A maskila of Asaph.
1 My people, hear my teaching;j
listen to the words of my mouth.
2 I will open my mouth with a parable;k
I will utter hidden things, things from of old—
3 things we have heard and known,
things our ancestors have told us.l
4 We will not hide them from their descendants;m
we will tell the next generationn
the praiseworthy deedso of the Lord,
his power, and the wondersp he has done.
5 He decreed statutesq for Jacobr
and established the law in Israel,
which he commanded our ancestors
to teach their children,
6 so the next generation would know them,
even the children yet to be born,s
and they in turn would tell their children.
7 Then they would put their trust in God
and would not forgett his deeds
but would keep his commands.u
8 They would not be like their ancestorsv—
a stubbornw and rebelliousx generation,
whose hearts were not loyal to God,
whose spirits were not faithful to him.
9 The men of Ephraim, though armed with bows,y
turned back on the day of battle;z
10 they did not keep God’s covenanta
and refused to live by his law.b
11 They forgot what he had done,c
the wonders he had shown them.
12 He did miraclesd in the sight of their ancestors
in the land of Egypt,e in the region of Zoan.f
13 He divided the seag and led them through;
he made the water stand up like a wall.h
14 He guided them with the cloud by day
and with light from the fire all night.i
15 He split the rocksj in the wilderness
and gave them water as abundant as the seas;
16 he brought streams out of a rocky crag
and made water flow down like rivers.
17 But they continued to sink against him,
rebelling in the wilderness against the Most High.
18 They willfully put God to the testl
by demanding the food they craved.m
19 They spoke against God;n
they said, “Can God really
spread a table in the wilderness?
and water gushed out,o
streams flowed abundantly,
but can he also give us bread?
Can he supply meatp for his people?”
21 When the Lord heard them, he was furious;
his fire broke outq against Jacob,
and his wrath rose against Israel,
22 for they did not believe in God
or trustr in his deliverance.
23 Yet he gave a command to the skies above
and opened the doors of the heavens;s
24 he rained down mannat for the people to eat,
he gave them the grain of heaven.
25 Human beings ate the bread of angels;
he sent them all the food they could eat.
26 He let loose the east windu from the heavens
and by his power made the south wind blow.
27 He rained meat down on them like dust,
birdsv like sand on the seashore.
28 He made them come down inside their camp,
all around their tents.
29 They ate till they were gorged—w
he had given them what they craved.
30 But before they turned from what they craved,
even while the food was still in their mouths,x
31 God’s anger rose against them;
he put to death the sturdiesty among them,
cutting down the young men of Israel.
32 In spite of all this, they kept on sinning;z
in spite of his wonders,a they did not believe.b
33 So he ended their days in futilityc
and their years in terror.
34 Whenever God slew them, they would seekd him;
they eagerly turned to him again.
35 They remembered that God was their Rock,e
that God Most High was their Redeemer.f
36 But then they would flatter him with their mouths,g
lying to him with their tongues;
37 their hearts were not loyalh to him,
they were not faithful to his covenant.
38 Yet he was merciful;i
and did not destroy them.
Time after time he restrained his angerl
and did not stir up his full wrath.
39 He remembered that they were but flesh,m
a passing breezen that does not return.
40 How often they rebelledo against him in the wildernessp
and grieved himq in the wasteland!
41 Again and again they put God to the test;r
they vexed the Holy One of Israel.s
42 They did not remembert his power—
the day he redeemed them from the oppressor,u
43 the day he displayed his signsv in Egypt,
his wondersw in the region of Zoan.
44 He turned their river into blood;x
they could not drink from their streams.
45 He sent swarms of fliesy that devoured them,
and frogsz that devastated them.
46 He gave their crops to the grasshopper,a
their produce to the locust.b
47 He destroyed their vines with hailc
and their sycamore-figs with sleet.
48 He gave over their cattle to the hail,
their livestockd to bolts of lightning.
49 He unleashed against them his hot anger,e
his wrath, indignation and hostility—
a band of destroying angels.f
50 He prepared a path for his anger;
he did not spare them from death
but gave them over to the plague.
51 He struck down all the firstborn of Egypt,g
the firstfruits of manhood in the tents of Ham.h
52 But he brought his people out like a flock;i
he led them like sheep through the wilderness.
53 He guided them safely, so they were unafraid;
but the sea engulfedj their enemies.k
54 And so he brought them to the border of his holy land,
to the hill country his right handl had taken.
55 He drove out nationsm before them
and allotted their lands to them as an inheritance;n
he settled the tribes of Israel in their homes.
56 But they put God to the test
and rebelled against the Most High;
they did not keep his statutes.
57 Like their ancestorso they were disloyal and faithless,
as unreliable as a faulty bow.p
58 They angered himq with their high places;r
they aroused his jealousy with their idols.s
59 When God heardt them, he was furious;u
he rejected Israelv completely.
60 He abandoned the tabernacle of Shiloh,w
the tent he had set up among humans.x
61 He sent the ark of his mighty into captivity,z
his splendor into the hands of the enemy.
62 He gave his people over to the sword;a
he was furious with his inheritance.b
63 Fire consumedc their young men,
and their young women had no wedding songs;d
64 their priests were put to the sword,e
and their widows could not weep.
65 Then the Lord awoke as from sleep,f
as a warrior wakes from the stupor of wine.
he put them to everlasting shame.g
67 Then he rejected the tents of Joseph,
he did not choose the tribe of Ephraim;h
68 but he chose the tribe of Judah,i
Mount Zion,j which he loved.
69 He built his sanctuaryk like the heights,
like the earth that he established forever.
70 He chose Davidl his servant
and took him from the sheep pens;
71 from tending the sheepm he brought him
to be the shepherdn of his people Jacob,
of Israel his inheritance.
72 And David shepherded them with integrity of heart;o
with skillful hands he led them.
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