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Book 3: Psalms 73–89

Should the Wicked Be Rich?

A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

73 ·God is truly [Surely God is] good to ·Israel [or those with integrity/virtue],
    to those who have pure hearts.
But ·I had almost stopped believing [L as for me, my feet almost stumbled];
    ·I had almost lost my faith [my steps almost slipped]
because I was ·jealous [envious] of ·proud people [braggers; boasters].
    I saw wicked people ·doing well [prospering].

They are not ·suffering [struggling; in pain];
    ·they [their bodies] are ·healthy [perfect] and strong.
They don’t have ·troubles [toils] like the rest of us;
    they ·don’t have problems [are not plagued] like other people [Gen. 3:17–19].
They wear pride like a necklace
    and ·put on violence as their clothing [L adorn themselves with garments of violence].
·They are looking for profits [L Their eyes bulge with fat]
    and ·do not control their selfish desires [cunning overflows from their hearts/minds].
They ·make fun of others [scoff] and speak ·evil [harm];
    ·proudly [from high] they speak of ·hurting [oppressing; exploiting] others.
They ·brag to the sky [L set their mouth against heaven].
    ·They say that they own [L Their tongue wanders] the earth.
10 So their people turn to them
    and ·give them whatever they want [L they drink up water in abundance].
11 They say, “How can God know?
    What does God Most High know?”
12 These people are wicked,
    always ·at ease [carefree], and getting richer.
13 ·So why have I kept my heart pure [L In vain, I kept my heart pure…]?
    ·Why have I kept my hands from doing wrong [L …and washed my hands in innocence; Matt. 27:24]?
14 I ·have suffered [am plagued] all day long;
    I have been ·punished [corrected] every morning.

15 God, if I had ·decided to talk like this [L said, “I will recount this,”],
    I would have ·let your people down [L betrayed the generation/race of your children].
16 I ·tried [thought how] to understand all this,
    but it was too ·hard [wearisome] ·for me to see [L in my eyes]
17 until I went to the ·Temple [sanctuary; Holy Place] of God.
    Then I understood ·what will happen to them [L their fate/end].
18 You have put them in ·danger [L slippery places];
    you cause them to ·be destroyed [L fall into disaster].
19 They are destroyed in a moment;
    they are swept away by terrors.
20 It will be like waking from a dream.
    Lord, when you ·rise up [awake; arouse yourself], ·they will disappear [L you despise their shadows].

21 When my heart was ·sad [bitter]
    and ·I was angry [L my innards felt stabbed],
22 I was senseless and stupid.
    I acted like an ·animal [brute beast] toward you.
23 But I am always with you [C in covenant relationship];
    you have held my ·hand [L right hand; C guiding him].
24 You guide me with your advice,
    and later you will receive me in ·honor [glory; C perhaps in the afterlife].
25 ·I have no one [L Whom do I have…?] in heaven but you;
    I ·want [desire] nothing on earth besides you.
26 My body and my ·mind [heart] may become weak,
    but God is ·my strength [L the rock of my heart].
He is ·mine [L my portion] forever.

27 Those who are far from ·God [L you] will ·die [perish];
    you ·destroy [bring to an end] those who ·are unfaithful [prostitute themselves spiritually].
28 But I am close to God, and that is good.
    The Lord God ·is [I have made] my ·protection [refuge].
I will ·tell [recount] all that you have done.

A Nation in Trouble Prays

A ·maskil [skillful psalm; meditation] of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

74 God, why have you rejected us ·for so long [forever]?
    Why ·are you angry with us, [L does your anger smoke against] the sheep of your pasture [100:3]?
Remember the ·people [assembly; congregation] you ·bought [acquired] long ago.
    You ·saved [redeemed] us, and we are ·your very own [L the tribe of your inheritance].
    After all, you live on Mount Zion.
·Make your way [Direct your steps] through ·these old [or the utter] ruins;
    the enemy ·wrecked [destroyed] everything in the ·Temple [sanctuary; Holy Place; C perhaps a reference to the Babylonian destruction of the Temple; 2 Kin. 25:8–21; 2 Chr. 36:17–21; Lam. 2:6].

