Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, PSALM 35. JUDICA DOMINE, by OLD TESTAMENT BIBLE

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PSALM 35. JUDICA DOMINE, by            
First Line: Speak thou for me against wrong-speaking foes
Last Line: Thy justice witness shall and speak thy praise.

Speak Thou for me against wrong-speaking foes;
Thy force, O Lord, against their force oppose,
Take up Thy shield and for my succor stand,
Yea, take Thy lance and stop the way of those
That seek my bane; O make me understand
In sprite that I shall have Thy helping hand.

Confound those folks, thrust them in shameful hole
That hunt so poor a prey as is my soul.
Rebuke and wrack on those wrong-doers throw,
Who for my hurt each way their thoughts did roll.
And as vile chaff away the wind doth blow,
Let Angel Thine a-scattering make them go.

Let Angel Thine pursue them as they fly,
But let their flight be dark and slippery;
For causeless they both pit and net did set,
For causeless they did seek and make me die.
Let their sly wits unwares destruction get,
Fall in self pit, be caught in their own net.

Then shall I joy in Thee, then saved by Thee
I both in mind and bones shall gladded be.
Even bones shall say, O God, who is Thy peer,
Who poor and weak from rich and strong dost free?
Who helpest those whose ruin was so near,
From him whose force did in their spoils appear?

Who did me wrong, against me witness bear
Laying such things, as never in me were;
So my good deeds they pay with this evil share,
With cruel minds my very soul to tear.
And whose? Ev'n his who when they sickness bare
With inward woe, an outward sackcloth wear.

I did pull down myself, fasting for such;
I prayed with prayers which my breast did touch;
In sum, I showed that I to them was bent
As brothers, or as friends beloved much;
Still, still for them I humbly mourning went
Like one that should his mother's death lament.

But lo, soon as they did me staggering see,
Who joy but they, when they assembled be?
Then abjects, while I was unwitting quite,
Against me swarm, ceaseless to rail at me.
With scoffers false I was their feast's delight,
Even gnashing teeth, to witness more their spite.

Lord, wilt Thou see, and wilt Thou suffer it?
O! on my soul let not these tumults hit.
Save me, distressed, from lion's cruel kind.
I will thank Thee, where congregations sit,
Even where I do most store of people find;
Most to Thy lauds will I my speeches bind.

Then, then let not my foes unjustly joy;
Let them not fleer, who me would causeless stroy,
Who never word of peace yet utter would,
But hunt with craft the quiet man's annoy;
And said to me, wide mowing, as they could,
Aha! Sir, now we see you where we should.

This Thou hast seen, and wilt Thou silent be?
O Lord, do not absent Thyself from me!
But rise, but wake that I may judgment get.
My Lord, my God, even to my equity
Judge Lord, judge God, even in Thy justice great,
Let not their joy upon my woes be set.

Let them not, Lord, within their hearts thus say:
O soul, rejoice, we made this wretch our prey.
But throw them down, put them to endless blame,
Who make a cause to joy of my decay;
Let them be clothed in most confounding shame,
That lift themselves my ruin for to frame.

But make such glad, and full of joyfulness,
That yet bear love unto my righteousness;
Yet let them say, laud be to God always,
Who loves with good, his servants good to bless.
As for my tongue, while I have any days,
Thy justice witness shall and speak Thy praise.

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