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An Oracle Concerning Sacrifices

A psalm of Asaph.[a]

50 The Supreme God, God, Yahweh, has spoken
and summoned the earth,
from the rising of the sun
to its setting.
From Zion, the perfection of beauty,
God shines forth.
Our God comes and he is not silent.
Before him fire devours,
and around him it is very tempestuous.
He summons the heavens above
and the earth that he might judge his people:
“Gather to me my loyal ones,
those who have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.”
And the heavens declare his righteousness,
because God himself is judge. Selah
“Hear, O my people, and I will speak,
O Israel, and I will testify against you.
I am God, your God.
It is not concerning a lack of your sacrifices that I rebuke you,
and your burnt offerings are before me continually.
I will not take from your house a bull
or from your stalls a he-goat,
10 because every animal of the forest is mine,
the cattle on a thousand hills.
11 I know every bird of the mountains,
and every moving creature in the field is mine.
12 If I were hungry I would not tell you,
because the world and its fullness are mine.
13 Do I eat the flesh of bulls
or drink the blood of goats?
14 Offer to God a thank offering
and pay your vows to the Most High.
15 And call me in the day of trouble;
I will deliver you, and you will glorify me.”
16 But to the wicked God says,
“What right have you to recite my statutes
and mention my covenant with your mouth,[b]
17 while you yourself hate discipline,
and cast my words behind you?
18 When you see a thief, then you are pleased with him,
and your association is with adulterers.
19 You give your mouth free rein for evil,
and you harness your tongue to deceit.
20 You sit and speak against your brother;
you slander your mother’s son.
21 These things you have done, and I have been silent;
You imagined that I was just like you.
I will rebuke you and present an argument before your eyes.
22 Now consider this, you who forget God,
lest I tear you apart, and there will be none to deliver.
23 He who sacrifices a thank offering honors me,
and he who orders his way;
I will show him the salvation of God.”


  1. Psalm 50:1 The Hebrew Bible counts the superscription as the first verse of the psalm
  2. Psalm 50:16 Literally “take my covenant on your mouth”