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New American Bible

2002 11 11
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Chapter 80


1 2 For the leader; according to "Lilies." Eduth. A psalm of Asaph.


Shepherd of Israel, listen, guide of the flock of Joseph! From your throne upon the cherubim reveal yourself


to Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh. Stir up your power, come to save us.


O LORD of hosts, restore us; Let your face shine upon us, that we may be saved.


LORD of hosts, how long will you burn with anger while your people pray?


You have fed them the bread of tears, made them drink tears in abundance.


You have left us to be fought over by our neighbors; our enemies deride us.


O LORD of hosts, restore us; let your face shine upon us, that we may be saved.


3 You brought a vine out of Egypt; you drove away the nations and planted it.


You cleared the ground; it took root and filled the land.


The mountains were covered by its shadow, the cedars of God by its branches.


4 It sent out boughs as far as the sea, shoots as far as the river.


Why have you broken down the walls, so that all who pass by pluck its fruit?


The boar from the forest strips the vine; the beast of the field feeds upon it.


Turn again, LORD of hosts; look down from heaven and see; Attend to this vine,


the shoot your right hand has planted.


Those who would burn or cut it down -  may they perish at your rebuke.


5 May your help be with the man at your right hand, with the one whom you once made strong.


Then we will not withdraw from you; revive us, and we will call on your name.


LORD of hosts, restore us; let your face shine upon us, that we may be saved.



1 [Psalm 80] A community lament in time of military defeat. Using the familiar image of Israel as a vineyard, the people complain that God has broken down the wall protecting the once splendid vine brought from Egypt ( Psalm 80:9-14). They pray that God will again turn to them and use the Davidic king to lead them to victory ( Psalm 80:15-19).

2 [1] Lilies . . . . Eduth: the first term is probably the title of the melody to which the psalm was to be sung; the second is unexplained.

3 [9] A vine: a frequent metaphor for Israel. Cf Isaiah 5:1-7; 27:2-5; Jeremiah 2:21; Hosea 10:1; Matthew 21:33.

4 [12] The sea: the Mediterranean. The river: the Euphrates. Cf Genesis 15:18; 1 Kings 5:1. The terms may also have a mythic nuance - the seas that surround the earth; sea and river are sometimes paralleled in poetry.

5 [18] The man at your right hand . . . the one: the Davidic king who will lead the army in battle.

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