Those who were against you ·shouted [roared] in your meeting place
    and ·raised their flags [L set their signs as signs] there.
·They came with axes raised [or They hacked at the upper entrances]
    as if to cut down a forest of trees.
They ·smashed [beat to pieces] the ·carved [engraved] panels
    with their axes and ·hatchets [crowbars].
They ·burned your Temple to the ground [L set your sanctuary/Holy Place on fire];
    they have made the ·place where you live [L residence of your name] ·unclean [profane].
They ·thought [L said in their hearts], “We will completely crush them!”
    They burned ·every place where God was worshiped [L all the meeting places of God] in the land.
We do not see any signs.
    There are no more prophets [C who can tell them what will happen],
    and no one knows how long this will last.
10 God, how much longer will the enemy ·make fun of [scorn] you?
    Will they ·insult [revile] ·you [L your name] forever?
11 Why do you ·hold back your power [L return your hand]?
    ·Bring your power out in the open [L Take your right hand out of your bosom] and ·destroy [annihilate] them!

12 God, you have been our king ·for a long time [of old; Ex. 15:18].
    You bring ·salvation [victory] to the earth.
13 You split open the sea by your power
    and broke the heads of the sea monster [C an ancient Near Eastern symbol of chaos].
14 You ·smashed [crushed in pieces] the heads of the monster Leviathan [C a sea monster and symbol of chaos; 104:26; Job 3:8; 41:1; Is. 27:1]
    and gave it to the ·desert [wilderness] creatures as food.
15 You ·opened up [split] the springs and ·streams [wadis]
    and made the flowing rivers run dry.
16 Both the day and the night are yours;
    you made the sun and the moon [Gen. 1:14–18].
17 You set all the ·limits [borders] on the earth;
    you ·created [formed] summer and winter [104:19–23; Gen. 8:22].

18 Lord, remember how the enemy ·insulted [scorned] you.
    Remember how those foolish people ·made fun of you [L reviled your name].
19 Do not give us, your doves, to those wild animals.
    Never forget your poor people.
20 ·Remember [Regard] the ·agreement [covenant] you made with us,
    because violence fills every dark corner of this land.
21 Do not let your ·suffering [crushed] people be ·disgraced [humiliated].
    Let the poor and ·helpless [needy] praise ·you [L your name].
22 God, arise and ·defend [contend for] yourself.
    Remember the ·insults [scorn] that come from those foolish people all day long.
23 Don’t forget what your enemies said;
    don’t forget their roar as they rise against you always.

God the Judge

For the director of music. To the tune of “Do Not Destroy.” A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12]. A song.

75 God, we ·thank [praise] you;
    we ·thank [praise] you because ·you [L your name] are near.
We tell about the ·miracles [wonders] you do.

You say, “I set ·the time for trial [L an appointed time],
    and I will judge ·fairly [with integrity].
The earth with all its people may ·shake [totter],
    but I ·am the one who holds it steady [L set/establish its pillars; C the idea was that the earth was supported by pillars]. ·Selah [Interlude]
I say to those who ·are proud [brag; boast], ‘Don’t ·be proud [brag; boast],’
    and to the wicked, ‘Don’t ·show your power [L exalt your horn; C a horn is a symbol of strength].
Don’t ·try to use your power [L exalt your horn] against ·heaven [L the heights; or on high].
    Don’t ·be stubborn [L speak with an insolent neck].’”

No one from the east or the west
    or the ·desert [wilderness] ·can judge you [comes exalting].
God is the judge;
    he ·judges one person as guilty [L puts one down] and ·another as innocent [L raises another up].
The Lord holds a cup in his hand;
    it is ·full of wine mixed with [foaming wine full of] spices [C the cup of God’s wrath; 60:3; Jer. 25:15–29; Nah. 3:11; Matt. 26:39].
He pours it out ·even to the last drop [until its dregs drain out],
    and the wicked drink it all.

I will tell about this forever;
    I will ·sing praise [make a psalm] to the God of Jacob.
10 ·He will take all power away from [L I will cut off all the horns of] the wicked [v. 4],
    but the ·power [L horn] of ·good [righteous] people will ·grow [be exalted].

The God Who Always Wins

For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12]. A song.

