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Psalm 54

For the worship leader. A contemplative song[a] of David when his friends, the Ziphites, betrayed him to Saul. Accompanied by strings.

This is a lament reflecting the time when David was betrayed to Saul (1 Samuel 23:6–29). It expresses hope that God will save by His name. The name refers to the covenant name given to Moses at Mount Sinai (Exodus 3). We have translated it “the Eternal One.” For the ancients the name of God has power precisely because it embodies the presence of God. To call upon the name was to call upon God to remember His covenant promises and be present in power in order to rescue His people.

Liberate me, O God, by the authority of Your name.
    Vindicate me through Your legendary power.
Hear my prayer, O God;
    let the words of my mouth reach Your sympathetic ear.

The truth is, these strangers are rallying against me;
    cold-blooded men seek to slay me;
    they have no respect for You.


But see now! God comes to rescue me;
    the Lord is my valiant supporter.
He will repay my enemies for the harm they have done; they are doomed!
    According to Your faithful promises, silence them.

I will sacrifice to You willingly;
    I will lift Your name by shouts of thanksgiving, O Eternal One, for Your name is good.
God has pulled me out from every one of the troubles that encompass me,
    and I have seen what it means to stand over my enemies in triumph.


  1. 54:title Hebrew, maskil
  2. 54:3 Literally, selah, likely a musical direction from a Hebrew root meaning “to lift up”

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