Will You Reject Us Forever?
Poems by Ethan the Ezrahite for instruction # 89 Many scholars believe Ps. 89 contains four poems or stanzas. This translation signifies each poem with an inscription.
First Poem – God’s Promises to David
1This forever-song I sing # 89:1 The Hebrew word for “sing” has multiple homonyms. Shuwr can also mean “wall.” When we feel like we are up against a wall, it is time to sing and see ourselves break through by faith. But shuwr can also mean “to behold” or “to perceive.” As we sing to God in abandoned worship, we perceive that his glory is greater than the wall that stands before us. The root word of the word used here for “sing” is sur, which is also the same word used for “having dominion over.” So many times when we sing in worship, exalting the loving-kindness of God, we establish dominion over any thoughts that God might not be faithful or that he may fail us. Sing when you feel defeated and watch as the walls come down and you rise to take dominion over your foes. of the gentle love of God!
Young and old alike will hear about
your faithful, steadfast love—never failing!
2Here’s my chorus: “Your mercy grows through the ages. # 89:2 As translated from the Septuagint.
Your faithfulness is firm, rising up to the skies.”
3I heard the Lord say, “My covenant has been made,
and I’m committed forever to my chosen one, David.
4I have made my oath that there will be sons of David forever,
sons that are kings through every generation.”
Pause in his presence
5-6Can you hear it? Heaven is filled with your praises, O Lord!
All the holy ones are praising you for your miracles.
The sons of God are all praising you for your mighty wonders.
We could search the skies forever and never find one like you.
All the mighty angels could not be compared to you.
7You are a God who is greatly to be feared
as you preside over the council of holy ones.
You are surrounded by trembling ones
who are overwhelmed with fear and dread,
stunned as they stand in awe of you!
8So awesome are you, O Yahweh, Lord God of Angel Armies!
Where could we find anyone as glorious as you?
Your faithfulness shines all around you!
9You rule over oceans and the swelling seas.
When their stormy waves rise, you speak, and they lie still. # 89:9 This is a prophecy of Jesus, who would one day calm the stormy seas. See Matt. 8:23–27.
10You crushed the strongholds of Egypt,
and all your enemies were scattered
at the mighty display of your glory-power.
11All the heavens and everything on earth belong to you,
for you are the Creator of all that is seen and unseen.
12The four corners of the earth were put in place by you.
You made the majestic mountains
that are still shouting their praises to your name.
13Breathtaking and awesome is your power!
Astounding and unbelievable
is your might and strength when it goes on display!
14Your glorious throne rests on a foundation
of righteousness and just verdicts.
Grace and truth are the attendants who go before you.
15O Lord, how blessed are the people
who know the triumphant shout, # 89:15 The Hebrew word for “triumphant shout” is teruah, a homonym of the word for “brokenness.” Our triumphant shout can be powerful even in the midst of our brokenness.
for they walk in the radiance of your presence. # 89:15 Or “in the radiance of your face.”
16We can do nothing but leap for joy all day long,
for we know who you are and what you do,
and you’ve exalted us on high.
17The glory of your splendor is our strength,
and your marvelous favor makes us even stronger,
lifting us even higher!
18You are our King, the holiest one of all;
your wraparound presence is our protection.
Second Poem – God Keeps His Promises
19-20You spoke to your prophets in visions, saying,
“I have found a mighty hero for my people.
I have chosen David as my loving servant and exalted him.
I have anointed him as king with the oil of my holiness.
21I will be strength to him, and I will give him
my grace to sustain him no matter what comes.
22None of his enemies will get the best of him,
nor will the wicked one overpower him.
23For I will crush his every adversary
and do away with all who hate him.
24Because I love him and treasure him,
my faithfulness will always protect him.
I will place my great favor upon him,
and I will cause his power and fame to increase.
25I will set his hand over the sea
and his right hand over the rivers.
26And he will come before me, saying,
‘You truly are my Father, # 89:26 David was the first man in the Bible to address God as “my Father.” my only God, and my strong deliverer!’
27I am setting him apart, favoring him as my firstborn son.
I will make him the most high king in all the earth!
28I will love him forever and always show him kindness.
My covenant with him will never be broken.
29For I have decreed that he will always have an heir—
a dynasty that will release the days of heaven on earth.
30-32But if his children turn from me and forsake my words,
refusing to walk in my truth, renouncing and violating my laws,
then I will surely punish them for their sins
with my stern discipline until they regret it.
33But I will never, no never, lift my faithful love from off their lives.
My kindness will prevail and I will never disown them.
34-35How could I revoke my covenant of love that I promised David?
For I have given him my word, my holy, irrevocable word.
How could I lie to my loving servant David?
36-37Sons of David will continue to reign on his throne,
and their kingdom will endure as long as the sun is in the sky.
This covenant will be an unbreakable promise that
I have established for all time.”
Pause in his presence
Third Poem – Why Has Our King Been Defeated?
38Why have you rejected me, the one you anointed?
Why would you cast me away?
Why would you lose your temper with me?
39You have torn up the contract you made with me, your servant.
You have stripped away my crown # 89:39 In place of the word crown, some translations render “my dignity.” and thrown it to the ground.
40You have torn down all my walls of defense
and have made my every hiding place into ruins.
41All the passersby attack and rob me while my neighbors mock!
42Instead of fighting for me, you take the side of my enemies,
even giving them strength to subdue me,
and then watched them celebrate their victory!
43You are no longer helping me in battle.
You’ve forsaken me to the swords of those
who would strike me down.
44You’ve made my regal splendor to decrease
and allowed my rule to be overthrown.
45Because of you, I’ve become old before my time,
and I’m publicly disgraced!
Pause in his presence
Fourth Poem – Save Us, God
46How long will you hide your love from me?
Have you left me for good?
How long will your anger continue to burn against me?
47Remember, Lord, I am nothing but dust,
here today and so soon blown away.
Is this all you’ve created us for? For nothing but this?
48Which one of us will live forever?
We are all mortal, terminal, for we will all one day die.
Which one of us would ever escape our appointment with death
and dodge our own funeral?
Pause in his presence
49So God, where is all this love and kindness you promised us?
What happened to your covenant with David?
50Have you forgotten how your own servants are being slandered?
Lord God, it seems like I’m carrying in my heart
all the pain and abuse of many people.
51They have relentlessly insulted and persecuted us,
your anointed ones.
52Nevertheless, blessed be our God forever and ever.
Amen! Faithful is our King!
The Numbers Psalms
Psalms of our pilgrimage on earth