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Psalm 31

Prayer and Praise for Deliverance from Enemies

To the leader. A Psalm of David.

In you, O Lord, I seek refuge;
    do not let me ever be put to shame;
    in your righteousness deliver me.(A)
Incline your ear to me;
    rescue me speedily.
Be a rock of refuge for me,
    a strong fortress to save me.(B)

You are indeed my rock and my fortress;
    for your name’s sake lead me and guide me;(C)
take me out of the net that is hidden for me,
    for you are my refuge.(D)
Into your hand I commit my spirit;
    you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God.(E)

You hate[a] those who pay regard to worthless idols,
    but I trust in the Lord.(F)
I will exult and rejoice in your steadfast love,
    because you have seen my affliction;
    you have taken notice of my adversities(G)
and have not delivered me into the hand of the enemy;
    you have set my feet in a broad place.(H)

Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress;
    my eye wastes away from grief,
    my soul and body also.
10 For my life is spent with sorrow
    and my years with sighing;
my strength fails because of my misery,[b]
    and my bones waste away.(I)

11 I am the scorn of all my adversaries,
    a horror[c] to my neighbors,
an object of dread to my acquaintances;
    those who see me in the street flee from me.(J)
12 I have passed out of mind like one who is dead;
    I have become like a broken vessel.(K)
13 For I hear the whispering of many—
    terror all around!—
as they scheme together against me,
    as they plot to take my life.(L)

14 But I trust in you, O Lord;
    I say, “You are my God.”(M)
15 My times are in your hand;
    deliver me from the hand of my enemies and persecutors.(N)
16 Let your face shine upon your servant;
    save me in your steadfast love.(O)
17 Do not let me be put to shame, O Lord,
    for I call on you;
let the wicked be put to shame;
    let them go dumbfounded to Sheol.(P)
18 Let the lying lips be stilled
    that speak insolently against the righteous
    with pride and contempt.(Q)

19 O how abundant is your goodness
    that you have laid up for those who fear you
and accomplished for those who take refuge in you,
    in the sight of everyone!(R)
20 In the shelter of your presence you hide them
    from human plots;
you hold them safe under your shelter
    from contentious tongues.(S)

21 Blessed be the Lord,
    for he has wondrously shown his steadfast love to me
    when I was beset as a city under siege.(T)
22 I had said in my alarm,
    “I am driven far[d] from your sight.”
But you heard my supplications
    when I cried out to you for help.(U)

23 Love the Lord, all you his saints.
    The Lord preserves the faithful
    but abundantly repays the one who acts haughtily.(V)
24 Be strong, and let your heart take courage,
    all you who wait for the Lord.(W)

Psalm 32

The Joy of Forgiveness

Of David. A Maskil.

Happy are those whose transgression is forgiven,
    whose sin is covered.(X)
Happy are those to whom the Lord imputes no iniquity
    and in whose spirit there is no deceit.(Y)

While I kept silent, my body wasted away
    through my groaning all day long.(Z)
For day and night your hand was heavy upon me;
    my strength was dried up[e] as by the heat of summer. Selah(AA)

Then I acknowledged my sin to you,
    and I did not hide my iniquity;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
    and you forgave the guilt of my sin. Selah(AB)

Therefore let all who are faithful
    offer prayer to you;
at a time of distress,[f] the rush of mighty waters
    shall not reach them.(AC)
You are a hiding place for me;
    you preserve me from trouble;
    you surround me with glad cries of deliverance. Selah(AD)

I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go;
    I will counsel you with my eye upon you.(AE)
Do not be like a horse or a mule, without understanding,
    whose temper must be curbed with bit and bridle,
    else it will not stay near you.(AF)

10 Many are the torments of the wicked,
    but steadfast love surrounds those who trust in the Lord.(AG)
11 Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, O righteous,
    and shout for joy, all you upright in heart.(AH)


  1. 31.6 Heb ms Gk Syr Jerome: MT I hate
  2. 31.10 Gk Syr: Heb my iniquity
  3. 31.11 Cn: Heb exceedingly
  4. 31.22 Heb mss: MT cut off
  5. 32.4 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  6. 32.6 Cn: Heb at a time of finding only

16 Now the son of Paul’s sister heard about the ambush, so he went and gained entrance to the barracks and told Paul.(A) 17 Paul called one of the centurions and said, “Take this young man to the tribune, for he has something to report to him.” 18 So he took him, brought him to the tribune, and said, “The prisoner Paul called me and asked me to bring this young man to you; he has something to tell you.”(B) 19 The tribune took him by the hand, drew him aside privately, and asked, “What is it that you have to report to me?” 20 He answered, “The Jews have agreed to ask you to bring Paul down to the council tomorrow, as though they were going to inquire more thoroughly into his case.(C) 21 But do not be persuaded by them, for more than forty of their men are lying in ambush for him. They have bound themselves by an oath neither to eat nor drink until they kill him. They are ready now and are waiting for your consent.”(D) 22 So the tribune dismissed the young man, ordering him, “Tell no one that you have informed me of this.”

Paul Sent to Felix the Governor

23 Then he summoned two of the centurions and said, “Get ready to leave by nine o’clock tonight for Caesarea with two hundred soldiers, seventy horsemen, and two hundred spearmen.(E) 24 Also provide mounts for Paul to ride and take him safely to Felix the governor.”(F) 25 He wrote a letter to this effect:

26 “Claudius Lysias to his Excellency the governor Felix, greetings.(G) 27 This man was seized by the Jews and was about to be killed by them, but when I had learned that he was a Roman, I came with the guard and rescued him.(H) 28 Since I wanted to know the charge for which they accused him, I had him brought to their council.(I) 29 I found that he was accused concerning questions of their law but was charged with nothing deserving death or imprisonment.(J) 30 When I was informed that there would be a plot against the man, I sent him to you at once, ordering his accusers also to state before you what they have against him.”[a](K)

31 So the soldiers, according to their instructions, took Paul and brought him during the night to Antipatris. 32 The next day they let the horsemen go on with him, while they returned to the barracks.(L) 33 When they came to Caesarea and delivered the letter to the governor, they presented Paul also before him.(M) 34 On reading the letter, he asked what province he belonged to, and when he learned that he was from Cilicia,(N) 35 he said, “I will give you a hearing when your accusers arrive.” Then he ordered that he be kept under guard in Herod’s headquarters.[b](O)

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  1. 23.30 Other ancient authorities add Farewell
  2. 23.35 Gk praetorium