By July 13, 2008 0 Comments Read More →

Psalms 72-74

The Hebrew Bible

72Of Solomon.

O God, endow the king with Your judgments,

the king’s son with Your righteousness;

2that he may judge Your people rightly,

Your lowly ones, justly.

3Let the mountains produce well-being for the people,

the hills, the reward of justice.

4Let him champion the lowly among the people,

deliver the needy folk,

and crush those who wrong them.

5Let them fear You as long as the sun shines,

while the moon lasts, generations on end.

6Let him be like rain that falls on a mown field,

like a downpour of rain on the ground,

7that the righteous may flourish in his time,

and well-being abound, till the moon is no more.

8Let him rule from sea to sea,

from the river to the ends of the earth.

9Let desert-dwellers kneel before him,

and his enemies lick the dust.

10Let kings of Tarshish and the islands pay tribute,

kings of Sheba and Seba offer gifts.

11Let all kings bow to him,

and all nations serve him.

12For he saves the needy who cry out,

the lowly who have no helper.

13He cares about the poor and the needy;

He brings the needy deliverance.

14He redeems them from fraud and lawlessness;

the shedding of their blood weighs heavily upon him.

15So let him live, and receive gold of Sheba;

let prayers for him be said always,

blessings on him invoked at all times.

16Let abundant grain be in the land, to the tops of the mountains;

let his crops thrive like the forest of Lebanon;

and let men sprout up in towns like country grass.

17May his name be eternal;

while the sun lasts, may his name endure;

let men invoke his blessedness upon themselves;

let all nations count him happy.

18Blessed is the Lord God, God of Israel,

who alone does wondrous things;

19Blessed is His glorious name forever;

His glory fills the whole world.

Amen and Amen.

20End of the prayers of David son of Jesse.

B O O K T H R E E

73A psalm of Asaph.

God is truly good to Israel,

to those whose heart is pure.

2As for me, my feet had almost strayed,

my steps were nearly led off course,

3for I envied the wanton;

I saw the wicked at ease.

4Death has no pangs for them;

their body is healthy.

5They have no part in the travail of men;

they are not afflicted like the rest of mankind.

6So pride adorns their necks,

lawlessness enwraps them as a mantle.

7Fat shuts out their eyes;

their fancies are extravagant.

8They scoff and plan evil;

from their eminence they plan wrongdoing.

9They set their mouths against heaven,

and their tongues range over the earth.

10So they pound His people again and again,

until they are drained of their very last tear.

11Then they say, “How could God know?

Is there knowledge with the Most High?”

12Such are the wicked;

ever tranquil, they amass wealth.

13It was for nothing that I kept my heart pure

and washed my hands in innocence,

14seeing that I have been constantly afflicted,

that each morning brings new punishments.

15Had I decided to say these things,

I should have been false to the circle of Your disciples.

16So I applied myself to understand this,

but it seemed a hopeless task

17till I entered God’s sanctuary

and reflected on their fate.

18You surround them with flattery;

You make them fall through blandishments.

19How suddenly are they ruined,

wholly swept away by terrors.

20When You are aroused You despise their image,

as one does a dream after waking, O Lord.

21My mind was stripped of its reason,

my feelings were numbed.

22I was a dolt, without knowledge;

I was brutish toward You.

23Yet I was always with You,

You held my right hand;

24You guided me by Your counsel

and led me toward honor.

25Whom else have I in heaven?

And having You, I want no one on earth.

26My body and mind fail;

but God is the stay of my mind, my portion forever.

27Those who keep far from You perish;

You annihilate all who are untrue to You.

28As for me, nearness to God is good;

I have made the Lord God my refuge,

that I may recount all Your works.

74A maskil of Asaph.

Why, O God, do You forever reject us,

do You fume in anger at the flock that You tend?

2Remember the community You made Yours long ago,

Your very own tribe that You redeemed,

Mount Zion, where You dwell.

3Bestir Yourself because of the perpetual tumult,

all the outrages of the enemy in the sanctuary.

4Your foes roar inside Your meeting-place;

they take their signs for true signs.

5It is like men wielding axes

against a gnarled tree;

6with hatchet and pike

they hacked away at its carved work.

7They made Your sanctuary go up in flames;

they brought low in dishonor the dwelling-place of Your presence.

8They resolved, “Let us destroy them altogether!”

They burned all God’s tabernacles in the land.

9No signs appear for us;

there is no longer any prophet;

no one among us knows for how long.

10Till when, O God, will the foe blaspheme,

will the enemy forever revile Your name?

11Why do You hold back Your hand, Your right hand?

Draw it out of Your bosom!

12O God, my king from of old,

who brings deliverance throughout the land;

13it was You who drove back the sea with Your might,

who smashed the heads of the monsters in the waters;

14it was You who crushed the heads of Leviathan,

who left him as food for the denizens of the desert;

15it was You who released springs and torrents,

who made mighty rivers run dry;

16the day is Yours, the night also;

it was You who set in place the orb of the sun;

17You fixed all the boundaries of the earth;

summer and winter—You made them.

18Be mindful of how the enemy blasphemes the Lord,

how base people revile Your name.

19Do not deliver Your dove to the wild beast;

do not ignore forever the band of Your lowly ones.

20Look to the covenant!

For the dark places of the land are full of the haunts of lawlessness.

21Let not the downtrodden turn away disappointed;

let the poor and needy praise Your name.

22Rise, O God, champion Your cause;

be mindful that You are blasphemed by base men all day long.

23Do not ignore the shouts of Your foes,

the din of Your adversaries that ascends all the time.

Tanakh, The Holy Scriptures, (Philadelphia, Jerusalem- Jewish Publication Society) 1985.

Posted in: Biblical Poetry

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