For the choir director: A psalm[a] of David, to be accompanied by stringed instruments.
1 Listen to my prayer, O God.
Do not ignore my cry for help!
2 Please listen and answer me,
for I am overwhelmed by my troubles.
3 My enemies shout at me,
making loud and wicked threats.
They bring trouble on me
and angrily hunt me down.
4 My heart pounds in my chest.
The terror of death assaults me.
5 Fear and trembling overwhelm me,
and I can’t stop shaking.
6 Oh, that I had wings like a dove;
then I would fly away and rest!
7 I would fly far away
to the quiet of the wilderness. Interlude
8 How quickly I would escape—
far from this wild storm of hatred.
9 Confuse them, Lord, and frustrate their plans,
for I see violence and conflict in the city.
10 Its walls are patrolled day and night against invaders,
but the real danger is wickedness within the city.
11 Everything is falling apart;
threats and cheating are rampant in the streets.
12 It is not an enemy who taunts me—
I could bear that.
It is not my foes who so arrogantly insult me—
I could have hidden from them.
13 Instead, it is you—my equal,
my companion and close friend.
14 What good fellowship we once enjoyed
as we walked together to the house of God.
15 Let death stalk my enemies;
let the grave[b] swallow them alive,
for evil makes its home within them.
16 But I will call on God,
and the Lord will rescue me.
17 Morning, noon, and night
I cry out in my distress,
and the Lord hears my voice.
18 He ransoms me and keeps me safe
from the battle waged against me,
though many still oppose me.
19 God, who has ruled forever,
will hear me and humble them. Interlude
For my enemies refuse to change their ways;
they do not fear God.
20 As for my companion, he betrayed his friends;
he broke his promises.
21 His words are as smooth as butter,
but in his heart is war.
His words are as soothing as lotion,
but underneath are daggers!
22 Give your burdens to the Lord,
and he will take care of you.
He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.
23 But you, O God, will send the wicked
down to the pit of destruction.
Murderers and liars will die young,
but I am trusting you to save me.
Prayer for the Destruction of the Treacherous.
To the Chief Musician; with stringed instruments. A skillful song, or a didactic or reflective poem, of David.
1Listen to my prayer, O God,
And do not hide Yourself from my plea.
Listen to me and answer me;
I am restless and distraught in my complaint and distracted
Because of the voice of the enemy,
Because of the pressure of the wicked;
For they bring down trouble on me,
And in anger they persecute me.
My heart is in anguish within me,
And the terrors of death have fallen upon me.
Fear and trembling have come upon me;
Horror has overwhelmed me.
And I say, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove!
I would fly away and be at rest.
“I would wander far away,
I would lodge in the [peace of the] wilderness. Selah.
“I would hurry to my refuge [my tranquil shelter far away]
From the stormy wind and from the tempest.”
[a]Confuse [my enemies], O Lord, divide their tongues [destroying their schemes],
For I have seen violence and strife in the city.
Day and night they go around her walls;
Wickedness and mischief are in her midst.
Destruction is within her;
Oppression and deceit do not depart from her streets and market places.
For it is not an enemy who taunts me—
Then I could bear it;
Nor is it one who has hated me who insolently exalts himself against me—
Then I could hide from him.
But it is you, a man my equal and my counsel,
My companion and my familiar friend;
We who had sweet [b]fellowship together,
Who walked to the house of God in company.
Let death come deceitfully upon them;
Let them go down alive to Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead),
For evil [of every kind] is in their dwelling and in their hearts, in their midst.
As for me, I shall call upon God,
And the Lord will save me.
Evening and morning and at noon I will complain and murmur,
And He will hear my voice.
He has redeemed my life in peace from the battle that was against me,
For there were many against me.
God will hear and humble them,
Even He who [c]sits enthroned from old— Selah.
Because in them there has been no change [of heart],
And they do not fear God [at all].
He [my companion] has put out his hands against those who were at peace with him;
He has [d]broken his covenant [of friendship and loyalty].
The words of his mouth were smoother than butter,
But his heart was hostile;
His words were softer than oil,
Yet they were drawn swords.
Cast your burden on the Lord [release it] and He will sustain and uphold you;
He will never allow the righteous to be shaken (slip, fall, fail).
But You, O God, will bring down the wicked to the pit of destruction;
Men of blood and treachery will not live out half their days.
But I will [boldly and unwaveringly] trust in You.