For the director of music. To the tune of ‘Do Not Destroy’. Of David. A miktam.[b]
1 Do you rulers indeed speak justly?
Do you judge people with equity?
2 No, in your heart you devise injustice,
and your hands mete out violence on the earth.
3 Even from birth the wicked go astray;
from the womb they are wayward, spreading lies.
4 Their venom is like the venom of a snake,
like that of a cobra that has stopped its ears,
5 that will not heed the tune of the charmer,
however skilful the enchanter may be.
6 Break the teeth in their mouths, O God;
Lord, tear out the fangs of those lions!
7 Let them vanish like water that flows away;
when they draw the bow, let their arrows fall short.
8 May they be like a slug that melts away as it moves along,
like a stillborn child that never sees the sun.
9 Before your pots can feel the heat of the thorns –
whether they be green or dry – the wicked will be swept away.[c]
10 The righteous will be glad when they are avenged,
when they dip their feet in the blood of the wicked.
11 Then people will say,
‘Surely the righteous still are rewarded;
surely there is a God who judges the earth.’
Prayer for the Punishment of the Wicked.
To the Chief Musician; set to [the tune of] “Do Not Destroy.” A Mikhtam of David. [A record of memorable thoughts of David].
1Do you indeed speak righteousness, O gods (heavenly beings)?
Do you judge fairly, O sons of men?
No, in your heart you devise wrongdoing;
On earth you deal out the violence of your hands.
The wicked are estranged from the womb;
These go astray from birth, speaking lies [even twisted partial truths].
Their poison is like the venom of a serpent;
They are like the deaf horned viper that stops up its ear,
So that it does not listen to the voice of charmers,
Or of the skillful enchanter casting [cunning] spells.
O God, break their teeth in their mouth;
Break out the fangs of the young lions, O Lord.
Let them flow away like water that runs off;
When he aims his arrows, let them be as headless shafts.
Let them be as a snail which melts away (secretes slime) as it goes along,
Like the miscarriage of a woman which never sees the sun.
Before your cooking pots can feel the fire of thorns [burning under them as fuel],
He will sweep them away with a whirlwind, the green and the burning ones alike.
The [unyieldingly] righteous will rejoice when he sees the vengeance [of God];
He will wash his feet in the blood of the wicked.
Men will say, “Surely there is a reward for the righteous;
Surely there is a God who judges on the earth.”