In pondering what Psalm to post for today, I decided to just start at Psalm 1 and post the first one in order that I had never posted before. Turns out I’ve already posted Psalms 1, 2, and 3, but have not posted Psalm 4. As I read through various translations on Biblegateway.com, I settled on the New Living Translation. Although the various translations are different, there are a couple of things about the NLT that speak to me.
First, in the first verse God is called the one “who declares me innocent.” Other translations refer to God as “my righteous God” or “God of my righteousness.” But this NLT translation, which is not substantively different from the other translations, states who God is to me in a way that ties in with some of the other posts I have written lately, including my post yesterday titled “Is a Little Faith Enough?”
Second, as one who has all my life struggled with controlling my anger and have been able to do so only with the help of God, verse 4 is a great reminder that my anger, if uncontrolled, only leads to sin. Other translations also admonish the reader to “not sin” but do not focus on anger as being a source of that sin.
There are other great verses in this Psalm, which is why I posted the whole thing, but these two are the most meaningful to me.
For the choir director: A psalm of David, to be accompanied by stringed instruments.
1 Answer me when I call to you,
O God who declares me innocent.
Free me from my troubles.
Have mercy on me and hear my prayer.
2 How long will you people ruin my reputation?
How long will you make groundless accusations?
How long will you continue your lies?
3 You can be sure of this:
The Lord set apart the godly for himself.
The Lord will answer when I call to him.
4 Don’t sin by letting anger control you.
Think about it overnight and remain silent.
5 Offer sacrifices in the right spirit,
and trust the Lord.
6 Many people say, “Who will show us better times?”
Let your face smile on us, Lord.
7 You have given me greater joy
than those who have abundant harvests of grain and new wine.
8 In peace I will lie down and sleep,
for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe.