David laments that his enemies are having success. He asks the LORD to deliver him and give him victory.
VERSE 1. Contend, LORD, with those who contend with me. Fight against those who fight against me.
Contend, LORD. David wants the LORD to fight against those are harassing him.
Fight against. David wants the LORD to attack those who are attacking him.
VERSE 2. Take hold of shield and buckler, and stand up for my help.
VERSE 3. Brandish the spear and block those who pursue me. Tell my soul, “I am your salvation.”
VERSE 4. Let those who seek after my soul be disappointed and brought to dishonor. Let those who plot my ruin be turned back and confounded.
VERSE 5. Let them be as chaff before the wind, The LORD’s angel driving them on.
The LORD’s angel. Who is this angel?
VERSE 6. Let their way be dark and slippery, The LORD’s angel pursuing them.
VERSE 7. For without cause they have hidden their net in a pit for me. Without cause they have dug a pit for my soul.
VERSE 8. Let destruction come on him unawares. Let his net that he has hidden catch himself. Let him fall into that destruction.
VERSE 9. My soul shall be joyful in the LORD. It shall rejoice in his salvation.
NIV translation: My soul will rejoice in the LORD and delight in his salvation.
shall be joyful. David acts with joy, even if he doesn’t feel like it. Perhaps his feelings will become consistent with his words. The priority is on doing these things, by faith if necessary. Actions, not feelings, lead the way.
VERSE 10. All my bones shall say, “LORD, who is like you, who delivers the poor from him who is too strong for him; yes, the poor and the needy from him who robs him?”
VERSE 11. Unrighteous witnesses rise up. They ask me about things that I don’t know about.
Unrighteous witnesses rise up. Some people are willing to testify falsely. These false witnesses are major agents of untruth.
VERSE 12. They reward me evil for good, to the bereaving of my soul.
VERSE 13. But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth. I afflicted my soul with fasting. My prayer returned into my own bosom.
when they were sick. When his enemies were sick, David had fasted and prayed for them, putting on sackcloth. The Lord Jesus Christ commanded us to do that:
Matthew 5:44. But I tell you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who mistreat you and persecute you,
VERSE 14. I behaved myself as though it had been my friend or my brother. I bowed down mourning, as one who mourns his mother.
VERSE 15. But in my adversity, they rejoiced, and gathered themselves together. The attackers gathered themselves together against me, and I didn’t know it. They tore at me, and didn’t cease.
VERSE 16. Like the profane mockers in feasts, they gnashed their teeth at me.
VERSE 17. Lord, how long will you look on? Rescue my soul from their destruction, my precious life from the lions.
VERSE 18. I will give you thanks in the great assembly. I will praise you among many people.
VERSE 19. Don’t let those who are my enemies wrongfully rejoice over me; neither let those who hate me without a cause wink their eyes.
VERSE 20. For they don’t speak peace, but they devise deceitful words against those who are quiet in the land.
VERSE 21. Yes, they opened their mouth wide against me. They said, “Aha! Aha! Our eye has seen it!”
VERSE 22. You have seen it, LORD. Don’t keep silent. Lord, don’t be far from me.
VERSE 23. Wake up! Rise up to defend me, my God! My Lord, contend for me!
VERSE 24. Vindicate me, LORD my God, according to your righteousness. Don’t let them gloat over me.
VERSE 25. Don’t let them say in their heart, “Aha! That’s the way we want it!” Don’t let them say, “We have swallowed him up!”
VERSE 26. Let them be disappointed and confounded together who rejoice at my calamity. Let them be clothed with shame and dishonor who magnify themselves against me.
VERSE 27. Let them shout for joy and be glad, who favor my righteous cause. Yes, let them say continually, “The LORD be magnified, who has pleasure in the prosperity of his servant!”
Let them shout for joy. David wants there to be joy for those who love is cause.
prosperity. The Hebrew word is שְׁל֣וֹם (“shalom”). In this verse, here are how different translations render it:
- peace: NAB, NJB, ICEL
- prosperity: NASB, NKJV, AMP, KJV
- secure: NET Bible
- welfare: NRSV
- well-being: NIV
VERSE 28. My tongue shall talk about your righteousness and about your praise all day long.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.