Translated by Rabbi Avraham Greenbaum
THE TEN PSALMS
Our God and God of our fathers:
Who chooses King David and his descendants; Who chooses songs and praises. Please turn to me in mercy and accept the psalms I am about to say as if King David himself were saying them, and let his merit protect us.
There is merit in every verse of the psalms and in every word, every letter, vowel and musical note, and in all the holy names spelled out by the first and last letters of each Hebrew word.
Let this merit stand in our favor to atone for our sins and transgressions, cut down our enemies and accusers on High, and destroy all the thorns and thistles surrounding the Supernal Rose. Send down blessing from Your exalted place to all the levels of our soul and spirit, to purify us from our sins, forgive our transgressions and atone for our rebellion, just as You forgave King David who recited these Psalms before You. "And God will cause your sin to pass away and you will not die" ( II Samuel 12:13 ) .
Do not take us from this world before our time. Give us a full life throughout our span of seventy years so that we may make amends for all the wrong we have done.
May the merit of King David protect us . Be patient with us until we return to You in perfect repentance.
Grant us blessing from Your treasury of open-handed generosity, as it is written: "I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will show mercy to whom I will show mercy" (Exodus 33:19) . Just as we sing before You in this world, grant us the privilege of singing before You, God, in the world to come. Through our recital of the Psalms , let pleasant song break forth with rejoicing and exultation. Let glory be given to Israel , and splendor and beauty shall be in the House of God. Bring it speedily in our days. Amen.
In saying these Ten Psalms I bind myself to all the true Tzaddikim in this generation and all the true Tzaddikim who have departed, "the holy ones who are in the earth," and especially our holy Rebbe, Tzaddik, foundation of the world, the "flowing brook, source of wisdom," Rabbi Nachman the son of Feige, may his merit protect us, who revealed this remedy.
Come let us sing to God, let us shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; let us sing to Him joyously in song. For God is a great God and a great King over all gods (Psalms 95:1-3) .
I prepare my mouth to give thanks and praise to my Creator, to unify the Holy One , blessed be He , and His Indwelling Presence in awe and love, through the Hidden and Concealed One, in the name of all Israel .
1. A sweet song of David, a crown for his head. Protect me, God, for I take refuge in You.
2. Community of Israel , say to God: You are my Lord. The goodness that You show me is not my due from You, it is because of Your love.
3. Because of the holy ones who rest in the earth and those who were firm in their fear of God. All my desires are fulfilled through their merit.
4. But as for those who hurry after other gods, their afflictions will be multiplied. I will not pour out libations of blood like theirs, I will not bear the names of their gods upon my lips.
5. God, my lot and my portion, cup of my abundance, You have guided me to choose a goodly portion: faith in God.
6. My lot has fallen in places of pleasantness, mine is an inheritance of grace and beauty.
7. As for me, I will bless God, for He guides me to cho o se life and follow His ways. Even in the night-time, my reins give me counsel in the fear and love of God.
8. I have placed God before me always. He is always at my right hand: I will not stumble.
9. Therefore my heart is joyous, my soul, glory of my being, exults. My very flesh will dwell secure.
10. For You will not cast my soul into hell, You will not allow Your devoted one to see destruction.
11. You will teach me the path of life and grant me the ultimate contentment and joy, the joy of Your countenance, the eternal bliss at Your right hand.
1. A song of David to teach wisdom.
Happy is he whose sin is forgiven and his transgression covered over.
2. Happy is the man whose wrong-doing God will not hold against him, because he has truly repented and he has no intention of deceiving either God or man.
3. As long as I kept silent and did not confess my sins before You, I became worn down in my very essence, groaning all the day in fear of punishment.
4. For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me, my vitality turned as dry as the parchedness of summer. Selah.
5. Therefore I will acknowledge my transgression; I do not hide my wrongdoing. I said I will acknowledge my sins before God: And You have forgiven my sin and transgression. Selah.
6. Let everyone who is devoted to You offer this prayer at the moment You are to be found:
That when punishments are sent to scour him, at least they should not come upon him like a swelling flood of water.
7. You are my refuge; You guard me from the enemy terror. You surround me with the joys of deliverance. Selah.
8. You have said: I will teach you wisdom and light up the path that you should travel. With gestures of My eye will I give you counsel.
9. Don't be like a horse or a stubborn mule which do not understand, which do not distinguish between one who wants to help them and one who wants to harm them.
Even when you groom and adorn them, you must curb them with bridle and halter so they will not come close and injure you.
10. The wicked man, who like them, chaffs at suffering, has many troubles. But one who trusts in God, knowing that all the suffering God sends is intended to cleanse and refine him, will be surrounded with love.
