3 I am a man who has seen the suffering that comes from the rod of the Lord’s anger. 2 He led me into darkness, not light. 3 He turned his hand against me again and again, all day long.
4 He caused my flesh and skin to wear out. He broke my bones. 5 He surrounded me and attacked me with sadness and grief. 6 He made me sit in the dark, like someone who has been dead a long time.
7 He shut me in so I could not get out. He put heavy chains on me. 8 I cry out and beg for help. But he ignores my prayer. 9 He has blocked my way with stones. He has made my life difficult.
10 The Lord is like a bear ready to attack me. He is like a lion in hiding. 11 He led me the wrong way and tore me to pieces. He left me without help. 12 He prepared to shoot his bow. He made me the target for his arrows.
13 He shot me in the kidneys with the arrows from his arrow bag. 14 I have become a joke to all my people. All day long they make fun of me with songs. 15 The Lord filled me with misery. He filled me with suffering.
16 The Lord broke my teeth with gravel. He crushed me into the dirt. 17 I have no more peace. I have forgotten what happiness is. 18 I said, “My strength is gone. I have no more hope that the Lord will help me.”
19 Lord, remember my suffering and how I have no home. Remember the misery and suffering. 20 I remember them well. And I am very sad. 21 But I have hope when I think of this:
22 The Lord’s love never ends. His mercies never stop. 23 They are new every morning. Lord, your loyalty is great. 24 I say to myself, “The Lord is what I have left. So I have hope.”
25 The Lord is good to those who put their hope in him. He is good to those who look to him for help. 26 It is good to wait quietly for the Lord to save. 27 It is good for a man to work hard while he is young.
28 He should sit alone and be quiet because the Lord has given him hard work to do. 29 He should bow to the Lord with his face to the ground. Maybe there is still hope. 30 He should offer his cheek if someone wants to hit him. He should be filled with shame.
31 The Lord will not reject his people forever. 32 Although the Lord brings sorrow, he also has mercy. His love is great. 33 The Lord does not like to punish people or make them sad.
34 The Lord sees if any prisoner of the earth is crushed under his feet. 35 He sees if someone is treated unfairly before the Most High God. 36 The Lord sees if someone is cheated in his case in court.
37 Nobody can speak and have it happen unless the Lord commands it. 38 Both bad and good things come by the command of the Most High God. 39 No man should complain when he is punished for his sins.
40 Let us examine and look at what we have done. Then let us return to the Lord. 41 Let us lift up our hands and pray from our hearts. Let us say to God in heaven, 42 “We have sinned and turned against you. And you have not forgiven us.
43 “You wrapped yourself in anger and chased us. You killed us without mercy. 44 You wrapped yourself in a cloud. No prayer could get through. 45 You made us like scum and trash among the other nations.
46 “All of our enemies open their mouths and say things against us. 47 We have been frightened and fearful. We have been ruined and destroyed.” 48 Streams of tears flow from my eyes because my people are destroyed.
49 My tears flow continually, without stopping, 50 until the Lord looks down and sees from heaven. 51 I am sad when I see what has happened to all the women of my city.
52 Those who are my enemies for no reason hunted me like a bird. 53 They threw me alive into a pit. They threw stones at me. 54 Water came up over my head. I said to myself, “I am going to die.” 55 I called out to you, Lord, from the bottom of the pit. 56 You heard me calling, “Do not close your ears. Do not ignore my cry for help.” 57 You came close when I called out to you. You said, “Don’t be afraid.”
58 Lord, you have taken my case. You have given me back my life. 59 Lord, you have seen how I have been wronged. Now judge my case for me. 60 You have seen how my enemies took revenge on me. You have seen all their evil plans against me.
61 Lord, you have heard their insults and all their evil plans against me. 62 The words and thoughts of my enemies are against me all the time. 63 Look! In everything they do they make fun of me with songs.
64 Punish them as they should be punished, Lord. Pay them back for what they have done. 65 Make them stubborn. Put your curse on them. 66 Chase them in anger. Destroy them from the Lord’s earth.
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