For the choir director: A psalm*44: title Hebrew maskil. This may be a literary or musical term. of the descendants of Korah.
1O God, we have heard it with our own ears—
our ancestors have told us
of all you did in their day,
in days long ago:
2You drove out the pagan nations by your power
and gave all the land to our ancestors.
You crushed their enemies
and set our ancestors free.
3They did not conquer the land with their swords;
it was not their own strong arm that gave them victory.
It was your right hand and strong arm
and the blinding light from your face that helped them,
for you loved them.
4You are my King and my God.
You command victories for Israel.*44:4 Hebrew for Jacob. The names “Jacob” and “Israel” are often interchanged throughout the Old Testament, referring sometimes to the individual patriarch and sometimes to the nation.
5Only by your power can we push back our enemies;
only in your name can we trample our foes.
6I do not trust in my bow;
I do not count on my sword to save me.
7You are the one who gives us victory over our enemies;
you disgrace those who hate us.
8O God, we give glory to you all day long
and constantly praise your name.
9But now you have tossed us aside in dishonor.
You no longer lead our armies to battle.
10You make us retreat from our enemies
and allow those who hate us to plunder our land.
11You have butchered us like sheep
and scattered us among the nations.
12You sold your precious people for a pittance,
making nothing on the sale.
13You let our neighbors mock us.
We are an object of scorn and derision to those around us.
14You have made us the butt of their jokes;
they shake their heads at us in scorn.
15We can’t escape the constant humiliation;
shame is written across our faces.
16All we hear are the taunts of our mockers.
All we see are our vengeful enemies.
17All this has happened though we have not forgotten you.
We have not violated your covenant.
18Our hearts have not deserted you.
We have not strayed from your path.
19Yet you have crushed us in the jackal’s desert home.
You have covered us with darkness and death.
20If we had forgotten the name of our God
or spread our hands in prayer to foreign gods,
21God would surely have known it,
for he knows the secrets of every heart.
22But for your sake we are killed every day;
we are being slaughtered like sheep.
23Wake up, O Lord! Why do you sleep?
Get up! Do not reject us forever.
24Why do you look the other way?
Why do you ignore our suffering and oppression?
25We collapse in the dust,
lying face down in the dirt.
26Rise up! Help us!
Ransom us because of your unfailing love.
For the choir director: A psalm of David.
1Oh, the joys of those who are kind to the poor!
The Lord rescues them when they are in trouble.
2The Lord protects them
and keeps them alive.
He gives them prosperity in the land
and rescues them from their enemies.
3The Lord nurses them when they are sick
and restores them to health.
4“O Lord,” I prayed, “have mercy on me.
Heal me, for I have sinned against you.”
5But my enemies say nothing but evil about me.
“How soon will he die and be forgotten?” they ask.
6They visit me as if they were my friends,
but all the while they gather gossip,
and when they leave, they spread it everywhere.
7All who hate me whisper about me,
imagining the worst.
8“He has some fatal disease,” they say.
“He will never get out of that bed!”
9Even my best friend, the one I trusted completely,
the one who shared my food, has turned against me.
10Lord, have mercy on me.
Make me well again, so I can pay them back!
11I know you are pleased with me,
for you have not let my enemies triumph over me.
12You have preserved my life because I am innocent;
you have brought me into your presence forever.
13Praise the Lord, the God of Israel,
who lives from everlasting to everlasting.
Amen and amen!