- 1 For the leader. A psalm of David.
- I waited, waited for the LORD; who bent down and heard my cry,
- Drew me out of the pit of destruction, out of the mud of the swamp, Set my feet upon rock, steadied my steps,
- 2And put a new song in my mouth, a hymn to our God. Many shall look on in awe and they shall trust in the LORD.
- Happy those whose trust is the LORD, who turn not to idolatry or to those who stray after falsehood.
- How numerous, O LORD, my God, you have made your wondrous deeds! And in your plans for us there is none to equal you. Should I wish to declare or tell them, too many are they to recount.
- 3 sacrifice and offering you do not want; but ears open to obedience you gave me. Holocausts and sin-offerings you do not require;
- so I said, "Here I am; your commands for me are written in the scroll.
- To do your will is my delight; my God, your law is in my heart!"
- I announced your deed to a great assembly; I did not restrain my lips; you, LORD, are my witness.
- Your deed I did not hide within my heart; your loyal deliverance I have proclaimed. I made no secret of your enduring kindness to a great assembly.
- LORD, do not withhold your compassion from me; may your enduring kindness ever preserve me.
- For all about me are evils beyond count; my sins so overcome me I cannot see. They are more than the hairs of my head; my courage fails me.
- LORD, graciously rescue me! Come quickly to help me, LORD!
- Put to shame and confound all who seek to take my life. Turn back in disgrace those who desire my ruin.
- Let those who say "Aha!" know dismay and shame.
- But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you. May those who long for your help always say, "The LORD be glorified."
- Though I am afflicted and poor, the Lord keeps me in mind. You are my help and deliverer; my God, do not delay!
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Footnotes1 [Psalm 40] A thanksgiving (Psalm 40:2-13) has been combined with a lament (Psalm 40:14-17), that appears also in Psalm 70. The psalmist describes the rescue in spatial terms--being raised up from the swampy underworld to firm earth where one can praise God (Psalm 40:2-4). All who trust God will experience like protection (Psalm 40:5-6)! The psalm stipulates the precise mode of thanksgiving: not animal sacrifice but open and enthusiastic proclamation of the salvation just experienced (Psalm 40:7-11). A prayer for protection concludes (Psalm 40:12-17).
2 A new song: a song in response to the new action of God (cf Psalm 33:3; 96:1; 144:9; 149:1; Isaiah 42:10). Giving thanks is not purely a human response but is itself a divine gift.
3 [7-9] Obedience is better than sacrifice (cf 1 Sam 15:22; Isaiah 1:10-20; Hosea 6:6; Amos 5:22-25; Micah 6:6-8; Acts 7:42-43 [quoting Amos 5:25-26]). Hebrews 10:5-9 quotes the somewhat different Greek version and interprets it as Christ's self-oblation.
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