Psalm 51[a]

For the director of music. A psalm of David. When the prophet Nathan came to him after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba.(A)

Have mercy(B) on me, O God,
    according to your unfailing love;(C)
according to your great compassion(D)
    blot out(E) my transgressions.(F)
Wash away(G) all my iniquity
    and cleanse(H) me from my sin.

For I know my transgressions,
    and my sin is always before me.(I)
Against you, you only, have I sinned(J)
    and done what is evil in your sight;(K)
so you are right in your verdict
    and justified when you judge.(L)
Surely I was sinful(M) at birth,(N)
    sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;
    you taught me wisdom(O) in that secret place.(P)

Cleanse(Q) me with hyssop,(R) and I will be clean;
    wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.(S)
Let me hear joy and gladness;(T)
    let the bones(U) you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins(V)
    and blot out(W) all my iniquity.

10 Create in me a pure heart,(X) O God,
    and renew a steadfast spirit within me.(Y)
11 Do not cast me(Z) from your presence(AA)
    or take your Holy Spirit(AB) from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation(AC)
    and grant me a willing spirit,(AD) to sustain me.(AE)

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,(AF)
    so that sinners(AG) will turn back to you.(AH)
14 Deliver me(AI) from the guilt of bloodshed,(AJ) O God,
    you who are God my Savior,(AK)
    and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.(AL)
15 Open my lips, Lord,(AM)
    and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 You do not delight in sacrifice,(AN) or I would bring it;
    you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
17 My sacrifice,(AO) O God, is[b] a broken spirit;
    a broken and contrite heart(AP)
    you, God, will not despise.

18 May it please you to prosper Zion,(AQ)
    to build up the walls of Jerusalem.(AR)
19 Then you will delight in the sacrifices of the righteous,(AS)
    in burnt offerings(AT) offered whole;
    then bulls(AU) will be offered on your altar.

Psalm 52[c]

For the director of music. A maskil[d] of David. When Doeg the Edomite(AV) had gone to Saul and told him: “David has gone to the house of Ahimelek.”

Why do you boast of evil, you mighty hero?
    Why do you boast(AW) all day long,(AX)
    you who are a disgrace in the eyes of God?
You who practice deceit,(AY)
    your tongue plots destruction;(AZ)
    it is like a sharpened razor.(BA)
You love evil(BB) rather than good,
    falsehood(BC) rather than speaking the truth.[e]
You love every harmful word,
    you deceitful tongue!(BD)

Surely God will bring you down to everlasting ruin:
    He will snatch you up and pluck(BE) you from your tent;
    he will uproot(BF) you from the land of the living.(BG)
The righteous will see and fear;
    they will laugh(BH) at you, saying,
“Here now is the man
    who did not make God his stronghold(BI)
but trusted in his great wealth(BJ)
    and grew strong by destroying others!”

But I am like an olive tree(BK)
    flourishing in the house of God;
I trust(BL) in God’s unfailing love
    for ever and ever.
For what you have done I will always praise you(BM)
    in the presence of your faithful people.(BN)
And I will hope in your name,(BO)
    for your name is good.(BP)

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 51:1 In Hebrew texts 51:1-19 is numbered 51:3-21.
  2. Psalm 51:17 Or The sacrifices of God are
  3. Psalm 52:1 In Hebrew texts 52:1-9 is numbered 52:3-11.
  4. Psalm 52:1 Title: Probably a literary or musical term
  5. Psalm 52:3 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here and at the end of verse 5.