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Psalm 129

Prayer for the Downfall of Israel’s Enemies

A Song of Ascents.


“Often have they attacked me from my youth”

—let Israel now say—


“often have they attacked me from my youth,

yet they have not prevailed against me.


The plowers plowed on my back;

they made their furrows long.”


The Lord is righteous;

he has cut the cords of the wicked.


May all who hate Zion

be put to shame and turned backward.


Let them be like the grass on the housetops

that withers before it grows up,


with which reapers do not fill their hands

or binders of sheaves their arms,


while those who pass by do not say,

“The blessing of the Lord be upon you!

We bless you in the name of the Lord!”

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Ps 129:1-8. The people of God, often delivered from enemies, are confident of His favor, by their overthrow in the future.

1, 2. may Israel now say—or, "oh! let Israel say" (Ps 124:1). Israel's youth was the sojourn in Egypt (Jer 2:2; Ho 2:15).

2. prevailed—literally, "been able," that is, to accomplish their purpose against me (Ps 13:4).

3, 4. The ploughing is a figure of scourging, which most severe physical infliction aptly represents all kinds.

4. the cords—that is, which fasten the plough to the ox; and cutting denotes God's arresting the persecution;

5, 6. The ill-rooted roof grass, which withers before it grows up and procures for those gathering it no harvest blessing (Ru 2:4), sets forth the utter uselessness and the rejection of the wicked.