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Psalm 55


[Recommended tunes: v 1-6 Hampton, Shere; v 7-15 Old 134th, St Olave; v 16-23 Southwell, Narenza]



To the chief Musician on Neginoth, Maschil, A Psalm of David.

1Lord, hear my pray'r, hide not thyself

from my entreating voice:

2Attend and hear me; in my plaint

I mourn and make a noise.

3Because of th' en'my's voice, and for

lewd men's oppression great:

On me they cast iniquity,

and they in wrath me hate.


4Sore pain'd within me is my heart:

death's terrors on me fall.

5On me comes trembling, fear and dread

o'erwhelmed me withal.

6O that I, like a dove, had wings,

said I, then would I flee

Far hence, that I might find a place

where I in rest might be.


7Lo, then far off I wander would,

and in the desert stay;

8From windy storm and tempest I

would haste to 'scape away.

9O Lord, on them destruction bring,

and do their tongues divide;

For in the city violence

and strife I have espy'd.


10They day and night upon the walls

do go about it round:

There mischief is, and sorrow there

in midst of it is found.

11Abundant wickedness there is

within her inward part;

And from her streets deceitfulness

and guile do not depart.


12He was no foe that me reproach'd,

then that endure I could;

Nor hater that did 'gainst me boast,

from him me hide I would.

13But thou, man, who mine equal, guide,

and mine acquaintance wast:

14We join'd sweet counsels, to God's house

in company we past.


15Let death upon them seize, and down

let them go quick to hell;

For wickedness doth much abound

among them where they dwell.

16I'll call on God: God will me save.

17I'll pray, and make a noise

At ev'ning, morning, and at noon;

and he shall hear my voice.


18He hath my soul delivered,

that it in peace might be

From battle that against me was;

for many were with me.

19The Lord shall hear, and them afflict,

of old who hath abode:

Because they never changes have,

therefore they fear not God.


20'Gainst those that were at peace with him

he hath put forth his hand:

The covenant that he had made,

by breaking he profan'd.

21More smooth than butter were his words,

while in his heart was war;

His speeches were more soft than oil,

and yet drawn swords they are.


22Cast thou thy burden on the Lord,

and he shall thee sustain;

Yea, he shall cause the righteous man

unmoved to remain.

23But thou, O Lord my God, those men

in justice shalt o'erthrow,

And in destruction's dungeon dark

at last shalt lay them low:


The bloody and deceitful men

shall not live half their days:

But upon thee with confidence

I will depend always.



The Psalms in Metre