The Penitential Psalms
For the music director, to be accompanied by stringed instruments, according to the sheminith style; a psalm of David.
Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger!
Do not discipline me in your raging fury!
Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am frail!
Heal me, Lord, for my bones are shaking!
I am absolutely terrified, and you, Lord how long will this continue?
Relent, Lord, rescue me!
Deliver me because of your faithfulness!
For no one remembers you in the realm of death, In Sheol who gives you thanks?
I am exhausted as I groan; all night long I drench my bed in tears; my tears saturate the cushion beneath me.
My eyes grow dim from suffering; they grow weak because of all my enemies.
Turn back from me, all you who behave wickedly, for the Lord has heard the sound of my weeping!
The Lord has heard my appeal for mercy; the Lord has accepted my prayer.
May all my enemies be humiliated and absolutely terrified!
May they turn back and be suddenly humiliated!
By David; a well-written song.
How blessed is the one whose rebellious acts are forgiven, whose sin is pardoned!
How blessed is the one whose wrongdoing the Lord does not punish, in whose spirit there is no deceit.
When I refused to confess my sin, my whole body wasted away, while I groaned in pain all day long.
For day and night you tormented me; you tried to destroy me in the intense heat of summer. (Selah)
Then I confessed my sin; I no longer covered up my wrongdoing.
I said, ďI will confess my rebellious acts to the Lord.Ē
And then you forgave my sins. (Selah)
For this reason every one of your faithful followers should pray to you while there is a window of opportunity.
Certainly when the surging water rises, it will not reach them.
You are my hiding place; you protect me from distress.
You surround me with shouts of joy from those celebrating deliverance. (Selah)
I will instruct and teach you about how you should live.
I will advise you as I look you in the eye.
Do not be like an unintelligent horse or mule, which will not obey you unless they are controlled by a bridle and bit.
An evil person suffers much pain, but the Lordís faithfulness overwhelms the one who trusts in him.
Rejoice in the Lord and be happy, you who are godly!
Shout for joy, all you who are morally upright!
A psalm of David, written to get Godís attention.
O Lord, do not continue to rebuke me in your anger!
Do not continue to punish me in your raging fury!
For your arrows pierce me and your hand presses me down.
My whole body is sick because of your judgment; I am deprived of health because of my sin.
For my sins overwhelm me; like a heavy load, they are too much for me to bear.
My wounds are infected and starting to smell, because of my foolish sins.
I am dazed and completely humiliated; all day long I walk around mourning.
For I am overcome with shame and my whole body is sick.
I am numb with pain and severely battered; I groan loudly because of the anxiety I feel.
O Lord, you understand my heartís desire; my groaning is not hidden from you.
My heart beats quickly; my strength leaves me; I can hardly see.
Because of my condition, even my friends and acquaintances keep their distance; my neighbors stand far away.
Those who seek my life try to entrap me; those who want to harm me speak destructive words; all day long they say deceitful things.
But I am like a deaf man, I hear nothing; I am like a mute who cannot speak.
I am like a man who cannot hear and is incapable of arguing his defense.
Yet I wait for you, O Lord!
You will respond, O Lord, my God!
I have prayed for deliverance, because otherwise they will gloat over me; when my foot slips they will arrogantly taunt me.
For I am about to stumble and I am in constant pain.
Yes, I confess my wrongdoing, and I am concerned about my sins.
But those who are my enemies for no reason are numerous; those who hate me without cause outnumber me.
They repay me evil for the good I have done; though I have tried to do good to them, they hurl accusations at me.
Do not abandon me, O Lord!
My God, do not remain far away from me!
Hurry and help me, O Lord, my deliverer!
For the music director; a psalm of David, written when Nathan the prophet confronted him after Davidís affair with Bathsheba.
Have mercy on me, O God, because of your loyal love!
Because of your great compassion, wipe away my rebellious acts!
Wash away my wrongdoing!
Cleanse me of my sin!
For I am aware of my rebellious acts; I am forever conscious of my sin.
Against you, you above all, I have sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight.
So you are just when you confront me; you are right when you condemn me.
Look, I was guilty of sin from birth, a sinner the moment my mother conceived me.
Look, you desire integrity in the inner man; you want me to possess wisdom.
Sprinkle me with water and I will be pure; wash me and I will be whiter than snow.
Grant me the ultimate joy of being forgiven!
May the bones you crushed rejoice!
Hide your face from my sins!
Wipe away all my guilt!
Create for me a pure heart, O God!