11. Take joy in God, the source of this love. Exult, you righteous, and shout for joy all who are upright in their heart.
1. For the leader of the singers. A song of David.
2. Happy is he who cares for the poor and the sick. On the day of evil God will rescue him.
3. God will guard him and give him life. Throughout the world he will be considered happy. You will not subject him to the desire of his enemies.
4. God will sustain him when he is on his sickbed. Even when he is ill, You attend him and turn him from one side to the other.
5. But as for me, whom no- one comes to visit, I have said: God, have pity. Heal my soul for I have sinned against You .
6. My enemies speak evil against me: "When will he die and his name be destroyed?"
7. Even if my enemy comes to visit , his protestations of concern are false. As he sits there, his heart collects malicious thoughts which he will then go out and spread.
8. All those who hate me whisper together against me and plot evil against me.
9. They say how "All his evil has now come back to haunt him in the form of his illness, and now that he has succumbed, he will never get up again."
10. Even the man with whom I was at peace, whom I trusted and to whom I gave my bread, has also surrounded me with a great ambush.
11. But You, O God, take pity on me and raise me up and I shall repay them.
12. By the fact of Your healing me I will know that You have accepted me, if my enemy will not triumph over me.
13. As for me, it is in my purity that You have supported me and established me before You for ever.
14. When I am healed I will praise You : Blessed be the Lord, God of Israel, from eternity to eternity. Amen. Amen.
1. For the leader of the singers. A song of the sons of Korach. To teach wisdom.
2. As a deer pants for streams of water, so my soul cries out for You, O God.
3. My soul thirsts for God, the living God: when will I come and appear in the presence of God?
4. My tears have been my bread day and night as my enemies taunt me all day long asking "Where is your God?"
5. This I remember and I pour out my soul within me: how I would go to Jerusalem with the throngs for the festivals, how I would walk in the procession to the House of God with shouts of joy and thanks to God amidst the festival crowds.
6. Why are you downcast, my soul? Why do you groan within me? Have hope in God. There will come a time when I will give thanks for the salvation which will come from His radiant presence.
7. My God, my soul is downcast in this exile, as I remember Your miracles in the land of the Jordan where the River Jordan became dry land, at the peaks of Mount Hermon where You passed over our wrongdoing, and at the lowly mountain Sinai where You forgave us the sin of the golden calf.
8. Yet in our present exile, deep water cries out to deep water , one sorrow cries out after another, with the cry from the channels through which You send punishments, which are poured out like water. All Your breakers and waves have swept over me.
9. With the light of day let God command His kindness to be revealed. Even in the night of exile, may His presence rest with me. This is my prayer to the God of my life.
10. I say to God, my Rock, why have You forgotten me ? Why must I go about in dark gloom under the oppression of the enemy?
11. I feel it like murder and the pain of death in my bones when my oppressors taunt me and say to me all day, "Where is your God?"
12. Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why do you groan within me? Have hope in God, for I will yet have cause to acknowledge Him, my salvation, the light of my face and my God.
1. For the leader of the singers. A precious song of David. "Do not destroy." A prayer composed when Saul sent messengers to wait at the house in order to kill him.
2. Rescue me from my enemies, O my God, give me strength against them that rise up against me.
3. Rescue me from those who act treacherously. Save me from bloodthirsty men.
4. For they are lying in wait for my very soul. Brazen men are gathered against me - and not because of any sin or transgression of mine, O God, You know.
5. Without my having wronged them they come running against me and have readied themselves to kill me. Awaken, come towards me and see!
6. And You, Lord God of hosts, the God of Israel, awaken and deal with them just as You deal with all the nations. Show no favor to all who deal treacherously and falsely. Selah.
7. They oppress me in the day; then they are back in the evening. They howl like dogs and go about the city to prevent me escaping.
8. All through the day they pour forth slander from their mouths, words sharp as swords are on their lips, for they say, "Who can hear us?"
9. But You, O God, laugh at them, as You scorn all the nations.
10. In the face of the enemy power, I wait for You. For God is my fortress.
11. God, Who always shows me love, will send me help in time. He will let me see what I want to happen to those who lie in wait for me.
12. Do not kill them, lest their being dead puts them out of mind, and my people will forget. Put them to flight with Your power and put their fortunes into decline, God our Shield, my Master.
13. The sin of their mouth is the word of their lips. They will be trapped through their pride and men will tell of the curse and the weakness that befell them, and people will learn.
14. Destroy them in Your wrath, destroy them and they will be no more, and all will know that God rules over the people of Jacob, God rules to the ends of the earth. Selah.
