Plea for Relief from Oppressors
A Psalm of Asaph.
1Truly God is good to the upright,#73.1 Or good to Israel
to those who are pure in heart.
2But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled;
my steps had nearly slipped.
3For I was envious of the arrogant;
I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4For they have no pain;
their bodies are sound and sleek.
5They are not in trouble as others are;
they are not plagued like other people.
6Therefore pride is their necklace;
violence covers them like a garment.
7Their eyes swell out with fatness;
their hearts overflow with follies.
8They scoff and speak with malice;
loftily they threaten oppression.
9They set their mouths against heaven,
and their tongues range over the earth.
10Therefore the people turn and praise them,#73.10 Cn: Heb his people return here
and find no fault in them.#73.10 Cn: Heb abundant waters are drained by them
11And they say, “How can God know?
Is there knowledge in the Most High?”
12Such are the wicked;
always at ease, they increase in riches.
13All in vain I have kept my heart clean
and washed my hands in innocence.
14For all day long I have been plagued,
and am punished every morning.
15If I had said, “I will talk on in this way,”
I would have been untrue to the circle of your children.
16But when I thought how to understand this,
it seemed to me a wearisome task,
17until I went into the sanctuary of God;
then I perceived their end.
18Truly you set them in slippery places;
you make them fall to ruin.
19How they are destroyed in a moment,
swept away utterly by terrors!
20They are#73.20 Cn: Heb Lord like a dream when one awakes;
on awaking you despise their phantoms.
21When my soul was embittered,
when I was pricked in heart,
22I was stupid and ignorant;
I was like a brute beast toward you.
23Nevertheless I am continually with you;
you hold my right hand.
24You guide me with your counsel,
and afterward you will receive me with honor.#73.24 Or to glory
25Whom have I in heaven but you?
And there is nothing on earth that I desire other than you.
26My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength#73.26 Heb rock of my heart and my portion forever.
27Indeed, those who are far from you will perish;
you put an end to those who are false to you.
28But for me it is good to be near God;
I have made the Lord God my refuge,
to tell of all your works.