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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,(A) when I am afraid,
    I put my trust in you.(B)
In God, whose word I praise,
    in God I trust; I am not afraid;
    what can flesh do to me?(C)

All day long they seek to injure my cause;
    all their thoughts are against me for evil.(D)
They stir up strife; they lurk;
    they watch my steps,
as they hoped to take my life.(E)
    Do not deliver them for any reason;[a]
    in wrath cast down the peoples, O God!(F)

You have kept count of my tossings;
    put my tears in your bottle.
    Are they not in your record?(G)
Then my enemies will retreat
    in the day when I call.
    This I know, that[b] God is for me.(H)
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.(I)
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.(J)

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.(K)
I cry to God Most High,
    to God who fulfills his purpose for me.(L)
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.(M)

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

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

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(P)
My heart is steadfast, O God;
    my heart is steadfast.
I will sing and make melody.(Q)
    Awake, my soul!
Awake, O harp and lyre!
    I will awake the dawn.(R)
I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
    I will sing praises to you among the nations.(S)
10 For your steadfast love is as high as the heavens;
    your faithfulness extends to the clouds.(T)

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

Psalm 58

Prayer for Vengeance

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

Do you indeed decree what is right, you gods?
    Do you judge people fairly?(V)
No, in your hearts you devise wrongs;
    your hands deal out violence on earth.(W)

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

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

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


  1. 56.7 Gk Compare Syr Jerome: Heb deliver them because of their iniquity
  2. 56.9 Or because
  3. 57.4 Cn: Heb are aflame for
  4. 58.7 Cn: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  5. 58.11 Or there are gods who judge