1 I come to you for protection, O LORD my God. Save me from my persecutors—rescue me! 2 If you don’t, they will maul me like a lion, tearing me to pieces with no one to rescue me. 3 O LORD my God, if I have done wrong or am guilty of injustice, 4 if I have betrayed a friend or plundered my enemy without cause, 5 then let my enemies capture me. Let them trample me into the ground and drag my honor in the dust. Interlude 6 Arise, O LORD, in anger! Stand up against the fury of my enemies! Wake up, my God, and bring justice! 7 Gather the nations before you. Rule over them from on high. 8 The LORD judges the nations. Declare me righteous, O LORD, for I am innocent, O Most High! 9 End the evil of those who are wicked, and defend the righteous. For you look deep within the mind and heart, O righteous God. 10 God is my shield, saving those whose hearts are true and right. 11 God is an honest judge. He is angry with the wicked every day. 12 If a person does not repent, God will sharpen his sword; he will bend and string his bow. 13 He will prepare his deadly weapons and shoot his flaming arrows. 14 The wicked conceive evil; they are pregnant with trouble and give birth to lies. 15 They dig a deep pit to trap others, then fall into it themselves. 16 The trouble they make for others backfires on them. The violence they plan falls on their own heads. 17 I will thank the LORD because he is just; I will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High.
1 O LORD, our Lord, your majestic name fills the earth! Your glory is higher than the heavens. 2 You have taught children and infants to tell of your strength, silencing your enemies and all who oppose you. 3 When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers— the moon and the stars you set in place— 4 what are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them? 5 Yet you made them only a little lower than God and crowned them with glory and honor. 6 You gave them charge of everything you made, putting all things under their authority— 7 the flocks and the herds and all the wild animals, 8 the birds in the sky, the fish in the sea, and everything that swims the ocean currents. 9 O LORD, our Lord, your majestic name fills the earth!
1 I will praise you, LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done. 2 I will be filled with joy because of you. I will sing praises to your name, O Most High. 3 My enemies retreated; they staggered and died when you appeared. 4 For you have judged in my favor; from your throne you have judged with fairness. 5 You have rebuked the nations and destroyed the wicked; you have erased their names forever. 6 The enemy is finished, in endless ruins; the cities you uprooted are now forgotten. 7 But the LORD reigns forever, executing judgment from his throne. 8 He will judge the world with justice and rule the nations with fairness. 9 The LORD is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. 10 Those who know your name trust in you, for you, O LORD, do not abandon those who search for you. 11 Sing praises to the LORD who reigns in Jerusalem. Tell the world about his unforgettable deeds. 12 For he who avenges murder cares for the helpless. He does not ignore the cries of those who suffer. 13 LORD, have mercy on me. See how my enemies torment me. Snatch me back from the jaws of death. 14 Save me so I can praise you publicly at Jerusalem’s gates, so I can rejoice that you have rescued me. 15 The nations have fallen into the pit they dug for others. Their own feet have been caught in the trap they set. 16 The LORD is known for his justice. The wicked are trapped by their own deeds. Quiet Interlude 17 The wicked will go down to the grave. This is the fate of all the nations who ignore God. 18 But the needy will not be ignored forever; the hopes of the poor will not always be crushed. 19 Arise, O LORD ! Do not let mere mortals defy you! Judge the nations! 20 Make them tremble in fear, O LORD . Let the nations know they are merely human. Interlude
1 Then Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. 2 There he became acquainted with a Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, who had recently arrived from Italy with his wife, Priscilla. They had left Italy when Claudius Caesar deported all Jews from Rome. 3 Paul lived and worked with them, for they were tentmakers just as he was. 4 Each Sabbath found Paul at the synagogue, trying to convince the Jews and Greeks alike. 5 And after Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul spent all his time preaching the word. He testified to the Jews that Jesus was the Messiah. 6 But when they opposed and insulted him, Paul shook the dust from his clothes and said, “Your blood is upon your own heads—I am innocent. From now on I will go preach to the Gentiles.” 7 Then he left and went to the home of Titius Justus, a Gentile who worshiped God and lived next door to the synagogue. 8 Crispus, the leader of the synagogue, and everyone in his household believed in the Lord. Many others in Corinth also heard Paul, became believers, and were baptized. 9 One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision and told him, “Don’t be afraid! Speak out! Don’t be silent! 10 For I am with you, and no one will attack and harm you, for many people in this city belong to me.” 11 So Paul stayed there for the next year and a half, teaching the word of God. 12 But when Gallio became governor of Achaia, some Jews rose up together against Paul and brought him before the governor for judgment. 13 They accused Paul of “persuading people to worship God in ways that are contrary to our law.” 14 But just as Paul started to make his defense, Gallio turned to Paul’s accusers and said, “Listen, you Jews, if this were a case involving some wrongdoing or a serious crime, I would have a reason to accept your case. 15 But since it is merely a question of words and names and your Jewish law, take care of it yourselves. I refuse to judge such matters.” 16 And he threw them out of the courtroom. 17 The crowd then grabbed Sosthenes, the leader of the synagogue, and beat him right there in the courtroom. But Gallio paid no attention. 18 Paul stayed in Corinth for some time after that, then said good-bye to the brothers and sisters and went to nearby Cenchrea. There he shaved his head according to Jewish custom, marking the end of a vow. Then he set sail for Syria, taking Priscilla and Aquila with him. 19 They stopped first at the port of Ephesus, where Paul left the others behind. While he was there, he went to the synagogue to reason with the Jews. 20 They asked him to stay longer, but he declined. 21 As he left, however, he said, “I will come back later, God willing.” Then he set sail from Ephesus. 22 The next stop was at the port of Caesarea. From there he went up and visited the church at Jerusalem and then went back to Antioch. 23 After spending some time in Antioch, Paul went back through Galatia and Phrygia, visiting and strengthening all the believers. 24 Meanwhile, a Jew named Apollos, an eloquent speaker who knew the Scriptures well, had arrived in Ephesus from Alexandria in Egypt. 25 He had been taught the way of the Lord, and he taught others about Jesus with an enthusiastic spirit and with accuracy. However, he knew only about John’s baptism. 26 When Priscilla and Aquila heard him preaching boldly in the synagogue, they took him aside and explained the way of God even more accurately. 27 Apollos had been thinking about going to Achaia, and the brothers and sisters in Ephesus encouraged him to go. They wrote to the believers in Achaia, asking them to welcome him. When he arrived there, he proved to be of great benefit to those who, by God’s grace, had believed. 28 He refuted the Jews with powerful arguments in public debate. Using the Scriptures, he explained to them that Jesus was the Messiah.