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Psalm 73Revised Standard Version (RSV)


Plea for Relief from Oppressors

A Psalm of Asaph.

73 Truly God is good to the upright,
    to those who are pure in heart.[a]
But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled,
    my steps had well nigh slipped.
For I was envious of the arrogant,
    when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

For they have no pangs;
    their bodies are sound and sleek.
They are not in trouble as other men are;
    they are not stricken like other men.
Therefore pride is their necklace;
    violence covers them as a garment.
Their eyes swell out with fatness,
    their hearts overflow with follies.
They scoff and speak with malice;
    loftily they threaten oppression.
They set their mouths against the heavens,
    and their tongue struts through the earth.

10 Therefore the people turn and praise them;[b]
    and find no fault in them.[c]
11 And they say, “How can God know?
    Is there knowledge in the Most High?”
12 Behold, these are the wicked;
    always at ease, they increase in riches.
13 All in vain have I kept my heart clean
    and washed my hands in innocence.
14 For all the day long I have been stricken,
    and chastened every morning.

15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,”
    I would have been untrue to the generation of thy children.
16 But when I thought how to understand this,
    it seemed to me a wearisome task,
17 until I went into the sanctuary of God;
    then I perceived their end.
18 Truly thou dost set them in slippery places;
    thou dost make them fall to ruin.
19 How they are destroyed in a moment,
    swept away utterly by terrors!
20 They are[d] like a dream when one awakes,
    on awaking you despise their phantoms.

21 When my soul was embittered,
    when I was pricked in heart,
22 I was stupid and ignorant,
    I was like a beast toward thee.
23 Nevertheless I am continually with thee;
    thou dost hold my right hand.
24 Thou dost guide me with thy counsel,
    and afterward thou wilt receive me to glory.[e]
25 Whom have I in heaven but thee?
    And there is nothing upon earth that I desire besides thee.
26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
    but God is the strength[f] of my heart and my portion for ever.

27 For lo, those who are far from thee shall perish;
    thou dost put an end to those who are false to thee.
28 But for me it is good to be near God;
    I have made the Lord God my refuge,
    that I may tell of all thy works.


  1. Psalm 73:1 Or Truly God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart
  2. Psalm 73:10 Cn: Heb his people return hither
  3. Psalm 73:10 Cn: Heb abundant waters are drained by them
  4. Psalm 73:20 Cn: Heb Lord
  5. Psalm 73:24 Or honor
  6. Psalm 73:26 Heb rock
Revised Standard Version (RSV)

Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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