1 Lord, in thy wrath, reprove me not,
Though I deserve thine ire:
Nor yet correct me in thy rage,
O Lord, I thee desire.
2 For I am weak, therefore, O Lord,
Of mercy me forbear;
And heal me, Lord, for why? thou know'st
My bones do quake for fear.
3 My soul is troubled very sore,
And vex'd exceedingly;
But, Lord, how long wilt thou delay
To cure my misery?
4 Lord, turn thee to thy wonted grace,
Some pity on me take;
O save me, not for my deserts,
But for thy mercies' sake.
5 For why? no man among the dead
Rememb'reth thee at all;
Or who shall worship thee, O Lord
That in the pit do fall?
6 So grievous is my plaint and moan,
That I grow wond'rous faint;
All the night long I wash my bed
With tears of my complaint.
7 My sight is dim, and waxeth old
With anguish of my heart,
For fear of them that be my foes,
And would my soul subvert.
8 But now depart from me, all ye
That work iniquity;
Because the Lord hath heard the voice
Of my complaint and cry.
9 He heard not only the request
And pray'r of my sad heart,
But it received at my hands,
And took it in good part.
10 And now my foes that vexed me
The Lord will soon defame,
And suddenly confound them all
With great rebuke and shame.
Metrical 'New Version' (Tate/Brady)
1 Thy dreadful anger, Lord, restrain,
And spare a wretch forlorn;
Correct me not in thy fierce wrath,
Too heavy to be borne.
2 Have mercy, Lord, for I grow faint,
Unable to endure
The anguish of my aching bones,
Which thou alone canst cure.
3 My tortur'd flesh distracts my mind,
And fills my soul with grief;
But, Lord, how long wilt thou delay
To grant me thy relief?
4 Thy wonted goodness, Lord, repeat,
And ease my troubled soul;
Lord, for thy wondrous mercy's sake
Vouchsafe to make me whole.
5 For after death no more can I
Thy glorious acts proclaim;
No pris'ner of the silent grave
Can magnify thy Name.
6 Quite tir'd with pain, with groaning faint,
No hope of ease I see;
The night, that quiets common griefs,
Is spent in tears by me.
7 My beauty fades, my sight grows dim,
My eyes with weakness close;
Old age o'ertakes me, whilst I think
On my insulting foes.
8 Depart, ye wicked; in my wrongs
Ye shall no more rejoice;
For God, I find, accepts my tears,
And listens to my voice.
9-10 He hears and grants my humble pray'r;
And they that wish my fall
Shall blush and rage to see that God
Protects me from them all.
Metrical Paraphrase by Isaac Watts
PART 1, (C. M.)
In anger, Lord, rebuke me not;
Withdraw the dreadful storm;
Nor let thy fury grow so hot
Against a feeble worm.
My soul's bowed down with heavy cares,
My flesh with pain oppressed;
My couch is witness to my tears,
My tears forbid my rest.
Sorrow and pain wear out my days,
I waste the night with cries,
Counting the minutes as they pass,
Till the slow morning rise.
Shall I be still tormented more?
Mine eye consumed with grief?
How long, my God, how long before
Thine hand afford relief?
He hears when dust and ashes speak,
He pities all our groans;
He saves us for his mercy's sake,
And heals our broken bones.
The virtue of his sovereign word
Restores our fainting breath;
For silent graves praise not the Lord,
Nor is he known in death.
PART 2. (L. M.)
Lord, I can suffer thy rebukes,
When thou with kindness dost chastise;
But thy fierce wrath I cannot bear:
O let it not against me rise.
Pity my languishing estate,
And ease the sorrows that I feel;
The wounds thine heavy hand hath made,
O let thy gentler touches heal!
See how I pass my weary days
In sighs and groans; and when 'tis night
My bed is watered with my tears;
My grief consumes, and dims my sight.
Look, how the powers of nature mourn!
How long, Almighty God, how long?
When shall thine hour of grace return?
When shall I make thy grace my song?
I feel my flesh so near the grave,
My thoughts are tempted to despair;
But graves can never praise the Lord,
For all is dust and silence there.
Depart, ye tempters, from my soul,
And all despairing thoughts, depart;
My God, who hears lily humble moan,
Will ease my flesh, and cheer my heart.