Renew a resolute spirit within me!
Do not reject me!
Do not take your Holy Spirit away from me!
Let me again experience the joy of your deliverance!
Sustain me by giving me the desire to obey!
Then I will teach rebels your merciful ways, and sinners will turn to you.
Rescue me from the guilt of murder, O God, the God who delivers me!
Then my tongue will shout for joy because of your deliverance.
O Lord, give me the words!
Then my mouth will praise you.
Certainly you do not want a sacrifice, or else I would offer it; you do not desire a burnt sacrifice.
The sacrifices God desires are a humble spirit, O God, a humble and repentant heart you will not reject.
Because you favor Zion, do what is good for her!
Fortify the walls of Jerusalem!
Then you will accept the proper sacrifices, burnt sacrifices and whole offerings; then bulls will be sacrificed on your altar.
The prayer of an oppressed man, as he grows faint and pours out his lament before the Lord.
O Lord, hear my prayer!
Pay attention to my cry for help!
Do not ignore me in my time of trouble!
Listen to me!
When I call out to you, quickly answer me!
For my days go up in smoke, and my bones are charred like a fireplace.
My heart is parched and withered like grass, for I am unable to eat food.
Because of the anxiety that makes me groan, my bones protrude from my skin.
I am like an owl in the wilderness; I am like a screech owl among the ruins.
I stay awake; I am like a solitary bird on a roof.
All day long my enemies taunt me; those who mock me use my name in their curses.
For I eat ashes as if they were bread, and mix my drink with my tears, because of your anger and raging fury.
Indeed, you pick me up and throw me away.
My days are coming to an end, and I am withered like grass.
But you, O Lord, rule forever, and your reputation endures.
You will rise up and have compassion on Zion.
For it is time to have mercy on her, for the appointed time has come.
Indeed, your servants take delight in her stones, and feel compassion for the dust of her ruins.
The nations will respect the reputation of the Lord, and all the kings of the earth will respect his splendor, when the Lord rebuilds Zion, and reveals his splendor, when he responds to the prayer of the destitute, and does not reject their request.
The account of his intervention will be recorded for future generations; people yet to be born will praise the Lord.
For he will look down from his sanctuary above; from heaven the Lord will look toward earth, in order to hear the painful cries of the prisoners, and to set free those condemned to die, so they may proclaim the name of the Lord in Zion, and praise him in Jerusalem, when the nations gather together, and the kingdoms pay tribute to the Lord.
He has taken away my strength in the middle of life; he has cut short my days.
I say, ďO my God, please do not take me away in the middle of my life!
You endure through all generations.
In earlier times you established the earth; the skies are your handiwork.
They will perish, but you will endure.
They will wear out like a garment; like clothes you will remove them and they will disappear.
But you remain; your years do not come to an end.
The children of your servants will settle down here, and their descendants will live securely in your presence.Ē
A song of ascents.
From the deep water I cry out to you, O Lord.
O Lord, listen to me!
Pay attention to my plea for mercy!
If you, O Lord, were to keep track of sins,
O Lord, who could stand before you?
But you are willing to forgive, so that you might be honored.
I rely on the Lord, I rely on him with my whole being; I wait for his assuring word.
I yearn for the Lord, more than watchmen do for the morning, yes, more than watchmen do for the morning.
O Israel, hope in the Lord, for the Lord exhibits loyal love, and is more than willing to deliver.
He will deliver Israel from all the consequences of their sins.
A psalm of David.
O Lord, hear my prayer!
Pay attention to my plea for help!
Because of your faithfulness and justice, answer me!
Do not sit in judgment on your servant, for no one alive is innocent before you.
Certainly my enemies chase me.
They smash me into the ground.
They force me to live in dark regions, like those who have been dead for ages.
My strength leaves me; I am absolutely shocked.
I recall the old days; I meditate on all you have done; I reflect on your accomplishments.
I spread my hands out to you in prayer; my soul thirsts for you in a parched land.
Answer me quickly, Lord!
My strength is fading.
Do not reject me, or I will join those descending into the grave.
May I hear about your loyal love in the morning, for I trust in you?
Show me the way I should go, because I long for you.
Rescue me from my enemies, O Lord!
I run to you for protection.
Teach me to do what pleases you, for you are my God.
May your kind presence lead me into a level land.
O Lord, for the sake of your reputation, revive me!
Because of your justice, rescue me from trouble!
As a demonstration of your loyal love, destroy my enemies!
Annihilate all who threaten my life, for I am your servant.