New American Bible (Revised Edition)
Confidence in God During National Distress
1 For the leader; According to Jeduthun. A psalm of Asaph.
2 I cry aloud to God,
I cry to God to hear me.
3 On the day of my distress I seek the Lord;
by night my hands are stretched out unceasingly;(A)
I refuse to be consoled.
4 When I think of God, I groan;
as I meditate, my spirit grows faint.(B)
5 You have kept me from closing my eyes in sleep;
I am troubled and cannot speak.
6 I consider the days of old;
the years long past 7 I remember.(C)
At night I ponder in my heart;
and as I meditate, my spirit probes:
8 “Will the Lord reject us forever,(D)
never again show favor?
9 Has God’s mercy ceased forever?
The promise to go unfulfilled for future ages?
10 Has God forgotten how to show mercy,
in anger withheld his compassion?”
11 [b]I conclude: “My sorrow is this,
the right hand of the Most High has abandoned us.”(E)
12 [c]I will recall the deeds of the Lord;
yes, recall your wonders of old.(F)
13 I will ponder all your works;
on your exploits I will meditate.
14 Your way, God, is holy;
what god is as great as our God?(G)
15 You are the God who does wonders;
among the peoples you have revealed your might.(H)
16 With your mighty arm you redeemed your people,
the children of Jacob and Joseph.(I)
17 The waters saw you, God;
the waters saw you and lashed about,
even the deeps of the sea[d] trembled.(J)
18 The clouds poured down their rains;
the thunderheads rumbled;
your arrows flashed back and forth.(K)
19 The thunder of your chariot wheels resounded;
your lightning lit up the world;
the earth trembled and quaked.(L)
20 Through the sea was your way;
your path, through the mighty waters,
though your footsteps were unseen.(M)
21 You led your people like a flock
by the hand of Moses and Aaron.(N)
- Psalm 77 A community lament in which the speaker (“I”) describes the anguish of Israel at God’s silence when its very existence is at stake (Ps 77:2–11). In response the speaker recites the story of how God brought the people into existence (Ps 77:12–20). The question is thus posed to God: Will you allow the people you created to be destroyed?
- 77:11 I conclude: lit., “I said.” The psalmist, after pondering the present distress and God’s promises to Israel, has decided that God has forgotten the people.
- 77:12 I will recall: the verb sometimes means to make present the great deeds of Israel’s past by reciting them, cf. Ps 78:42; 105:5; 106:7.
- 77:17 The deeps of the sea: Heb. tehom; the same word is used in Gn 1:2, where it alludes to the primeval seas which in ancient Semitic cosmography are tamed by God in creation, cf. Ps 74:12–17; 89:12–13 and notes.