A Psalm. Of Solomon. With Song. Of the King.
O Lord, thou art our king for ever and ever, For in thee, O God, shall our soul glory. 2 What is the duration of man's life upon earth? As are his days, so is his hope set upon them. 3 But we will hope in God our saviour; For the might of our God is for ever with mercy, (4) 3And the kingdom of our God is for ever over the nations in judgement. (5) 4Thou, Lord, didst choose David as king over Israel, And thou didst swear to him concerning his posterity for ever, That his kingdom would not fail before thee. (6) 5But, for our sins, there rose up against us sinners: They assailed us and thrust us out (they to whom thou didst give no promise), (7) They took possession with violence, and did not praise thy honourable name. 6 They set up in splendour a kingdom in their pride, 1 The sense of the Gk. is uncertain: possibly ‘as a result of their elevation’. (8) They laid waste the throne of David in the arrogance of their fortune. 2 Lit. ‘change’ (i.e. of fate). 7 And thou, O God, wilt overthrow them and wilt remove their offspring from the earth, (9) When there rises up against them a man that is foreign to our race. (10) 8According to their sins wilt thou recompense them, O God, That it may befall them according to their works. (11) 9God will show them no pity. He sought out their offspring, and let not one of them go. (12) 10Faithful is the Lord in all his judgements which he performs on earth. (13) 11The lawless one laid waste our land so that none inhabited it: They destroyed young and old and their children together. (14) 12In the wrath of his anger 3 Gk. ‘beauty’, which can hardly be right. Perhaps an original Heb. ’pyw (‘his anger’) was misread as ypyw (‘his beauty’), or alternatively the Gk. κάλλους (‘beauty’) may be a corruption of καπνου̂ (‘smoke’ – i.e. ‘in his smoking anger’, cp. Isa. lxv. 5 ). he sent them off to the west, And the rulers of the land he exposed to derision without mercy. (15) 13In his foreign ways the enemy acted arrogantly, And his heart was alien from our God. (16) 14And everything he did in Jerusalem Was in accordance with what the heathen do in their strong cities. 4 MSS ‘in their cities to their gods’. (17) 15And the children of the covenant ruled over them among peoples of mixed origin: There was not among them one who dealt honestly and faithfully in the midst of Jerusalem. (18) 16Those who loved the assemblies of the holy fled from them, As sparrows scattered from their nest. (19) 17They roamed about in deserted places that their souls might be preserved from harm; And precious in the eyes of those who lived abroad was any that escaped alive from them. (20) 18Over the whole earth were they scattered by lawless men. (21) For the heavens withheld the rain from dropping upon the earth: 19 The perennial springs from the deeps were stopped up, and the streams from the high mountains stayed; For there was none among them who dealt righteously and justly. 20 From their ruler to the lowest of the people, they were utterly sinful: (22) The king was a transgressor, and the judge disobedient, and the people sinful. (23) 21Behold, O Lord, and raise up for them their king, the son of David, For the time which thou didst foresee, O God, that he may reign over Isrel thy servant. (24) 22And gird him with strength, that he may shatter unrighteous rulers; (25) And purify Jerusalem of the nations which trample her down in destruction. (26) 23In wisdom, in righteousness, may he expel 5 These verbs could be taken as infinitives rather than optatives (i.e. following on ‘gird him … that …’). sinners from the inheritance: May he smash 5 These verbs could be taken as infinitives rather than optatives (i.e. following on ‘gird him … that …’). the sinner's arrogance like a potter's vessel. 