Old Testament

Psalm 1-9,147
Psalm 1
Two Responses to God's Word
The Way of the Godly Leads to Blessing
1How blessed is the man
who does not walk in the advice of the wicked,
who does not stand on the path with sinners,
and who does not sit in a meeting with mockers.
2But his delight is in the teaching[] of the Lord,
and on his teaching he meditates day and night.
3He is like a tree planted beside streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season,
and its leaves do not wither.
Everything he does prospers.
The Way of the Ungodly Leads to Destruction
4Not so the wicked!
No, they are like the chaff which the wind blows away.
5Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
6Yes, the Lord approves[] of the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.
Psalm 2
The Nations Conspire,
But God's King Rules Securely
The Futile Rebellion of the Nations
1Why do the nations rage?
Why do the peoples grumble in vain?
2The kings of the earth take a stand,
and the rulers join together
against the Lord
and against his Anointed One.[]
3“Let us tear off their chains
and throw off their ropes from us.”
The Reaction of the Lord
4The one who is seated in heaven laughs.
The Lord scoffs at them.
5Then he speaks to them in his anger,
and in his wrath he terrifies them.
6“I have installed my King on Zion, my holy mountain.”
The Powerful Rule of God's King
7I will proclaim the decree of the Lord.
He said to me:
“You are my Son.
Today I have begotten you.[]
8Ask me,
and I will give you the nations as your inheritance
and the ends of the earth as your possession.
9You will smash them with an iron rod.
You will break them to pieces like pottery.”
The Lesson to Be Learned
10So now, you kings, do what is wise.
Accept discipline,[] you judges of the earth.
11Serve the Lord with fear,
and rejoice with trembling.
12Kiss the Son,
or he will be angry,
and you will be destroyed in your way,
for his wrath can flare up in a moment.
How blessed are all who take refuge in him.
Psalm 3
How Many Are My Foes,
But You Are My Shield
A psalm by David. When he fled from Absalom, his son.[]
Many Enemies
1O Lord, how my foes are multiplying!
Many are rising up against me!
2Many are saying about my life,
“There is no salvation for him in God.” Interlude[]
One Protector
3But you, O Lord, are a shield for me.
You are my glory and the one who lifts up my head.
4With a loud voice I cry out to the Lord,
and he answers me from his holy mountain. Interlude
Peaceful Rest
5I lie down, and I sleep.
I awake, because the Lord sustains me.
6I will not be afraid of the thousands of people
who line up against me on all sides.
Certain Victory
7Rise up, O Lord! Save me, my God!
Yes, you will strike all my enemies on the jaw.
The teeth of the wicked you will break.
8Salvation belongs to the Lord.
Your blessing rests on your people. Interlude
Psalm 4
My Righteous God, Give Me Relief
For the choir director. With stringed instruments. A psalm by David.
A Prayer to God
1My righteous God, answer me when I call.
When I was under pressure, you gave me relief.
Be merciful to me and hear my prayer.
A Rebuke to Enemies
2You people, how long will you turn my glory into shame?
How long will you love empty delusions?
How long will you pursue lies? Interlude
3Know this: The Lord has set apart
his favored one[] for himself.
The Lord will hear when I call to him.
Advice to David's Friends
4You may be upset, but do not sin.
When you are on your beds,
speak to your heart, but remain silent. Interlude
5Offer righteous sacrifices,
and trust in the Lord.
6Many are saying, “Who can show us any good?”
Shine the light of your face on us, O Lord.
Closing Prayer
7You have placed joy in my heart greater than the joy
when grain and new wine are plentiful.
8In complete peace I will lie down, and I will sleep,
for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Psalm 5
With You the Wicked Cannot Dwell
For the choir director. For flutes. A psalm by David.
Access in Prayer
1Turn your ear to my words, O Lord.
Understand me when I sigh.
2Pay attention to my cry for help,
my King and my God,
for to you I pray.
3 Lord, in the morning you hear my voice.
In the morning I lay out my requests in front of you,
and I watch for your answer.
No Access for the Wicked
4For you are not a God who takes pleasure in evil.
With you the wicked cannot dwell.
5The arrogant cannot stand before your eyes.
You hate all evildoers.
6You put to death those who speak lies.
The Lord is disgusted with bloodthirsty, deceitful men.
Access in Prayer
7But as for me, by your great mercy
I will enter your house.
I will bow down toward your holy temple
with reverence for you.
8 Lord, lead me in your righteousness.
Because of those who slander me,
make your way straight before me.
