Friday, December 26, 2008

Psalm 109

Last year I did some detailed work on the structure of this psalm. I wonder how such can be revealed in sequential text only.

For the leader
of David
A Psalm
God of my prayer do not be silent
for the mouth of a criminal and the mouth of deceit are open against me
they speak to me with a false tongue
with hate-speech they surround me
and they battle me without cause

for my love they are my accusers but I, I am a prayer
and they return to me evil for good
hatred for my love
set over him a criminal
and let the accuser stand at his right hand

in his judgment let him come out a criminal
and his prayer let it become the sin
let his days be short and let another take his office
let his children be orphans and his wife a widow

and wandering let his children wander and let them beg
let them seek from their wastelands
let the creditor catch all that is his
and let the strangers spoil his work

let there be to him no dragging out of mercy
and let there be no grace to his orphans
let his followers be cut off in the generation to come
let their name be blotted out

let the iniquity of his fathers be remembered with יְהוָה
and the sin of his mother let it not be blotted out
let them be before יְהוָה continually
that he may cut off their memory from the earth

because he did not remember to do mercy
but he persecuted the poor and needy one
to kill the one with a broken heart

as he loved cursing so let it come to him
as he did not delight in blessing so let it be distant from him
as he put on cursing like clothing
so it will come like water in his midst and like oil into his bones
let it be to him as a garment wrapping him
and a binding continually holding him

These are the wages of my accusers from יְהוָה
and of those speaking evil of my life
but you יְהוָה my Lord do to me on account of your name
for your mercy is good

deliver me for I am poor and needy
and my heart is pierced in my midst
as a declining shadow I fade away
I am tossed around like a locust
my knees are weak from fasting
and my flesh is lean of fatness
and I, I have become a reproach to them

they stare at me
they shake their heads
Help me יְהוָה my God
Save me for your mercy
and they will know that it is your hand
this you יְהוָה have done

Let them curse but you will bless
they will rise
let them be ashamed
but let your servant rejoice
let my accusers put on confusion
let them wrap themselves as a mantle with their shame

I will praise יְהוָה greatly with my mouth and among many
I will praise him for he will stand at the right hand of the poor
to save him from those judging his life

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