Psalms 140
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1  For the Leader. A Psalm of David.

א  לַמְנַצֵּחַ מִזְמוֹר לְדָוִד.

2  Deliver me, O Hashem, from the evil man; preserve me from the violent man;

kha-l’-TZAY-nee a-do-NAI may-a-DAM ra may-EESH kha-ma-SEEM tin-tz’-RAY-nee

ב  חַלְּצֵנִי יְהוָה מֵאָדָם רָע מֵאִישׁ חֲמָסִים תִּנְצְרֵנִי.

140:2   Deliver me, O LORD, from the evil man

This psalm is about evil men and their wicked plans. The psalmist has many words for evil, but chooses a Hebrew word found elsewhere in the Bible, ‘khamas’ refering to a special type of evil. When, in the incipient stages of civilization, the generation of Noah began to cheat, steal, deceive and corrupt, the Bible laments that God saw ‘khamas’ in the land (Genesis 6:11). Later, in the days of Jonah, the people of Nineveh are also described as engaging in ‘khamas’ (Jonah 3:8). Here, as David lashes out at the depraved people who want to destroy him, he speaks of ‘khamas’ men with evil in their hearts who stir up wars all day. They use traps and speak with forked tongues. David asks God to save him and all the innocents from these devious minds, and curses the evil men that they should fall into their own vicious traps and be torn asunder. Ultimately, David concludes that the righteous ones will acknowledge God’s great name and merit the presence of the Almighty.

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3  Who devise evil things in their heart; every day do they stir up wars.

ג  אֲשֶׁר חָשְׁבוּ רָעוֹת בְּלֵב כָּל יוֹם יָגוּרוּ מִלְחָמוֹת.

4  They have sharpened their tongue like a serpent; vipers’ venom is under their lips. Selah

ד  שָׁנְנוּ לְשׁוֹנָם כְּמוֹ נָחָשׁ חֲמַת עַכְשׁוּב תַּחַת שְׂפָתֵימוֹ סֶלָה.

5  Keep me, O Hashem, from the hands of the wicked; preserve me from the violent man; who have purposed to make my steps slip.

ה  שָׁמְרֵנִי יְהוָה מִידֵי רָשָׁע מֵאִישׁ חֲמָסִים תִּנְצְרֵנִי אֲשֶׁר חָשְׁבוּ לִדְחוֹת פְּעָמָי.

6  The proud have hid a snare for me, and cords; they have spread a net by the wayside; they have set gins for me. Selah

ו  טָמְנוּ גֵאִים פַּח לִי וַחֲבָלִים פָּרְשׂוּ רֶשֶׁת לְיַד מַעְגָּל מֹקְשִׁים שָׁתוּ לִי סֶלָה.

7  I have said unto Hashem: ‘Thou art my God’; give ear, O Hashem, unto the voice of my supplications.

ז  אָמַרְתִּי לַיהוָה אֵלִי אָתָּה הַאֲזִינָה יְהוָה קוֹל תַּחֲנוּנָי.

8  O GOD the Lord, the strength of my salvation, who hast screened my head in the day of battle,

ח  יְהוִה אֲדֹנָי עֹז יְשׁוּעָתִי סַכֹּתָה לְרֹאשִׁי בְּיוֹם נָשֶׁק.

9  Grant not, O Hashem, the desires of the wicked; further not his evil device, so that they exalt themselves. Selah

ט  אַל תִּתֵּן יְהוָה מַאֲוַיֵּי רָשָׁע זְמָמוֹ אַל תָּפֵק יָרוּמוּ סֶלָה.

10  As for the head of those that compass me about, let the mischief of their own lips cover them.

י  רֹאשׁ מְסִבָּי עֲמַל שְׂפָתֵימוֹ יכסומו (יְכַסֵּימוֹ).

11  Let burning coals fall upon them; let them be cast into the fire, into deep pits, that they rise not up again.

יא  ימיטו (יִמּוֹטוּ) עֲלֵיהֶם גֶּחָלִים בָּאֵשׁ יַפִּלֵם בְּמַהֲמֹרוֹת בַּל יָקוּמוּ.

12  A slanderer shall not be established in the earth; the violent and evil man shall be hunted with thrust upon thrust.

יב  אִישׁ לָשׁוֹן בַּל יִכּוֹן בָּאָרֶץ אִישׁ חָמָס רָע יְצוּדֶנּוּ לְמַדְחֵפֹת.

13  I know that Hashem will maintain the cause of the poor, and the right of the needy.

יג  ידעת (יָדַעְתִּי) כִּי יַעֲשֶׂה יְהוָה דִּין עָנִי מִשְׁפַּט אֶבְיֹנִים.

14  Surely the righteous shall give thanks unto Thy name; the upright shall dwell in Thy presence.

יד  אַךְ צַדִּיקִים יוֹדוּ לִשְׁמֶךָ יֵשְׁבוּ יְשָׁרִים אֶת פָּנֶיךָ.

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Psalms 139
Psalms 141

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Psalms 140