Poetry by Isaac Watts based on Psalm 25
V. 1-11 — Waiting for pardon and direction.
I Lift my soul to God,
My trust is in his name:
Let not my foes that seek my blood
Still triumph in my shame.
Sin, and the powers of hell,
Persuade me to despair:
Lord, make me know thy cov’nant well,
That I may ‘scape the snare.
From the first dawning light
Till the dark ev’ning rise,
For thy salvation, Lord, I wait
With ever-longing eyes.
Remember all thy grace,
And lead me in thy truth;
Forgive the sins of riper days,
And follies of my youth.
The Lord is just and kind,
The meek shall learn his ways,
And every humble sinner find
The methods of his grace.
For his own goodness’ sake
He saves my soul from shame:
He pardons, though my guilt be great,
Through my Redeemer’s name.
V. 12, 14, 10, 13 — Divine instruction.
Where shall the man be found
That fears t’ offend his God?
That loves the gospel’s joyful sound,
And trembles at the rod?
The Lord shall make him know
The secrets of his heart,
The wonders of his cov’nant show,
And all his love impart.
The dealings of his hand
Are truth and mercy still,
With such as to his cov’nant stand,
And love to do his will.
Their souls shall dwell at ease
Before their Maker’s face;
Their seed shall taste the promises
In their extensive grace.
V. 15-22 — Distress of soul; or, Backsliding and desertion.
Mine eyes and my desire
Are ever to the Lord;
I love to plead his promises,
And rest upon his word.
Turn, turn thee to my soul,
Bring thy salvation near;
When will thy hand release my feet
Out of the deadly snare?
When shall the sovereign grace
Of my forgiving God
Restore me from those dangerous ways
My wand’ring feet have trod?
The tumult of my thoughts
Doth but enlarge my woe;
My spirit languishes, my heart
Is desolate and low.
With ev’ry morning light
My sorrow new begins;
Look on my anguish and my pain,
And pardon all my sins.
Behold the hosts of hell,
How cruel is their hate!
Against my life they rise, and join
Their fury with deceit.
O keep my soul from death,
Nor put my hope to shame,
For I have placed my only trust
In my Redeemer’s name.
With humble faith I wait
To see thy face again:
Of Isr’el it shall ne’er be said,
He sought the Lord in vain.
Adam Clarke Commentary on Psalm 25 -Background
The psalmist, in great distress, calls upon God frequently, Psalm 25:1-5; prays for pardon with the strong confidence of being heard, Psalm 25:6-11; shows the blessedness of the righteous, Psalm 25:12-14; again earnestly implores the Divine mercy; and prays for the restoration of Israel, Psalm 25:15-22.
This Psalm seems to refer to the case of the captives in Babylon, who complain of oppression from their enemies, and earnestly beg the help and mercy of God.
It is the first of those called acrostic Psalms, i.e., Psalms each line of which begins with a several letter of the Hebrew alphabet in their common order. Of acrostic Psalms there are seven, viz., 25, 34, 37, Psalm 111:1-10, Psalm 112:1-10, 119, and 145.
Psalm 25 New Living Translation (NLT)
A psalm of David.
1 O Lord, I give my life to you.
2 I trust in you, my God!
Do not let me be disgraced,
or let my enemies rejoice in my defeat.
3 No one who trusts in you will ever be disgraced,
but disgrace comes to those who try to deceive others.
4 Show me the right path, O Lord;
point out the road for me to follow.
5 Lead me by your truth and teach me,
for you are the God who saves me.
All day long I put my hope in you.
6 Remember, O Lord, your compassion and unfailing love,
which you have shown from long ages past.
7 Do not remember the rebellious sins of my youth.
Remember me in the light of your unfailing love,
for you are merciful, O Lord.
8 The Lord is good and does what is right;
he shows the proper path to those who go astray.
9 He leads the humble in doing right,
teaching them his way.
10 The Lord leads with unfailing love and faithfulness
all who keep his covenant and obey his demands.
11 For the honor of your name, O Lord,
forgive my many, many sins.
12 Who are those who fear the Lord?
He will show them the path they should choose.
13 They will live in prosperity,
and their children will inherit the land.
14 The Lord is a friend to those who fear him.
He teaches them his covenant.
15 My eyes are always on the Lord,
for he rescues me from the traps of my enemies.
16 Turn to me and have mercy,
for I am alone and in deep distress.
17 My problems go from bad to worse.
Oh, save me from them all!
18 Feel my pain and see my trouble.
Forgive all my sins.
19 See how many enemies I have
and how viciously they hate me!
20 Protect me! Rescue my life from them!
Do not let me be disgraced, for in you I take refuge.
21 May integrity and honesty protect me,
for I put my hope in you.
22 O God, ransom Israel
from all its troubles.