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Psalm 44

National Lament and Prayer for Help

To the leader. Of the Korahites. A Maskil.


We have heard with our ears, O God,

our ancestors have told us,

what deeds you performed in their days,

in the days of old:


you with your own hand drove out the nations,

but them you planted;

you afflicted the peoples,

but them you set free;


for not by their own sword did they win the land,

nor did their own arm give them victory;

but your right hand, and your arm,

and the light of your countenance,

for you delighted in them.



You are my King and my God;

you command victories for Jacob.


Through you we push down our foes;

through your name we tread down our assailants.


For not in my bow do I trust,

nor can my sword save me.


But you have saved us from our foes,

and have put to confusion those who hate us.


In God we have boasted continually,

and we will give thanks to your name forever. Selah



Yet you have rejected us and abased us,

and have not gone out with our armies.


You made us turn back from the foe,

and our enemies have gotten spoil.


You have made us like sheep for slaughter,

and have scattered us among the nations.


You have sold your people for a trifle,

demanding no high price for them.



You have made us the taunt of our neighbors,

the derision and scorn of those around us.


You have made us a byword among the nations,

a laughingstock among the peoples.


All day long my disgrace is before me,

and shame has covered my face


at the words of the taunters and revilers,

at the sight of the enemy and the avenger.



All this has come upon us,

yet we have not forgotten you,

or been false to your covenant.


Our heart has not turned back,

nor have our steps departed from your way,


yet you have broken us in the haunt of jackals,

and covered us with deep darkness.



If we had forgotten the name of our God,

or spread out our hands to a strange god,


would not God discover this?

For he knows the secrets of the heart.


Because of you we are being killed all day long,

and accounted as sheep for the slaughter.



Rouse yourself! Why do you sleep, O Lord?

Awake, do not cast us off forever!


Why do you hide your face?

Why do you forget our affliction and oppression?


For we sink down to the dust;

our bodies cling to the ground.


Rise up, come to our help.

Redeem us for the sake of your steadfast love.

15 My reproach is daily before me. The Hebrew words כלהיום, col-hayom, mean all the day, and denote long continuance: but they may be understood in two ways, either for the whole or entire day, from morning to evening, or for continued succession of days. According to either of these interpretations, the meaning is, that there is no end to their misfortunes. As to the change of the number from the plural to the singular, it is not at all inconsistent that what is spoken in the name of the Church should be uttered, as it were, in the person of one man. The reason is added why they were so overwhelmed with shame, that they dared not to lift up their eyes and their face, namely, because they had no respite, but were incessantly subjected to the insolence and reproach of their enemies. Had they been allowed to hide themselves in some corner, they might have endured, as well as they were able, their calamities in secret; but when their enemies openly derided them with the greatest insolence, it served to redouble the wound inflicted upon them. They, therefore, complain that their calamities had accumulated to such an extent, that they were forced unceasingly to hear blasphemies and bitter reproaches. They describe their enemies by the epithet avengers, a term which, among the Hebrews, denotes barbarity and cruelty, accompanied with pride, as we have remarked on the 8th Psalm

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