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Psalm 5

Trust in God for Deliverance from Enemies

To the leader: for the flutes. A Psalm of David.


Give ear to my words, O L ord;

give heed to my sighing.


Listen to the sound of my cry,

my King and my God,

for to you I pray.


O L ord, in the morning you hear my voice;

in the morning I plead my case to you, and watch.



For you are not a God who delights in wickedness;

evil will not sojourn with you.


The boastful will not stand before your eyes;

you hate all evildoers.


You destroy those who speak lies;

the L ord abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful.



But I, through the abundance of your steadfast love,

will enter your house,

I will bow down toward your holy temple

in awe of you.


Lead me, O L ord, in your righteousness

because of my enemies;

make your way straight before me.



For there is no truth in their mouths;

their hearts are destruction;

their throats are open graves;

they flatter with their tongues.


Make them bear their guilt, O God;

let them fall by their own counsels;

because of their many transgressions cast them out,

for they have rebelled against you.



But let all who take refuge in you rejoice;

let them ever sing for joy.

Spread your protection over them,

so that those who love your name may exult in you.


For you bless the righteous, O L ord;

you cover them with favor as with a shield.

12. For thou, Jehovah, wilt bless the righteous. The Psalmist here confirms the concluding sentence of the preceding verse, namely, that all the servants of God in common will take support to their faith from what he had experienced, for he would have us from one example to form our judgment of the immutability and perpetuity of God’s grace towards all the godly. Again, by this he teaches us that there is no true and right joy but that which is derived from the sense of God’s fatherly love. The word, to bless, in Hebrew, (when we speak of this as the act of men,) signifies to wish happiness and prosperity to any one, and to pray for him; 7979     “Signifie, souhaitter bien et prosperite a quelquun et prier pour luy.” — Fr. but when it is spoken of as the act of God, it signifies the same thing as to prosper a man, or to enrich him abundantly with all good things; for since the favor of God is efficacious, his blessing of itself produces an abundance of every good thing. The name righteous is not restricted to any one man, but signifies in general all the servants of God. Those, however, who are called righteous in Scripture, are not so called on account of the merit of their works, but because they aspire after righteousness; for after God has received them into his favor, by not imputing their sins to them, he accepts their upright endeavors for perfect righteousness. What follows is of the same import as the preceding clause, Thou wilt crown them with thy free favor, or good will, as with a shield The Psalmist’s meaning is, that the faithful shall be completely defended on all sides, since he will, in no case, withhold from them his grace, which is to them an invincible fortress, and brings along with it certain safety. The word, to crown, which the Psalmist employs, often denotes in Hebrew, ornament or glory; but as there is added the similitude of a shield, I have no doubt but he uses it metaphorically for, to fortify or to compass about. 8080     Bishop Horsley thinks כצנה, katsinah, as with a shield, should be construed with רצונ ratson, favor or good will, and translates the words thus: ”Like a shield of good will, thou wilt stand guard around him.” The reading of the Septuagint is the same: Ως ὁπλω εὐδοκιας, as with a shield of good will. The word צנה tsinah, means that kind of shield, from the middle of which there arose a large boss, surmounted by a dagger and which was highly useful both as a defensive and an offensive weapon in ancient warfare. The meaning, therefore, is, that however great and various may be the dangers which besiege the righteous, they shall, notwithstanding, escape, and be saved, because God is favorable to them.

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