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Chapter 74

Prayer at the Destruction of the Temple

1A maskil of Asaph.


Why, God, have you cast us off forever? q Pss 10, 1; 44, 24; 77, 8 . * Why does your anger burn against the sheep of your pasture? r Ps 80, 5 . 2Remember your flock that you gathered of old, the tribe you redeemed as your very own. Remember Mount Zion where you dwell. s Pss 68, 17; 132, 13; Ex 15, 17; Jer 10, 16; 51, 19 . 3Turn your steps toward the utter ruins, toward the sanctuary devastated by the enemy. 4Your foes roared triumphantly in your shrine; they set up their own tokens of victory. 5They hacked away like foresters gathering boughs, swinging their axes in a thicket of trees. 6They smashed all your engraved work, pounded it with hammer and pick. 7They set your sanctuary on fire; the abode of your name they razed and profaned. t Is 64, 10; Ps 79, 1 . 8They said in their hearts, “Destroy them all! Burn all the shrines of God in the land!” 9Now we see no signs,* we have no prophets, u LAm 2, 9 . no one who knows how long. 10How long, O God, shall the enemy jeer? v Ps 89, 47 . Shall the foe revile your name forever? 11Why draw back your right hand, why keep it idle beneath your cloak?


12Yet you, God, are my king from of old,* winning victories throughout the earth. 13You stirred up the sea in your might; w Ps 89, 10 . you smashed the heads of the dragons on the waters. x Is 51, 9–10 . 14You crushed the heads of Leviathan, y Jb 3, 8; 40, 25; Is 27, 1 . tossed him for food to the sharks. 15You opened up springs and torrents, brought dry land out of the primeval waters. 16Yours the day and yours the night; you set the moon and sun in place. 17You fixed all the limits of the earth; summer and winter you made. z 74, 16–17: Gn 74, 1 . 18Remember how the enemy has jeered, O LORD, how a foolish people has reviled your name. 19Do not surrender to beasts those who praise you; do not forget forever the life of your afflicted. 20Look to your covenant, for the land is filled with gloom; the pastures, with violence. 21Let not the oppressed turn back in shame; may the poor and needy praise your name. 22Arise, God, defend your cause; remember the constant jeers of the fools. 23Do not ignore the clamor of your foes, the unceasing uproar of your enemies.


q: Pss 10, 1; 44, 24; 77, 8 .

r: Ps 80, 5 .

s: Pss 68, 17; 132, 13; Ex 15, 17; Jer 10, 16; 51, 19 .

t: Is 64, 10; Ps 79, 1 .

u: LAm 2, 9 .

v: Ps 89, 47 .

w: Ps 89, 10 .

x: Is 51, 9–10 .

y: Jb 3, 8; 40, 25; Is 27, 1 .

z: 74, 16–17: Gn 74, 1 .

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