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Sunday, June 8, 2014

Week 30 (Book 6): Reviewing the Fifth Week of Nissan - Psalms 88-90; 90:8-10; 89:31

PSALMS (Introductions and Translations from Chabad.org):

Chapter 88

The psalmist weeps and laments bitterly over the maladies and suffering Israel endures in exile, which he describes in detail.

1. A song, a psalm by the sons of Korach, for the Conductor, upon the machalat le'anot; 1 a maskil2 for Heiman the Ezrachite. 2. O Lord, G-d of my deliverance, by day I cried out [to You], by night I [offer my prayer] before You. 3. Let my prayer come before You; turn Your ear to my supplication. 4. For my soul is sated with affliction, and my life has reached the grave. 5. I was reckoned with those who go down to the pit, I was like a man without strength. 6. [I am regarded] among the dead who are free, like corpses lying in the grave, of whom You are not yet mindful, who are yet cut off by Your hand. 7. You have put me into the lowest pit, into the darkest places, into the depths. 8. Your wrath has weighed heavily upon me, and all the waves [of Your fury] have constantly afflicted me. 9. You have estranged my friends from me, You have made me abhorrent to them; I am imprisoned and unable to leave. 10. My eye is afflicted because of distress; I call to You, O Lord, every day; I have stretched out my hands [in prayer] to You. 11. Do You perform wonders for the deceased? Do the dead stand to offer You praise? Selah. 12. Is Your kindness recounted in the grave, your faithfulness in the place of perdition? 13. Are Your wondrous deeds known in the darkness [of the grave], or Your righteousness in the land of oblivion? 14. But, I, to You, O Lord, I cry; each morning my prayer comes before You. 15. Why, O Lord, do You forsake my soul? Why do You conceal Your countenance from Me? 16. From my youth I have been afflicted and approaching death, yet I have borne the fear of You which is firmly established within me. 17. Your furies have passed over me; Your terrors have cut me down. 18. They have engulfed me like water all day long, they all together surrounded me. 19. You have estranged from me beloved and friend; I have been rejected by my intimates.

Chapter 89

This psalm speaks of the kingship of the House of David, the psalmist lamenting its fall from power for many years, and G-d's abandonment and spurning of us.

