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Psalm 40

Thanksgiving for Deliverance and Prayer for Help

To the leader. Of David. A Psalm.


I waited patiently for the L ord;

he inclined to me and heard my cry.


He drew me up from the desolate pit,

out of the miry bog,

and set my feet upon a rock,

making my steps secure.


He put a new song in my mouth,

a song of praise to our God.

Many will see and fear,

and put their trust in the L ord.



Happy are those who make

the L ord their trust,

who do not turn to the proud,

to those who go astray after false gods.


You have multiplied, O L ord my God,

your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us;

none can compare with you.

Were I to proclaim and tell of them,

they would be more than can be counted.



Sacrifice and offering you do not desire,

but you have given me an open ear.

Burnt offering and sin offering

you have not required.


Then I said, “Here I am;

in the scroll of the book it is written of me.


I delight to do your will, O my God;

your law is within my heart.”



I have told the glad news of deliverance

in the great congregation;

see, I have not restrained my lips,

as you know, O L ord.


I have not hidden your saving help within my heart,

I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;

I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness

from the great congregation.



Do not, O L ord, withhold

your mercy from me;

let your steadfast love and your faithfulness

keep me safe forever.


For evils have encompassed me

without number;

my iniquities have overtaken me,

until I cannot see;

they are more than the hairs of my head,

and my heart fails me.



Be pleased, O L ord, to deliver me;

O L ord, make haste to help me.


Let all those be put to shame and confusion

who seek to snatch away my life;

let those be turned back and brought to dishonor

who desire my hurt.


Let those be appalled because of their shame

who say to me, “Aha, Aha!”



But may all who seek you

rejoice and be glad in you;

may those who love your salvation

say continually, “Great is the L ord!”


As for me, I am poor and needy,

but the Lord takes thought for me.

You are my help and my deliverer;

do not delay, O my God.

11 O thou Jehovah! withhold not thy tender mercies from me We now see more clearly, what I have just adverted to, that David speaks of his own thankfulness, that he might secure a continuance of God’s favor towards him; and that he opened his mouth in the praises of God, that he might continue to acquire new favors, against which our perverse and ungrateful silence very often closes the gate. We ought, therefore, carefully to observe the relation which the clause, in which David affirms that he closed not his lips, bears to what follows, namely, that God on his part would not contract or stop up the course of his tender mercies; for by this we are taught that God would always be ready to relieve us by his goodness, or rather that it would flow down upon us as from a never-failing fountain, if our own ingratitude did not prevent or cut off its course. The tender mercies of God, which he expresses by the word רחמיד, rachamecha, and of which he here speaks, differ little from his goodness. It was not, however, without cause that David chose to make this distinction. It could only be, first, because he was unable otherwise to satisfy himself in extolling the grace of God; and, secondly, because it was requisite to show that the source from which the mercy and goodness of God proceed, when he is moved in compassion for our miseries to aid and succor us. Then he places his confidence of salvation in the goodness and faithfulness of God, for we must of necessity begin (as I have said a little before) at the free favor of God, that his bounty may extend even to us. But as we are unable to discern that God is gracious to us until he grant us some assurance of his love, his constancy is, with much propriety, placed in connection with his truth in keeping his promises.

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