Psalm 54[a]

For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskil[b] of David. When the Ziphites(A) had gone to Saul and said, “Is not David hiding among us?”

Save me(B), O God, by your name;(C)
    vindicate me by your might.(D)
Hear my prayer, O God;(E)
    listen to the words of my mouth.

Arrogant foes are attacking me;(F)
    ruthless people(G) are trying to kill me(H)
    people without regard for God.[c](I)

Surely God is my help;(J)
    the Lord is the one who sustains me.(K)

Let evil recoil(L) on those who slander me;
    in your faithfulness(M) destroy them.

I will sacrifice a freewill offering(N) to you;
    I will praise(O) your name, Lord, for it is good.(P)
You have delivered me(Q) from all my troubles,
    and my eyes have looked in triumph on my foes.(R)


  1. Psalm 54:1 In Hebrew texts 54:1-7 is numbered 54:3-9.
  2. Psalm 54:1 Title: Probably a literary or musical term
  3. Psalm 54:3 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here.

The king of Assyria invaded the entire land, marched against Samaria and laid siege(A) to it for three years. In the ninth year of Hoshea, the king of Assyria(B) captured Samaria(C) and deported(D) the Israelites to Assyria. He settled them in Halah, in Gozan(E) on the Habor River and in the towns of the Medes.

Israel Exiled Because of Sin

All this took place because the Israelites had sinned(F) against the Lord their God, who had brought them up out of Egypt(G) from under the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt. They worshiped other gods and followed the practices of the nations(H) the Lord had driven out before them, as well as the practices that the kings of Israel had introduced. The Israelites secretly did things against the Lord their God that were not right. From watchtower to fortified city(I) they built themselves high places in all their towns. 10 They set up sacred stones(J) and Asherah poles(K) on every high hill and under every spreading tree.(L) 11 At every high place they burned incense, as the nations whom the Lord had driven out before them had done. They did wicked things that aroused the Lord’s anger. 12 They worshiped idols,(M) though the Lord had said, “You shall not do this.”[a] 13 The Lord warned(N) Israel and Judah through all his prophets and seers:(O) “Turn from your evil ways.(P) Observe my commands and decrees, in accordance with the entire Law that I commanded your ancestors to obey and that I delivered to you through my servants the prophets.”(Q)

14 But they would not listen and were as stiff-necked(R) as their ancestors, who did not trust in the Lord their God. 15 They rejected his decrees and the covenant(S) he had made with their ancestors and the statutes he had warned them to keep. They followed worthless idols(T) and themselves became worthless.(U) They imitated the nations(V) around them although the Lord had ordered them, “Do not do as they do.”

16 They forsook all the commands of the Lord their God and made for themselves two idols cast in the shape of calves,(W) and an Asherah(X) pole. They bowed down to all the starry hosts,(Y) and they worshiped Baal.(Z) 17 They sacrificed(AA) their sons and daughters in the fire. They practiced divination and sought omens(AB) and sold(AC) themselves to do evil in the eyes of the Lord, arousing his anger.

18 So the Lord was very angry with Israel and removed them from his presence.(AD) Only the tribe of Judah was left,

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  1. 2 Kings 17:12 Exodus 20:4,5

29 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets(A) and decorate the graves of the righteous. 30 And you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our ancestors, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ 31 So you testify against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets.(B) 32 Go ahead, then, and complete(C) what your ancestors started!(D)

33 “You snakes! You brood of vipers!(E) How will you escape being condemned to hell?(F) 34 Therefore I am sending you prophets and sages and teachers. Some of them you will kill and crucify;(G) others you will flog in your synagogues(H) and pursue from town to town.(I) 35 And so upon you will come all the righteous blood that has been shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel(J) to the blood of Zechariah son of Berekiah,(K) whom you murdered between the temple and the altar.(L) 36 Truly I tell you, all this will come on this generation.(M)

37 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you,(N) how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings,(O) and you were not willing. 38 Look, your house is left to you desolate.(P) 39 For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’[a](Q)

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  1. Matthew 23:39 Psalm 118:26

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