A Cry for Help
1Save me, O God!
The water is up to my neck;
2I am sinking in deep mud,
and there is no solid ground;
I am out in deep water,
and the waves are about to drown me.
3I am worn out from calling for help,
and my throat is aching.
I have strained my eyes,
looking for your help.
4 Those who hate me for no reason
are more numerous than the hairs of my head.
My enemies tell lies against me;
they are strong and want to kill me.
They made me give back things I did not steal.
5My sins, O God, are not hidden from you;
you know how foolish I have been.
6Don't let me bring shame on those who trust in you,
Sovereign Lord Almighty!
Don't let me bring disgrace to those who worship you,
O God of Israel!
7It is for your sake that I have been insulted
and that I am covered with shame.
8I am like a stranger to my relatives,
like a foreigner to my family.
9 My devotion to your Temple burns in me like a fire;
the insults which are hurled at you fall on me.
10I humble myself by fasting,
and people insult me;
11I dress myself in clothes of mourning,
and they laugh at me.
12They talk about me in the streets,
and drunkards make up songs about me.
13But as for me, I will pray to you, Lord;
answer me, God, at a time you choose.
Answer me because of your great love,
because you keep your promise to save.
14Save me from sinking in the mud;
keep me safe from my enemies,
safe from the deep water.
15Don't let the flood come over me;
don't let me drown in the depths
or sink into the grave.
16Answer me, Lord, in the goodness of your constant love;
in your great compassion turn to me!
17Don't hide yourself from your servant;
I am in great trouble—answer me now!
18Come to me and save me;
rescue me from my enemies.
19You know how I am insulted,
how I am disgraced and dishonored;
you see all my enemies.
20Insults have broken my heart,
and I am in despair.
I had hoped for sympathy, but there was none;
for comfort, but I found none.
21 When I was hungry, they gave me poison;
when I was thirsty, they offered me vinegar.
22 May their banquets cause their ruin;
may their sacred feasts cause their downfall.
23Strike them with blindness!
Make their backs always weak!
24Pour out your anger on them;
let your indignation overtake them.
25 May their camps be left deserted;
may no one be left alive in their tents.
26They persecute those whom you have punished;
they talk about the sufferings of those you have wounded.
27Keep a record of all their sins;
don't let them have any part in your salvation.
28 May their names be erased from the book of the living;
may they not be included in the list of your people.
29But I am in pain and despair;
lift me up, O God, and save me!
30I will praise God with a song;
I will proclaim his greatness by giving him thanks.
31This will please the Lord more than offering him cattle,
more than sacrificing a full-grown bull.
32When the oppressed see this, they will be glad;
those who worship God will be encouraged.
33The Lord listens to those in need
and does not forget his people in prison.
34Praise God, O heaven and earth,
seas and all creatures in them.
35He will save Jerusalem
and rebuild the towns of Judah.
His people will live there and possess the land;
36the descendants of his servants will inherit it,
and those who love him will live there.