76 ·People in Judah know God [L God is known in Judah];
    his ·fame [name] is great in Israel.
His Tent is in ·Jerusalem [L Salem; C shortened name of Jerusalem];
    his ·home [abode] is on Mount Zion [Ps. 48].
There God broke the flaming arrows,
    the shields, the swords, and the weapons of war. ·Selah [Interlude]

God, how ·wonderful [glorious; awesome; or radiant] you are!
    You are more ·splendid [majestic] than the ·hills full of animals [hills full of prey; or everlasting mountains].
The ·brave soldiers [L strong of heart] were ·stripped [plundered]
    as they ·lay asleep in death [sleep their last sleep].
Not one ·warrior [valiant person]
    ·had the strength to stop it [L could lift their hand].
God of Jacob, ·when you spoke strongly [L at your rebuke/reprimand],
    horses and riders ·fell dead [L were in deep sleep; or lay stupefied].
You are ·feared [awesome];
    ·no one [L who…?] can stand against you when you are angry.
From heaven you ·gave the decision [made your judgment heard],
    and the earth was afraid and silent.
God, you ·stood [rose] up to judge
    and to ·save [give victory to] the needy people of the earth. ·Selah [Interlude]
10 ·People praise you for your anger against evil [or Human anger praises you].
    ·Those who live through your anger are stopped from doing more evil [Those who survive your wrath are restrained; L You gird the remains of wrath on you].

11 Make and keep your ·promises [vows] to the Lord your God.
    From all around, gifts should come to the God ·we worship [L who is awesome].
12 God ·breaks [cuts off] the spirits of ·great leaders [princes];
    the kings on earth fear him.

Remembering God’s Help

For the director of music. For Jeduthun [C a Levitical musician; 1 Chr. 16:41–42; 25:1, 6; 2 Chr. 5:12]. A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

77 I cry out to God;
    I call to God, and he ·will hear [or heard] me.
I ·look [sought] for the Lord on the day of ·trouble [L my distress].
    All night long I ·reach out my untiring hands [L flow forth my hand and it does not grow weak],
    but I ·cannot [refuse to] be comforted.
When I remember God, I ·become upset [moan];
    when I ·think [reflect; meditate], ·I become afraid [my soul faints]. ·Selah [Interlude]

You ·keep my eyes from closing [L grab the eyelids of my eyes].
    I am too ·upset [disturbed] to say anything.
I keep thinking about the old days,
    the years of long ago [C when things were going well].
At night I remember my songs.
    I ·think [meditate] and ·I ask myself [L my spirit inquires]:
“Will the Lord reject us forever?
    Will he never be ·kind [favorable] to us again?
Is his ·love [loyalty] gone forever?
    Has he stopped speaking for all time [C he questions God’s commitment to the covenant]?
Has God forgotten ·mercy [compassion]?
    Is he too angry to ·pity [have mercy on] us?” ·Selah [Interlude]
10 Then I say, “This is what makes me sad:
    ·For years the power of God Most High was with us [L The right hand of the God Most High has changed].”

11 I remember what the Lord did;
    I remember the ·miracles [wonderful acts] you did long ago.
12 I ·think [mused] about all the things you did
    and ·consider [meditated on] your deeds.

13 God, your ways are holy.
    ·No god [L What god…?] is as great as our God.
14 You are the God who does ·miracles [wonders];
    you have ·shown [made known to] people your power.
15 By your ·power [L arm] you have ·saved [redeemed] your people,
    the descendants of Jacob and Joseph. ·Selah [Interlude]

16 God, the waters saw you;
    they saw you and ·became afraid [L writhed];
    the deep waters shook with fear.
17 The clouds poured down their rain.
    The ·sky [clouds] ·thundered [L gave forth a sound].
    Your lightning flashed back and forth like arrows.
18 Your thunder sounded in the whirlwind.
    Lightning lit up the world.
    The earth trembled and ·shook [quaked].
19 You made a way through the sea
    and paths through the ·deep [L many] waters,
    but your footprints were not ·seen [revealed].
20 You led your people like a flock
    by ·using [L the hand of] Moses and Aaron [Ex. 14–15].

