I Need You, Lord
King David’s poetic song for the Pure and Shining One
1God always blesses those who are kind to the poor and helpless.
They’re the first ones God helps
when they find themselves in any trouble.
2The Lord will preserve and protect them.
They’ll be honored and esteemed # 41:2 Or “They will be blessed in the land.”
while their enemies are defeated.
3When they are sick, lying upon their bed of suffering,
God will restore them.
He will raise them up again and restore them back to health.
4So in my sickness I say to you,
“Lord, be my kind healer.
Heal my body and soul; heal me, God!
For I have confessed my sins to you.” # 41:4 Or “For I have sinned against you.”
5But those who hate me wish the worst for me, saying,
“When will he die and be forgotten?”
6And when these “friends” come to visit me
with their pious sympathy and their hollow words
and with hypocrisy hidden in their hearts,
I can see right through it all.
For they come merely to gather gossip about me,
using all they find to mock me with malicious hearts of slander.
7They are wicked whisperers who imagine the worst for me,
repeating their rumors, saying,
8“He got what he deserved; it’s over for him!
The spirit of infirmity # 41:8 Or “A thing of Belial” or “An affliction from the abandoned one.” is upon him,
and he’ll never get over this illness.”
9Even my ally, my friend, has turned against me.
He was one I totally trusted with my life,
sharing supper with him, # 41:9 In the ancient Near Eastern culture, sharing a meal together was a sign of covenant friendship.
and now he shows me nothing but betrayal and treachery.
He has sold me as an enemy. # 41:9 The Hebrew literally reads “He lifted up his heel against me.” This is a powerful figure of speech meaning he was sold as an enemy and was treated treacherously. This verse was quoted, in part, by Jesus at the Last Supper (see John 13:18 and footnote).
10So Lord, please don’t desert me when I need you!
Give me grace and get me back on my feet
so I can triumph over them all.
11Then I’ll know you’re pleased with me
when you allow me to taste victory over all my foes.
12Now stand up for me and don’t let me fall,
for I’ve walked with integrity.
Keep me before your face forever.
13Everyone praise the Lord God of Israel, always and forever!
For he is from eternity past
and will remain for the eternity to come.
That’s the way it will be forever.
Faithful is our King! Amen! # 41:13 Some scholars believe this last verse was added as a “doxology of praise,” marking the end of the first book of Psalms. The word amen could be translated as “Faithful is our King!”
The Exodus Psalms
Psalms of suffering and redemption