Psalms 38 and 88 were both written in times of trouble. David cried out to God asking, “Do you see what is happening to me? Do you know what is going on?” Even in the the dark time, David expresses his confidence in God, knowing that if he humbles himself and cries out to God, the Lord will deliver him.
Psalm 138 is a praise for God’s goodness and deliverance and presents a juxtaposition between the proud and the righteous. God draws near to the humble but resists the proud (vs 6)
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1 LORD, don’t rebuke me in your wrath,
neither chasten me in your hot displeasure.
2 For your arrows have pierced me,
your hand presses hard on me.
3 There is no soundness in my flesh because of your indignation,
neither is there any health in my bones because of my sin.
4 For my iniquities have gone over my head.
As a heavy burden, they are too heavy for me.
5 My wounds are loathsome and corrupt,
because of my foolishness.
6 I am pained and bowed down greatly.
I go mourning all day long.
7 For my waist is filled with burning.
There is no soundness in my flesh.
8 I am faint and severely bruised.
I have groaned by reason of the anguish of my heart.
9 Lord, all my desire is before you.
My groaning is not hidden from you.
10 My heart throbs.
My strength fails me.
As for the light of my eyes, it has also left me.
11 My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my plague.
My kinsmen stand far away.
12 They also who seek after my life lay snares.
Those who seek my hurt speak mischievous things,
and meditate deceits all day long.
13 But I, as a deaf man, don’t hear.
I am as a mute man who doesn’t open his mouth.
14 Yes, I am as a man who doesn’t hear,
in whose mouth are no reproofs.
15 For in you, LORD, do I hope.
You will answer, Lord my God.
16 For I said, “Don’t let them gloat over me,
or exalt themselves over me when my foot slips.”
17 For I am ready to fall.
My pain is continually before me.
18 For I will declare my iniquity.
I will be sorry for my sin.
19 But my enemies are vigorous and many.
Those who hate me without reason are numerous.
20 They who render evil for good are also adversaries to me,
because I follow what is good.
21 Don’t forsake me, LORD.
My God, don’t be far from me.
22 Hurry to help me,
Lord, my salvation.
1 LORD, the God of my salvation,
I have cried day and night before you.
2 Let my prayer enter into your presence.
Turn your ear to my cry.
3 For my soul is full of troubles.
My life draws near to Sheol.*
4 I am counted among those who go down into the pit.
I am like a man who has no help,
5 set apart among the dead,
like the slain who lie in the grave,
whom you remember no more.
They are cut off from your hand.
6 You have laid me in the lowest pit,
in the darkest depths.
7 Your wrath lies heavily on me.
You have afflicted me with all your waves.
8 You have taken my friends from me.
You have made me an abomination to them.
I am confined, and I can’t escape.
9 My eyes are dim from grief.
I have called on you daily, LORD.
I have spread out my hands to you.
10 Do you show wonders to the dead?
Do the departed spirits rise up and praise you?
11 Is your loving kindness declared in the grave?
Or your faithfulness in Destruction?
12 Are your wonders made known in the dark?
Or your righteousness in the land of forgetfulness?
13 But to you, LORD, I have cried.
In the morning, my prayer comes before you.
14 LORD, why do you reject my soul?
Why do you hide your face from me?
15 I am afflicted and ready to die from my youth up.
While I suffer your terrors, I am distracted.
16 Your fierce wrath has gone over me.
Your terrors have cut me off.
17 They came around me like water all day long.
They completely engulfed me.
18 You have put lover and friend far from me,
and my friends into darkness.
1 I will give you thanks with my whole heart.
Before the gods,* I will sing praises to you.
2 I will bow down toward your holy temple,
and give thanks to your Name for your loving kindness and for your truth;
for you have exalted your Name and your Word above all.
3 In the day that I called, you answered me.
You encouraged me with strength in my soul.
4 All the kings of the earth will give you thanks, LORD,
for they have heard the words of your mouth.
5 Yes, they will sing of the ways of the LORD;
for great is the LORD’s glory.
6 For though the LORD is high, yet he looks after the lowly;
but the proud, he knows from afar.
7 Though I walk in the middle of trouble, you will revive me.
You will stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies.
Your right hand will save me.
8 The LORD will fulfill that which concerns me;
your loving kindness, LORD, endures forever.
Don’t forsake the works of your own hands.
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