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Psalm 143 


First Version (C.M.)


[Recommended tunes: St Mary, Dundee, Caroline]



A Psalm of David.


1Lord, hear my pray'r, attend my suits;

and in thy faithfulness

Give thou an answer unto me,

and in thy righteousness.

2Thy servant also bring thou not

in judgment to be try'd:

Because no living man can be

in thy sight justify'd.


3For th' en'my hath pursu'd my soul,

my life to ground down tread:

In darkness he hath made me dwell,

as who have long been dead.

4My sp'rit is therefore overwhelm'd

in me perplexedly;

Within me is my very heart

amazed wondrously.


5I call to mind the days of old,

to meditate I use

On all thy works; upon the deeds

I of thy hands do muse.

6My hands to thee I stretch; my soul

thirsts, as dry land, for thee.

7Haste, Lord, to hear, my spirit fails:

hide not thy face from me;


Lest like to them I do become

that go down to the dust.

8At morn let me thy kindness hear;

for in thee do I trust.

Teach me the way that I should walk:

I lift my soul to thee.

9Lord, free me from my foes; I flee

to thee to cover me.


10Because thou art my God, to do

thy will do me instruct:

Thy Sp'rit is good, me to the land

of uprightness conduct.

11Revive and quicken me, O Lord,

ev'n for thine own name's sake;

And do thou, for thy righteousness,

my soul from trouble take.


12And of thy mercy slay my foes;

let all destroyed be

That do afflict my soul: for I

a servant am to thee.



    Second Version (


[Recommended tunes: Leuchars, St Cecilia, Hawarden, Lawes (Psalm 32)]



1Oh, hear my prayer, Lord,

And unto my desire

To bow thine ear accord,

I humbly thee require;

And, in thy faithfulness,

Unto me answer make,

And, in thy righteousness,

Upon me pity take.


2In judgment enter not

With me thy servant poor;

For why, this well I wot,

No sinner can endure

The sight of thee, O God:

If thou his deeds shalt try,

He dare make none abode

Himself to justify.


3Behold, the cruel foe

Me persecutes with spite,

My soul to overthrow:

Yea, he my life down quite

Unto the ground hath smote,

And made me dwell full low

In darkness, as forgot,

Or men dead long ago.


4Therefore my sp'rit much vex'd,

O'erwhelm'd is me within;

My heart right sore perplex'd

And desolate hath been.

5Yet I do call to mind

What ancient days record,

Thy works of ev'ry kind

I think upon, O Lord.


6Lo, I do stretch my hands

To thee, my help alone;

For thou well understands

All my complaint and moan:

My thirsting soul desires,

And longeth after thee,

As thirsty ground requires

With rain refresh'd to be.


7Lord, let my pray'r prevail,

To answer it make speed;

For, lo, my sp'rit doth fail:

Hide not thy face in need;

Lest I be like to those

That do in darkness sit,

Or him that downward goes

Into the dreadful pit.


8Because I trust in thee,

O Lord, cause me to hear

Thy loving-kindness free,

When morning doth appear:

Cause me to know the way

Wherein my path should be;

For why, my soul on high

I do lift up to thee.


9From my fierce enemy

In safety do me guide,

Because I flee to thee,

Lord, that thou may'st me hide.

10My God alone art thou,

Teach me thy righteousness:

Thy Sp'rit's good, lead me to

The land of uprightness.


11O Lord, for thy name's sake,

Be pleas'd to quicken me;

And, for thy truth, forth take

My soul from misery.

12And of thy grace destroy

My foes, and put to shame

All who my soul annoy;

For I thy servant am.


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The Psalms in Metre