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Psalm 137-139 Common English Bible (CEB)

Psalm 137

137 Alongside Babylon’s streams,
    there we sat down,
    crying because we remembered Zion.
We hung our lyres up
    in the trees there
    because that’s where our captors asked us to sing;
    our tormentors requested songs of joy:
    “Sing us a song about Zion!” they said.
But how could we possibly sing
    the Lord’s song on foreign soil?

Jerusalem! If I forget you,
    let my strong hand wither!
Let my tongue stick to the roof of my mouth
    if I don’t remember you,
    if I don’t make Jerusalem my greatest joy.

Lord, remember what the Edomites did
        on Jerusalem’s dark day:
    “Rip it down, rip it down!
    All the way to its foundations!” they yelled.
Daughter Babylon, you destroyer,[a]
    a blessing on the one who pays you back
    the very deed you did to us!
    A blessing on the one who seizes your children
    and smashes them against the rock!

Psalm 138

Of David.

138 I give thanks to you with all my heart, Lord.[b]
    I sing your praise before all other gods.
I bow toward your holy temple
    and thank your name
    for your loyal love and faithfulness
        because you have made your name and word
        greater than everything else.[c]
On the day I cried out, you answered me.
    You encouraged me with inner strength.[d]

Let all the earth’s rulers give thanks to you, Lord,
    when they hear what you say.
Let them sing about the Lord’s ways
    because the Lord’s glory is so great!
Even though the Lord is high,
    he can still see the lowly,
    but God keeps his distance from the arrogant.

Whenever I am in deep trouble,
    you make me live again;
    you send your power against my enemies’ wrath;
    you save me with your strong hand.
The Lord will do all this for my sake.

Your faithful love lasts forever, Lord!
    Don’t let go of what your hands
    have made.

Psalm 139

For the music leader. Of David. A song.

139 Lord, you have examined me.
    You know me.
You know when I sit down and when I stand up.
    Even from far away, you comprehend my plans.
You study my traveling and resting.
    You are thoroughly familiar with all my ways.
There isn’t a word on my tongue, Lord,
    that you don’t already know completely.
You surround me—front and back.
    You put your hand on me.
That kind of knowledge is too much for me;
    it’s so high above me that I can’t fathom it.

Where could I go to get away from your spirit?
    Where could I go to escape your presence?
If I went up to heaven, you would be there.
    If I went down to the grave,[e] you would be there too!
If I could fly on the wings of dawn,
    stopping to rest only on the far side of the ocean—
10         even there your hand would guide me;
        even there your strong hand would hold me tight!
11 If I said, “The darkness will definitely hide me;
        the light will become night around me,”
12     even then the darkness isn’t too dark for you!
        Nighttime would shine bright as day,
        because darkness is the same as light to you!

13 You are the one who created my innermost parts;
    you knit me together while I was still in my mother’s womb.
14 I give thanks to you that I was marvelously set apart.
    Your works are wonderful—I know that very well.
15 My bones weren’t hidden from you
    when I was being put together in a secret place,
    when I was being woven together in the deep parts of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my embryo,
    and on your scroll every day was written that was being formed for me,[f]
    before any one of them had yet happened.[g]
17 God, your plans are incomprehensible to me!
    Their total number is countless!
18 If I tried to count them—they outnumber grains of sand!
    If I came to the very end—I’d still be with you.[h]

19 If only, God, you would kill the wicked!
    If only murderers would get away from me—
20     the people who talk about you, but only for wicked schemes;
        the people who are your enemies,
        who use your name as if it were of no significance.[i]
21 Don’t I hate everyone who hates you?
    Don’t I despise those who attack you?
22 Yes, I hate them—through and through!
    They’ve become my enemies too.

23 Examine me, God! Look at my heart!
    Put me to the test! Know my anxious thoughts!
24 Look to see if there is any idolatrous way[j] in me,
    then lead me on the eternal path!

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 137:8 Sym, Tg, Syr; MT the devastated
  2. Psalm 138:1 LXX, Syr, Tg, DSS (11QPsa); MT lacks Lord.
  3. Psalm 138:2 Correction; Heb uncertain
  4. Psalm 138:3 Heb uncertain
  5. Psalm 139:8 Heb Sheol
  6. Psalm 139:16 Correction; Heb lacks for me.
  7. Psalm 139:16 Heb uncertain
  8. Psalm 139:18 Correction
  9. Psalm 139:20 Heb lacks your name.
  10. Psalm 139:24 Correction; cf Tg; LXX, Syr, Vulg painful or wicked or hurtful way
Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

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