A Prayer for God to Throw down the Wicked
1Why, O Yahweh, do you stand far off?
Why do you hide#Or “shut your eyes” during times of distress?
2In arrogance the wicked persecutes#Or “pursues” the poor.
Let them be caught in the schemes that they devised,
3for the wicked boasts about the desire of his heart,#Literally “soul”
and the one greedy for gain curses and treats Yahweh with contempt.
4With bald-faced pride#Literally “According to the height of his nose” the wicked will not seek God.
There is no God in any of his thoughts.
5His ways#According to the reading tradition (Qere) endure at all times.#Hebrew “time”
Your judgments are aloof from him.
As for all his enemies, he scoffs at them.
6He says in his heart, “I shall not be moved
throughout all generations,#Literally “for a generation and a generation” during which I will have no trouble.”
7His mouth is filled with cursing,
with deceits and oppression;
under his tongue are trouble and evil.
8He sits in ambush in villages;
in the hiding places he kills the innocent.
His eyes lurk#Literally “lie hid” for the helpless.
9He lies in ambush secretly,#Literally “in the secret places” like a lion in a thicket.
He lies in ambush to seize the poor;
he seizes the poor by catching him in his net.
10He is crushed;#Or “and he the wicked stoops” he is bowed down;#Or “he the wicked crouches”
so#Or “and” the helpless host#According to the reading tradition (Qere) falls by his might.#Literally “mighty ones”
11He says in his heart, “God has forgotten.
He has hidden his face.
He never sees.”
12Rise up, O Yahweh;
O God, lift up your hand.
Do not forget the afflicted.
13Why does the wicked treat God with contempt?
He says in his heart, “You will not call me to account.”
14But you have seen; indeed you have noted trouble and grief
to take it into your hand.
The helpless abandons himself upon you;
you have been the helper for the orphan.
15Break the arm of the wicked,
and as for the evil man—
seek out his wickedness until you find none.
16Yahweh is king forever and ever;
the nations have perished from his land.
17The longing of the afflicted you have heard, O Yahweh.
You will make their heart secure. You will listen attentively#Literally “cause your ear to hear”
18to render judgment for the fatherless and the oppressed
so that a mere mortal from the earth will no longer cause terror.