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41. Psalm 41

Blessed is he that considereth the poor: the Lord will deliver him in time of trouble.

2The Lord will preserve him, and keep him alive; and he shall be blessed upon the earth: and thou wilt not deliver him unto the will of his enemies.

3The Lord will strengthen him upon the bed of languishing: thou wilt make all his bed in his sickness.

4I said, Lord, be merciful unto me: heal my soul; for I have sinned against thee.

5Mine enemies speak evil of me, When shall he die, and his name perish?

6And if he come to see me, he speaketh vanity: his heart gathereth iniquity to itself; when he goeth abroad, he telleth it.

7All that hate me whisper together against me: against me do they devise my hurt.

8An evil disease, say they, cleaveth fast unto him: and now that he lieth he shall rise up no more.

9Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.

10But thou, O Lord, be merciful unto me, and raise me up, that I may requite them.

11By this I know that thou favourest me, because mine enemy doth not triumph over me.

12And as for me, thou upholdest me in mine integrity, and settest me before thy face for ever.

13Blessed be the Lord God of Israel from everlasting, and to everlasting. Amen, and Amen.

13 Blessed be Jehovah, the God of Israel, for ever and ever 111111     The Hebrew Psalter is divided into five books. This is the end of the first book. The second ends with the 72d psalm, the third with the 89th, the fourth with the 106th, and the fifth with the 150th. It is worthy of remark, that each of these five books solemnly concludes with a distinct ascription of praise to God; only no distinct doxology appears at the end of the fifth book, probably because the last psalm throughout is a psalm of praise. The Jewish writers affirm that this form of benediction was added by the person who collected and distributed The Psalms into their present state. How ancient this division is, cannot now be clearly ascertained. Jerome, in his Epistle to Marcella, and Epiphanius, speak of The Psalms as having been divided by the Hebrews into five books; but when this division was made, they do not inform us. The forms of ascription of praise, added at the end of each of the five books, are in the Septuagint version, from which we may conclude that this distribution had been made before that version was executed. It was probably made by Ezra, after the return of the Jews from Babylon to their own country, and the establishment of the worship of God in the new temple; and it was perhaps made in imitation of a similar distribution of the books of Moses. In making this division of the Hebrew Psalter, regard appears to have been paid to the subject-matter of the psalms. Here the Psalmist confirms and repeats the expression of thanksgiving contained in a preceding verse. By calling God expressly the God of Israel, he testifies that he cherished in his heart a deep and thorough impression of the covenant which God had made with the Fathers; because it was the source from which his deliverance proceeded. The term amen is repeated twice, to express the greater vehemence, and that all the godly might be the more effectually stirred up to praise God.


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