A Prayer for Protection against Persecutors
140 1 God, get me out of here, away from this evil; protect me from these vicious people. 2 All they do is think up new ways to be bad; they spend their days plotting war games. 3 They practice the sharp rhetoric of hate and hurt, speak venomous words that maim and kill. 4 God, keep me out of the clutch of these wicked ones, protect me from these vicious people; 5 Stuffed with self-importance, they plot ways to trip me up, determined to bring me down. These crooks invent traps to catch me and do their best to incriminate me. 6 I prayed, "God, you're my God! Listen, God! Mercy! 7 God, my Lord, Strong Savior, protect me when the fighting breaks out!
8 Don't let the wicked have their way, God, don't give them an inch!" 9 These troublemakers all around me - let them drown in their own verbal poison. 10 Let God pile hellfire on them, let him bury them alive in crevasses! 11 These loudmouths - don't let them be taken seriously; These savages - let the Devil hunt them down! 12 I know that you, God, are on the side of victims, that you care for the rights of the poor. 13 And I know that the righteous personally thank you, that good people are secure in your presence.
A Prayer for Preservation from Evil
141 1 God, come close. Come quickly! Open your ears - it's my voice you're hearing! 2 Treat my prayer as sweet incense rising; my raised hands are my evening prayers. 3 Post a guard at my mouth, God, set a watch at the door of my lips. 4 Don't let me so much as dream of evil or thoughtlessly fall into bad company. And these people who only do wrong - don't let them lure me with their sweet talk!
5 May the Just One set me straight, may the Kind One correct me, Don't let sin anoint my head. I'm praying hard against their evil ways! 6 Oh, let their leaders be pushed off a high rock cliff; make them face the music. 7 Like a rock pulverized by a maul, let their bones be scattered at the gates of hell. 8 But God, dear Lord, I only have eyes for you. Since I've run for dear life to you, take good care of me. 9 Protect me from their evil scheming, from all their demonic subterfuge. 10 Let the wicked fall flat on their faces, while I walk off without a scratch. A David prayer - when he was in the cave.
A Prayer for Help in Trouble
142 1 I cry out loudly to God, loudly I plead with God for mercy. 2 I spill out all my complaints before him, and spell out my troubles in detail: 3 "As I sink in despair, my spirit ebbing away, you know how I'm feeling, Know the danger I'm in, the traps hidden in my path.
4 Look right, look left - there's not a soul who cares what happens! I'm up against it, with no exit - bereft, left alone. 5 I cry out, God, call out: 'You're my last chance, my only hope for life!' 6 Oh listen, please listen; I've never been this low. Rescue me from those who are hunting me down; I'm no match for them. 7 Get me out of this dungeon so I can thank you in public. Your people will form a circle around me and you'll bring me showers of blessing!"
A Prayer for Deliverance and Guidance
143 1 Listen to this prayer of mine, God; pay attention to what I'm asking. Answer me - you're famous for your answers! Do what's right for me. 2 But don't, please don't, haul me into court; not a person alive would be acquitted there. 3 The enemy hunted me down; he kicked me and stomped me within an inch of my life. He put me in a black hole, buried me like a corpse in that dungeon. 4 I sat there in despair, my spirit draining away, my heart heavy, like lead. 5 I remembered the old days, went over all you've done, pondered the ways you've worked, 6 Stretched out my hands to you, as thirsty for you as a desert thirsty for rain.
7 Hurry with your answer, God! I'm nearly at the end of my rope. Don't turn away; don't ignore me! That would be certain death. 8 If you wake me each morning with the sound of your loving voice, I'll go to sleep each night trusting in you. Point out the road I must travel; I'm all ears, all eyes before you. 9 Save me from my enemies, God - you're my only hope! 10 Teach me how to live to please you, because you're my God. Lead me by your blessed Spirit into cleared and level pastureland. 11 Keep up your reputation, God - give me life! In your justice, get me out of this trouble! 12 In your great love, vanquish my enemies; make a clean sweep of those who harass me. And why? Because I'm your servant.
A Prayer for Rescue and Prosperity
144 1 Blessed be God, my mountain, who trains me to fight fair and well. 2 He's the bedrock on which I stand, the castle in which I live, my rescuing knight, The high crag where I run for dear life, while he lays my enemies low. 3 I wonder why you care, God - why do you bother with us at all? 4 All we are is a puff of air; we're like shadows in a campfire. 5 Step down out of heaven, God; ignite volcanoes in the hearts of the mountains. 6 Hurl your lightnings in every direction; shoot your arrows this way and that. 7 Reach all the way from sky to sea: pull me out of the ocean of hate, out of the grip of those barbarians 8 Who lie through their teeth, who shake your hand then knife you in the back.
9 O God, let me sing a new song to you, let me play it on a twelve-string guitar - 10 A song to the God who saved the king, the God who rescued David, his servant. 11 Rescue me from the enemy sword, release me from the grip of those barbarians Who lie through their teeth, who shake your hand then knife you in the back. 12 Make our sons in their prime like sturdy oak trees, Our daughters as shapely and bright as fields of wildflowers. 13 Fill our barns with great harvest, fill our fields with huge flocks; 14 Protect us from invasion and exile - eliminate the crime in our streets. 15 How blessed the people who have all this! How blessed the people who have God for God!
Praise for the LORD's Goodness and Power
145 1 I lift you high in praise, my God, O my King! and I'll bless your name into eternity. 2 I'll bless you every day, and keep it up from now to eternity. 3 God is magnificent; he can never be praised enough. There are no boundaries to his greatness. 4 Generation after generation stands in awe of your work; each one tells stories of your mighty acts. 5 Your beauty and splendor have everyone talking; I compose songs on your wonders. 6 Your marvelous doings are headline news; I could write a book full of the details of your greatness. 7 The fame of your goodness spreads across the country; your righteousness is on everyone's lips. 8 God is all mercy and grace - not quick to anger, is rich in love. 9 God is good to one and all; everything he does is suffused with grace.
10 Creation and creatures applaud you, God; 11 your holy people bless you. They talk about the glories of your rule, they exclaim over your splendor, 12 Letting the world know of your power for good, the lavish splendor of your kingdom. 13 Your kingdom is a kingdom eternal; you never get voted out of office. God always does what he says, and is gracious in everything he does. 14 God gives a hand to those down on their luck, gives a fresh start to those ready to quit. 15 All eyes are on you, expectant; you give them their meals on time. 16 Generous to a fault, you lavish your favor on all creatures. 17 Everything God does is right - the trademark on all his works is love. 18 God's there, listening for all who pray, for all who pray and mean it. 19 He does what's best for those who fear him - hears them call out, and saves them. 20 God sticks by all who love him, but it's all over for those who don't. 21 My mouth is filled with God's praise. Let everything living bless him, bless his holy name from now to eternity!