God Saved Israel from Egypt

A ·maskil [skillful psalm; meditation] of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

78 My people, ·listen [give ear] to my ·teaching [instruction; law];
    ·listen [L incline your ear] to ·what I say [L the words of my mouth].
I will ·speak [L open my mouth] ·using stories [L with a proverb/parable];
    I will ·tell [expound] ·secret things [L riddles] from long ago [C the past contains lessons for the present generation].
We have heard them and known them
    by what our ·ancestors [fathers] have ·told [recounted to] us.
We will not ·keep [hide] them from our children;
    we will ·tell [recount them to] ·those who come later [a later generation]
    about the praises of the Lord.
We will tell about his power
    and the ·miracles [wonderful acts] he has done.

The Lord ·made an agreement [established a decree/testimony] with Jacob
    and gave the ·teachings [instructions; laws] to Israel [Ex. 19–24],
which he commanded our ·ancestors [fathers]
    to ·teach [make known] to their children [Deut. 6:6–9, 20–22].
Then ·their children [L the later generation] would know them,
    even their children not yet born.
    And they would ·tell [L rise up and recount them to] their children.
So they would ·all trust [L place their trust/confidence in] God
    and would not forget what he had done
    but would ·obey [protect] his commands.
They would not be like their ·ancestors [fathers]
    who were ·stubborn and disobedient [L a stubborn and rebellious generation].
Their hearts were not ·loyal [steadfast; L set] to God,
    and they were not ·true [faithful] to him [Deut. 9:6–7, 13, 24; 31:27; 32:5; Acts 2:40].

The men of Ephraim ·had bows for weapons [L were armed for shooting the bow],
    but they ·ran away [turned back] on the day of battle [C perhaps 1 Sam. 4:1–4 or 1 Sam. 28–31].
10 They didn’t ·keep [observe; guard] their ·agreement [covenant; treaty] with God
    and refused to ·live [L walk] by his ·teachings [instructions; laws].
11 They forgot what he had done
    and the ·miracles [wonderful acts] he had shown them.
12 He did ·miracles [wonderful acts] while their ·ancestors [fathers] watched,
    in the fields of Zoan [C a city in the Nile Delta also known as Tanis] in Egypt [C the plagues; Ex. 7–12].
13 He divided the ·Red Sea [L Sea; C probably a lake north of the Gulf of Suez] and led them through [Ex. 14–15].
    He made the water stand up like a ·wall [or heap; Ex. 15:8].
14 He led them with a cloud by day
    and by the light of a fire by night [105:39; Ex. 13:21; Num. 10:34].
15 He split the rocks in the ·desert [wilderness]
    and gave them more ·than enough water, as if from the deep ocean [L water, as much as the deeps].
16 He brought streams out of the rock
    and caused water to flow down like rivers [Ex. 17:6; Num. 20:8; 1 Cor. 10:4].

17 But the people continued to sin against him;
    in the ·desert [wasteland; wilderness] they ·turned [rebelled] against God Most High.
18 They ·decided to test God [L tested God in their hearts]
    by asking for the food ·they wanted [L for their appetite].
19 Then they spoke against God,
    saying, “Can God prepare ·food [L a table] in the ·desert [wilderness]?
20 When he ·hit [L struck] the rock, water ·poured out [gushed]
    and rivers flowed down.
But can he give us bread also?
    Will he provide his people with meat [Ex. 16]?”
21 When the Lord heard them, he was very angry.
    ·His anger was like fire to the people of [L A fire was ignited against] Jacob;
    his anger ·grew against the people of [L rose up against] Israel [Num. 11].
22 They had not ·believed [trusted; been faithful to] God
    and had not ·trusted [put confidence in] him to ·save them [give them victory].
23 But he gave a command to the clouds above
    and opened the doors of heaven.
24 He rained manna down on them to eat;
    he gave them grain from heaven.
25 So they ate the bread of ·angels [L strong ones].
    He sent them all the food they could eat.
26 He sent the east wind from heaven
    and ·led [guided] the south wind by his power.
27 He rained meat on them like dust.
    The birds were as many as the sand of the sea.
28 He made the birds fall inside the camp,
    all around the ·tents [L residences].
29 So the people ate and became very ·full [satisfied; satiated].
    God had given them what they ·wanted [desired].
30 While ·they were still eating [L their desire had not turned aside],
    and while the food was still in their mouths,
31 ·God became angry with them [L the anger of God came up on them].
    He killed some of the ·healthiest [most robust; sturdiest] of them;
he ·struck down [laid low] the best young men of Israel.

