Friday, January 21, 2011

Day 21 — Psalm 106

National confession


Give thanks to Yahweh, for He is good,
His love is everlasting!
Who can count all Yahweh's triumphs?
Who can praise Him enough?

Happy are we if we exercise justice
and constantly practice virtue!
Yahweh, remember me,
for the love You bear Your people,
come to me as a Savior,
let me share the happiness of Your chosen,
the joys of Your nation
and take pride in being one of Your heirs.

We have sinned quite as much as our fathers,
we have been wicked, we are guilty;
our ancestors in Egypt never grasped
the meaning of Your marvels.

They failed to appreciate Your great love,
they defied the Most High at the Sea of reeds.
For the sake of His name He saved them
to demonstrate His power.

One word from Him dried up the Sea of Reeds,
He led them across the seabed like dry land,
He saved them from the grasp of those who hated them
and rescued them from the clutches of the enemy.

And the waters swallowed their oppressors,
not one of them was left.
Then, having faith in His promises,
they immediately sang His praises.

They forgot His achievements as quickly,
going on before asking His advice;
their desires overcame them in the desert,
they challenged God in the wilds.

He granted them what they asked for,
then struck them with a wasting fever;
in camp, they grew jealous of Moses
and Aaron, Yahweh's holy one.

The earth opened, swallowing Dathan,
closing on Abiram's faction,
the renegades went up in flames.

They made a calf at Horeb,
performed prostrations to a smelted thing,
exchanged the One who was their glory
for the image of a grass-eating ox.

They forgot the God who had saved them
by performing such feats in Egypt,
such wonders in the land of Ham,
such fearful things at the Sea of Reeds.

He talked of putting an end to them
and would have done, if Moses His chosen
had not stood in the breach, confronting Him,
and deflecting His destructive anger.

They refused a land of delight,
having no faith in His promise;
they stayed in their camp and grumbled,
they would not listen to Yahweh's voice.

So, raising His hand, He swore
to make them fall dead in the desert
and their descendants to fall to the heathen,
and to disperse them throughout those countries.

They accepted the yoke of Ba‘al-pe‘or
and ate sacrifices to the dead.
They provoked Him by their behavior;
plague broke out among them.

Then up stood Phinehas to intervene,
and the plague was checked;
hence his reputation for virtue
through successive generations for ever.

They enraged Him at the waters of Meribah;
as a result, things went wrong for Moses,
since they had embittered his spirit
and he spoke without stopping to think.

They did not destroy the pagans
as Yahweh had told them to do,
but, intermarrying with them,
adopted their practices instead.

Serving the pagans' idols,
they found themselves trapped
into sacrificing their own sons
and daughters to demons.

They shed innocent blood,
the blood of their sons and daughters,
offering them to the idols of Canaan,
they polluted the country with blood.

They defiled themselves by such actions,
their behavior was that of a whore.
Yahweh's anger blazed out at His people,
He came to loathe His heirs.

He handed them over to the pagans,
those who hated them became their masters;
their enemies tyrranized over them,
crushing them under their rule.

Time and again, He rescued them,
but they went on defying Him deliberately
and plunging deeper into wickedness;
even so He took pity on their distress
each time He heard them calling.

For their sake, He remembered His covenant,
He relented in His great love,
making their captors mitigate
the harshness of their treatment.

Yahweh our God and Savior,
gather us from among the pagans,
to give thanks to Your holy name
and to find our happiness in praising You.

Blessed be Yahweh the God of Israel,
from all eternity and for ever!

Here, all the people are to say, ‘Amen.’

The end of the fourth book of the Psalter.

Next… Day 22 — Psalm 107

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