How the innocent pray
Trusting God’s stubborn love
A Psalm of David1Clear my name, LORD.
I’ve lived an honest and innocent life.
I’ve trusted the LORD all these years.
2See for yourself, LORD.
Put me to the test.
Probe my heart.
Study my motives.
3I see your stubborn love for me.
I count on it, as I stay faithful to you.
4I don’t hang out with liars.
I don’t cozy up to hypocrites.
5I hate being in a group of bad people.
I refuse to sit and socialize with them.
6I’ve washed my hands in waters of innocence.
Innocent I come to your holy altar, LORD.
7There, in a loud voice, I thank you.
I tell everyone the astonishing things you’ve done.
8LORD, I love your home on earth, the Temple.
You fill it with the glory of your presence.
9Don’t end my life when you deal with sinners.
Don’t take me when you take the lives of murderers.
10They fill their hands with evil.
With their right hands they pass out bribes.
11As for me, I’ll stand on my integrity.
So, treat me kindly and save me.
12I’m standing my ground, LORD.
And when your people get together,
They’re going to hear me sing your praise.
The subtitle wasn’t part of the original psalm. And the possible byline “of David,” isn’t necessarily a byline. The vague phrase could mean the song was written by David, about David, or was inspired by David. Almost half of the psalms are attributed to David in this way, 73 of 150. Ancient Jewish history tells of David playing a lyre and writing songs. For one, he wrote a song of mourning at the battlefield death of King Saul and his sons: “How have the mighty fallen!” (2 Samuel 1:19-27 New American Standard Bible). An ancient Jewish scroll from about the time of Jesus, discovered among the famous Dead Sea Scrolls, reports that David wrote 3,600 songs.
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