32 But they kept on sinning;
    they did not believe even with the ·miracles [wonderful acts].
33 So he ended their days without ·meaning [purpose; Eccl. 1:2]
    and their years in terror.
34 Anytime he killed them, they would ·look to him for help [seek him];
    they would ·come back to God [repent] and ·follow [be intent on] him.
35 They would remember that God was their Rock [C the one who protected them],
    that God Most High had ·saved [redeemed] them.
36 But ·their words were false [L they deceived/or flattered him with their mouths],
    and with their tongues they lied to him.
37 Their hearts were not really ·loyal to [steadfast toward] God;
    they ·did not keep [were not faithful to] his ·agreement [covenant].
38 Still God was ·merciful [compassionate].
    He ·forgave their sins [made atonement for their guilt]
    and did not destroy them.
Many times he held back his anger
    and did not stir up all his ·anger [wrath].
39 He remembered that they were ·only human [flesh; 38:3; 56:4; 103:14–15; Gen. 6:3; Is. 2:22],
    like a wind that blows and does not come back.

40 They ·turned [rebelled] against God so often in the ·desert [wilderness]
    and grieved him ·there [L in the wasteland].
41 Again and again they tested God
    and ·brought pain to [provoked] the Holy One of Israel.
42 They did not remember his ·power [L hand]
    or the ·time [L day] he ·saved [ransomed] them from the ·enemy [foe].
43 They forgot the signs he did in Egypt
    and his wonders in the fields of Zoan [v. 12].
44 He turned their rivers to blood
    so no one could drink ·the water [L from their streams; 105:29; Ex. 7:17–20; Rev. 16:4].
45 He sent flies that ·bit [L consumed] the people [Ex. 8:20–32].
    He sent frogs that destroyed them [Ex. 7:25—8:15].
46 He gave their crops to grasshoppers
    and ·what they worked for [L their labor] to locusts [Ex. 10:1–20].
47 He ·destroyed [L killed] their vines with hail
    and their ·sycamore [or fig] trees with ·sleet [or frost; or floods; Ex. 9:13–35].
48 He ·killed their animals with [L handed over their beasts to the] hail
    and their cattle with lightning [Ex. 9:1–7].
49 He ·showed [L sent against] them his hot anger.
    He sent his strong anger against them,
    his ·destroying angels [or messengers of evil/harm].
50 He ·found a way to show [L made a path for] his anger.
    He did not ·keep them from dying [L hold back their lives from death]
    but ·let them die by a terrible disease [L handed their lives over to plague].
51 God ·killed [L struck] all the firstborn sons in Egypt [Ex. 12],
    the ·oldest son of each family [L first of their virility in the tents] of Ham [C the ancestor of the Egyptians; Gen. 10:6].
52 But God led his people out like sheep
    and he guided them like a flock through the ·desert [wilderness].
53 He led them to safety so they had nothing to fear,
    but ·their enemies drowned in the sea [L the sea covered their enemies].
54 So God brought them to his holy ·land [L boundary],
    to the mountain country ·he took with his own power [L his hand acquired].
55 He ·forced out [dispossessed before them] the other nations,
    and he ·had his people inherit the land [L alloted the land as an inheritance].
He let the tribes of Israel settle there in tents.

56 But they tested God
    and ·turned [rebelled] against God Most High;
    they did not ·keep [observe; guard] his ·rules [decrees; testimonies].
57 They ·turned away [recoiled] and were disloyal just like their ·ancestors [fathers].
They ·were like [turned into] a ·crooked bow that does not shoot straight [slack bow; C unreliable and ineffective].
58 They made God angry ·by building places to worship gods [L with their high places; C worship sites associated with pagan worship or inappropriate worship of God; Deut. 12:2–3];
    they made him jealous with their idols.
59 When God heard them, he became very angry
    and rejected the people of Israel completely.
60 He ·left [cast off] his dwelling at Shiloh,
    the Tent where he lived among the people.
61 He let his ·Power [Strength; C the Ark] be captured;
    he let his ·glory [beauty; C the Ark] be taken by ·enemies [L the hand of the foe; 1 Sam. 4–5].
62 He ·let his people be killed [L handed his people over to the sword];
    he was very angry with his ·children [L inheritance].
63 The young men ·died [L were consumed] by fire,
    and the young women ·had no one to marry [had no wedding songs; or could not sing a lament for them].
64 Their priests fell by the sword [1 Sam. 4:12–22],
    but their widows were not allowed to cry.

65 Then the Lord ·got up [awoke] as if he had been asleep;
    ·he awoke like a man [L like a soldier] who had been ·drunk with [shouting/singing because of] wine.
66 He struck ·down [L back] his enemies
    and ·disgraced them forever [L placed on them eternal scorn/reproach].
67 But God rejected the ·family [L tent] of Joseph [C the tribe of Ephraim];
    he did not choose the tribe of Ephraim [C the most important northern tribe, here representing the house of Saul].
68 Instead, he chose the tribe of Judah
    and Mount Zion [C the location of the Temple], which he loves.
69 And he built his ·Temple [sanctuary; Holy Place] ·high like the mountains [or like the high heavens].
    Like the earth, ·he built it to last [L its foundations are] forever.
70 He chose David to be his servant
    and took him from the sheep pens.
71 He brought him from tending the ·sheep [L ewes]
    so he could ·lead the flock, [shepherd] the people of Jacob,
    his ·own people [inheritance], the people of Israel.
72 And David ·led [shepherded] them with an ·innocent [blameless] heart
    and guided them with skillful hands.

The Nation Cries for Jerusalem

A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

79 God, nations have come against your ·chosen people [L inheritance].
    They have ·ruined [profaned] your holy Temple.
    They have turned Jerusalem into ·ruins [a dump; 2 Kin. 25:9–10].
They have given the bodies of your servants as food to the ·wild birds [L birds of the sky/heavens].
They have given the ·bodies [L flesh] of ·those who worship you [your faithful ones; saints] to the wild animals [Jer. 34:20].
They have spilled blood like water all around Jerusalem.
    No one was left to bury the dead.
We are a ·joke [reproach; scorn] to the ·other nations [L residents];
    ·they [L the people around us] ·laugh [ridicule] and make fun of us.

Lord, how long?
    Will you be angry forever?
    How long will your jealousy burn like a fire?
·Be angry with [L Pour out your wrath on] the nations that do not know you
    and ·with [or on] the kingdoms that do not ·honor you [L call on your name].
They have ·gobbled up [devoured] the people of Jacob
    and ·destroyed [desolated] their ·land [pasturage].
Don’t ·punish us for our past sins [L remember our former guilt].
    Show your ·mercy [compassion] to us soon,
    because we are ·helpless [very low]!
God our ·Savior [Victor], help us
    ·so people will praise you [L for the glory of your name].
·Save [Protect] us and ·forgive [atone for] our sins
    ·so people will honor you [L for your name].
10 Why should the nations say,
    “Where is their God?”
·Tell [Inform] the other nations ·in our presence [L before our eyes]
    that you ·punish [avenge] ·those who kill your servants [L the blood of your servants that has been poured out].
11 ·Hear the moans of the prisoners [Let the groans of the prisoner come before you].
    Use your great ·power [L arm]
to save those ·sentenced [doomed] to die.

12 Repay ·those around [L into the bosom of those around] us seven times over
    for their ·insults to [reproach/scorn of] you, Lord.
13 We are your people, the sheep of your ·flock [pasture].
    We will ·thank [praise] you always;
·forever and ever [from generation to generation] we ·will praise you [L recount your praise].

A Prayer to Bring Israel Back

For the director of music. To the tune of “Lilies of the Agreement.” A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

80 Shepherd of Israel, ·listen to us [give ear].
    You ·lead [guide] the people of Joseph [C the northern empire of Israel] like a flock.
You sit on your throne between the ·gold creatures with wings [L cherubim; Ex. 25:18–22; 1 Kin. 8:7].
·Show your greatness [L Shine forth]     to the people of Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh.
·Use [Arouse] your strength,
    and come to ·save us [give us victory].

