to be said before and after. –  Menachem Nov 11 '12 at 19:10
    
Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/29993 –  msh210 Jul 17 '13 at 21:19
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