Psalms 55:1-8

For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskil of David.

1 [a][b]Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea;
2 hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught
3 because of what my enemy is saying, because of the threats of the wicked; for they bring down suffering on me and assail me in their anger.
4 My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen on me.
5 Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me.
6 I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.
7 I would flee far away and stay in the desert;[c]
8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.”

Psalms 55:1-8 Meaning and Commentary

Psalms 55:1-8 In-Context

1 Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea;
2 hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught
3 because of what my enemy is saying, because of the threats of the wicked; for they bring down suffering on me and assail me in their anger.
4 My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen on me.
5 Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me.
6 I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.
7 I would flee far away and stay in the desert;
8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.”
9 Lord, confuse the wicked, confound their words, for I see violence and strife in the city.
10 Day and night they prowl about on its walls; malice and abuse are within it.
11 Destructive forces are at work in the city; threats and lies never leave its streets.
12 If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it; if a foe were rising against me, I could hide.

Cross References 13

  • 1. Psalms 27:9; Psalms 61:1; Lamentations 3:56
  • 2. Psalms 4:1; Psalms 66:19
  • 3. 1 Samuel 1:15-16; Psalms 77:3; Psalms 86:6-7; Psalms 142:2; Isaiah 38:14
  • 4. S 2 Samuel 16:6-8; Psalms 17:9; Psalms 143:3
  • 5. S Psalms 44:16
  • 6. Psalms 71:11
  • 7. S Psalms 6:3
  • 8. S Job 18:11; Psalms 116:3
  • 9. S Job 4:14; S 2 Corinthians 7:15; Job 21:6; Psalms 119:120
  • 10. Deuteronomy 28:67; Isaiah 21:4; Jeremiah 46:5; Jeremiah 49:5; Ezekiel 7:18
  • 11. 1 Samuel 23:14
  • 12. Psalms 31:20
  • 13. Psalms 77:18; Isaiah 4:6; Isaiah 25:4; Isaiah 28:2; Isaiah 29:6; Isaiah 32:2

Footnotes 3

  • [a]. In Hebrew texts 55:1-23 is numbered 55:2-24.
  • [b]. Title: Probably a literary or musical term
  • [c]. The Hebrew has "Selah" (a word of uncertain meaning) here and in the middle of verse 19.