Lying Tongues
9Nothing reliable comes out of their mouth.
From within them comes destruction.
Their throat is an open grave.
With their tongue they flatter.
10Declare them guilty, O God!
Let them fall because of their own schemes.
For their many treacherous deeds banish them,
because they have rebelled against you.
Praising Tongues
11But let all who take refuge in you be glad.
Let them sing for joy forever.
You cover them with protection,
so those who love your name rejoice in you.
12Yes, Lord, you bless the righteous.
You surround them with your favor as a shield.
Psalm 6
Do Not Rebuke Me in Your Anger
For the choir director. With stringed instruments.
According to sheminith.[] A psalm by David.
Anxious Prayer
1 Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger.
Do not discipline me in your wrath.
2Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am fading away.
Heal me, Lord, for my bones are trembling,
3and my soul is terrified.
But you, O Lord—how long?
4Turn, O Lord, and deliver my soul.
Save me because of your mercy.
5For in death no one remembers you.
In the grave who praises you?
6I am worn out from my groaning.
I flood my bed all night long.
With my tears I drench my couch.
7My eyes are blurred by sorrow.
They are worn out because of all my foes.
Confident Trust
8Turn away from me, all you evildoers,
because the Lord has heard the sound of my weeping.
9The Lord has heard my cry for mercy.
The Lord accepts my prayer.
10They will be put to shame.
All my enemies will be terrified.
They will turn back.
They will be put to shame in an instant.
Psalm 7
The Slandered Saint
A shiggaion[] by David, which he sang to the Lord
because of the words of Cush, from the tribe of Benjamin.
David's Innocence
1O Lord my God, in you I take refuge.
Save me from all my pursuers and deliver me.
2Otherwise, like a lion they will tear me apart.
They will drag me away with no one to rescue me.
3O Lord my God, if I have done this,
if there is injustice in my hands,
4if I have done evil to anyone who is at peace with me,
or if I have robbed my foe for no reason,
5then let an enemy pursue my life and overtake me.
Let him trample my life to the ground
and make my glory dwell in the dust. Interlude
David's Appeal for Justice
6Stand up, O Lord, in your anger.
Rise up against the fury of my foes.
Awake for me. You have commanded justice.[]
7A crowd of peoples surrounds you.
Turn against them from on high.
8Let the Lord judge the peoples.
Acquit me, O Lord, according to my righteousness,
according to my integrity which is in me.
9The evil of the wicked will come to an end,
but you will establish the righteous.
You search minds and hearts,[] O righteous God.
God's Judgment Against the Wicked
10My shield is God, who saves the upright in heart.
11God, the judge, is righteous,
but he is a God who expresses his wrath every day.
12If he[] does not relent,
the Lord[] will sharpen his sword.
He has bent his bow and will string it.
13He prepares his deadly weapons.
He will make his arrows flames.
You Reap What You Sow
14Yes, whoever conceives evil and is pregnant with trouble
will give birth to disappointment.[]
15He digs a pit and scoops it out,
and he will fall into the hole he has made.
16The trouble he causes comes back on his own head.
His violence comes down on top of his own skull.
Closing Praise
17I will thank the Lord because of his righteousness,
and I will make music to the name of the Lord Most High.
Psalm 8
Your Name Is Majestic
For the choir director. According to gittith.[] A psalm by David.
The Glory of God Declared by the Heavens
The Glory of God Declared by Children
1O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
Set this glory of yours above the heavens.[]
2From the lips of little children and nursing babies
you have established strength[] because of your foes,
to put a stop to the enemy and the avenger.
The Glory of the Son of Man
3Whenever I look up at your heavens, the works of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place—
4what is man that you remember him,
the son of man[] that you pay attention to him!
5Nevertheless, you make him suffer need,
apart from God for a while,[]
but you crown him with glory and honor.
6You make him the ruler over the works of your hands.
You put everything under his feet:
7all flocks and cattle, and even the wild animals,
8the birds of the sky, and the fish of the sea,
which pass through the currents of the seas.
9O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
Psalm 9
Praise for God's Righteous Judgment
For the choir director. According to “The Death of the Son.”[]
A psalm by David.
Praise for God's Righteous Judgment
1I will thank you, Lord, with all my heart.
I will tell about all your wonderful deeds.
2I will be glad and rejoice in you.
I will make music to your name, O Most High.
Judgment Against David's Enemies
3When my enemies turn back,
they stumble and perish from your presence,
4for you have upheld my rights and my cause.
You sat on the throne, judging righteously.
