The Eternal One is my shepherd,
I lack nothing.
He lets me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside peaceful waters;
he restores my life.
He guides me along right paths for the sake of his name.
Even if I walk through the valley of deepest darkness,
I will fear no evil;
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff – they comfort me.
You set a table before me in front of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and loving kindness will pursue me all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Eternal One for the length of my days.
Some notes on my paraphrase:
Eternal One – an alternate rendering of YHWH, which is sometimes translated at Jehovah or Yahweh. From Strong’s:
יהוה yehôvâh – (the) self Existent or eternal; Jehovah, Jewish national name of God: – Jehovah, the Lord.
valley of deepest darkness – the Hebrew does not necessarily refer to death, but instead to a dark and treacherous ravine.
loving kindness – instead of mercy or steadfast love, I have decided to go with this term. From Strong’s:
חסד chêsêd – kindness; by implication (towards God) piety; rarely (by opprobrium) reproof, or (subjectively) beauty: – favour, good deed (-liness, -ness), kindly, (loving-) kindness, merciful (kindness), mercy, pity.
pursue – a more accurate translation of the word commonly translated as “follow.” It also connotes a more aggressive action on the part of God that is in keeping with my Wesleyan understanding of prevenient grace.
for the length of my days – a more accurate translation of the Hebrew, rather than the more commonly used “forever.” Another alternative would be “as long as I live.”
So, what do you think?
Technorati Tags: Psalm 23
Who has believed the rumor?
And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
For he grew up like a tender plant,
and as a root out of parched ground;
he had no form or beauty that we should look upon him,
and no appearance that we should delight in him.
He was despised and rejected by men;
a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief;
and as one from whom we averted our faces he was held in contempt,
and we esteemed him not.
Surely he has borne our diseases and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
punished by God, and afflicted.
But he was wounded because of our transgressions;
he was bruised for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and by his stripes we are made whole.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have all turned to our own way;
and the Eternal has placed upon him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
yet he opened not his mouth;
like a lamb that is brought to be butchered,
and as a sheep that before its shearers is silent,
so he opened not his mouth.
He was taken away in oppression and judgment.
And as for his generation,
who has considered that he was cut off from the land of the living,
and, for the transgression of my people, beaten?
And they made his grave with the ungodly and with the rich in his death,
although he had done no wrong,
and neither was there any deceit in his mouth.
Yet it pleased the Eternal to break him;
he has put him to grief;
but when his soul makes an offering for sin,
he shall see his children;
he shall lengthen his days;
and the delight of the Eternal shall prosper in his hand.
He shall perceive the weariness of his soul and be satisfied.
By his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant, justify many,
and he shall bear their iniquities.
Therefore I will allot him a portion with the great,
and he shall divide the spoil with the mighty,
because he poured out his soul to death and was counted among the transgressors;
yet he bore the sin of many,
and makes intercession for the transgressors.
Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are in the presence of his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and has cleansed us from our sins by his own blood, and has made us kings and priests to serve his God and Father – to him glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.
“Look, he is coming with the clouds,”
and “every eye will see him,
and those who pierced him
and all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of him.”
Even so! Amen.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come; God Almighty.”