For the choir director: A psalm of Asaph, to be accompanied by a stringed instrument.[a]
1 Sing praises to God, our strength. Sing to the God of Jacob. 2 Sing! Beat the tambourine. Play the sweet lyre and the harp. 3 Blow the ram’s horn at new moon, and again at full moon to call a festival! 4 For this is required by the decrees of Israel; it is a regulation of the God of Jacob. 5 He made it a law for Israel[b] when he attacked Egypt to set us free.
I heard an unknown voice say, 6 “Now I will take the load from your shoulders; I will free your hands from their heavy tasks. 7 You cried to me in trouble, and I saved you; I answered out of the thundercloud and tested your faith when there was no water at Meribah. Interlude
8 “Listen to me, O my people, while I give you stern warnings. O Israel, if you would only listen to me! 9 You must never have a foreign god; you must not bow down before a false god. 10 For it was I, the Lord your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it with good things.
11 “But no, my people wouldn’t listen. Israel did not want me around. 12 So I let them follow their own stubborn desires, living according to their own ideas. 13 Oh, that my people would listen to me! Oh, that Israel would follow me, walking in my paths! 14 How quickly I would then subdue their enemies! How soon my hands would be upon their foes! 15 Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him; they would be doomed forever. 16 But I would feed you with the finest wheat. I would satisfy you with wild honey from the rock.”
A psalm of Asaph.
1 God presides over heaven’s court; he pronounces judgment on the heavenly beings: 2 “How long will you hand down unjust decisions by favoring the wicked? Interlude
3 “Give justice to the poor and the orphan; uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute. 4 Rescue the poor and helpless; deliver them from the grasp of evil people. 5 But these oppressors know nothing; they are so ignorant! They wander about in darkness, while the whole world is shaken to the core. 6 I say, ‘You are gods; you are all children of the Most High. 7 But you will die like mere mortals and fall like every other ruler.’”
8 Rise up, O God, and judge the earth, for all the nations belong to you.
A song. A psalm of Asaph.
1 O God, do not be silent! Do not be deaf. Do not be quiet, O God. 2 Don’t you hear the uproar of your enemies? Don’t you see that your arrogant enemies are rising up? 3 They devise crafty schemes against your people; they conspire against your precious ones. 4 “Come,” they say, “let us wipe out Israel as a nation. We will destroy the very memory of its existence.” 5 Yes, this was their unanimous decision. They signed a treaty as allies against you— 6 these Edomites and Ishmaelites; Moabites and Hagrites; 7 Gebalites, Ammonites, and Amalekites; and people from Philistia and Tyre. 8 Assyria has joined them, too, and is allied with the descendants of Lot. Interlude
9 Do to them as you did to the Midianites and as you did to Sisera and Jabin at the Kishon River. 10 They were destroyed at Endor, and their decaying corpses fertilized the soil. 11 Let their mighty nobles die as Oreb and Zeeb did. Let all their princes die like Zebah and Zalmunna, 12 for they said, “Let us seize for our own use these pasturelands of God!” 13 O my God, scatter them like tumbleweed, like chaff before the wind! 14 As a fire burns a forest and as a flame sets mountains ablaze, 15 chase them with your fierce storm; terrify them with your tempest. 16 Utterly disgrace them until they submit to your name, O Lord. 17 Let them be ashamed and terrified forever. Let them die in disgrace. 18 Then they will learn that you alone are called the Lord, that you alone are the Most High, supreme over all the earth.
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