Why do you boast of mischief, mighty man? God’s loving kindness endures continually. Your tongue plots destruction, like a sharp razor, working deceitfully. You love evil more than good, lying rather than speaking the truth. You love all devouring words, you deceitful tongue. God will likewise destroy you forever. He will take you up, and pluck you out of your tent, and root you out of the land of the living. The righteous also will see it, and fear, and laugh at him, saying, «Behold, this is the man who didn’t make God his strength, but trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness.» But as for me, I am like a green olive tree in God’s house. I trust in God’s loving kindness forever and ever. I will give you thanks forever, because you have done it. I will hope in your name, for it is good, in the presence of your saints.
I awakened; for Yahweh sustains me. I will not be afraid of tens of thousands of people who have set themselves against me on every side. Arise, Yahweh! Save me, my God! For you have struck all of my enemies on the cheek bone. You have broken the teeth of the wicked. Salvation belongs to Yahweh. Your blessing be on your people.
The fool has said in his heart, «There is no God.» They are corrupt. They have done abominable works. There is none who does good. Yahweh looked down from heaven on the children of men, to see if there were any who understood, who sought after God. They have all gone aside. They have together become corrupt. There is none who does good, no, not one. Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge, who eat up my people as they eat bread, and don’t call on Yahweh? There they were in great fear, for God is in the generation of the righteous. You frustrate the plan of the poor, because Yahweh is his refuge. Oh that the salvation of Israel would come out of Zion! When Yahweh restores the fortunes of his people, then Jacob shall rejoice, and Israel shall be glad.
Blessed is he whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man to whom Yahweh doesn’t impute iniquity, in whose spirit there is no deceit. When I kept silence, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy on me. My strength was sapped in the heat of summer. I acknowledged my sin to you. I didn’t hide my iniquity. I said, I will confess my transgressions to Yahweh, and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. For this, let everyone who is godly pray to you in a time when you may be found. Surely when the great waters overflow, they shall not reach to him. You are my hiding place. You will preserve me from trouble. You will surround me with songs of deliverance. I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go. I will counsel you with my eye on you. Don’t be like the horse, or like the mule, which have no understanding, who are controlled by bit and bridle, or else they will not come near to you. Many sorrows come to the wicked, but loving kindness shall surround him who trusts in Yahweh. Be glad in Yahweh, and rejoice, you righteous! Shout for joy, all you who are upright in heart!
I said, «I will watch my ways, so that I don’t sin with my tongue. I will keep my mouth with a bridle while the wicked is before me.» I was mute with silence. I held my peace, even from good. My sorrow was stirred. My heart was hot within me. While I meditated, the fire burned: I spoke with my tongue: «Yahweh, show me my end, what is the measure of my days. Let me know how frail I am. Behold, you have made my days handbreadths. My lifetime is as nothing before you. Surely every man stands as a breath.» «Surely every man walks like a shadow. Surely they busy themselves in vain. He heaps up, and doesn’t know who shall gather. Now, LORD, what do I wait for? My hope is in you. Deliver me from all my transgressions. Don’t make me the reproach of the foolish. I was mute. I didn’t open my mouth, because you did it. Remove your scourge away from me. I am overcome by the blow of your hand. When you rebuke and correct man for iniquity, You consume his wealth like a moth. Surely every man is but a breath.» «Hear my prayer, Yahweh, and give ear to my cry. Don’t be silent at my tears. For I am a stranger with you, a foreigner, as all my fathers were. Oh spare me, that I may recover strength, before I go away, and exist no more.»
Yahweh said to me, «You are my son. Today I have become your father. Ask of me, and I will give the nations for your inheritance, the uttermost parts of the earth for your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron. You shall dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.» Now therefore be wise, you kings. Be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve Yahweh with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
It is a good thing to give thanks to Yahweh, to sing praises to your name, Most High; to proclaim your loving kindness in the morning, and your faithfulness every night, with the ten-stringed lute, with the harp, and with the melody of the lyre. For you, Yahweh, have made me glad through your work. I will triumph in the works of your hands. How great are your works, Yahweh! Your thoughts are very deep. A senseless man doesn’t know, neither does a fool understand this: though the wicked spring up as the grass, and all the evildoers flourish, they will be destroyed forever. But you, Yahweh, are on high forevermore. For, behold, your enemies, Yahweh, for, behold, your enemies shall perish. All the evildoers will be scattered. But you have exalted my horn like that of the wild ox. I am anointed with fresh oil. My eye has also seen my enemies. My ears have heard of the wicked enemies who rise up against me. The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree. He will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. They are planted in Yahweh’s house. They will flourish in our God’s courts. They will still bring forth fruit in old age. They will be full of sap and green, to show that Yahweh is upright. He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.
Praise waits for you, God, in Zion. To you shall vows be performed. You who hear prayer, to you all men will come. Sins overwhelmed me, but you atoned for our transgressions. Blessed is one whom you choose, and cause to come near, that he may live in your courts. We will be filled with the goodness of your house, your holy temple. By awesome deeds of righteousness, you answer us, God of our salvation. You who are the hope of all the ends of the earth, of those who are far away on the sea; Who by his power forms the mountains, having armed yourself with strength; who stills the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, and the turmoil of the nations. They also who dwell in faraway places are afraid at your wonders. You call the morning’s dawn and the evening with songs of joy. You visit the earth, and water it. You greatly enrich it. The river of God is full of water. You provide them grain, for so you have ordained it. You drench its furrows. You level its ridges. You soften it with showers. You bless it with a crop. You crown the year with your bounty. Your carts overflow with abundance. The wilderness grasslands overflow. The hills are clothed with gladness. The pastures are covered with flocks. The valleys also are clothed with grain. They shout for joy! They also sing.
The idealism and self-sacrificing commitment of that wartime generation are harder to find in our society today. But as Christians, we are challenged to rediscover that commitment. Jesus is saying to his people today the same sort of thing Uncle Sam said in those posters. Jesus is saying to us, “Your church—my church—needs you!”