40 I patiently waited, Lord, for you to hear my prayer. You listened 2 and pulled me from a lonely pit full of mud and mire. You let me stand on a rock with my feet firm, 3 and you gave me a new song, a song of praise to you. Many will see this, and they will honor and trust you, the Lord God.
4 You bless all of those who trust you, Lord, and refuse to worship idols or follow false gods. 5 You, Lord God, have done many wonderful things, and you have planned marvelous things for us. No one is like you! I would never be able to tell all you have done.
6 Sacrifices and offerings are not what please you; gifts and payment for sin are not what you demand. But you made me willing to listen and obey. 7 And so, I said, “I am here to do what is written about me in the book, where it says, 8 ’I enjoy pleasing you. Your Law is in my heart.’”
9 When your people worshiped, you know I told them, “Our Lord always helps!” 10 When all your people met, I did not keep silent. I said, “Our Lord is kind. He is faithful and caring, and he saves us.”
11 You, Lord, never fail to have pity on me; your love and faithfulness always keep me secure.
12 I have more troubles than I can count. My sins are all around me, and I can’t find my way. My sins outnumber the hairs on my head, and I feel weak. 13 Please show that you care and come to my rescue. Hurry and help me!
14 Disappoint and confuse all who want me dead; turn away and disgrace all who want to hurt me. 15 Embarrass and shame all of those who say, “Just look at you now!”
16 Our Lord, let your worshipers rejoice and be glad. They love you for saving them, so let them always say, “The Lord is wonderful!”
17 I am poor and needy, but, Lord God, you care about me, and you come to my rescue. Please hurry and help.
(A psalm by David for the music leader.)
A Prayer in Time of Sickness
41 You, Lord God, bless everyone who cares for the poor, and you rescue those people in times of trouble. 2 You protect them and keep them alive. You make them happy here in this land, and you don’t hand them over to their enemies. 3 You always heal them and restore their strength when they are sick. 4 I prayed, “Have pity, Lord! Heal me, though I have sinned against you.”
5 My vicious enemies ask me, “When will you die and be forgotten?” 6 When visitors come, all they ever bring are worthless words, and when they leave, they spread gossip.
7 My enemies whisper about me. They think the worst, 8 and they say, “You have some fatal disease! You’ll never get well.” 9 My most trusted friend has turned against me, though he ate at my table.
10 Have pity, Lord! Heal me, so I can pay them back. 11 Then my enemies won’t defeat me, and I will know that you really care. 12 You have helped me because I am innocent, and you will always be close to my side.
13 You, the Lord God of Israel, will be praised forever! Amen and amen.
(A special psalm for the people of Korah and for the music leader.)
Longing for God
42 As a deer gets thirsty for streams of water, I truly am thirsty for you, my God. 2 In my heart, I am thirsty for you, the living God. When will I see your face? 3 Day and night my tears are my only food, as everyone keeps asking, “Where is your God?”
4 Sorrow floods my heart, when I remember leading the worshipers to your house.[a] I can still hear them shout their joyful praises. 5 Why am I discouraged? Why am I restless? I trust you! And I will praise you again because you help me, 6 and you are my God.
I am deeply discouraged as I think about you from where the Jordan begins at Mount Hermon and from Mount Mizar.[b] 7 Your vicious waves have swept over me like an angry ocean or a roaring waterfall.
8 Every day, you are kind, and at night you give me a song as my prayer to you, the living Lord God.
9 You are my mighty rock.[c] Why have you forgotten me? Why must enemies mistreat me and make me sad? 10 Even my bones are in pain, while all day long my enemies sneer and ask, “Where is your God?”
11 Why am I discouraged? Why am I restless? I trust you! And I will praise you again because you help me, and you are my God.
A Prayer in Times of Trouble
43 Show that I am right, God! Defend me against everyone who doesn’t know you; rescue me from each of those deceitful liars. 2 I run to you for protection. Why have you turned me away? Why must enemies mistreat me and make me sad?
3 Send your light and your truth to guide me. Let them lead me to your house on your sacred mountain. 4 Then I will worship at your altar because you make me joyful. You are my God, and I will praise you. Yes, I will praise you as I play my harp.
5 Why am I discouraged? Why am I restless? I trust you! And I will praise you again because you help me, and you are my God.
(A special psalm for the people of Korah and for the music leader.)
A Prayer for Help
44 Our God, our ancestors told us what wonders you worked and we listened carefully. 2 You chased off the nations by causing them trouble with your powerful arm. Then you let our ancestors take over their land. 3 Their strength and weapons were not what won the land and gave them victory! You loved them and fought with your powerful arm and your shining glory.
4 You are my God and King, and you give victory[d] to the people of Jacob. 5 By your great power, we knocked our enemies down and stomped on them. 6 I don’t depend on my arrows or my sword to save me. 7 But you saved us from our hateful enemies, and you put them to shame. 8 We boast about you, our God, and we are always grateful.
9 But now you have rejected us; you don’t lead us into battle, and we look foolish. 10 You made us retreat, and our enemies have taken everything we own. 11 You let us be slaughtered like sheep, and you scattered us among the nations. 12 You sold your people for little or nothing, and you earned no profit.
13 You made us look foolish to our neighbors, and people who live nearby insult us and sneer. 14 Foreigners joke about us and shake their heads. 15 I am embarrassed every day, and I blush with shame. 16 But others mock and sneer, as they watch my enemies take revenge on me.
17 All of this has happened to us, though we didn’t forget you or break our agreement. 18 We always kept you in mind and followed your teaching. 19 But you crushed us, and you covered us with deepest darkness where wild animals live.
20 We did not forget you or lift our hands in prayer to foreign gods. 21 You would have known it because you discover every secret thought. 22 We face death all day for you. We are like sheep on their way to be slaughtered.
23 Wake up! Do something, Lord! Why are you sleeping? Don’t desert us forever. 24 Why do you keep looking away? Don’t forget our sufferings and all of our troubles. 25 We are flat on the ground, holding on to the dust. 26 Do something! Help us! Show how kind you are and come to our rescue.
(A special psalm for the people of Korah and for the music leader. To the tune “Lilies.” A love song.)
For a Royal Wedding
45 My thoughts are filled with beautiful words for the king, and I will use my voice as a writer would use pen and ink.
2 No one is as handsome as you! Your words are always kind. That is why God will always bless you. 3 Mighty king, glorious ruler, strap on your sword 4 and ride out in splendor! Win victories for truth and mercy and justice. Do fearsome things with your powerful arm. 5 Send your sharp arrows through enemy hearts and make all nations fall at your feet.
6 You are God, and you will rule forever as king.[e] Your royal power brings about justice. 7 You love justice and hate evil. And so, your God chose you and made you happier than any of your friends. 8 The sweet aroma of the spices myrrh, aloes, and cassia, covers your royal robes. You enjoy the music of harps in palaces decorated with ivory. 9 Daughters of kings are here, and your bride stands at your right side, wearing a wedding gown trimmed with pure gold.[f]
10 Bride of the king, listen carefully to me. Forget your own people and your father’s family. 11 The king is your husband, so do what he desires. 12 All of the richest people from the city of Tyre will try to influence you 13 with precious treasures.
Your bride, my king, has inward beauty,[g] and her wedding gown is woven with threads of gold. 14 Wearing the finest garments, she is brought to you, followed by her young friends, the bridesmaids. 15 Everyone is excited, as they follow you to the royal palace.
16 Your sons and your grandsons will also be kings as your ancestors were. You will make them the rulers everywhere on earth.
17 I will make your name famous from now on, and you will be praised forever and ever.
42.4leading. . . house: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
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