The wonderful history of Israel
Give thanks to Yahweh, call His name aloud,
proclaim His deeds to the peoples!
Sing to Him, play to Him,
tell over all His marvels!
Glory in His holy name,
let the hearts that seek Yahweh rejoice!
Seek Yahweh and His strength,
seek His face untiringly;
remember the marvels He has done,
His wonders, the judgments from His mouth.
Stock of Abraham His servant,
sons of Jacob His chosen one!
He is Yahweh our God,
His authority is over all the earth.
Remember His covenant for ever,
His word of command for a thousand generations,
the pact He made with Abraham,
His oath to Isaac.
He established it as a statute for Jacob,
an everlasting covenant for Israel.
‘I give you a land,’ He said,
‘Canaan, your alloted heritage.
‘There, where you were easily counted,
few in number, strangers to the country.’
They went from nation to nation,
from one kingdom to another people;
He let no man oppress them,
He punished kings on their behalf.
‘Do not touch My anointed ones,’ He said,
‘do not harm My prophets!’
Next, He called down famine on the country,
He broke their staff, that is, their bread;
He sent a man ahead of them,
Joseph, sold as a slave.
They tortured his feet with fetters,
they put his neck in irons;
time passed, Joseph's oracle came true,
Yahweh's word proved him right.
The king gave orders to release him,
that master of nations set him free,
putting him in charge of his household,
in control of all he possessed,
to train his officials as he thought fit
and convert his elders into sages.
Israel then migrated to Egypt,
Jacob settled in the land of Ham.
He made His people fertile
and more vigorous than their oppressors,
whose hearts He then disposed to hatred of His people
and double-dealing with His servants.
He sent His servant Moses,
and Aaron, the man of His choice;
there they displayed His signs,
His wonders in the land of Ham.
He sent darkness, darkness fell,
but still they defied His word.
He turned their rivers into blood,
thus killing all their fish.
Their country was overrun with frogs
even in the royal apartments;
He spoke: flies and mosquitoes
swarmed throughout the country.
He sent them hail instead of rain,
fire swept across their land;
He blasted their vines and fig trees,
He shattered the trees throughout the country.
He spoke: there came locusts,
grasshoppers, more than you could count,
eating every scrap of greenstuff,
every blade their soil produced.
Next, He struck down all the first-born in their land,
the entire first fruits of their fertility;
then He led Israel out with gold and silver,
and not one man of their tribes was left behind.
Egypt was glad to see them go,
they had filled her with alarm;
He spread a cloud to cover them,
and a fire to glow at night.
They demanded food, He sent them quails,
He satisfied them with the bread of heaven;
He opened the rock, the waters gushed
to flow through the desert like a river.
Yes, faithful to the sacred promise
given to His servant Abraham,
He led His happy people forward,
to joyful shouts from His chosen,
and gave them the pagans' territories.
Where others had toiled, they took possession,
on condition that they kept His statutes
and remained obedient to His laws.