A Psalm of David. A skillful [a]song, or a didactic or reflective poem.
32 Blessed [fortunate, prosperous, favored by God] is he whose transgression is forgiven, And whose sin is covered. 2 Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute wickedness, And in whose spirit there is no deceit.
3 When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away Through my groaning all the day long. 4 For day and night Your hand [of displeasure] was heavy upon me; My [b]energy (vitality, strength) was drained away as with the burning heat of summer. Selah. 5 I acknowledged my sin to You, And I did not hide my wickedness; I said, “I will confess [all] my transgressions to the Lord”; And You forgave the guilt of my sin. Selah. 6 Therefore, let everyone who is godly pray to You [for forgiveness] in a time when You [are near and] may be found; Surely when the great waters [of trial and distressing times] overflow they will not reach [the spirit in] him. 7 You are my hiding place; You, Lord, protect me from trouble; You surround me with songs and shouts of deliverance. Selah.
8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you [who are willing to learn] with My eye upon you. 9 Do not be like the horse or like the mule which have no understanding, Whose trappings include bridle and rein to hold them in check, Otherwise they will not come near to you. 10 Many are the sorrows of the wicked, But he who trusts in and relies on the Lord shall be surrounded with compassion and lovingkindness. 11 Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, you righteous [who actively seek right standing with Him]; Shout for joy, all you upright in heart.
Praise to the Creator and Preserver.
33 Rejoice in the Lord, you righteous ones; Praise is becoming and appropriate for those who are upright [in heart—those with moral integrity and godly character]. 2 Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre; Sing praises to Him with the harp of ten strings. 3 Sing to Him a new song; Play skillfully [on the strings] with a loud and joyful sound. 4 For the word of the Lord is right; And all His work is done in faithfulness. 5 He loves righteousness and justice; The earth is full of the lovingkindness of the Lord.
6 By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, And all their host by the breath of His mouth. 7 He gathers the waters of the sea together as in a wineskin; He puts the deeps in storehouses. 8 Let all the earth fear and worship the Lord; Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him. 9 For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast. 10 The Lord nullifies the counsel of the nations; He makes the thoughts and plans of the people ineffective. 11 The counsel of the Lord stands forever, The thoughts and plans of His heart through all generations. 12 Blessed [fortunate, prosperous, and favored by God] is the nation whose God is the Lord, The people whom He has chosen as His own inheritance.
13 The Lord looks [down] from heaven; He sees all the sons of man; 14 From His dwelling place He looks closely Upon all the inhabitants of the earth— 15 He who fashions the hearts of them all, Who considers and understands all that they do. 16 The king is not saved by the great size of his army; A warrior is not rescued by his great strength. 17 A horse is a false hope for victory; Nor does it deliver anyone by its great strength.
18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon those who fear Him [and worship Him with awe-inspired reverence and obedience], On those who hope [confidently] in His compassion and lovingkindness, 19 To rescue their lives from death And keep them alive in famine. 20 We wait [expectantly] for the Lord; He is our help and our shield. 21 For in Him our heart rejoices, Because we trust [lean on, rely on, and are confident] in His holy name. 22 Let Your [steadfast] lovingkindness, O Lord, be upon us, In proportion as we have [c]hoped in You.
The Lord, a Provider and the One Who Rescues Me.
A Psalm of David; when he pretended to be insane before Abimelech, who drove him out, and he went away.
34 I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. 2 My soul makes its boast in the Lord; The humble and downtrodden will hear it and rejoice. 3 O [d]magnify the Lord with me, And let us lift up His name together.
4 I sought the Lord [on the authority of His word], and He answered me, And delivered me from all my fears. 5 They looked to Him and were radiant; Their faces will never blush in shame or confusion. 6 This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him And saved him from all his troubles. 7 The [e]angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him [with awe-inspired reverence and worship Him with obedience], And He rescues [each of] them.
8 O taste and see that the Lord [our God] is good; How blessed [fortunate, prosperous, and favored by God] is the man who takes refuge in Him. 9 O [reverently] fear the Lord, you His saints (believers, holy ones); For to those who fear Him there is no want. 10 The young lions lack [food] and grow hungry, But they who seek the Lord will not lack any good thing. 11 Come, you children, listen to me; I will teach you to fear the Lord [with awe-inspired reverence and worship Him with obedience]. 12 Who is the man who desires life And loves many days, that he may see good? 13 Keep your tongue from evil And your lips from speaking deceit. 14 Turn away from evil and do good; Seek peace and pursue it.
