Words: Brady and Tate, A New Version of the Psalms of David
1 O God, whose former mercies make my constant praise thy due, Hold not thy peace, but my sad state with wonted favor view, 2 For sinful men, with lying lips, deceitful speeches frame, And with their studied slanders seek to wound my spotless fame. 3 Their restless hatred prompts them still malicious lies to spread; And all against my life combine, by causeless fury led. 4 Those whom with tend'rest love I used, my chief opposers are: Whilst I, of other friends bereft, resort to thee by pray'r. 5 Since mischief for the good I did their strange reward does prove, And hatred's the return they make for un-dissembled love: 6 Their guilty leader shall be made to some ill man a slave; And, when he's tried, his mortal foe for his accuser have. 7 His guilt, when sentence is pronounced, shall meet a dreadful fate, Whilst his rejected pray'r but serves his crimes to aggravate. 8 He, snatched by some untimely fate sha'n't live out half his days; Another, by divine decree, shall on his office seize. 9,10 His seed shall orphans be, his wife a widow plunged in grief; His vagrant children beg their bread, where none can give relief. 11 His ill-got riches shall be made to usurers a prey; The fruit of all his toil shall be by strangers borne away. 12 None shall be found that to his wants their mercy will extend, Or to his helpless orphan seed the least assistance lend. 13 A swift destruction soon shall seize on his unhappy race; and the next age his hated name shall utterly deface. 14 The vengeance of his father's sins upon his head shall fall; God on his mother's crimes shall think, and punish him for all. 15 All these, in horrid order ranked, before the Lord shall stand, Till his fierce anger quite cuts off their mem'ry from the land. The second part: 16 Because he never mercy showed, but still the poor oppressed; And sought to slay the helpless man, with heavy woes distressed: 17 Therefore the curse he loved to vent shall his own portion prove; And blessing, which he still abhorred shall far from him remove. 18 Since he in cursing took such pride, like water it shall spread Through all his veins, and stick like oil, with which his bones are fed. 19 This, like a poisoned robe, shall still his constant cov'ring be, Or an envenomed belt, from which he never shall be free. 20 Thus shall the Lord reward all those that ill to me design, That with malicious false reports against my life combine. 21 But for thy glorious Name, O God, do thou deliver me; And for thy gracious mercy's sake preserve and set me free. 22 For I, to utmost straits reduced am void of all relief; My heart is wounded with distress, and quite pierced through with grief. 23 I, like an evening shade, decline, which vanishes apace: Like locusts, up and down I'm tossed, and have no certain place. 24,25 My knees with fasting are grown weak, my body lank and lean; All that behold me shake their heads, and treat me with disdain. 26,27 But for thy mercy's sake, O Lord, do thou my foes withstand; That all may see 'tis thine own act, the work of thy right hand. 28 Then let them curse, so thou but bless; let shame the portion be Of all that my destruction seek; while I rejoice in thee. 29 My foe shall with disgrace be clothed, and, spite of all his pride, His own confusion, like a cloak, the guilty wretch shall hide. 30 But I to God, in grateful thanks, my cheerful voice will raise; And, where the great assembly meets, set forth his noble praise. 31 For him the poor shall always find their sure and constant friend; And he shall from unrighteous dooms their guiltless souls defend.