BOOK THE THIRD.
A Melody of Asaph.
73 Nothing but good is God Unto Israel, Unto the pure in heart.
2 But as for me—My feet had almost stumbled, My steps had well-nigh slipped;
3 For I was envious of the boasters, At the prosperity of the lawless used I to look.
4 For they have no pangs in their death, And vigorous is their body;
5 Of the toil of weak mortals have they none, Nor with the sons of earth are they hard smitten.
6 For this cause doth arrogance deck them as a neck-chain, And a garment of wrong is their attire;
7 Their iniquity hath proceeded from fatness They have surpassed the imaginations of the heart;
8 They mock and wickedly command oppression, From on high they command;
9 They have set in the heavens their mouth, And their tongue marcheth through the earth.
10 Therefore must his people return thither, And the waters of abundance are drained by them;
11 And they say—How doth God know? And is there knowledge in the Most High?
12 Lo! these are the lawless, Who are secure for an age, They have attained unto wealth.
13 Altogether in vain Have I cleansed my heart, And bathed in pureness my hands;
14 And yet been smitten all the day, And been rebuked morning by morning!
15 If I had thought I will relate it thus Lo! the circle of thy sons had I betrayed.
16 When I reasoned that I might understand this A vexation it was in mine eyes:
17 Until I could enter the holy places of God,—Could give heed to their hereafter:—
18 Surely in slippery places dost thou set them,—Thou hast suffered them to fall into places of danger.
19 How have they become desolate as in a moment! They have ceased—come to an end by reason of calamities.
20 As the dream of him that waketh O my Lord! when rousing thyself up their shadowy being wilt thou despise.
21 But my heart had grown embittered, And in my reins had I received wounds;
22 But I was brutish and could not perceive, Like the beasts had I become before thee.
23 Nevertheless I am continually before thee, Thou hast taken hold of my right hand;
24 By thy counsel wilt thou guide me, And afterwards unto glory wilt thou take me.
25 Whom have I in the heavens? And compared with thee there is nothing I desire on earth.
26 Failed have my flesh and my heart, The rock of my heart—and my portion is God unto times age-abiding.
27 For lo! they who are far from thee shall perish, Thou hast put an end to every one who wandered unchastely from thee.
28 But as for me the drawing near of God is my blessedness,—I have made of My Lord Yahweh my refuge,—That I may recount all thy works.