A Prayer for National Deliverance#HEBREW TITLE: A poem by Asaph.
1Why have you abandoned us like this, O God?
Will you be angry with your own people forever?
2Remember your people, whom you chose for yourself long ago,
whom you brought out of slavery to be your own tribe.
Remember Mount Zion, where once you lived.
3Walk over these total ruins;
our enemies have destroyed everything in the Temple.
4Your enemies have shouted in triumph in your Temple;
they have placed their flags there as signs of victory.
5They looked like woodsmen
cutting down trees with their axes.#74.5: Verse 5 in Hebrew is unclear.
6They smashed all the wooden panels
with their axes and sledge hammers.
7They wrecked your Temple and set it on fire;
they desecrated the place where you are worshiped.
8They wanted to crush us completely;
they burned down every holy place in the land.
9All our sacred symbols are gone;
there are no prophets left,
and no one knows how long this will last.
10How long, O God, will our enemies laugh at you?
Will they insult your name forever?
11Why have you refused to help us?
Why do you keep your hands behind you?#74.11: Probable text Why do you keep your hands behind you; Hebrew unclear.
12But you have been our king from the beginning, O God;
you have saved us many times.
13 # Ex 14.21 With your mighty strength you divided the sea
and smashed the heads of the sea monsters;
14 # Job 41.1; Ps 104.26; Is 27.1 you crushed the heads of the monster Leviathan#74.14: Leviathan: A legendary monster which was a symbol of the forces of chaos and evil.
and fed his body to desert animals.#74.14: animals; or people.
15You made springs and fountains flow;
you dried up large rivers.
16You created the day and the night;
you set the sun and the moon in their places;
17you set the limits of the earth;
you made summer and winter.
18But remember, O Lord, that your enemies laugh at you,
that they are godless and despise you.
19Don't abandon your helpless people to their cruel enemies;
don't forget your persecuted people!
20Remember the covenant you made with us.
There is violence in every dark corner of the land.
21Don't let the oppressed be put to shame;
let those poor and needy people praise you.
22Rouse yourself, God, and defend your cause!
Remember that godless people laugh at you all day long.
23Don't forget the angry shouts of your enemies,
the continuous noise made by your foes.