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Confident Prayer in Great Peril

1For the leader. On stringed instruments. A maskil of David, 2when the Ziphites came and said to Saul, “David is hiding among us.”a


3O God, by your name* save me.

By your strength defend my cause.

4O God, hear my prayer.

Listen to the words of my mouth.

5Strangers have risen against me;

the ruthless seek my life;

they do not keep God before them.b



6God is present as my helper;c

the Lord sustains my life.

7Turn back the evil upon my foes;

in your faithfulness, destroy them.d

8Then I will offer you generous sacrifice

and give thanks to your name, LORD, for it is good.

9Because it has rescued me from every trouble,

and my eyes look down on my foes.e

* [Psalm 54] A lament in which the person under attack calls directly upon God for help (Ps 54:35). Refusing to despair, the psalmist hopes in God, who is active in history and just (Ps 54:67). The Psalm ends with a serene promise to return thanks (Ps 54:89).

* [54:3] By your name: one is present in one’s name, hence God as revealed to human beings.

a. [54:2] 1 Sm 23:19; 26:1.

b. [54:5] Ps 86:14.

c. [54:6] Ps 118:7.

d. [54:7] Ps 143:12.

e. [54:9] Ps 59:11; 91:8; 92:12.

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