5You have rebuked the nations,
and you made the wicked perish.
You have blotted out their name forever and ever.
6As for the enemy, their destruction is complete and final.
You have uprooted cities.
Memory of them has perished with them.
Judgment Against the Whole World
7The Lord is seated forever.
He has established his throne for judgment.
8The Lord himself will judge the world in righteousness.
He will judge the peoples with fairness.
9The Lord will be a refuge for those who have been crushed,
a refuge for times of trouble.
10Those who know your name will trust in you,
for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.
Closing Praise and Final Appeal
11Make music for the Lord, who is seated in Zion.
Proclaim his deeds among the peoples.
12Yes, he who avenges bloodshed remembers them.
He does not forget the cry of the afflicted.
13Have mercy on me, O Lord.
See my afflictions that are caused by those who hate me,
and raise me up from the gates of death,
14so that I may declare all your praise.
In the gates of the Daughter of Zion[]
I will rejoice in your salvation.
The End of the Wicked
15The nations have sunk into the pit they have made.
Their feet are caught in the net that they have hidden.
16The Lord makes himself known by the judgment he has carried out.
By the work of his hands the wicked are snared. Interlude for meditation[]
17The wicked return to the grave,
all the nations who forget God.
18But he will never forget the needy.
The hope of the afflicted will never perish.
19Rise up, O Lord. Do not let man triumph.
Let the nations be judged in your presence.
20Strike them with fear, O Lord.
Let the nations know they are only human. Interlude


  • 1:2 The Hebrew torah is traditionally translated law, but the term torah also includes other types of instruction besides legal regulations, so here it is translated with the more general term teaching.
  • 1:6 Literally knows
  • 2:2 Or Messiah
  • 2:7 Or I have become your father
  • 2:10 Or receive correction
  • 3:0 See 2 Samuel 15–18.
  • 3:2 The Hebrew term selah probably indicates a musical interlude for meditation, so selah is translated interlude throughout Psalms.
  • 4:3 The Hebrew word hasid refers to someone who receives and/or gives mercy. It is the most common title for a believer in the Psalms. Many translations use generic terms like devout, godly, or faithful. This translation uses favored when hasid refers primarily to a recipient of mercy and merciful when it refers primarily to a dispenser of mercy.
  • 6:0 Sheminith seems to be derived from the Hebrew word for eight. It may refer to an eight-stringed instrument, to the bass voice, to low-pitched stringed instruments, or, most likely, to a method for tuning a stringed instrument (1 Chronicles 15:21).
  • 7:0 The Hebrew word shiggaion is a musical term of uncertain meaning. Perhaps it means an emotional song.
  • 7:6 Or command justice
  • 7:9 Literally hearts and kidneys
  • 7:12 It is not clear whether he refers to God or to the wicked.
  • 7:12 Hebrew he. The subject the Lord is supplied for clarity.
  • 7:14 Or lies
  • 8:0 Gittith means in the style of Gath. Gath is a city name. It also means winepress. The term seems to refer to a musical style associated with Gath or perhaps to the name of a melody.
  • 8:1 The grammar of the line is difficult.
  • 8:2 The Greek Old Testament and Matthew 21:16 read prepared praise.
  • 8:4 Or the Son of Man, or the Son of Adam. Hebrews 2:6 makes it clear that Jesus is the Son of Adam who fulfills this prophecy. Jesus' title, the Son of Man, however, is based on Daniel 7:13 rather than on this verse. Here and in Daniel 7:13 it seems that the term son of man is not yet a formal title. It is the poetic parallel of the term man.
  • 8:5 This very important verse is difficult and has been the subject of a number of interpretations. A literal rendering of the Hebrew reads: You made him lack—God—a little. This could be paraphrased with Luther: You let him be forsaken by God for a little while. The translation above follows Luther in understanding this as a reference to Jesus' humiliation. The Greek translation of the Old Testament interprets the Hebrew word elohim, which usually means god, as a reference to godlike beings, namely, the angels: You made him a little lower [or lower for a little while] than the angels. Hebrews 2:7 quotes this translation. In either interpretation the point is the same: Jesus endured humiliation while he was on earth acting as our Savior. The fact that he needed help from the angels is one evidence of this.
  • 9:0 This may be the name of the tune. The translation according to the death of the son is uncertain.
  • 9:14 This half-line may be taken with the preceding line rather than with the following line. Here Daughter of Zion seems to be a personification of Jerusalem.
  • 9:16 Higgaion and selah together may mean a musical interlude for meditation.