24 With a rod of iron may he break 5 These verbs could be taken as infinitives rather than optatives (i.e. following on ‘gird him … that …’). in pieces all their substance: (27) May he destroy 5 These verbs could be taken as infinitives rather than optatives (i.e. following on ‘gird him … that …’). the lawless nations by the word of his mouth, 25 So that, at his rebuke, nations flee before him; And may he reprove 5 These verbs could be taken as infinitives rather than optatives (i.e. following on ‘gird him … that …’). sinners by the word of their own hearts. (28) 26And he shall gather together a holy people, whom he shall lead in righteousness, And he shall judge the tribes of the people which has been sanctified by the Lord his God. (29) 27And he shall not permit unrighteousness to lodge any more in their midst, Nor shall there dwell with them any man with knowledge of wickedness; (30) For he shall know them, that they are all sons of their God. 28 And he shall divide them up by their tribes over the land: (31) Neither settler nor alien shall live among them any more. 29 He shall judge peoples and nations in the wisdom of his righteousness. Selah. (32) 30And he shall have the peoples of the Gentiles to serve him under his yoke; And he shall glorify the Lord at the centre 6 Lit. ‘mark’ (i.e. navel). Others take the phrase as ‘conspicuously before’; but it is doubtful whether the Gk. can bear this meaning. of all the earth, (33) And he shall purify Jerusalem, making it holy as of old; (34) 31So that nations shall come from the ends of the earth to see his glory, Bringing as gifts her sons who had fainted, (35) And to see the glory of the Lord, with which God glorified her. 32 And he shall be a righteous king, taught by God, over them, (36) And there shall be no unrighteousness in his days in their midst, For all shall be holy, and their king the anointed Lord. (37) 33And he shall not put his trust in horse and rider and bow, Nor shall he increase his store of gold and silver for war, Nor shall he concentrate his hopes on numbers for the day of battle. (38) 34The Lord himself is his king, the hope of him who is strong in the hope of God; And he shall have mercy on all the nations that stand before him in fear. (39) 35For he will smite the earth with the word of his mouth for ever: (40) He will bless the people of the Lord with wisdom and joy; (41) 36And he himself is pure from sin, so that he may rule a great people, That he may rebuke rulers, and remove sinners by the might of his word. (42) 37And during his days he shall not be weakened, relying on his God; For God created him strong in the holy spirit, And wise in prudent counsel, together with strength and righteousness; (43) 38And the blessing of the Lord is with him providing 7 Gk. ‘in’. strength, And he shall not be weakened. (44) 39His hope is upon the Lord: Who then can prevail against him – 40Strong in his works, and mighty in the fear of God, (45) Shepherding the flock of the Lord faithfully and righteously? And he will not let any among them languish in their pasturing. (46) 41And he shall lead them in equity; And there shall be no arrogance among them that any of them should be oppressed. (47) 42This is the majesty of the king of Israel, of which God has knowledge, So as to raise him up over the house of Israel, to educate them. (48) 43His words are refined more than the very choicest gold: In the assemblies he will administer justice to the tribes of a people that has been sanctified: (49) His words are as the words of holy men amidst sanctified peoples. (50) 44Blessed are they who shall be in those days, Seeing the good things of Israel which God shall accomplish in the gathering of the tribes. (51) 45May God hasten his mercy upon Israel, May he deliver us 8 Gk. ‘he will deliver us’. from the uncleanness of profane enemies. 46 The Lord is our king for ever and ever.
1 The sense of the Gk. is uncertain: possibly ‘as a result of their elevation’.
2 Lit. ‘change’ (i.e. of fate).
3 Gk. ‘beauty’, which can hardly be right. Perhaps an original Heb. ’pyw (‘his anger’) was misread as ypyw (‘his beauty’), or alternatively the Gk. κάλλους (‘beauty’) may be a corruption of καπνου̂ (‘smoke’ – i.e. ‘in his smoking anger’, cp. Isa. lxv. 5 ).
4 MSS ‘in their cities to their gods’.
5 These verbs could be taken as infinitives rather than optatives (i.e. following on ‘gird him … that …’).
6 Lit. ‘mark’ (i.e. navel). Others take the phrase as ‘conspicuously before’; but it is doubtful whether the Gk. can bear this meaning.
7 Gk. ‘in’.
8 Gk. ‘he will deliver us’.