15 The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous [those with moral courage and spiritual integrity] And His ears are open to their cry. 16 The face of the Lord is against those who do evil, To cut off the memory of them from the earth. 17 When the righteous cry [for help], the Lord hears And rescues them from all their distress and troubles. 18 The Lord is near to the heartbroken And He saves those who are crushed in spirit (contrite in heart, truly sorry for their sin).
19 Many hardships and perplexing circumstances confront the righteous, But the Lord rescues him from them all. 20 He keeps all his bones; Not one of them is broken. 21 Evil will cause the death of the wicked, And those who hate the righteous will be held guilty and will be condemned. 22 The Lord redeems the soul of His servants, And none of those who take refuge in Him will be condemned.
Prayer for Rescue from Enemies.
A Psalm of David.
35 Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me; Fight against those who fight against me. 2 Take hold of shield and buckler ([f]small shield), And stand up for my help. 3 Draw also the spear and javelin to meet those who pursue me. Say to my soul, “I am your salvation.” 4 Let those be ashamed and dishonored who seek my life; Let those be turned back [in defeat] and humiliated who plot evil against me. 5 Let them be [blown away] like chaff before the wind [worthless, without substance], With the angel of the Lord driving them on. 6 Let their way be dark and slippery, With the angel of the Lord pursuing and harassing them. 7 For without cause they hid their net for me; Without cause they dug a pit [of destruction] for my life. 8 Let destruction come upon my enemy by surprise; Let the net he hid for me catch him; Into that very destruction let him fall.
9 Then my soul shall rejoice in the Lord; It shall rejoice in His salvation. 10 All my bones will say, “Lord, who is like You, Who rescues the afflicted from him who is too strong for him [to resist alone], And the afflicted and the needy from him who robs him?” 11 Malicious witnesses rise up; They ask me of things that I do not know. 12 They repay me evil for good, To the sorrow of my soul. 13 But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth (mourning garment); I humbled my soul with fasting, And I prayed with my head bowed on my chest. 14 I behaved as if grieving for my friend or my brother; I bowed down in mourning, as one who sorrows for his mother. 15 But in my stumbling they rejoiced and gathered together [against me]; The slanderers whom I did not know gathered against me; They slandered and reviled me without ceasing. 16 Like godless jesters at a feast, They gnashed at me with their teeth [in malice].
17 Lord, how long will You look on [without action]? Rescue my life from their destructions, My only life from the young lions. 18 I will give You thanks in the great congregation; I will praise You among a mighty people. 19 Do not let those who are wrongfully my enemies rejoice over me; Nor let those who hate me without cause wink their eye [maliciously]. 20 For they do not speak peace, But they devise deceitful words [half-truths and lies] against those who are quiet in the land. 21 They open their mouths wide against me; They say, “Aha, aha, our eyes have seen it!”
22 You have seen this, O Lord; do not keep silent. O Lord, do not be far from me. 23 Wake Yourself up, and arise to my right And to my cause, my God and my Lord. 24 Judge me, O Lord my God, according to Your righteousness and justice; And do not let them rejoice over me. 25 Do not let them say in their heart, “Aha, that is what we wanted!” Do not let them say, “We have swallowed him up and destroyed him.” 26 Let those be ashamed and humiliated together who rejoice at my distress; Let those be clothed with shame and dishonor who magnify themselves over me.
27 Let them shout for joy and rejoice, who favor my vindication and want what is right for me; Let them say continually, “Let the Lord be magnified, who delights and takes pleasure in the prosperity of His servant.” 28 And my tongue shall declare Your righteousness (justice), And Your praise all the day long.
Psalm 34:3The ancient rabbis applied this verse specifically to the saying of grace after a meal and instituted the practice of zimmum (“invitation”) as a religious duty for three or more men who had eaten together. They were to invite one another to say the blessing. One then said the blessing and the others were required to say “Amen” in voices no louder than that of the speaker of the blessing, based on the word together. It was also taught that all the participants in the blessing receive a reward from God.
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