Psalm 37

vv 1-12, 39-40 (Series C, Epiphany 7)

vv 1-10 (Series C, 18th Sunday after Pentecost)


Do not get vexed over the wicked;

    do not become jealous of evildoers,

For they will quickly fade like grass,

    and wither like green vegetation.

Trust in Yahweh and do good;

    so you will dwell in the land and find a safe pasture.

Take delight in Yahweh,

    and he will meet all the requests of your heart.

Commit your way to Yahweh;

    Trust in him, and he will act.

He will bring out your vindication like a light,

    and your justice like noonday.

Be still before Yahweh, and wait for him;

    do not be vexed over those who prosper in their way,

    over those who do acts of deceit.

Let go of anger, and forsake wrath.

    Do not be vexed--it only leads to evil.

For the wicked will be cut off,

    but those who wait for Yahweh will possess the land.

In a little while the wicked will be no more;

    If you seek their place diligently, it will not be there. (end of v 10)

But the meek will possess the land,

    they will take delight in the abundance of "peace."

The wicked scheme against the righteous,

    and gnash their teeth at them.  (end of v 12)

The Lord laughs at the wicked,

    for he sees that their day is coming.

The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows

    to bring down the poor and the needy,

    to slaughter those whose ways are upright;

their sword shall enter their own heart,

    and their bows will be broken.

Better is the little that a single righteous person has

    than the abundance of many wicked people.

For the arms of the wicked will be broken,

    but Yahweh sustains the righteous.

Yahweh knows the days of the blameless,

    and their heritage will last forever;

they are not put to shame in evil times,

    in the days of famine they will have plenty.

But the wicked perish,

    and the enemies of Yahweh are like the beauty of pastures;

    they vanish, vanish like smoke.

The wicked borrow, and do not pay back,

    but the righteous are generous in giving;

for those blessed by Yahweh will inherit the land,

    but those cursed by Yahweh will be cut off.

The steps of strong persons are guided by Yahweh,

    when Yahweh delights in their lifestyle.

Even if they fall, they will not plunge headlong,

   for Yahweh sustains them.

I once was young and now am old,

    yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken,

    or their children begging for bread.

They are constantly giving generously and lending,

    and their children become a blessing.

Depart from evil, and do good;

    that you may inhabit the land forever.

For Yahweh loves justice;

    he will not forsake his loyal ones.

When the unjust are destroyed,

    and the children of the wicked cut off,

the righteous will inherit the land,

    and will dwell on it forever.

The mouth of the righteous person utters wisdom,

    and their tongue speaks what is right;

the instruction of their God is in their heart,

    their steps do not slip.

The wicked watch for the righteous,

    and seek to put them to death.

Yahweh will not abandon them to their own power,

    or let them be convicted when brought to trial.

Wait for Yahweh, and keep to his way,

    and he will raise you up to possess the land;

    you will be a spectator when the wicked are cut off.

I have see wicked and ruthless people

    towering like a flourishing cedar tree.

When next I passed by them they were gone,

    I searched for them, but they were nowhere to be found.

Observe the innocent, and consider the upright,

    for there is a future for the peaceable person.

But rebels shall be totally destroyed;

    the future of the wicked will be cut off.

vv 39-40

The victory of the righteous comes from Yahweh,

    Yahweh is their stronghold in the time of distress.

Yahweh helps them and delivers them;

    he delivers them from the wicked and saves them,

    for they have sought refuge in him.


2001 Ralph W. Klein