1 On the holy mountain stands the city founded by the LORD . 2 He loves the city of Jerusalem more than any other city in Israel. 3 O city of God, what glorious things are said of you! Interlude 4 I will count Egypt and Babylon among those who know me— also Philistia and Tyre, and even distant Ethiopia. They have all become citizens of Jerusalem! 5 Regarding Jerusalem it will be said, “Everyone enjoys the rights of citizenship there.” And the Most High will personally bless this city. 6 When the LORD registers the nations, he will say, “They have all become citizens of Jerusalem.” Interlude 7 The people will play flutes and sing, “The source of my life springs from Jerusalem!”
1 O LORD, God of my salvation, I cry out to you by day. I come to you at night. 2 Now hear my prayer; listen to my cry. 3 For my life is full of troubles, and death draws near. 4 I am as good as dead, like a strong man with no strength left. 5 They have left me among the dead, and I lie like a corpse in a grave. I am forgotten, cut off from your care. 6 You have thrown me into the lowest pit, into the darkest depths. 7 Your anger weighs me down; with wave after wave you have engulfed me. Interlude 8 You have driven my friends away by making me repulsive to them. I am in a trap with no way of escape. 9 My eyes are blinded by my tears. Each day I beg for your help, O LORD ; I lift my hands to you for mercy. 10 Are your wonderful deeds of any use to the dead? Do the dead rise up and praise you? Interlude 11 Can those in the grave declare your unfailing love? Can they proclaim your faithfulness in the place of destruction? 12 Can the darkness speak of your wonderful deeds? Can anyone in the land of forgetfulness talk about your righteousness? 13 O LORD, I cry out to you. I will keep on pleading day by day. 14 O LORD, why do you reject me? Why do you turn your face from me? 15 I have been sick and close to death since my youth. I stand helpless and desperate before your terrors. 16 Your fierce anger has overwhelmed me. Your terrors have paralyzed me. 17 They swirl around me like floodwaters all day long. They have engulfed me completely. 18 You have taken away my companions and loved ones. Darkness is my closest friend.
1 Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God. 2 So anyone who rebels against authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and they will be punished. 3 For the authorities do not strike fear in people who are doing right, but in those who are doing wrong. Would you like to live without fear of the authorities? Do what is right, and they will honor you. 4 The authorities are God’s servants, sent for your good. But if you are doing wrong, of course you should be afraid, for they have the power to punish you. They are God’s servants, sent for the very purpose of punishing those who do what is wrong. 5 So you must submit to them, not only to avoid punishment, but also to keep a clear conscience. 6 Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority. 8 Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law. 9 For the commandments say, “You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not covet.” These—and other such commandments—are summed up in this one commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law. 11 This is all the more urgent, for you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living. 13 Because we belong to the day, we must live decent lives for all to see. Don’t participate in the darkness of wild parties and drunkenness, or in sexual promiscuity and immoral living, or in quarreling and jealousy. 14 Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires.