Bible Book List

Psalm 84-85 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Psalm 84[a]

Prayer of a Pilgrim to Jerusalem

For the leader; “upon the gittith.” A psalm of the Korahites.


How lovely your dwelling,
    O Lord of hosts!
My soul yearns and pines
    for the courts of the Lord.
My heart and flesh cry out
    for the living God.
[b]As the sparrow finds a home
    and the swallow a nest to settle her young,
My home is by your altars,
    Lord of hosts, my king and my God!
Blessed are those who dwell in your house!
    They never cease to praise you.


Blessed the man who finds refuge in you,
    in their hearts are pilgrim roads.
As they pass through the Baca valley,[c]
    they find spring water to drink.
    The early rain covers it with blessings.
They will go from strength to strength[d]
    and see the God of gods on Zion.


Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer;
    listen, God of Jacob.
10 [e]O God, watch over our shield;
    look upon the face of your anointed.


11 Better one day in your courts
    than a thousand elsewhere.
Better the threshold of the house of my God
    than a home in the tents of the wicked.
12 For a sun and shield is the Lord God,
    bestowing all grace and glory.
The Lord withholds no good thing
    from those who walk without reproach.
13 O Lord of hosts,
    blessed the man who trusts in you!

Psalm 85[f]

Prayer for Divine Favor

For the leader. A psalm of the Korahites.


You once favored, Lord, your land,
    restored the captives of Jacob.
You forgave the guilt of your people,
    pardoned all their sins.
You withdrew all your wrath,
    turned back from your burning anger.


Restore us, God of our salvation;
    let go of your displeasure with us.
Will you be angry with us forever,
    prolong your anger for all generations?
Certainly you will again restore our life,
    that your people may rejoice in you.
Show us, Lord, your mercy;
    grant us your salvation.


[g]I will listen for what God, the Lord, has to say;
    surely he will speak of peace
To his people and to his faithful.
    May they not turn to foolishness!
10 Near indeed is his salvation for those who fear him;
    glory will dwell in our land.
11 [h]Love and truth will meet;
    justice and peace will kiss.
12 Truth will spring from the earth;
    justice will look down from heaven.
13 Yes, the Lord will grant his bounty;
    our land will yield its produce.
14 Justice will march before him,
    and make a way for his footsteps.


  1. Psalm 84 Israelites celebrated three pilgrimage feasts in Jerusalem annually. The Psalm expresses the sentiments of the pilgrims eager to enjoy the divine presence.
  2. 84:4 The desire of a restless bird for a secure home is an image of the desire of a pilgrim for the secure house of God, cf. Ps 42:2–3, where the image for the desire of the pilgrim is the thirst of the deer for water.
  3. 84:7 Baca valley: Hebrew obscure; probably a valley on the way to Jerusalem.
  4. 84:8 Strength to strength: pass through outer and inner wall.
  5. 84:10 Our shield…your anointed: the king had a role in the liturgical celebration. For the king as shield, cf. Ps 89:19.
  6. Psalm 85 A national lament reminding God of past favors and forgiveness (Ps 85:2–4) and begging for forgiveness and grace now (Ps 85:5–8). A speaker represents the people who wait humbly with open hearts (Ps 85:9–10): God will be active on their behalf (Ps 85:11–13). The situation suggests the conditions of Judea during the early postexilic period, the fifth century B.C.; the thoughts are similar to those of postexilic prophets (Hg 1:5–11; 2:6–9).
  7. 85:9 The prophet listens to God’s revelation, cf. Hb 2:1.
  8. 85:11–13 Divine activity is personified as pairs of virtues.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.


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