Psalms 73 to 74 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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Psalm 73

Asaph’s song of praise.

1God is truly good to Israel. God is good to people whose hearts are pure. 2I almost slipped and began to sin. 3I saw that wicked people were successful I became jealous of those proud people. 4Those people are healthy. They don’t have to struggle to survive.* 5Those proud people don’t suffer like us. They don’t have troubles like other people. 6So they are very proud and hateful people. This is as easy to see as the jewels and fancy clothes they wear. 7If those people like something they see, they go and take it. They do whatever they want to do. 8They say cruel, evil things about other people. They are proud and stubborn. And they are always planning ways to take advantage of other people. 9Those proud people think they are gods! They think they are the rulers of earth. 10* So even God’s people turn to them and do the things they tell them. 11Those evil people say, “God doesn’t know what we are doing! God Most-High does not know!” 12Those proud people are wicked, but they are rich and getting richer. 13So why should I make my heart pure? Why should I make my hands clean? 14God, I suffer all day long. And you punish me every morning. 15God, I wanted to talk to other people about these things. But I knew I would be betraying your people. 16I tried hard to understand these things. But it was all too hard for me 17until I went to your temple.* I went to God’s temple, and then I understood. 18God, you really have put those people in a dangerous situation. It is so easy for them to fall and be destroyed. 19Trouble can come suddenly, and then those proud people are ruined. Terrible things can happen to them, and then they are finished. 20Lord, those people will be like a dream that we forget when we wake up. You will make those people disappear like the monsters in our dreams. 21–22I was very stupid. I thought about rich and wicked people, and I became upset. God, I was upset and angry at you! I acted like a stupid, ignorant animal. 23{I have everything I need!} I am with you always. God, you hold my hand. 24God, you lead me and give me good advice. And later you will lead me to glory.* 25God, I have you in heaven. And when I am with you, what on earth can I want?  26Maybe my mind* and body will be destroyed, but I have the Rock* I love. I have God forever! 27God, people who leave you will be lost. You will destroy the people who are not faithful to you. 28As for me, I have come to God. And that is good for me. I have made the Lord my Master my place of safety. God, I have come to tell about all the things you have done.

They don’t have to struggle to survive Literally, “They have no bonds to their death.” Verse 10 This verse is hard to understand in Hebrew. temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship. Later … glory Or, “You take (lead) me after honor.” mind Literally, “heart.” Rock A name for God to show he is a strong place of safety.

Psalm 74

A maskil* of Asaph.

1God, did you leave us forever? Are you still angry at your people? 2Remember the people you bought long ago. You saved us. We belong to you. Remember Mount Zion,* the place that you lived. 3God, come walk through these ancient ruins. Come back to the Holy Place that the enemy destroyed. 4The enemy shouted their war cries in the temple. They put their flags in the temple to show they won the war. 5The enemy soldiers were like people cutting weeds with a hoe. 6God, they used their axes and hatchets, and cut the carved, wooden panels in your temple. 7Those soldiers burned your Holy Place. That temple was built to honor your name. But they pulled it down to the ground. 8The enemy decided to crush us completely. They burned every holy place* in the country. 9We could not see any of our own signs.* There are no more prophets. No person knows what to do. 10God, how much longer will the enemy make fun of us? Will you let them insult your name forever? 11God, why did you punish us so hard? You used your great power and destroyed us completely! 12God, you have been our King for a long time. You helped us win many battles in this country. 13God, you used your great power, to split open the Red Sea. 14You defeated the great sea monsters! You smashed the heads of Leviathan,* and left his body for the animals to eat. 15You make the springs and rivers flow. And you make the rivers become dry. 16God, you control the day, and you control the night. You made the moon and the sun. 17You set the limits for everything on earth. And you created summer and winter. 18God, remember these things. Remember, the enemy insulted you! Those foolish people hate your name! 19Don’t let those wild animals take your dove! Don’t forget your poor people forever.  20Remember our Agreement!* There is violence in every dark place in this land. 21God, your people were treated badly. Don’t let them be hurt any more. Your poor, helpless people praise you. 22God, get up and fight! Remember, those fools challenged you! 23Don’t forget the shouts of your enemies. They insulted you again and again.

maskil The exact meaning of “maskil” is not known. It might mean “a poem of meditation,” “a poem of instruction,” or “a skillfully-written poem.” Zion The southeast part of the mountain Jerusalem is built on. Sometimes it means the people of God living in Jerusalem. holy place Or, “El meeting place.” This means every place where people went to meet with God. signs These were probably signal fires that people burned as a way of passing messages from one town to the next. In war, this was a way people showed other towns that the enemy had not yet destroyed their own town. great sea monsters … Leviathan These were creatures from ancient stories. People believed that these creatures kept the world from being a safe, orderly place. When it says that God destroyed these creatures, it means God showed he really controlled every part of the world, even the animals in the deepest ocean. Agreement Literally, “Proof.” The flat stones with the Ten Commandments written on them were proof of the Agreement between God and Israel.

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