Bible Society of South Africa

Bible Reading Plan – Day 102

Bible text(s)

Thanksgiving to God for his Justice

1I will praise you, LORD, with all my heart;

I will tell of all the wonderful things you have done.

2I will sing with joy because of you.

I will sing praise to you, Almighty God.

3My enemies turn back when you appear;

they fall down and die.

4You are fair and honest in your judgements,

and you have judged in my favour.

5You have condemned the heathen

and destroyed the wicked;

they will be remembered no more.

6Our enemies are finished for ever;

you have destroyed their cities,

and they are completely forgotten.

7But the LORD is king for ever;

he has set up his throne for judgement.

8He rules the world with righteousness;

he judges the nations with justice.

9The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed,

a place of safety in times of trouble.

10Those who know you, LORD, will trust you;

you do not abandon anyone who comes to you.

11Sing praise to the LORD, who rules in Zion!

Tell every nation what he has done!

12God remembers those who suffer;

he does not forget their cry,

and he punishes those who wrong them.

13Be merciful to me, O LORD!

See the sufferings my enemies cause me!

Rescue me from death, O LORD,

14that I may stand before the people of Jerusalem

and tell them all the things for which I praise you.

I will rejoice because you saved me.

15The heathen have dug a pit and fallen in;

they have been caught in their own trap.

16The LORD has revealed himself by his righteous judgements,

and the wicked are trapped by their own deeds.

17Death is the destiny of all the wicked,

of all those who reject God.

18The needy will not always be neglected;

the hope of the poor will not be crushed for ever.

19Come, LORD! Do not let human beings defy you!

Bring the heathen before you

and pronounce judgement on them.

20Make them afraid, O LORD;

make them know that they are only mortal beings.

A Prayer for Justice

1Why are you so far away, O LORD?

Why do you hide yourself when we are in trouble?

2The wicked are proud and persecute the poor;

catch them in the traps they have made.

3The wicked are proud of their evil desires;

the greedy curse and reject the LORD.

4The wicked do not care about the LORD;

in their pride they think that God doesn't matter.

5The wicked succeed in everything.

They cannot understand God's judgements;

they sneer at their enemies.

6They say to themselves, “I will never fail;

I will never be in trouble.”

7Their speech is filled with curses, lies, and threats;

they are quick to speak hateful, evil words.

8They hide themselves in the villages,

waiting to murder innocent people.

They spy on their helpless victims;

9they wait in their hiding places like lions.

They lie in wait for the poor;

they catch them in their traps and drag them away.

10The helpless victims lie crushed;

brute strength has defeated them.

11The wicked say to themselves, “God doesn't care!

He has closed his eyes and will never see me!”

12O LORD, punish those wicked people!

Remember those who are suffering!

13How can the wicked despise God

and say to themselves, “He will not punish me”?

14But you do see; you take notice of trouble and suffering

and are always ready to help.

The helpless commit themselves to you;

you have always helped the needy.

15Break the power of wicked and evil people;

punish them for the wrong they have done

until they do it no more.

16The LORD is king for ever and ever.

Those who worship other gods

will vanish from his land.

17You will listen, O LORD, to the prayers of the lowly;

you will give them courage.

18You will hear the cries of the oppressed and the orphans;

you will judge in their favour,

so that mortal men may cause terror no more.

Confidence in the LORD

1I trust in the LORD for safety.

How foolish of you to say to me,

“Fly away like a bird to the mountains,

2because the wicked have drawn their bows and aimed their arrows

to shoot from the shadows at good people.

3There is nothing a good person can do

when everything falls apart.”

4The LORD is in his holy temple;

he has his throne in heaven.

He watches people everywhere

and knows what they are doing.

5He examines the good and the wicked alike;

the lawless he hates with all his heart.

6He sends down flaming coals and burning sulphur on the wicked;

he punishes them with scorching winds.

7The LORD is righteous and loves good deeds;

those who do them will live in his presence.

A Prayer for Help

1Help us, LORD!

There is not a good person left;

honest people can no longer be found.

2All of them lie to one another;

they deceive each other with flattery.

3Silence those flattering tongues, O LORD!

Close those boastful mouths that say,

4“With our words we get what we want.

We will say what we wish,

and no one can stop us.”

