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Psalm 56

Trust in God under Persecution

To the leader: according to The Dove on Far-off Terebinths. Of David. A Miktam, when the Philistines seized him in Gath.

Be gracious to me, O God, for people trample on me;
    all day long foes oppress me;
my enemies trample on me all day long,
    for many fight against me.
O Most High, when I am afraid,
    I put my trust in you.
In God, whose word I praise,
    in God I trust; I am not afraid;
    what can flesh do to me?

All day long they seek to injure my cause;
    all their thoughts are against me for evil.
They stir up strife, they lurk,
    they watch my steps.
As they hoped to have my life,
    so repay[a] them for their crime;
    in wrath cast down the peoples, O God!

You have kept count of my tossings;
    put my tears in your bottle.
    Are they not in your record?
Then my enemies will retreat
    in the day when I call.
    This I know, that[b] God is for me.
10 In God, whose word I praise,
    in the Lord, whose word I praise,
11 in God I trust; I am not afraid.
    What can a mere mortal do to me?

12 My vows to you I must perform, O God;
    I will render thank offerings to you.
13 For you have delivered my soul from death,
    and my feet from falling,
so that I may walk before God
    in the light of life.

Psalm 57

Praise and Assurance under Persecution

To the leader: Do Not Destroy. Of David. A Miktam, when he fled from Saul, in the cave.

Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me,
    for in you my soul takes refuge;
in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge,
    until the destroying storms pass by.
I cry to God Most High,
    to God who fulfills his purpose for me.
He will send from heaven and save me,
    he will put to shame those who trample on me.Selah
God will send forth his steadfast love and his faithfulness.

I lie down among lions
    that greedily devour[c] human prey;
their teeth are spears and arrows,
    their tongues sharp swords.

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens.
    Let your glory be over all the earth.

They set a net for my steps;
    my soul was bowed down.
They dug a pit in my path,
    but they have fallen into it themselves.Selah
My heart is steadfast, O God,
    my heart is steadfast.
I will sing and make melody.
    Awake, my soul!
Awake, O harp and lyre!
    I will awake the dawn.
I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
    I will sing praises to you among the nations.
10 For your steadfast love is as high as the heavens;
    your faithfulness extends to the clouds.

11 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens.
    Let your glory be over all the earth.

Psalm 58

Prayer for Vengeance

To the leader: Do Not Destroy. Of David. A Miktam.

Do you indeed decree what is right, you gods?[d]
    Do you judge people fairly?
No, in your hearts you devise wrongs;
    your hands deal out violence on earth.

The wicked go astray from the womb;
    they err from their birth, speaking lies.
They have venom like the venom of a serpent,
    like the deaf adder that stops its ear,
so that it does not hear the voice of charmers
    or of the cunning enchanter.

O God, break the teeth in their mouths;
    tear out the fangs of the young lions, O Lord!
Let them vanish like water that runs away;
    like grass let them be trodden down[e] and wither.
Let them be like the snail that dissolves into slime;
    like the untimely birth that never sees the sun.
Sooner than your pots can feel the heat of thorns,
    whether green or ablaze, may he sweep them away!

10 The righteous will rejoice when they see vengeance done;
    they will bathe their feet in the blood of the wicked.
11 People will say, “Surely there is a reward for the righteous;
    surely there is a God who judges on earth.”

Psalm 59

Prayer for Deliverance from Enemies

To the leader: Do Not Destroy. Of David. A Miktam, when Saul ordered his house to be watched in order to kill him.

Deliver me from my enemies, O my God;
    protect me from those who rise up against me.
Deliver me from those who work evil;
    from the bloodthirsty save me.

Even now they lie in wait for my life;
    the mighty stir up strife against me.
For no transgression or sin of mine, O Lord,
    for no fault of mine, they run and make ready.

Rouse yourself, come to my help and see!
    You, Lord God of hosts, are God of Israel.
Awake to punish all the nations;
    spare none of those who treacherously plot evil.Selah

Each evening they come back,
    howling like dogs
    and prowling about the city.
There they are, bellowing with their mouths,
    with sharp words[f] on their lips—
    for “Who,” they think,[g] “will hear us?”

But you laugh at them, O Lord;
    you hold all the nations in derision.
O my strength, I will watch for you;
    for you, O God, are my fortress.
10 My God in his steadfast love will meet me;
    my God will let me look in triumph on my enemies.

