The Holy See
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New American Bible

2002 11 11
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Chapter 26


Of David. 1 Grant me justice, LORD! I have walked without blame. In the LORD I have trusted; I have not faltered.


Test me, LORD, and try me; search my heart and mind.


Your love is before my eyes; I walk guided by your faithfulness.


I do not sit with deceivers, nor with hypocrites do I mingle.


I hate the company of evildoers; with the wicked I do not sit.


2 I will wash my hands in innocence and walk round your altar, LORD,


Lifting my voice in thanks, recounting all your wondrous deeds.


LORD, I love the house where you dwell, the tenting-place of your glory.


Do not take me away with sinners, nor my life with the violent.


Their hands carry out their schemes; their right hands are full of bribes.


But I walk without blame; redeem me, be gracious to me!


1 [Psalm 26] Like a priest washing before approaching the altar ( Exodus 30:17-21), the psalmist seeks God's protection upon entering the temple. Psalm 26:1-3, matched by Psalm 26:11-12, remind God of past integrity while asking for purification; Psalm 26:4-5, matched by Psalm 26:9-10, pray for inclusion among the just; Psalm 26:6-8, the center of the poem, express the joy in God at the heart of all ritual.

2 [6] I will wash my hands: the washing of hands was a liturgical act ( Exodus 30:19, 21; 40:31-32), symbolic of inner as well as outer cleanness. Cf Isaiah 1:16.

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