1. A maskil1 by Eitan the Ezrachite. 2. I will sing of the Lord's kindness forever; to all generations I will make known Your faithfulness with my mouth. 3. For I have said, "The world is built with kindness; there in the heavens You establish Your faithfulness.” 4. I have made a covenant with My chosen one; I have sworn to David, My servant: 5. "I will establish Your descendants forever; I will build your throne for all generations," Selah. 6. Then the heavens will extol Your wonders, O Lord; Your faithfulness, too, in the congregation of the holy ones. 7. Indeed, who in heaven can be compared to the Lord, who among the supernal beings can be likened to the Lord! 8. The Almighty is revered in the great assembly of the holy ones, awe-inspiring to all who surround Him. 9. O Lord, G-d of Hosts, who is mighty like You, O G-d! Your faithfulness surrounds You. 10. You rule the vastness of the sea; when its waves surge, You still them. 11. You crushed Rahav (Egypt) like a corpse; with Your powerful arm You scattered Your enemies. 12. Yours are the heavens, the earth is also Yours; the world and all therein-You established them. 13. The north and the south-You created them; Tabor and Hermon sing of [the greatness] of Your Name. 14. Yours is the arm which has the might; strengthen Your hand, raise high Your right hand. 15. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; kindness and truth go before Your countenance. 16. Fortunate is the people who know the sound of the shofar; Lord, they walk in the light of Your countenance. 17. They rejoice in Your Name all day, and they are exalted through Your righteousness. 18. Indeed, You are the splendor of their might, and in Your goodwill our glory is exalted. 19. For our protectors turn to the Lord, and our king to the Holy One of Israel. 20. Then You spoke in a vision to Your pious ones and said: "I have granted aid to [David] the mighty one; I have exalted the one chosen from among the people. 21. I have found David, My servant; I have anointed him with My holy oil. 22. It is he whom My hand shall be prepared [to assist]; My arm, too, shall strengthen him. 23. The enemy shall not prevail over him, nor shall the iniquitous person afflict him. 24. And I will crush his adversaries before him, and will strike down those who hate him. 25. Indeed, My faithfulness and My kindness shall be with him, and through My Name his glory shall be exalted. 26. I will set his hand upon the sea, his right hand upon the rivers. 27. He will call out to Me, 'You are my Father, my G-d, the strength of my deliverance.’ 28. I will also make him [My] firstborn, supreme over the kings of the earth. 29. I will maintain My kindness for him forever; My covenant shall remain true to him. 30. And I will bestow [kingship] upon his seed forever, and his throne will endure as long as the heavens last. 31. If his children forsake My Torah and do not walk in My ordinances; 32. if they profane My statutes and do not observe My commandments, 33. then I will punish their transgression with the rod and their misdeeds with plagues. 34. Yet I shall not take away My kindness from him, nor betray My faithfulness. 35. I will not abrogate My covenant, nor change that which has issued from My lips. 36. One thing I have sworn by My holiness-I will not cause disappointment to David. 37. His seed will endure forever and his throne will be [resplendent] as the sun before Me. 38. Like the moon, it shall be established forever; [the moon] is a faithful witness in the sky for all time.” 39. Yet You have forsaken and abhorred; You became enraged at Your anointed. 40. You annulled the covenant with Your servant; You have profaned his crown [by casting it] to the ground. 41. You shattered all his fences; You turned all his strongholds into ruin. 42. All wayfarers despoiled him; he has become a disgrace to his neighbors. 43. You have uplifted the right hand of his adversaries; You have made all his enemies rejoice. 44. You also turned back the blade of his sword, and did not sustain him in battle. 45. You put an end to his splendor, and toppled his throne to the ground. 46. You have cut short the days of his youth; You have enclothed him with long-lasting shame. 47. How long, O Lord, will You conceal Yourself-forever? [How long] will Your fury blaze like fire? 48. O remember how short is my life span! Why have You created all children of man for naught? 49. What man can live and not see death, can save his soul forever from the grave? 50. Where are Your former deeds of kindness, my Lord, which You swore to David in Your faithfulness? 51. Remember, my Lord, the disgrace of Your servants, that I bear in my bosom from all the many nations; 52. that Your enemies have disgraced, O Lord, that they have disgraced the footsteps of Your anointed. 53. Blessed is the Lord forever, Amen and Amen.

Chapter 90

David found this prayer in its present form-receiving a tradition attributing it to MosesThe Midrash attributes the next eleven psalms to Moses (Rashi).-and incorporated it into the Tehillim. It speaks of the brevity of human life, and inspires man to repent and avoid pride in this world.

1. A prayer by Moses, the man of G-d. My Lord, You have been a shelter for us in every generation. 2. Before the mountains came into being, before You created the earth and the world-for ever and ever You are Almighty G-d. 3. You diminish man until he is crushed, and You say, "Return, you children of man.” 4. Indeed, a thousand years are in Your eyes like yesterday that has passed, like a watch of the night. 5. The stream of their life is as but a slumber; in the morning they are like grass that sprouts anew. 6. In the morning it thrives and sprouts anew; in the evening it withers and dries. 7. For we are consumed by Your anger, and destroyed by Your wrath. 8. You have set our wrongdoings before You, our hidden sins before the light of Your countenance. 9. For all our days have vanished in Your wrath; we cause our years to pass like a fleeting sound. 10. The days of our lives number seventy years, and if in great vigor, eighty years; most of them are but travail and futility, passing quickly and flying away. 11. Who can know the intensity of Your anger? Your wrath is commensurate with one's fear of You. 12. Teach us, then, to reckon our days, that we may acquire a wise heart. 13. Relent, O Lord; how long [will Your anger last]? Have compassion upon Your servants. 14. Satiate us in the morning with Your kindness, then we shall sing and rejoice throughout our days. 15. Give us joy corresponding to the days You afflicted us, the years we have seen adversity. 16. Let Your work be revealed to Your servants, and Your splendor be upon their children. 17. May the pleasantness of the Lord our G-d be upon us; establish for us the work of our hands; establish the work of our hands.


Chapter 90

8. You have set our wrongdoings before You, our hidden sins before the light of Your countenance.

9. For all our days have vanished in Your wrath; we cause our years to pass like a fleeting sound. 
10. The days of our lives number seventy years, and if in great vigor, eighty years; most of them are but travail and futility, passing quickly and flying away.


31. If his children forsake My Torah and do not walk in My ordinances; 

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