11 Do not kill them, or my people may forget;
    make them totter by your power, and bring them down,
    O Lord, our shield.
12 For the sin of their mouths, the words of their lips,
    let them be trapped in their pride.
For the cursing and lies that they utter,
13     consume them in wrath;
    consume them until they are no more.
Then it will be known to the ends of the earth
    that God rules over Jacob.Selah

14 Each evening they come back,
    howling like dogs
    and prowling about the city.
15 They roam about for food,
    and growl if they do not get their fill.

16 But I will sing of your might;
    I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the morning.
For you have been a fortress for me
    and a refuge in the day of my distress.
17 O my strength, I will sing praises to you,
    for you, O God, are my fortress,
    the God who shows me steadfast love.

Psalm 60

Prayer for National Victory after Defeat

To the leader: according to the Lily of the Covenant. A Miktam of David; for instruction; when he struggled with Aram-naharaim and with Aram-zobah, and when Joab on his return killed twelve thousand Edomites in the Valley of Salt.

O God, you have rejected us, broken our defenses;
    you have been angry; now restore us!
You have caused the land to quake; you have torn it open;
    repair the cracks in it, for it is tottering.
You have made your people suffer hard things;
    you have given us wine to drink that made us reel.

You have set up a banner for those who fear you,
    to rally to it out of bowshot.[h]Selah
Give victory with your right hand, and answer us,[i]
    so that those whom you love may be rescued.

God has promised in his sanctuary:[j]
    “With exultation I will divide up Shechem,
    and portion out the Vale of Succoth.
Gilead is mine, and Manasseh is mine;
    Ephraim is my helmet;
    Judah is my scepter.
Moab is my washbasin;
    on Edom I hurl my shoe;
    over Philistia I shout in triumph.”

Who will bring me to the fortified city?
    Who will lead me to Edom?
10 Have you not rejected us, O God?
    You do not go out, O God, with our armies.
11 O grant us help against the foe,
    for human help is worthless.
12 With God we shall do valiantly;
    it is he who will tread down our foes.

Psalm 61

Assurance of God’s Protection

To the leader: with stringed instruments. Of David.

Hear my cry, O God;
    listen to my prayer.
From the end of the earth I call to you,
    when my heart is faint.

Lead me to the rock
    that is higher than I;
for you are my refuge,
    a strong tower against the enemy.

Let me abide in your tent forever,
    find refuge under the shelter of your wings.Selah
For you, O God, have heard my vows;
    you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name.

Prolong the life of the king;
    may his years endure to all generations!
May he be enthroned forever before God;
    appoint steadfast love and faithfulness to watch over him!

So I will always sing praises to your name,
    as I pay my vows day after day.

Psalm 62

Song of Trust in God Alone

To the leader: according to Jeduthun. A Psalm of David.

For God alone my soul waits in silence;
    from him comes my salvation.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
    my fortress; I shall never be shaken.

How long will you assail a person,
    will you batter your victim, all of you,
    as you would a leaning wall, a tottering fence?
Their only plan is to bring down a person of prominence.
    They take pleasure in falsehood;
they bless with their mouths,
    but inwardly they curse.Selah

For God alone my soul waits in silence,
    for my hope is from him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
    my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
On God rests my deliverance and my honor;
    my mighty rock, my refuge is in God.

Trust in him at all times, O people;
    pour out your heart before him;
    God is a refuge for us.Selah

Those of low estate are but a breath,
    those of high estate are a delusion;
in the balances they go up;
    they are together lighter than a breath.
10 Put no confidence in extortion,
    and set no vain hopes on robbery;
    if riches increase, do not set your heart on them.

11 Once God has spoken;
    twice have I heard this:
that power belongs to God,
12     and steadfast love belongs to you, O Lord.
For you repay to all
    according to their work.

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 56:7 Cn: Heb rescue
  2. Psalm 56:9 Or because
  3. Psalm 57:4 Cn: Heb are aflame for
  4. Psalm 58:1 Or mighty lords
  5. Psalm 58:7 Cn: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  6. Psalm 59:7 Heb with swords
  7. Psalm 59:7 Heb lacks they think
  8. Psalm 60:4 Gk Syr Jerome: Heb because of the truth
  9. Psalm 60:5 Another reading is me
  10. Psalm 60:6 Or by his holiness

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