God, ·take us back [restore us].
·Show us your kindness [L Make your face shine on us; 31:16; 67:1; Num. 6:24–26] so we can ·be saved [have victory].

Lord God ·All-Powerful [Almighty; of Heaven’s Armies; T of hosts],
    how long will you ·be angry [L smoke/fume at us]
    at the prayers of your people?
You have fed your people ·with tears [L the bread/food of tears];
    you have made them drink ·many tears [tears by measure/L the third].
You made ·those around us fight over us [L us the strife of our neighbors],
    and our enemies ·make fun of [ridicule] us.

God ·All-Powerful [Almighty; of Heaven’s Armies; T of hosts], ·take us back [restore us].
·Show us your kindness [L Make your face shine on us; 31:16; 67:1; Num. 6:24–26] so we can ·be saved [have victory].

You brought ·us out of Egypt as if we were a vine [L a vine out of Egypt; Gen. 49:22; Is. 5:1–7; 27:2–6; Jer. 2:21; 12:10; Ezek. 15:1–8; 19:10–14; Hos. 10:1].
    You ·forced out [dispossessed] other nations and planted us in the land.
You cleared the ground for us.
    We took root and filled the land.
10 We covered the mountains with our shade.
    We had branches like the mighty cedar tree.
11 Our branches reached the Mediterranean Sea,
    and our shoots went to the Euphrates River.

12 So why did you ·pull [break] down our walls?
    Now everyone who passes by ·steals from us [picks our fruit].
13 Like ·wild pigs [L boars of the forest] they ·walk over us [ravage us; gobble us up];
    like ·wild animals [L creatures of the field] they feed on us.

14 God ·All-Powerful [Almighty; of Heaven’s Armies; T of hosts], ·come back [restore us].
    Look down from heaven and see.
Take care of us, your vine.
15 You planted this ·shoot [root] with your own hands
    and strengthened this child [C the king].
16 Now it is cut down and burned with fire;
    you destroyed us by ·your angry looks [L the rebuke of your face].
17 ·With your hand,
    strengthen the one you have chosen for yourself [L Let your hand be on the man of your right hand; C the king].
18 Then we will not ·turn away from [deviate from; be disloyal to] you.
    Give us life again, and we will call ·to you for help [L on your name].

19 Lord God ·All-Powerful [Almighty; of Heaven’s Armies; T of hosts], ·take us back [restore us].
·Show us your kindness [L Make your face shine on us; 31:16; 67:1; Num. 6:24–26] so we can ·be saved [have victory].

A Song for a Holiday

For the director of music. By the gittith [C perhaps a musical term or instrument]. A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

81 Sing for joy to God, our strength;
    shout out loud to the God of Jacob [C another name for Israel].
·Begin the music [Lift up a psalm]. ·Play [Sound; L Give] the tambourines [68:25; 149:3; 150:4; Ex. 15:20].
    ·Play pleasant music on the harps [L …the pleasant/sweet harps] and lyres.
Blow the ·trumpet [ram’s horn] at ·the time of the New Moon [L the month; C a monthly religious festival],
    when the moon is full, when our feast begins.
This is the ·law [statute; ordinance; requirement] for Israel;
    it is the ·command [judgment] of the God of Jacob [v. 1].
He ·gave [set] this ·rule [decree; testimony] to the people of Joseph [C reference to the northern tribes]
    when they went out of the land of Egypt [C the exodus; Ex. 12–15].

I heard a ·language [L tongue] I did not know, saying [C God now speaks]:
“I ·took the load off [removed the burden from] their shoulders;
    ·I let them put down their baskets [L Their hands were removed from the baskets].
When you were in ·trouble [distress], you called, and I ·saved [rescued] you.
    I answered you ·with thunder [L in the secret place of thunder; Ex. 19:18–19].
    I tested you at the waters of Meribah [95:8; 106:32; Ex. 17:1–17; Num. 20:1–13]. ·Selah [Interlude]
My people, listen. I ·am warning [bear testimony/witness against] you.
    Israel, please listen to me!
You must not have ·foreign [strange] gods;
    you must not worship any ·false [foreign] god.
10 I, the Lord, am your God,
    who brought you out of Egypt.
·Open [L Widen] your mouth and I will feed you [Deut. 29:6; 32:10–14].