15. The wicked return in the evening, they howl like dogs and roam the city.
16. They wander round in search of food. Until they are satiated they will not go to sleep. My enemies are like dogs in their search for my harm.
17. But when You save me I will sing in praise of Your strength, and I will exult in the morning over Your love. For You have been a tower of strength and a refuge for me on my day of trouble.
18. You are my strength, to You I will sing, for God is my tower of strength and a God of love to me.
1. For the leader of the singers. On the sufferings of Israel : A song of Asaph.
2. I lift my voice to God and cry out to Him, I lift my voice to God and He will turn His ears to hear me.
3. On my day of suffering, Master, I have sought for You . In the night of my exile, my hand - the suffering dealt me - is long drawn out, it does not subside. My soul refuses to be comforted.
4. I remember God; I remember the love He showed me in my time of favor, and I sigh. I reflect on those former kindnesses and my soul languishes. Selah.
5. You have gripped the lids of my eyes. I have no rest from my sorrows. I feel smitten and broken and I cannot speak.
6. I have considered the good You did in the days of old, the years of the ages past.
7. In this night of exile, I remember my song - the song I sang in the Sanctuary. I ponder in my heart and my spirit searches out the ways of God, and I ask:
8. How can it be that God will cast off for ever and not show favor once again as He did in the past?
9. Has His mercy disappeared for ever? Has He made a final decree for all the generations to come that He will not return from His anger?
10. Has God forgotten how to show graciousness? Has He shut off His love because of His wrath?
11. But I say, it is to inspire us with awe and bring us to repent that the right hand of the Supreme God has changed from bestowing good.
12. I remember the works of God, I remember Your wonders to us in former times.
13. I reflect on Your actions and I meditate on Your deeds.
14. God, Your way is to sanctify Your Name by executing justice among the nations. Which of their gods is as great as God?
15. You are the God that works wonders. You have made known Your strength among the nations.
16. With an outstretched arm You redeemed Your people, the sons of Jacob and Joseph. Selah.
17. The waters of the Red Sea saw You, God, the waters saw You and were afraid. The deeps were thrown into turmoil.
18. The clouds poured forth water, the heavens emitted a cry, and Your arrows flew in the camp of the Egyptians to destroy them.
19. The sound of Your thundering was like a whirlwind. Flashes of lightening lit up the world. The earth trembled and quaked.
20. Your path was in the sea, Your way was in abundant waters, and Your steps were not visible, because the waters rolled back at once to drown the Egyptians.
21. You led Your people as a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.
1. A prayer of Moses, man of God. Lord, You have been a refuge for us in every generation.
2. Before the mountains were born and before You formed the earth and the world, from eternity and for ever You are God.
3. You subdue a man ' s confidence and strength to the point where he is ground down and contrite, and You say: "Return to Me, children of man."
4. For a thousand years are in Your eyes like yesterday when it is past and like a watch in the night.
5. The stream of men's lives is a mere sleep. In the morning he sprouts forth like grass.
6. In the morning he flourishes and sprouts forth. But in the evening he is cut down and withers.
7. For in Your wrath we are destroyed. We are confounded by Your anger.
8. You place our sins before You and our hidden deeds in the light of Your countenance.
9. For all our days are passed and gone under the glare of Your anger. We have used up our years and they have passed like a fleeting sound.
10. The days of our years are seventy years, if we have exceptional strength perhaps eighty years, and all their pride and grandeur is mere toil and iniquity, it is gone quickly and we fly away.
11. In such a life, who can acquire any understanding of the strength of Your anger in order to feel the awe which You command - and according to the awe which You command, so is the power of Your wrath against sinners.
12. According to the number of our days, short as they are, teach us while they are with us, and then we will acquire a heart of wisdom.
13. Return from the heat of Your anger - how long will You be angry? Take pity on Your servants.
14. Satisfy us with Your love on the morning of our redemption, and we will exult and rejoice all our days, even over the troubles we have endured.
15. Give us joy according to the number of days You afflicted us and the years we have seen evil.
16. Let Your work be revealed to Your servants and let the splendor of Your glory be revealed to their children.
17. Let the pleasantness of the presence of the Lord our God rest upon us, and establish the work of our hands - the Temple . Establish the work of our hands - our labor - for good and for blessing.
1. Give thanks to God, call upon His name. Make known His acts among the nations.
2. Sing to Him, play instruments for Him. Tell of all His miracles.
3. Take pride in His holy Name . Take pride that you have such a God. The heart of those who seek for God will rejoice.
4. Search for God and for the revelation of His might. Seek out His face always.
5. Remember the miracles which He wrought, His wonders and the judgments which He executed upon the nations through the utterance of His mouth.
