Prayer of an Afflicted Man for Mercy on Himself and on Zion.
1Hear my prayer, O Lord!
And let my cry for help come to You.
2Do not hide Your face from me in the day of my distress;
Incline Your ear to me;
In the day when I call answer me quickly.
3For my days have been consumed in smoke,
And my bones have been scorched like a hearth.
4My heart has been smitten like grass and has withered away,
Indeed, I forget to eat my bread.
5Because of the loudness of my groaning
My bones cling to my flesh.
6I resemble a pelican of the wilderness;
I have become like an owl of the waste places.
7I lie awake,
I have become like a lonely bird on a housetop.
8My enemies have reproached me all day long;
Those who deride me have used my name as a curse.
9For I have eaten ashes like bread
And mingled my drink with weeping
10Because of Your indignation and Your wrath,
For You have lifted me up and cast me away.
11My days are like a lengthened shadow,
And I wither away like grass.
12But You, O Lord, abide forever,
And Your name to all generations.
13You will arise and have compassion on Zion;
For it is time to be gracious to her,
For the appointed time has come.
14Surely Your servants find pleasure in her stones
And feel pity for her dust.
15So the nations will fear the name of the Lord
And all the kings of the earth Your glory.
16For the Lord has built up Zion;
He has appeared in His glory.
17He has regarded the prayer of the destitute
And has not despised their prayer.
18This will be written for the generation to come,
That a people yet to be created may praise the Lord.
19For He looked down from His holy height;
From heaven the Lord gazed upon the earth,
20To hear the groaning of the prisoner,
To set free those who were doomed to death,
21That men may tell of the name of the Lord in Zion
And His praise in Jerusalem,
22When the peoples are gathered together,
And the kingdoms, to serve the Lord.
23He has weakened my strength in the way;
He has shortened my days.
24I say, “O my God, do not take me away in the midst of my days,
Your years are throughout all generations.
25Of old You founded the earth,
And the heavens are the work of Your hands.
26Even they will perish, but You endure;
And all of them will wear out like a garment;
Like clothing You will change them and they will be changed.
27But You are the same,
And Your years will not come to an end.
28The children of Your servants will continue,
And their descendants will be established before You.”