11 “But my people did not listen to ·me [L my voice];
    Israel did not ·want [accept] me.
12 So I ·let them go their stubborn way [L threw them away because of their stubborn hearts]
    and ·follow [walk according to] their own advice.
13 I wish my people would listen to me;
    I wish Israel would ·live [L walk on] my way.
14 Then I would quickly ·defeat [subdue; quell] their enemies
    and turn my hand against their foes.
15 Those who hate the Lord would ·bow [cringe; cower] before him.
    Their ·punishment [doom] would continue forever.
16 But I would give you the finest wheat [Deut. 32:14]
    and fill you with honey from the rocks [Deut. 32:13].”

A Cry for Justice

A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

82 God ·is in charge of the great meeting [L takes his place/presides in the great assembly/or the assembly of the gods/divine council; C the angels (powers and authorities; Eph. 6:12) are here called “gods”];
    he judges among the “gods” [John 10:35–36].
He says, “How long will you ·defend evil people [or judge unfairly]?
    How long will you show ·greater kindness [favor; preference] to the wicked? ·Selah [Interlude]
·Defend [Judge] the ·weak [or poor] and the orphans;
    ·defend the rights of [vindicate] the poor and ·suffering [needy].
·Save [Rescue] the ·weak [or poor] and helpless;
    ·free [protect] them from the ·power [L hand] of the wicked.

“You know nothing. You don’t understand.
You walk in the dark,
    while the ·world is falling apart [L foundations of the earth are tottering].
I said, ‘You are “gods.”
    You are all sons of God Most High.’
But you will die like any other person;
    you will fall like all the ·leaders [princes; C God will punish these evil angels].”

God, ·come [rise up] and judge the earth,
because you ·own [inherit] all the nations.

A Prayer Against the Enemies

A song. A psalm of Asaph [C a Levitical musician, a descendant of Gershon, at the time of David; 1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 2 Chr. 5:12].

83 God, do not keep quiet;
    God, do not be silent or still.
Your enemies are ·making noises [in tumult];
    those who hate you ·are getting ready to attack [L raise up their head; 2:1].
They are making secret ·plans [plots] against your people;
    they plot against those you ·love [cherish; treasure].
They say, “Come, let’s ·destroy them [wipe them out] as a nation.
    Then no one will ever remember the name ‘Israel.’”
They ·are united in their plan [L plot with one mind/heart].
    These have ·made an agreement [L cut a covenant/treaty] against you:
the ·families [L tents] of Edom and the Ishmaelites,
    Moab and the Hagrites,
the people of Byblos, Ammon, Amalek,
    Philistia, and inhabitants of Tyre.
Even Assyria has joined them
    to ·help Ammon and Moab, the [L be the arm of the] descendants of Lot [C a list of traditional enemies of Israel]. ·Selah [Interlude]

God, do to them what you did to Midian,
    what you did to Sisera and Jabin at the Kishon ·River [Wadi; Judg. 4–5].
10 They ·died [were destroyed] at Endor,
    ·and their bodies rotted [L like dung/manure] on the ground.
11 Do to their ·important leaders [princes; nobles] what you did to Oreb and Zeeb [Judg. 7:25].
    Do to their princes what you did to Zebah and Zalmunna [Judg. 8:21].
12 They said, “Let’s take for ourselves
    the pasturelands that belong to God.”
13 My God, make them like tumbleweed,
    like chaff blown ·away by [before] the wind [C rootless and landless; 1:4].
14 Be like a fire that burns a forest
    or like flames that blaze through the ·hills [mountains].
15 ·Chase [Pursue] them with your ·storm [tempest],
    and ·frighten [terrify] them with your ·wind [hurricane].
16 ·Cover [L Fill] them with shame.
    Then people will ·look for you [L seek your name], Lord.
17 Make them afraid and ashamed forever.
    ·Disgrace [Humiliate] them and destroy them.
18 Then they will know that ·you are the Lord [L the Lord is your name],
    that only you are God Most High over all the earth.

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