6. Remember this, you who are the seed of Abraham His servant, the children of Jacob, you, His chosen ones.
7. He is the Lord our God , Whose judgments hold sway throughout the earth.
8. God has remembered the eternal covenant of love He made with His children, the word He commanded to endure to the thousandth generation.
9. This covenant He struck with Abraham; it was His oath to Isaac.
10. He established it as a statute for Jacob, an eternal covenant with Israel ;
11. Saying: "To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion of your inheritance."
12. The covenant was made when our ancestors were small in number, they had scarcely dwelled in the land.
13. They wandered from nation to nation, from one kingdom to another people.
14. He did not let any man oppress them, even kings He rebuked for their sake.
15. "Do not touch My anointed ones, and do not harm My prophets."
16. In order to fulfill His word and exile His people to Egypt , He decreed a famine in the land, and the staff on which the people depended - their bread - He broke completely.
17. Before them He sent a man - Joseph, who was sold as a slave.
18. The Egyptians made him suffer by putting his legs in fetters. His very soul was in chains.
19. Until the time that God's decree came to pass that the Children of Israel should go down to Egypt , God's command was that Joseph should be refined through the tests he endured in Egypt .
20. Pharaoh the king sent to loosen his fetters, a ruler over nations it was who released him.
21. He appointed him master over his house and gave him power over all his possessions,
22. To bind his ministers to Joseph's soul with ties of love, and he taught wisdom to Pharaoh's wise men.
23. Israel came to Egypt : Jacob dwelled in the land of the descendants of Ham.
24. God caused His nation to be abundantly fruitful, and He made them stronger than their oppressors.
25. He turned their hearts to hate His people and to conspire against His servants.
26. He sent His servant Moses, and Aaron, His chosen one.
27. They performed among them the words of God's signs, miracles in the land of Ham .
28. God sent darkness, and it became dark: the signs God sent were faithful in their mission, they did not rebel against His word.
29. He turned their waters to blood and caused their fish to die.
30. Their land swarmed with frogs, even in the chambers of their kings.
31. He spoke, and wild animals came. There were lice throughout their borders.
32. He turned their rains into hail, and a flaming fire descended over their land.
33. The hail smote their vines and their fig-trees and broke the trees within their borders.
34. God spoke, and the locusts came, different kinds and without number.
35. They ate up all the plants in their country and ate up the fruit of their land.
36. He smote every first-born in their land, the flower of all their strength.
37. And he brought out the Children of Israel with silver and gold. In all their tribes no- one stumbled through sin.
38. Egypt rejoiced at their going out, because the fear of Israel had fallen upon them.
39. He spread out a cloud for protection, and sent a pillar of fire to light up the night.
40. The people asked and he brought quails; He satisfied them with the bread of Heaven, the Manna.
41. He opened a rock and water flowed forth, in the parched desert it ran like a river.
42. For He remembered His holy word that He had spoken to Abraham His servant.
43. He brought out His people in gladness, His chosen ones in joy.
44. He gave them the lands of the nations and they inherited the fruit of the labor of the peoples.
45. All this in order that they should keep His statutes and guard His teachings. Halleluyah .
1. By the waters of Babylon , there we sat and wept as we remembered Zion .
2. On willows there in her midst we hung up our harps.
3. For there our captors asked us to sing, those that scorned us asked us to be happy, saying "Sing us some of the songs of Zion ."
4. How can we sing the song of God on foreign soil?
5. If I forget you, Jerusalem , let my right hand forget its skills.
6. Let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth if I do not remember you, if I do not place Jerusalem above my chief joy.
7. Remember, O God, what the children of Edom did on the day of the destruction of Jerusalem , saying "Raze it, raze it completely to its foundation."
8. Pride of Babylon , you are destined to be destroyed. Happy is he that will repay you for the way you treated us.
9. Happy is the man who will sieze your little ones and dash them against the rock.
1. Praise God. Praise God in His holy sanctuary. Praise Him in the firmament of His power.
2. Praise Him for His mighty acts; praise Him and tell of His abundant greatness.
3. Praise Him with the blast of the horn. Praise Him with the harp and the lyre.
4. Praise Him on the drums and with dance. Praise Him with stringed instruments and with the flute.
5. Praise Him with the clear-sounding cymbals. Praise Him with the loud-toned cymbals.
6. Let everything that has breath praise God! Halleluyah!
If only the salvation of Israel would come out of Zion , when God will return the captivity of His people! Jacob will rejoice; Israel will exult.The salvation of the righteous is from God, Who will help them and rescue them. He will rescue them from the wicked and save them, for they trusted in Him.
By Rabbi Avraham Yehoshua Greenbaum
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