1 Be merciful to me, O God;
be merciful to me;
because my soul her confidence
doth wholly place in thee.
Yea, in the shadow of thy wings
my refuge I will place,
until thee sad calamities
do wholly overpass.
2 My cry I will cause to ascend
to God who is most high;
to God, who doth all things for me
perform most perfectly.
3 From heaven he shall send down, and me
from his reproach defend
that would devour me: God his truth
and mercy forth shall send.
4 My soul among fierce lions is,
I firebrands live among,
men's sons, whose teeth are spears and darts,
a sharp sword is their tongue.
5 Be thou exalted very high
above the heavens, O God;
let thou thy glory be advanced
o'er all the earth abroad.
6 My soul's bowed down; for they a net
have laid, my steps to snare:
into the pit which they have digged
for me, they fallen are.
7 My heart is fixed, my heart is fixed,
O God; I'll sing and praise.
8 My glory wake; wake psaltery, harp:
myself I'll early raise.
9 I'll praise thee 'mong the people,Lord;
'mong nations sing will I:
10 for great to heaven thy mercy is,
thy truth is to the sky.
11 O Lord, exalted by thy name
above the heavens to stand:
do thou thy glory far advance
above both sea and land.
MARTYRDOM was originally an eighteenth-century Scottish folk melody used for the ballad "Helen of Kirkconnel." Hugh Wilson (b. Fenwick, Ayrshire, Scotland, c. 1766; d. Duntocher, Scotland, 1824) adapted MARTYRDOM into a hymn tune in duple meter around 1800. A triple-meter version of the tune was fir…