A Prayer for Rescue from Persecutors

571 Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me; for the hope of my soul is in you: I will keep myself safely under the shade of your wings, till these troubles are past. 2 I will send up my cry to the Most High God; to God who does all things for me. 3 He will send from heaven, and take me from the power of him whose desire is for my destruction. God will send out his mercy and his good faith. 4 My soul is among lions; I am stretched out among those who are on fire, even the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and whose tongue is a sharp sword. 5 O God, be lifted up higher than the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth. 6 They have made ready a net for my steps; my soul is bent down; they have made a great hole before me, and have gone down into it themselves. (Selah.)

7 My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed; I will make songs, and give praise. 8 You are my glory; let the instruments of music be awake; I myself will be awake with the dawn. 9 I will give you praise, O Lord, among the peoples; I will make songs to you among the nations. 10 For your mercy is great, stretching up to the heavens, and your righteousness goes up to the clouds. 11 Be lifted up, O God, higher than the heavens, let your glory be over all the earth.

A Prayer for the Punishment of the Wicked

581 Is there righteousness in your mouths, O you gods? are you upright judges, O you sons of men? 2 The purposes of your hearts are evil; your hands are full of cruel doings on the earth. 3 The evil-doers are strange from the first; from the hour of their birth they go out of the true way, saying false words. 4 Their poison is like the poison of a snake; they are like the adder, whose ears are shut; 5 Who will not be moved by the voice of the wonder-worker, however great are his powers.

6 O God, let their teeth be broken in their mouths; let the great teeth of the young lions be pulled out, O Lord. 7 Let them be turned to liquid like the ever-flowing waters; let them be cut off like the grass by the way. 8 Let them be like an after-birth which is turned to water and comes to an end; like the fruit of a woman who gives birth before her time, let them not see the sun. 9 Before they are conscious of it, let them be cut down like thorns; let a strong wind take them away like waste growth. 10 The upright man will be glad when he sees their punishment; his feet will be washed in the blood of the evil-doer. 11 So that men will say, Truly there is a reward for righteousness; truly there is a God who is judge on the earth.

A Prayer for Deliverance from Enemies

591 Take me out of the hands of the cruel ones, O my God; keep me safe from those who come up against me. 2 Take me out of the power of the workers of evil, and keep me safe from the men of blood. 3 For see, they are watching in secret for my soul; the strong have come together against me? but not because of my sin, or my evil-doing, O Lord. 4 For no sin of mine they go quickly and get themselves ready; be awake and come to my help, and see. 5 You, O Lord God of armies, are the God of Israel; come now and give punishment to the nations; have no mercy on any workers of deceit. (Selah.) 6 They come back in the evening; they make a noise like a dog, and go round the town. 7 See, hate is dropping from their lips; curses are on their tongues: they say, Who gives attention to it?

8 But you are laughing at them, O Lord; you will make sport of all the nations. 9 O my strength, I will put my hope in you; because God is my strong tower. 10 The God of my mercy will go before me: God will let me see my desire effected on my haters. 11 Put them not to death, for so my people will keep the memory of them: let them be sent in all directions by your power; make them low, O Lord our saviour. 12 Because of the sin of their mouths and the word of their lips, let them even be taken in their pride; and for their curses and their deceit, 13 Put an end to them in your wrath, put an end to them, so that they may not be seen again; let them see that God is ruling in Jacob and to the ends of the earth. (Selah.) 14 And in the evening let them come back, and make a noise like a dog, and go round the town. 15 Let them go wandering up and down in search of food, and be there all night if they have not enough. 16 But I will make songs of your power; yes, I will give cries of joy for your mercy in the morning; because you have been my strength and my high tower in the day of my trouble. 17 To you, O my strength, will I make my song: because God is my high tower, even the God of my mercy.

The Example of Abraham

41 What, then, may we say that Abraham, our father after the flesh, has got? 2 For if Abraham got righteousness by works, he has reason for pride; but not before God. 3 But what does it say in the holy Writings? And Abraham had faith in God, and it was put to his account as righteousness. 4 Now, the reward is credited to him who does works, not as of grace but as a debt. 5 But to him who without working has faith in him who gives righteousness to the evil-doer, his faith is put to his account as righteousness. 6 As David says that there is a blessing on the man to whose account God puts righteousness without works, saying, 7 Happy are those who have forgiveness for their wrongdoing, and whose sins are covered. 8 Happy is the man against whom no sin is recorded by the Lord.

9 Is this blessing, then, for the circumcision only, or in the same way for those who have not circumcision? for we say that the faith of Abraham was put to his account as righteousness. 10 How, then, was it judged? when he had circumcision, or when he had it not? Not when he had it, but when he did not have it: 11 And he was given the sign of circumcision as a witness of the faith which he had before he underwent circumcision: so that he might be the father of all those who have faith, though they have not circumcision, and so that righteousness might be put to their account; 12 And the father of circumcision to those who not only are of the circumcision, but who keep to the way of that faith which our father Abraham had before he underwent circumcision.

The Promise Realized through Faith

13 For God's word, that the earth would be his heritage, was given to Abraham, not through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. 14 For if they who are of the law are the people who get the heritage, then faith is made of no use, and the word of God has no power; 15 For the outcome of the law is wrath; but where there is no law it will not be broken. 16 For this reason it is of faith, so that it may be through grace; and so that the word of God may be certain to all the seed; not only to that which is of the law, but to that which is of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all,

17 (As it is said in the holy Writings, I have made you a father of a number of nations) before him in whom he had faith, that is, God, who gives life to the dead, and to whom the things which are not are as if they were. 18 Who without reason for hope, in faith went on hoping, so that he became the father of a number of nations, as it had been said, So will your seed be. 19 And not being feeble in faith though his body seemed to him little better than dead (he being about a hundred years old) and Sarah was no longer able to have children: 20 Still, he did not give up faith in the undertaking of God, but was made strong by faith, giving glory to God, 21 And being certain that God was able to keep his word. 22 For which reason it was put to his account as righteousness.

23 Now, it was not because of him only that this was said, 24 But for us in addition, to whose account it will be put, if we have faith in him who made Jesus our Lord come back again from the dead, 25 Who was put to death for our evil-doing, and came to life again so that we might have righteousness.