PSALM 85#A national lament reminding God of past favors and forgiveness (Ps 85:2–4) and begging for forgiveness and grace now (Ps 85:5–8). A speaker represents the people who wait humbly with open hearts (Ps 85:9–10): God will be active on their behalf (Ps 85:11–13). The situation suggests the conditions of Judea during the early postexilic period, the fifth century B.C.; the thoughts are similar to those of postexilic prophets (Hg 1:5–11; 2:6–9).
Prayer for Divine Favor
1For the leader. A psalm of the Korahites.
2You once favored, Lord, your land,
restored the captives of Jacob.#a. [85:2] Ps 14:7; 126:4.
3You forgave the guilt of your people,
pardoned all their sins.Selah
4You withdrew all your wrath,
turned back from your burning anger.#b. [85:4] Ps 78:38; Ex 32:14; Is 48:9.
5Restore us, God of our salvation;
let go of your displeasure with us.#c. [85:5] Ps 80:4.
6Will you be angry with us forever,
prolong your anger for all generations?#d. [85:6] Ps 79:5; 89:47.
7Certainly you will again restore our life,
that your people may rejoice in you.
8Show us, Lord, your mercy;
grant us your salvation.
9#The prophet listens to God’s revelation, cf. Heb 2:1.I will listen for what God, the Lord, has to say;
surely he will speak of peace
To his people and to his faithful.
May they not turn to foolishness!
10Near indeed is his salvation for those who fear him;
glory will dwell in our land.
11#Divine activity is personified as pairs of virtues.Love and truth will meet;
justice and peace will kiss.#e. [85:11] Ps 89:15; 97:2.
12Truth will spring from the earth;
justice will look down from heaven.#f. [85:12] Is 45:8.
13Yes, the Lord will grant his bounty;
our land will yield its produce.#g. [85:13] Ps 67:7; Lv 26:4; Ez 34:27; Hos 2:23–24; Zec 8:12.
14Justice will march before him,
and make a way for his footsteps.
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