God's Goodness and Israel's Waywardness
81 1 Make a song to God our strength: make a glad cry to the God of Jacob. 2 Take up the melody, playing on an instrument of music, even on corded instruments. 3 Let the horn be sounded in the time of the new moon, at the full moon, on our holy feast-day: 4 For this is a rule for Israel, and a law of the God of Jacob. 5 He gave it to Joseph as a witness, when he went out over the land of Egypt; then the words of a strange tongue were sounding in my ears. 6 I took the weight from his back; his hands were made free from the baskets. 7 You gave a cry in your trouble, and I made you free; I gave you an answer in the secret place of the thunder; I put you to the test at the waters of Meribah. (Selah.)
8 Give ear, O my people, and I will give you my word, O Israel, if you will only do as I say! 9 There is to be no strange god among you; you are not to give worship to any other god. 10 I am the Lord your God, who took you up from the land of Egypt: let your mouth be open wide, so that I may give you food. 11 But my people did not give ear to my voice; Israel would have nothing to do with me. 12 So I gave them up to the desires of their hearts; that they might go after their evil purposes. 13 If only my people would give ear to me, walking in my ways! 14 I would quickly overcome their haters: my hand would be turned against those who make war on them. 15 The haters of the Lord would be broken, and their destruction would be eternal. 16 I would give them the best grain for food; you would be full of honey from the rock.
A Prayer for Deliverance from Death
88 1 O Lord, God of my salvation, I have been crying to you for help by day and by night: 2 Let my prayer come before you; give ear to my cry: 3 For my soul is full of evils, and my life has come near to the underworld. 4 I am numbered among those who go down into the earth; I have become like a man for whom there is no help: 5 My soul is among the dead, like those in the underworld, to whom you give no more thought; for they are cut off from your care. 6 You have put me in the lowest deep, even in dark places. 7 The weight of your wrath is crushing me, all your waves have overcome me. (Selah.) 8 You have sent my friends far away from me; you have made me a disgusting thing in their eyes: I am shut up, and not able to come out. 9 My eyes are wasting away because of my trouble: Lord, my cry has gone up to you every day, my hands are stretched out to you.
10 Will you do works of wonder for the dead? will the shades come back to give you praise? (Selah.) 11 Will the story of your mercy be given in the house of the dead? will news of your faith come to the place of destruction? 12 May there be knowledge of your wonders in the dark? or of your righteousness where memory is dead? 13 But to you did I send up my cry, O Lord; in the morning my prayer came before you. 14 Lord, why have you sent away my soul? why is your face covered from me? 15 I have been troubled and in fear of death from the time when I was young; your wrath is hard on me, and I have no strength. 16 The heat of your wrath has gone over me; I am broken by your cruel punishments. 17 They are round me all the day like water; they have made a circle about me. 18 You have sent my friends and lovers far from me; I am gone from the memory of those who are dear to me.
Praise for the LORD's Goodness
92 1 It is a good thing to give praise to the Lord, and to make melody to your name, O Most High; 2 To make clear your mercy in the morning, and your unchanging faith every night; 3 On a ten-corded instrument, and on an instrument of music with a quiet sound. 4 For you, O Lord, have made me glad through your work; I will have joy in the works of your hands. 5 O Lord, how great are your works! and your thoughts are very deep. 6 A man without sense has no knowledge of this; and a foolish man may not take it in.
7 When the sinners come up like the grass, and all the workers of evil do well for themselves, it is so that their end may be eternal destruction. 8 But you, O Lord, are on high for ever. 9 For see! your haters, O Lord, will be put to death; all the workers of evil will be put to flight; 10 But my horn is lifted up like the horn of the ox: the best oil is flowing on my head. 11 My eyes have seen trouble come on my haters; my ears have news of the fate of the evil-doers who have come up against me. 12 The good man will be like a tall tree in his strength; his growth will be as the wide-stretching trees of Lebanon. 13 Those who are planted in the house of the Lord will come up tall and strong in his gardens. 14 They will give fruit even when they are old; they will be fertile and full of growth; 15 For a sign that the Lord is upright; he is my Rock, there is no deceit in him.
The Majesty of the LORD
93 1 The Lord is King; he is clothed with glory; the Lord is clothed with strength; power is the cord of his robe; the world is fixed, so that it may not be moved. 2 The seat of your power has been from the past; you are eternal. 3 The rivers send up, O Lord, the rivers send up their voices; they send them up with a loud cry. 4 The Lord in heaven is stronger than the noise of great waters, yes, he is stronger than the great waves of the sea. 5 Your witness is most certain; it is right for your house to be holy, O Lord, for ever.