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To the Music Director: A Davidic Song

A Prayer for Deliverance

140 [a]Deliver me, Lord, from evil people,
    preserve me from violent men,
who craft evil plans in their minds,
    inciting wars every day.[b]
They sharpen their tongues like a serpent;
    the venom of vipers is on their lips.
Interlude

Protect me, Lord, from the control of evil people,
    from violent men who have planned to trip me.
The arrogant have laid a trap for me;
    they have spread a net with ropes,
        lining it with snares along the way.
Interlude

So I say to the Lord, “You are my God;
    listen to my voice
        as I plead for mercy, Lord.
Lord, my Lord, my strong deliverer,
    you have protected my head in the time[c] of battle.
Never grant, Lord, the desires of the wicked;
    never condone their plans
        so they cannot exalt themselves.
Interlude

May those who surround me discover
    that the trouble they talk about falls on their own head!
10 May burning coals fall on them;
    may they be cast into fire,
        and into miry pits, never to rise again.
11 Let not the slanderer[d] become established in the land.
    May evil quickly hunt down the violent man.
12 I know that the Lord will act on behalf of the tormented,
    providing justice for the needy.

13 Surely the righteous will give thanks to your name,
    while the upright live in your presence.

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 140:1 V.1 is v. 2 in MT, and so throughout the chapter.
  2. Psalm 140:2 Lit. all day; LXX DSS 11QPsa read all the day
  3. Psalm 140:7 Lit. day
  4. Psalm 140:11 Lit. the man of tongue

Psalm 140[a]

For the director of music. A psalm of David.

Rescue me,(A) Lord, from evildoers;
    protect me from the violent,(B)
who devise evil plans(C) in their hearts
    and stir up war(D) every day.
They make their tongues as sharp as(E) a serpent’s;
    the poison of vipers(F) is on their lips.[b]

Keep me safe,(G) Lord, from the hands of the wicked;(H)
    protect me from the violent,
    who devise ways to trip my feet.
The arrogant have hidden a snare(I) for me;
    they have spread out the cords of their net(J)
    and have set traps(K) for me along my path.

I say to the Lord, “You are my God.”(L)
    Hear, Lord, my cry for mercy.(M)
Sovereign Lord,(N) my strong deliverer,
    you shield my head in the day of battle.
Do not grant the wicked(O) their desires, Lord;
    do not let their plans succeed.

Those who surround me proudly rear their heads;
    may the mischief of their lips engulf them.(P)
10 May burning coals fall on them;
    may they be thrown into the fire,(Q)
    into miry pits, never to rise.
11 May slanderers not be established in the land;
    may disaster hunt down the violent.(R)

12 I know that the Lord secures justice for the poor(S)
    and upholds the cause(T) of the needy.(U)
13 Surely the righteous will praise your name,(V)
    and the upright will live(W) in your presence.(X)

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 140:1 In Hebrew texts 140:1-13 is numbered 140:2-14.
  2. Psalm 140:3 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here and at the end of verses 5 and 8.

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