A Prayer for Protection against Oppressors
17 1 Hear a just cause, O Lord; attend to my cry; give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit. 2 From you let my vindication come; let your eyes see the right. 3 If you try my heart, if you visit me by night, if you test me, you will find no wickedness in me; my mouth does not transgress. 4 As for what others do, by the word of your lips I have avoided the ways of the violent. 5 My steps have held fast to your paths; my feet have not slipped. 6 I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me, hear my words. 7 Wondrously show your steadfast love, O savior of those who seek refuge from their adversaries at your right hand.
8 Guard me as the apple of the eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings, 9 from the wicked who despoil me, my deadly enemies who surround me. 10 They close their hearts to pity; with their mouths they speak arrogantly. 11 They track me down; now they surround me; they set their eyes to cast me to the ground. 12 They are like a lion eager to tear, like a young lion lurking in ambush. 13 Rise up, O Lord, confront them, overthrow them! By your sword deliver my life from the wicked, 14 from mortals-by your hand, O Lord- from mortals whose portion in life is in this world. May their bellies be filled with what you have stored up for them; may their children have more than enough; may they leave something over to their little ones. 15 As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake I shall be satisfied, beholding your likeness.
A Prayer for Rescue from Enemies
35 1 Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me! 2 Take hold of shield and buckler, and rise up to help me! 3 Draw the spear and javelin against my pursuers; say to my soul, "I am your salvation." 4 Let them be put to shame and dishonor who seek after my life. Let them be turned back and confounded who devise evil against me. 5 Let them be like chaff before the wind, with the angel of the Lord driving them on. 6 Let their way be dark and slippery, with the angel of the Lord pursuing them. 7 For without cause they hid their net for me; without cause they dug a pit for my life. 8 Let ruin come on them unawares. And let the net that they hid ensnare them; let them fall in it-to their ruin. 9 Then my soul shall rejoice in the Lord, exulting in his deliverance. 10 All my bones shall say, "O Lord, who is like you? You deliver the weak from those too strong for them, the weak and needy from those who despoil them."
11 Malicious witnesses rise up; they ask me about things I do not know. 12 They repay me evil for good; my soul is forlorn. 13 But as for me, when they were sick, I wore sackcloth; I afflicted myself with fasting. I prayed with head bowed on my bosom, 14 as though I grieved for a friend or a brother; I went about as one who laments for a mother, bowed down and in mourning. 15 But at my stumbling they gathered in glee, they gathered together against me; ruffians whom I did not know tore at me without ceasing; 16 they impiously mocked more and more, gnashing at me with their teeth.
17 How long, O Lord, will you look on? Rescue me from their ravages, my life from the lions! 18 Then I will thank you in the great congregation; in the mighty throng I will praise you. 19 Do not let my treacherous enemies rejoice over me, or those who hate me without cause wink the eye. 20 For they do not speak peace, but they conceive deceitful words against those who are quiet in the land. 21 They open wide their mouths against me; they say, "Aha, Aha, our eyes have seen it." 22 You have seen, O Lord; do not be silent! O Lord, do not be far from me! 23 Wake up! Bestir yourself for my defense, for my cause, my God and my Lord! 24 Vindicate me, O Lord, my God, according to your righteousness, and do not let them rejoice over me. 25 Do not let them say to themselves, "Aha, we have our heart's desire." Do not let them say, "We have swallowed you up." 26 Let all those who rejoice at my calamity be put to shame and confusion; let those who exalt themselves against me be clothed with shame and dishonor. 27 Let those who desire my vindication shout for joy and be glad, and say evermore, "Great is the Lord, who delights in the welfare of his servant." 28 Then my tongue shall tell of your righteousness and of your praise all day long.
A Prayer for Protection from Enemies
54 1 Save me, O God, by your name, and vindicate me by your might. 2 Hear my prayer, O God; give ear to the words of my mouth. 3 For the insolent have risen against me, the ruthless seek my life; they do not set God before them. Selah
4 But surely, God is my helper; the Lord is the upholder of my life. 5 He will repay my enemies for their evil. In your faithfulness, put an end to them. 6 With a freewill offering I will sacrifice to you; I will give thanks to your name, O Lord, for it is good. 7 For he has delivered me from every trouble, and my eye has looked in triumph on my enemies.
God Satisfies the Thirsting Soul
63 1 O God, you are my God, I seek you, my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. 2 So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory.
3 Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. 4 So I will bless you as long as I live; I will lift up my hands and call on your name. 5 My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast, and my mouth praises you with joyful lips 6 when I think of you on my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night;
7 for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy. 8 My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me. 9 But those who seek to destroy my life shall go down into the depths of the earth; 10 they shall be given over to the power of the sword, they shall be prey for jackals. 11 But the king shall rejoice in God; all who swear by him shall exult, for the mouths of liars will be stopped.