Prayer for Deliverance from Enemies
1Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me;
fight against those who fight against me!
2Take hold of shield and buckler,
and rise up to help me!
3Draw the spear and javelin
against my pursuers;
say to my soul,
“I am your salvation.”
4Let them be put to shame and dishonor
who seek after my life.
Let them be turned back and confounded
who devise evil against me.
5Let them be like chaff before the wind,
with the angel of the Lord driving them on.
6Let their way be dark and slippery,
with the angel of the Lord pursuing them.
7For without cause they hid their net#35.7 Heb a pit, their net for me;
without cause they dug a pit#35.7 The word pit is transposed from the preceding line for my life.
8Let ruin come on them unawares.
And let the net that they hid ensnare them;
let them fall in it—to their ruin.
9Then my soul shall rejoice in the Lord,
exulting in his deliverance.
10All 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.”
11Malicious witnesses rise up;
they ask me about things I do not know.
12They repay me evil for good;
my soul is forlorn.
13But as for me, when they were sick,
I wore sackcloth;
I afflicted myself with fasting.
I prayed with head bowed#35.13 Or My prayer turned back on my bosom,
14as though I grieved for a friend or a brother;
I went about as one who laments for a mother,
bowed down and in mourning.
15But at my stumbling they gathered in glee,
they gathered together against me;
ruffians whom I did not know
tore at me without ceasing;
16they impiously mocked more and more,#35.16 Cn Compare Gk: Heb like the profanest of mockers of a cake
gnashing at me with their teeth.
17How long, O Lord, will you look on?
Rescue me from their ravages,
my life from the lions!
18Then I will thank you in the great congregation;
in the mighty throng I will praise you.
19Do not let my treacherous enemies rejoice over me,
or those who hate me without cause wink the eye.
20For they do not speak peace,
but they conceive deceitful words
against those who are quiet in the land.
21They open wide their mouths against me;
they say, “Aha, Aha,
our eyes have seen it.”
22You have seen, O Lord; do not be silent!
O Lord, do not be far from me!
23Wake up! Bestir yourself for my defense,
for my cause, my God and my Lord!
24Vindicate me, O Lord, my God,
according to your righteousness,
and do not let them rejoice over me.
25Do not let them say to themselves,
“Aha, we have our heart's desire.”
Do not let them say, “We have swallowed you#35.25 Heb him up.”
26Let 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.
27Let 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.”
28Then my tongue shall tell of your righteousness
and of your praise all day long.