Psalms 94
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1  God of retribution, Hashem, God of retribution, appear!

א  אֵל־נְקָמוֹת יְהוָה אֵל נְקָמוֹת הוֹפִיַע׃

2  Rise up, judge of the earth, give the arrogant their deserts!

ב  הִנָּשֵׂא שֹׁפֵט הָאָרֶץ הָשֵׁב גְּמוּל עַל־גֵּאִים׃

3  How long shall the wicked, Hashem, how long shall the wicked exult,

ג  עַד־מָתַי רְשָׁעִים יְהוָה עַד־מָתַי רְשָׁעִים יַעֲלֹזוּ׃

4  shall they utter insolent speech, shall all evildoers vaunt themselves?

ד  יַבִּיעוּ יְדַבְּרוּ עָתָק יִתְאַמְּרוּ כָּל־פֹּעֲלֵי אָוֶן׃

5  They crush Your people, Hashem, they afflict Your very own;

ה  עַמְּךָ יְהוָה יְדַכְּאוּ וְנַחֲלָתְךָ יְעַנּוּ׃

6  they kill the widow and the stranger; they murder the fatherless,

ו  אַלְמָנָה וְגֵר יַהֲרֹגוּ וִיתוֹמִים יְרַצֵּחוּ׃

7  thinking, “Hashem does not see it, the God of Yaakov does not pay heed.”

ז  וַיֹּאמְרוּ לֹא יִרְאֶה־יָּהּ וְלֹא־יָבִין אֱלֹהֵי יַעֲקֹב׃

8  Take heed, you most brutish people; fools, when will you get wisdom?

ח  בִּינוּ בֹּעֲרִים בָּעָם וּכְסִילִים מָתַי תַּשְׂכִּילוּ׃

9  Shall He who implants the ear not hear, He who forms the eye not see?

ט  הֲנֹטַע אֹזֶן הֲלֹא יִשְׁמָע אִם־יֹצֵר עַיִן הֲלֹא יַבִּיט׃

10  Shall He who disciplines nations not punish, He who instructs men in knowledge?

י  הֲיֹסֵר גּוֹיִם הֲלֹא יוֹכִיחַ הַמְלַמֵּד אָדָם דָּעַת׃

11  Hashem knows the designs of men to be futile.

יא  יְהוָה יֹדֵעַ מַחְשְׁבוֹת אָדָם כִּי־הֵמָּה הָבֶל׃

12  Happy is the man whom You discipline, Hashem, the man You instruct in Your teaching,

ash-RAY ha-GE-ver a-sher t’-ya-s’-RE-nu YAH u-mi-to-ra-t’-KHA t’-la-m’-DE-nu

יב  אַשְׁרֵי הַגֶּבֶר אֲשֶׁר־תְּיַסְּרֶנּוּ יָּהּ וּמִתּוֹרָתְךָ תְלַמְּדֶנּוּ׃

94:12   The man You instruct

Psalm 94 is about seeking vengeance. The psalmist is in great pain. He calls out to the Lord, but hears no response. He lashes out at the evildoers, but they ignore him. Finally, he turns inward to himself and realizes that sometimes suffering is really a gift. Rabbi Simeon Bar Yochai famously states in the Talmud (Berachot 5a): “Three gifts were given by God through suffering: Torah, the land of Israel and the world to come.” One must fight, endure and suffer in order to maintain the greatest of all gifts, Eretz Yisrael. Even though the Jews have returned to their land after two thousand years and assumed their rightful place among the nations, securing Eretz Yisrael is still fraught with bloodshed and pain. Only the righteous are able to perceive that this suffering paves the way to one of the greatest gifts of God to His people.1 comment

13  to give him tranquillity in times of misfortune, until a pit be dug for the wicked.

יג  לְהַשְׁקִיט לוֹ מִימֵי רָע עַד יִכָּרֶה לָרָשָׁע שָׁחַת׃

14  For Hashem will not forsake His people; He will not abandon His very own.

יד  כִּי לֹא־יִטֹּשׁ יְהוָה עַמּוֹ וְנַחֲלָתוֹ לֹא יַעֲזֹב׃

15  Judgment shall again accord with justice and all the upright shall rally to it.

טו  כִּי־עַד־צֶדֶק יָשׁוּב מִשְׁפָּט וְאַחֲרָיו כָּל־יִשְׁרֵי־לֵב׃

16  Who will take my part against evil men? Who will stand up for me against wrongdoers?

טז  מִי־יָקוּם לִי עִם־מְרֵעִים מִי־יִתְיַצֵּב לִי עִם־פֹּעֲלֵי אָוֶן׃

17  Were not Hashem my help, I should soon dwell in silence.

יז  לוּלֵי יְהוָה עֶזְרָתָה לִּי כִּמְעַט שָׁכְנָה דוּמָה נַפְשִׁי׃

18  When I think my foot has given way, Your faithfulness, Hashem, supports me.

יח  אִם־אָמַרְתִּי מָטָה רַגְלִי חַסְדְּךָ יְהוָה יִסְעָדֵנִי׃

19  When I am filled with cares, Your assurance soothes my soul.

יט  בְּרֹב שַׂרְעַפַּי בְּקִרְבִּי תַּנְחוּמֶיךָ יְשַׁעַשְׁעוּ נַפְשִׁי׃

20  Shall the seat of injustice be Your partner, that frames mischief by statute?

כ  הַיְחָבְרְךָ כִּסֵּא הַוּוֹת יֹצֵר עָמָל עֲלֵי־חֹק׃

21  They band together to do away with the righteous; they condemn the innocent to death.

כא  יָגוֹדּוּ עַל־נֶפֶשׁ צַדִּיק וְדָם נָקִי יַרְשִׁיעוּ׃

22  But Hashem is my haven; my God is my sheltering rock.

כב  וַיְהִי יְהוָה לִי לְמִשְׂגָּב וֵאלֹהַי לְצוּר מַחְסִי׃

23  He will make their evil recoil upon them, annihilate them through their own wickedness; Hashem our God will annihilate them.

 

כג  וַיָּשֶׁב עֲלֵיהֶם אֶת־אוֹנָם וּבְרָעָתָם יַצְמִיתֵם יַצְמִיתֵם יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ׃

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Psalms 93
Psalms 95

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Psalms 94

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