Psalms 25


לְדָוִד אֵלֶיךָ יְהוָה נַפְשִׁי אֶשָּׂא׃   25:1

Psal. 25:1   Of David's:  To You, O Lord, my soul shall I lift up.

This psalm is composed in the form of an alphabetic acrostic.  Starting with the next verse, which begins with the letter aleph, the first letter of each succeeding verse is the next letter of the Hebrew alphabet.  However, there are two omissions, the letters beth and vav, and the letter resh appears twice.  There is no explanation for these deviations.

אֱלֹהַי בְּךָ בָטַחְתִּי אַל־אֵבוֹשָׁה אַל־יַעַלְצוּ אֹיְבַי לִי׃   25:2

Psal. 25:2   O my God! In You have I trusted.

                               Let me not be ashamed of it.

                      Let not my enemies triumph against me.

גַּם כָּל־קֹוֶיכָ לֹא יֵבֹשׁוּ יֵבֹשׁוּ הַבֹּוגְדִים רֵיקָם׃   25:3

Psal. 25:3   As well, let not all who wait on You be disappointed.

                               Let the transgressors without cause be disappointed.

Is David here differentiating between transgressors with a valid reason for their indiscretion and those without one?  Or does he mean to be facetious, implying that the transgressors with cause would be disappointed anyway? Your guess is as good as mine.

דְּרָכֶיךָ יְהוָה הֹודִיעֵנִי אֹרְחֹותֶיכָ לַמְּדֵנִי׃   25:4

Psal. 25:4   Let me know Your ways, O Lord;

                                teach me Your paths.

הַדְרִיכֵנִי בַאֲמִתֶּךָ וְלַמְּדֵנִי כִּי־אַתָּה אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׁעִי אוֹתְךָ קִוִּיתִי כָּל־הַיּוֹם׃   25:5

Psal. 25:5   Guide me with Your truth and teach me;

                                for You are the God of my salvation.

                      You I await all the time.

זְכֹר־רַחֲמֶיךָ יְהוָה וַחֲסָדֶיךָ כִּי מֵעוֹלָם הֵמָּה׃   25:6

Psal. 25:6   Remember Your tender mercies, O Lord,

                                and Your loving kindnesses;

                      for they are perpetual.

חַטֹּאות נְעוּרַי וּפְשָׁעַי אַל־תִּזְכֹּר כְּחַסְדְּךָ זְכָר־לִי־אַתָּה לְמַעַן טוּבְךָ יְהוָה׃   25:7

Psal. 25:7   May You not remember the sins of my youth

                               and my transgressions.

                      According to Your mercy, You have remembered me,

                               because of Your goodness, O Lord.

טוֹב־וְיָשָׁר יְהוָה עַל־כֵּן יוֹרֶה חַטָּאִים בַּדָּרֶךְ׃   25:8

Psal. 25:8   Good and upright is the Lord.

                               Therefore He would instruct sinners in the way.

יַדְרֵךְ עֲנָוִים בַּמִּשְׁפָּט וִילַמֵּד עֲנָוִים דַּרְכּוֹ׃   25:9

Psal. 25:9   Let Him guide the humble in judgment

                                 as He teaches the humble His way.

כָּל־אָרְחוֹת יְהוָה חֶסֶד וֶאֱמֶת לְנֹצְרֵי בְרִיתוֹ וְעֵדֹתָיו׃   25:10

Psal. 25:10   All the ways of the Lord are of mercy and truth

                                 to the preservers of His covenant and testimonies.

לְמַעַן־שִׁמְךָ יְהוָה וְסָלַחְתָּ לַעֲוֺנִי כִּי רַב־הוּא׃   25:11

Psal. 25:11   For the sake of Your name, O Lord,

                                 then give pardon for my iniquity, for it is great.

מִי־זֶה הָאִישׁ יְרֵא יְהוָה יוֹרֶנּוּ בְּדֶרֶךְ יִבְחָר׃   25:12

Psal. 25:12   Who is that man reverent of the Lord?

                                 He will instruct him in a manner He shall choose.

נַפְשׁוֹ בְּטוֹב תָּלִין וְזַרְעוֹ יִירַשׁ אָרֶץ׃   25:13

Psal. 25:13   His soul shall dwell in favor

                                  and his seed shall inherit the earth.

סוֹד יְהוָה לִירֵאָיו וּבְרִיתוֹ לְהוֹדִיעָם׃   25:14

Psal. 25:14   The counsel of the Lord is for His reverers,

                                  and His covenant is for His teaching of them.

עֵינַי תָּמִיד אֶל־יְהוָה כִּי הוּא־יוֹצִיא מֵרֶשֶׁת רַגְלָי׃   25:15

Psal. 25:15   My eyes are always toward the Lord,

                                  for He plucks my feet from the net.

פְּנֵה־אֵלַי וְחָנֵּנִי כִּי־יָחִיד וְעָנִי אָנִי׃   25:16

Psal. 25:16   Turn to me and have mercy on me,

                                  for I am desolate and afflicted.

צָרוֹת לְבָבִי הִרְחִיבוּ מִמְּצוּקוֹתַי הוֹצִיאֵנִי׃   25:17

Psal. 25:17   The troubles of my heart are great;

                                  from my distresses bring me forth!

רְאֵה עָנְיִי וַעֲמָלִי וְשָׂא לְכָל־חַטֹּאותָי׃   25:18

Psal. 25:18   Behold my affliction and pain,

                                  and pardon all my sins.

רְאֵה־אוֹיְבַי כִּי־רָבּוּ וְשִׂנְאַת חָמָס שְׂנֵאוּנִי׃   25:19

Psal. 25:19   Regard my enemies, for they are many,

                                  and they hate me, hating unjustly.

שָׁמְרָה נַפְשִׁי וְהַצִּילֵנִי אַל־אֵבוֹשׁ כִּי־חָסִיתִי בָךְ׃   25:20

Psal. 25:20   Guard my soul and deliver me!

                                  Let me not be ashamed,

                         for I trust in You.

תֹּם־וָיֹשֶׁר יִצְּרוּנִי כִּי קִוִּיתִיךָ׃   25:21

Psal. 25:21   Integrity and uprightness,

                                  may they preserve me while I await You.

פְּדֵה אֱלֹהִים אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל מִכֹּל צָרֹותָיו׃   25:22

Psal. 25:22   O God, redeem Israel from all its troubles!

Judging from this last verse, this psalm is not necessarily about David being personally threatened.  It was more likely composed at a time early in David’s reign when Israel was being threatened, probably by the Philistines.  So he has assumed the person of Israel throughout the psalm.


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