69 God, God, save me!
I’m in over my head,
2 Quicksand under me, swamp water over me;
I’m going down for the third time.
3 I’m hoarse from calling for help,
Bleary-eyed from searching the sky for God.
4 I’ve got more enemies than hairs on my head;
Liars and cheats are out to knife me in the back.
What I never stole
Must I now give back?
5 God, you know every sin I’ve committed;
My life’s a wide-open book before you.
6 Don’t let those who look to you in hope
Be discouraged by what happens to me,
Dear Lord! God of the armies!
Don’t let those out looking for you
Come to a dead end by following me—
Please, dear God of Israel!
7 Because of you I look like an idiot,
I walk around ashamed to show my face.
8 My brothers shun me like a bum off the street;
My family treats me like an unwanted guest.
9 I love you more than I can say.
Because I’m madly in love with you,
They blame me for everything they dislike about you.
10 When I poured myself out in prayer and fasting,
All it got me was more contempt.
11 When I put on a sad face,
They treated me like a clown.
12 Now drunks and gluttons
Make up drinking songs about me.
13 And me? I pray.
God, it’s time for a break!
God, answer in love!
Answer with your sure salvation!
14 Rescue me from the swamp,
Don’t let me go under for good,
Pull me out of the clutch of the enemy;
This whirlpool is sucking me down.
15 Don’t let the swamp be my grave, the Black Hole
Swallow me, its jaws clenched around me.
16 Now answer me, God, because you love me;
Let me see your great mercy full-face.
17 Don’t look the other way; your servant can’t take it.
I’m in trouble. Answer right now!
18 Come close, God; get me out of here.
Rescue me from this deathtrap.
19 You know how they kick me around—
Pin on me the donkey’s ears, the dunce’s cap.
20 I’m broken by their taunts,
Flat on my face, reduced to a nothing.
I looked in vain for one friendly face. Not one.
I couldn’t find one shoulder to cry on.
21 They put poison in my soup,
Vinegar in my drink.
22 Let their supper be bait in a trap that snaps shut;
May their best friends be trappers who’ll skin them alive.
23 Make them become blind as bats,
Give them the shakes from morning to night.
24 Let them know what you think of them,
Blast them with your red-hot anger.
25 Burn down their houses,
Leave them desolate with nobody at home.
26 They gossiped about the one you disciplined,
Made up stories about anyone wounded by God.
27 Pile on the guilt,
Don’t let them off the hook.
28 Strike their names from the list of the living;
No rock-carved honor for them among the righteous.
29 I’m hurt and in pain;
Give me space for healing, and mountain air.
30 Let me shout God’s name with a praising song,
Let me tell his greatness in a prayer of thanks.
31 For God, this is better than oxen on the altar,
Far better than blue-ribbon bulls.
32 The poor in spirit see and are glad—
Oh, you God-seekers, take heart!
33 For God listens to the poor,
He doesn’t walk out on the wretched.
34 You heavens, praise him; praise him, earth;
Also ocean and all things that swim in it.
35 For God is out to help Zion,
Rebuilding the wrecked towns of Judah.
Guess who will live there—
The proud owners of the land?
36 No, the children of his servants will get it,
The lovers of his name will live in it.
70 1-3 God! Please hurry to my rescue!
God, come quickly to my side!
Those who are out to get me—
let them fall all over themselves.
Those who relish my downfall—
send them down a blind alley.
Give them a taste of their own medicine,
those gossips off clucking their tongues.
4 Let those on the hunt for you
sing and celebrate.
Let all who love your saving way
say over and over, “God is mighty!”
5 But I’ve lost it. I’m wasted.
Quick to my side, quick to my rescue!
God, don’t lose a minute.
71 1-3 I run for dear life to God,
I’ll never live to regret it.
Do what you do so well:
get me out of this mess and up on my feet.
Put your ear to the ground and listen,
give me space for salvation.
Be a guest room where I can retreat;
you said your door was always open!
You’re my salvation—my vast, granite fortress.
4-7 My God, free me from the grip of Wicked,
from the clutch of Bad and Bully.
You keep me going when times are tough—
my bedrock, God, since my childhood.
I’ve hung on you from the day of my birth,
the day you took me from the cradle;
I’ll never run out of praise.
Many gasp in alarm when they see me,
but you take me in stride.
8-11 Just as each day brims with your beauty,
my mouth brims with praise.
But don’t turn me out to pasture when I’m old
or put me on the shelf when I can’t pull my weight.
My enemies are talking behind my back,
watching for their chance to knife me.
The gossip is: “God has abandoned him.
Pounce on him now; no one will help him.”
12-16 God, don’t just watch from the sidelines.
Come on! Run to my side!
My accusers—make them lose face.
Those out to get me—make them look
Like idiots, while I stretch out, reaching for you,
and daily add praise to praise.
I’ll write the book on your righteousness,
talk up your salvation all the day long,
never run out of good things to write or say.
I come in the power of the Lord God,
I post signs marking his right-of-way.
17-24 You got me when I was an unformed youth,
God, and taught me everything I know.
Now I’m telling the world your wonders;
I’ll keep at it until I’m old and gray.
God, don’t walk off and leave me
until I get out the news
Of your strong right arm to this world,
news of your power to the world yet to come,
Your famous and righteous
ways, O God.
God, you’ve done it all!
Who is quite like you?
You, who made me stare trouble in the face,
Turn me around;
Now let me look life in the face.
I’ve been to the bottom;
Bring me up, streaming with honors;
turn to me, be tender to me,
And I’ll take up the lute and thank you
to the tune of your faithfulness, God.
I’ll make music for you on a harp,
Holy One of Israel.
When I open up in song to you,
I let out lungsful of praise,
my rescued life a song.
All day long I’m chanting
about you and your righteous ways,
While those who tried to do me in
slink off looking ashamed.
72 1-8 Give the gift of wise rule to the king, O God,
the gift of just rule to the crown prince.
May he judge your people rightly,
be honorable to your meek and lowly.
Let the mountains give exuberant witness;
shape the hills with the contours of right living.
Please stand up for the poor,
help the children of the needy,
come down hard on the cruel tyrants.
Outlast the sun, outlive the moon—
age after age after age.
Be rainfall on cut grass,
earth-refreshing rain showers.
Let righteousness burst into blossom
and peace abound until the moon fades to nothing.
Rule from sea to sea,
from the River to the Rim.
9-14 Foes will fall on their knees before God,
his enemies lick the dust.
Kings remote and legendary will pay homage,
kings rich and resplendent will turn over their wealth.
All kings will fall down and worship,
and godless nations sign up to serve him,
Because he rescues the poor at the first sign of need,
the destitute who have run out of luck.
He opens a place in his heart for the down-and-out,
he restores the wretched of the earth.
He frees them from tyranny and torture—
when they bleed, he bleeds;
when they die, he dies.
15-17 And live! Oh, let him live!
Deck him out in Sheba gold.
Offer prayers unceasing to him,
bless him from morning to night.
Fields of golden grain in the land,
cresting the mountains in wild exuberance,
Cornucopias of praise, praises
springing from the city like grass from the earth.
May he never be forgotten,
his fame shine on like sunshine.
May all godless people enter his circle of blessing
and bless the One who blessed them.
18-20 Blessed God, Israel’s God,
the one and only wonder-working God!
Blessed always his blazing glory!
All earth brims with his glory.
Yes and Yes and Yes.