5“But now I will come,” says the LORD,

“because the needy are oppressed

and the persecuted groan in pain.

I will give them the security they long for.”

6The promises of the LORD can be trusted;

they are as genuine as silver

refined seven times in the furnace.

7-8The wicked are everywhere,

and everyone praises what is evil.

Keep us always safe, O LORD,

and preserve us from such people.

A Prayer for Help

1How much longer will you forget me, LORD? For ever?

How much longer will you hide yourself from me?

2How long must I endure trouble?

How long will sorrow fill my heart day and night?

How long will my enemies triumph over me?

3Look at me, O LORD my God, and answer me.

Restore my strength; don't let me die.

4Don't let my enemies say, “We have defeated him.”

Don't let them gloat over my downfall.

5I rely on your constant love;

I will be glad, because you will rescue me.

6I will sing to you, O LORD,

because you have been good to me.

Human Wickedness

(Ps 53)

1Fools say to themselves,

“There is no God.”

They are all corrupt,

and they have done terrible things;

there is no one who does what is right.

2The LORD looks down from heaven at human beings

to see if there are any who are wise,

any who worship him.

3But they have all gone wrong;

they are all equally bad.

Not one of them does what is right,

not a single one.

4“Don't they know?” asks the LORD.

“Are all these evildoers ignorant?

They live by robbing my people,

and they never pray to me.”

5But then they will be terrified,

for God is with those who obey him.

6Evildoers frustrate the plans of the humble,

but the LORD is their protection.

7How I pray that victory

will come to Israel from Zion.

How happy the people of Israel will be

when the LORD makes them prosperous again!

What God Requires

1LORD, who may enter your Temple?

Who may worship on Zion, your sacred hill?

2Those who obey God in everything

and always do what is right,

whose words are true and sincere,

3and who do not slander others.

They do no wrong to their friends

nor spread rumours about their neighbours.

4They despise those whom God rejects,

but honour those who obey the LORD.

They always do what they promise,

no matter how much it may cost.

5They make loans without charging interest

and cannot be bribed to testify against the innocent.

Whoever does these things will always be secure.

A Prayer of Confidence

1Protect me, O God; I trust in you for safety.

2I say to the LORD, “You are my Lord;

all the good things I have come from you.”

3How excellent are the LORD's faithful people!

My greatest pleasure is to be with them.

4Those who rush to other gods

bring many troubles on themselves.

I will not take part in their sacrifices;

I will not worship their gods.

5You, LORD, are all I have,

and you give me all I need;

my future is in your hands.

6How wonderful are your gifts to me;

how good they are!

7I praise the LORD, because he guides me,

and in the night my conscience warns me.

8I am always aware of the LORD's presence;

he is near, and nothing can shake me.

9And so I am thankful and glad,

and I feel completely secure,

10because you protect me from the power of death.

I have served you faithfully,

and you will not abandon me to the world of the dead.

11You will show me the path that leads to life;

your presence fills me with joy

and brings me pleasure for ever.

The Prayer of an Innocent Person

1Listen, O LORD, to my plea for justice;

pay attention to my cry for help!

Listen to my honest prayer.

2You will judge in my favour,

because you know what is right.

3You know my heart.

You have come to me at night;

you have examined me completely

and found no evil desire in me.

4I speak no evil as others do;

I have obeyed your command

and have not followed paths of violence.

5I have always walked in your way

and have never strayed from it.

6I pray to you, O God, because you answer me;

so turn to me and listen to my words.

7Reveal your wonderful love and save me;

at your side I am safe from my enemies.

8Protect me as you would your very eyes;

hide me in the shadow of your wings

9from the attacks of the wicked.

Deadly enemies surround me;

10they have no pity and speak proudly.

11They are round me now, wherever I turn,

watching for a chance to pull me down.

12They are like lions, waiting for me,

wanting to tear me to pieces.

13Come, LORD! Oppose my enemies and defeat them!

Save me from the wicked by your sword;

14save me from those who in this life have all they want.

Punish them with the sufferings you have stored up for them;

may there be enough for their children

and some left over for their children's children!

15But I will see you, because I have done no wrong;

and when I awake, your presence will fill me with joy.

Psalms 9:1-17:15GNBOpen in Bible reader
Bible Society of South Africav.4.16.20
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