1 Save me, O God, and that with speed,
because the waters do
So very nigh my soul proceed,
and enter thereinto;
2 I sink full deep in mire and clay,
where I can feel no ground,
And in deep waters, where I may
most suddenly be drown'd.
3 With crying I am weary, lo,
my throat is hoarse and dry,
My sight doth fail, looking also
for help to God on high.
4 My guileless soul for to oppress
my foes with hate are led,
In number sure they are no less
than hairs upon my head.
5 Though for no cause they vex me sore,
they prosper and are glad;
they do compel me to restore
the things I never had.
6 What I through my simplicity
have done, Lord, thou canst tell,
And all my faults in privacy
to thee are known full well.
7 O God of hosts defend and stay
all those, that trust in thee,
Let no man shrink away for ought,
that happeneth unto me.
8 It is for thee and for thy sake
that I do bear this blame;
In spite to thee they would me make
to hide my face for shame.
9 My mother's sons, my brethren all,
reject me with disgrace,
And as a stranger they me call,
they will not know my face.
10 Unto thy house such zeal I bear,
that it doth vex me much,
Their checks and taunts at thee to hear
my very heart doth touch.
The Second Part.
11 Though I do fast my flesh to tame,
yea, if I weep and moan,
I am reproached for the same
by scorners every one;
12 If I for grief and pain of heart
in sackcloth use to walk,
Reproachfully they it pervert,
thereof they jest and talk.
13 Both high and low, and all the throng,
that sit within the gate,
They have me ever in their tongue,
of me they talk and prate:
14 They that sit in the gate with spite
against me all agree,
The drunkards that in wine delight
do make their songs of me.
15 But unto thee, O Lord, I pray,
that when it pleaseth thee,
For thy great truth thou wilt alway
send down thy aid to me:
16 Pluck thou my feet out of the mire,
from drowning do me keep,
From such as owe me wrath and ire,
and from the waters deep;
17 Lest with the waves I should be drown'd,
and depth my soul devour,
And lest the pit should me confound,
and shut me in her pow'r.
18 O Lord of hosts, to me give ear,
as thou art good and kind,
And as thy mercy is most dear,
Lord, have me in thy mind;
19 And do not from thy servant hide,
nor turn thy face away;
I am oppress'd on every side,
in haste give ear, I pray.
20 O Lord, unto my soul draw nigh,
the same with aid repose,
Because of their great tyranny
acquit me from my foes.
The Third Part.
21 That I abide rebuke and shame
thou know'st, and thou canst tell;
For those that seek and work the same
thou seest them all full well.
22 When with reproach they break my heart,
some help I fain would see,
But find no friends to ease my smart,
nor one to comfort me:
23 But in my meat they gave me gall,
(too cruel for to think)
And gave me in my thirst withal
strong vinegar to drink.
24 Lord, turn their table to a snare,
to take themselves therein,
And when they think full well to fare,
then trap them in their gin:
25 And let their eyes be dark, and blind,
that they may nothing see;
Bow down their backs and let them find
themselves in thrall to be:
26 Pour out thy wrath as hot as fire,
that it on them may fall,
Let thy displeasure in thine ire
take hold upon them all:
27 As desarts dry their house disgrace,
their seed do thou expel,
That none thereof possess their place,
nor in their tents once dwell.
28 If thou dost strike a man to tame,
on him they lay full sore;
And if that thou dost wound the same,
they seek to hurt him more.
29 Then let them heap up mischief still,
since they are all pervert,
That of thy favour and good-will
they never have a part:
30 And rase them clean out of thy book
of life, of hope, and trust,
That for their names they never look
in number of the just.
The Fourth Part.
31 Tho' I, O Lord, with pain and grief
have been full sore oppress'd,
Thy help shall give me such relief,
that all shall be redress'd.
32 That I may give thy name the praise,
that doth to thee belong,
I will extol the same always
with a thanksgiving song;
33 Which is more pleasant unto thee,
(such mind thy grace hath borne,)
Than either ox or calf can be,
that hath both hoof and horn.
34 When simple folk do this behold,
it shall rejoice them sure;
And ye, that seek the Lord, your life
for ever shall endure.
35 For why? the Lord of hosts doth hear
the poor when they complain,
His pris'ners are to him full dear,
lie doth them not disdain.
36 Wherefore the sky and earth below,
the sea with flood and stream,
His praises shall declare and show,
with all, that live in them.
37 For sure our God will Sion save,
and Judah's cities build;
Much folk possession there shall have,
her streets shall all be fill'd:
38 His servants seed shall keep the same
all ages out of mind,
And there all they that love his Name
a dwelling place shall find.
Source: The Whole Book of Psalms #LXIX