20 I pray that the Lord will listen when you are in trouble, and that the God of Jacob will keep you safe. 2 May the Lord send help from his temple and come to your rescue from Mount Zion. 3 May he remember your gifts and be pleased with what you bring.
4 May God do what you want most and let all go well for you. 5 Then you will win victories, and we will celebrate, while raising our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord answer all of your prayers!
6 I am certain, Lord, that you will help your chosen king. You will answer my prayers from your holy place in heaven, and you will save me with your mighty arm.
7 Some people trust the power of chariots or horses, but we trust you, Lord God. 8 Others will stumble and fall, but we will be strong and stand firm.
9 Give the king victory, Lord, and answer our prayers.[a]
(A psalm by David for the music leader.)
Thanking the Lord for Victory
21 Our Lord, your mighty power makes the king glad, and he celebrates victories that you have given him. 2 You did what he wanted most and never told him “No.” 3 You truly blessed the king, and you placed on him a crown of finest gold. 4 He asked to live a long time, and you promised him life that never ends.
5 The king is highly honored. You have let him win victories that have made him famous. 6 You have given him blessings that will last forever, and you have made him glad by being so near to him. 7 Lord Most High, the king trusts you, and your kindness keeps him from defeat.
8 With your mighty arm, Lord, you will strike down all of your hateful enemies. 9 They will be destroyed by fire once you are here, and because of your anger, flames will swallow them. 10 You will wipe their families from the earth, and they will disappear. 11 All their plans to harm you will come to nothing. 12 You will make them run away by shooting your arrows at their faces.
13 Show your strength, Lord, so that we may sing and praise your power.
(A psalm by David for the music leader. To the tune “A Deer at Dawn.”)
Suffering and Praise
22 My God, my God, why have you deserted me? Why are you so far away? Won’t you listen to my groans and come to my rescue? 2 I cry out day and night, but you don’t answer, and I can never rest.
3 Yet you are the holy God, ruling from your throne and praised by Israel. 4 Our ancestors trusted you, and you rescued them. 5 When they cried out for help, you saved them, and you did not let them down when they depended on you.
6 But I am merely a worm, far less than human, and I am hated and rejected by people everywhere. 7 Everyone who sees me makes fun and sneers. They shake their heads, 8 and say, “Trust the Lord! If you are his favorite, let him protect you and keep you safe.”
9 You, Lord, brought me safely through birth, and you protected me when I was a baby at my mother’s breast. 10 From the day I was born, I have been in your care, and from the time of my birth, you have been my God.
11 Don’t stay far off when I am in trouble with no one to help me. 12 Enemies are all around like a herd of wild bulls. Powerful bulls from Bashan[b] are everywhere. 13 My enemies are like lions roaring and attacking with jaws open wide.
14 I have no more strength than a few drops of water. All my bones are out of joint; my heart is like melted wax. 15 My strength has dried up like a broken clay pot, and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth. You, God, have left me to die in the dirt.
16 Brutal enemies attack me like a pack of dogs, tearing at[c] my hands and my feet. 17 I can count all my bones, and my enemies just stare and sneer at me. 18 They took my clothes and gambled for them.
19 Don’t stay far away, Lord! My strength comes from you, so hurry and help. 20 Rescue me from enemy swords and save me from those dogs. 21 Don’t let lions eat me.
You rescued me from the horns of wild bulls, 22 and when your people meet, I will praise you, Lord.
23 All who worship the Lord, now praise him! You belong to Jacob’s family and to the people of Israel, so fear and honor the Lord! 24 The Lord doesn’t hate or despise the helpless in all of their troubles. When I cried out, he listened and did not turn away.
25 When your people meet, you will fill my heart with your praises, Lord, and everyone will see me keep my promises to you. 26 The poor will eat and be full, and all who worship you will be thankful and live in hope.
27 Everyone on this earth will remember you, Lord. People all over the world will turn and worship you, 28 because you are in control, the ruler of all nations.
29 All who are rich and have more than enough will bow down to you, Lord. Even those who are dying and almost in the grave will come and bow down. 30 In the future, everyone will worship and learn about you, our Lord. 31 People not yet born will be told, “The Lord has saved us!”
20.9victory. . . prayers: Or “victory. He (God or the king) answers us.”
22.12Bashan: A land east of the Jordan River, where there were pastures suitable for raising fine cattle.
22.16tearing at: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
21 After saying good-by, we sailed straight to Cos. The next day we reached Rhodes and from there sailed on to Patara. 2 We found a ship going to Phoenicia, so we got on board and sailed off.
3 We came within sight of Cyprus and then sailed south of it on to the port of Tyre in Syria, where the ship was going to unload its cargo. 4 We looked up the Lord’s followers and stayed with them for a week. The Holy Spirit had told them to warn Paul not to go on to Jerusalem. 5 But when the week was over, we started on our way again. All the men, together with their wives and children, walked with us from the town to the seashore. We knelt on the beach and prayed. 6 Then after saying good-by to each other, we got into the ship, and they went back home.
7 We sailed from Tyre to Ptolemais, where we greeted the followers and stayed with them for a day. 8 The next day we went to Caesarea and stayed with Philip, the preacher. He was one of the seven men who helped the apostles, 9 and he had four unmarried[a] daughters who prophesied.
10 We had been in Caesarea for several days, when the prophet Agabus came to us from Judea. 11 He took Paul’s belt, and with it he tied up his own hands and feet. Then he told us, “The Holy Spirit says that some of the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem will tie up the man who owns this belt. They will also hand him over to the Gentiles.” 12 After Agabus said this, we and the followers living there begged Paul not to go to Jerusalem.
13 But Paul answered, “Why are you crying and breaking my heart? I am not only willing to be put in jail for the Lord Jesus. I am even willing to die for him in Jerusalem!”
14 Since we could not get Paul to change his mind, we gave up and prayed, “Lord, please make us willing to do what you want.”
15 Then we got ready to go to Jerusalem. 16 Some of the followers from Caesarea went with us and took us to stay in the home of Mnason. He was from Cyprus and had been a follower from the beginning.
Paul Visits James
17 When we arrived in Jerusalem, the Lord’s followers gladly welcomed us.
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