PSALM 125*

Israel’s Protector

1A song of ascents.

Those trusting in the LORD are like Mount Zion,

unshakable, forever enduring.a

2As mountains surround Jerusalem,

the LORD surrounds his people

both now and forever.b

3The scepter of the wicked will not prevail

in the land allotted to the just,*

Lest the just themselves

turn their hands to evil.

4Do good, LORD, to the good,

to those who are upright of heart.c

5But those who turn aside to crooked ways

may the LORD send down with the evildoers.d

Peace upon Israel!e

* [Psalm 125] In response to exilic anxieties about the ancient promises of restoration, the Psalm expresses confidence that God will surround the people as the mountains surround Zion (Ps 125:12). The just will not be contaminated by the wicked (Ps 125:3). May God judge between the two groups (Ps 125:45).

* [125:3] The land allotted to the just: lit., “the lot of the righteous.” The promised land was divided among the tribes of Israel by lot (Nm 26:55; Jos 18). The righteous are the members of the people who are obedient to God. If the domination of the wicked were to continue in the land, even the just would be infected by their evil attitudes.

a. [125:1] Prv 10:25.

b. [125:2] Dt 32:11.

c. [125:4] Ps 18:25ff.

d. [125:5] Prv 3:32.

e. [125:5] Ps 128:6.

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