Bible Society of South Africa

Comfort from the Word – Day 8

Serious illness or death

Bible text(s)

4LORD, how long will I live?

When will I die?

Tell me how soon my life will end.”

5How short you have made my life!

In your sight my lifetime seems nothing.

Indeed every living being is no more than a puff of wind,

6no more than a shadow.

All they do is for nothing;

they gather wealth, but don't know who will get it.

7What, then, can I hope for, Lord?

I put my hope in you.

Psalms 39:4-7GNBOpen in Bible reader

Someone Saved from Death Praises God

1I love the LORD, because he hears me;

he listens to my prayers.

2He listens to me

every time I call to him.

3The danger of death was all round me;

the horrors of the grave closed in on me;

I was filled with fear and anxiety.

4Then I called to the LORD,

“I beg you, LORD, save me!”

5The LORD is merciful and good;

our God is compassionate.

6The LORD protects the helpless;

when I was in danger, he saved me.

Psalms 116:1-6GNBOpen in Bible reader

A Prayer for Help

1Listen to me, LORD, and answer me,

for I am helpless and weak.

2Save me from death, because I am loyal to you;

save me, for I am your servant and I trust in you.

3You are my God, so be merciful to me;

I pray to you all day long.

4Make your servant glad, O Lord,

because my prayers go up to you.

5You are good to us and forgiving,

full of constant love for all who pray to you.

6Listen, LORD, to my prayer;

hear my cries for help.

7I call to you in times of trouble,

because you answer my prayers.

8There is no god like you, O Lord,

not one has done what you have done.

9All the nations that you have created

will come and bow down to you;

they will praise your greatness.

10You are mighty and do wonderful things;

you alone are God.

11Teach me, LORD, what you want me to do,

and I will obey you faithfully;

teach me to serve you with complete devotion.

12I will praise you with all my heart, O Lord my God;

I will proclaim your greatness for ever.

13How great is your constant love for me!

You have saved me from the grave itself.

Psalms 86:1-13GNBOpen in Bible reader

A Cry for Help

1LORD God, my saviour, I cry out all day,

and at night I come before you.

2Hear my prayer;

listen to my cry for help!

3So many troubles have fallen on me

that I am close to death.

4I am like all others who are about to die;

all my strength is gone.

5I am abandoned among the dead;

I am like the slain lying in their graves,

those you have forgotten completely,

who are beyond your help.

6You have thrown me into the depths of the tomb,

into the darkest and deepest pit.

7Your anger lies heavy on me,

and I am crushed beneath its waves.

8You have caused my friends to abandon me;

you have made me repulsive to them.

I am closed in and cannot escape;

9my eyes are weak from suffering.

LORD, every day I call to you

and lift my hands to you in prayer.

10Do you perform miracles for the dead?

Do they rise up and praise you?

11Is your constant love spoken of in the grave

or your faithfulness in the place of destruction?

12Are your miracles seen in that place of darkness

or your goodness in the land of the forgotten?

13LORD, I call to you for help;

every morning I pray to you.

14Why do you reject me, LORD?

Why do you turn away from me?

15Ever since I was young, I have suffered and been near death;

I am worn out from the burden of your punishments.

16Your furious anger crushes me;

your terrible attacks destroy me.

17All day long they surround me like a flood;

they close in on me from every side.

18You have made even my closest friends abandon me,

and darkness is my only companion.

The Prayer of a Troubled Youth

1Listen to my prayer, O LORD,

and hear my cry for help!

2When I am in trouble,

don't turn away from me!

Listen to me,

and answer me quickly when I call!

3My life is disappearing like smoke;

my body is burning like fire.

4I am beaten down like dry grass;

I have lost my desire for food.

5I groan aloud;

I am nothing but skin and bones.

6I am like a wild bird in the desert,

like an owl in abandoned ruins.

7I lie awake;

I am like a lonely bird on a housetop.

8All day long my enemies insult me;

those who mock me use my name in cursing.

9-10Because of your anger and fury,

ashes are my food,

and my tears are mixed with my drink.

You picked me up and threw me away.

11My life is like the evening shadows;

I am like dry grass.

12But you, O LORD, are king for ever;

all generations will remember you.

13You will rise and take pity on Zion;

the time has come to have mercy on her;

this is the right time.

14Your servants love her,

even though she is destroyed;

they have pity on her,

even though she is in ruins.

15The nations will fear the LORD;

all the kings of the earth will fear his power.

16When the LORD rebuilds Zion,

he will reveal his greatness.

17He will hear his forsaken people

and listen to their prayer.

18Write down for the coming generation what the LORD has done,

so that people not yet born will praise him.

19The LORD looked down from his holy place on high,

he looked down from heaven to earth.

20He heard the groans of prisoners

and set free those who were condemned to die.

21And so his name will be proclaimed in Zion,

and he will be praised in Jerusalem

22when nations and kingdoms come together

and worship the LORD.

23The LORD has made me weak while I am still young;

he has shortened my life.

24O God, do not take me away now

before I grow old.

O LORD, you live for ever;

25long ago you created the earth,

and with your own hands you made the heavens.

26They will disappear, but you will remain;

they will all wear out like clothes.

You will discard them like clothes,

and they will vanish.

27But you are always the same,

and your life never ends.

28Our children will live in safety,

and under your protection

their descendants will be secure.

Psalms 102GNBOpen in Bible reader

A Prayer for Help

1I call to the LORD for help;

I plead with him.

2I bring him all my complaints;

I tell him all my troubles.

3When I am ready to give up,

he knows what I should do.

In the path where I walk,

my enemies have hidden a trap for me.

4When I look beside me,

I see that there is no one to help me,

no one to protect me.

No one cares for me.

5LORD, I cry to you for help;

you, LORD, are my protector;

you are all I want in this life.

6Listen to my cry for help,

for I am sunk in despair.

Save me from my enemies;

they are too strong for me.

7Set me free from my distress;

then in the assembly of your people I will praise you

because of your goodness to me.

Psalms 142GNBOpen in Bible reader

When one is in distress and in need of the power and comfort of the Lord, one often feels rather helpless. These Scripture portions from the Psalms have been grouped together under headings to help you find verses of Scripture appropriate to your particular circumstances.

Bible Society of South Africav.4.20.14
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