Bookmark and Share

Psalm 43 (44)

In time of defeat
“In all these trials, we triumph through the power of him who has shown his love for us” (Rom 8, 37).

We heard with our own ears, O God,
  our fathers have told us the story
of the things you did in their days,
  you yourself, in days long ago.

To plant them you uprooted the nations;
  to let them spread you laid peoples low.
No sword of their own won the land;
  no arm of their own brought them victory.
It was your right hand, your arm
  and the light of your face; for you loved them.

It is you, my king, my God,
  who granted victories to Jacob.
Through you we beat down our foes;
  in your name we trampled down our aggressors.

For it was not in my bow that I trusted
  nor yet was I saved by my sword:
it was you who saved us from our foes,
  it was you who put our foes to shame.
All day long our boast was in God
  and we praised your name without ceasing.

Yet now you have rejected us, disgraced us;
  you no longer go forth with our armies.
You make us retreat from the foe
  and our enemies plunder us at will.

You make us like sheep for the slaughter
  and scatter us among the nations.
You sell your own people for nothing
  and make no profit by the sale.

You make us the taunt of our neighbours,
  the laughing-stock of all who are near.
Among the nations, you make us a byword,
  among the peoples a thing of derision.

All day long my disgrace is before me;
  my face is covered with shame
at the voice of the taunter, the scoffer,
  at the sight of the foe and avenger.

This befell us though we had not forgotten you,
  though we had not been false to your covenant,
though we had not withdrawn our hearts;
  though our feet had not strayed from your path.
Yet you have crushed us in a place of sorrows
  and covered us with the shadow of death.

Had we forgotten the name of our God
  or stretched out hands to another god,
would not God have found this out,
  he who knows the secrets of the heart?
It is for you that we face death all day long
  and are counted as sheep for the slaughter.

Awake, O Lord, why do you sleep?
  Arise, do not reject us for ever!
Why do you hide your face
  and forget our oppression and misery?

For we are brought down low to the dust;
  our body lies prostrate on the earth.
Stand up and come to our help!
  Redeem us because of your love!