Psalm 55

David wrote this special song for the music leader. Use stringed instruments when you sing it.

A prayer when a friend turns against you

55:1The psalm has three parts:

Verses 1-8: David tells us that his enemies have made him afraid.

Verses 9-14: David tells us that his friend has turned against him.

Verses 15-23: David prays that God will punish his enemies.

1 God, listen to my prayer.

Do not turn away

when I ask you to help me.

2 Listen carefully and answer me.

I am very upset because of all my troubles.

They are too many for me.

3 I am afraid because of what my enemies say.

Those wicked people give me much pain.

They are so angry that they hate me

and they give me nothing but trouble.

4 My heart beats fast inside me.

Death seems very near,

and I am very afraid.

5 I am shaking with fear!

My troubles are too much for me.

6 So I say, ‘If I had wings to fly like a dove,

I would fly away to a safe place.

7 Yes! I would go far away,

and I would live in the wilderness.


8 I would go quickly to a safe place.

The strong winds and storms of my enemies

would not reach me there!’

9 My Lord, make my enemies confused!

Stop them from doing what they want to do.

Everywhere that I look in the city,

I see that they do cruel things to attack people.

55:9The city is Jerusalem, where David lived.

10 They walk on the city's walls

in the day and at night.

Inside the city they do evil things

that bring trouble everywhere.

11 They destroy everything!

In all the city's streets, they move freely.

They hurt people and they cheat them.

12 But it is not my enemies that have insulted me.

That would not have hurt me.

If my enemy laughs at me,

I can always hide from him!

13 But it is you, my best friend!

We did things as men together,

and I trusted you!

14 We enjoyed our time together.

We often went to God's temple,

and we joined with the crowd of people there.

15 Please let death suddenly destroy my enemies!

May they go down into their graves alive!

They are at home with evil,

and that is all that they think about.

16 But I will call to God for help.

The Lord will make me safe.

17 I will weep and cry to him,

morning, noon and night.

He will listen to what I say.

18 I have very many enemies

who attack me all the time.

But God will rescue me and keep me safe.

19 God has always ruled everything as king.

He will listen to me,

and he will punish my enemies.


They refuse to change their thoughts,

and they do not respect God.

20 But my friend has turned against his own friends.

He has not been a true friend,

as he promised to be.

21 He speaks a message of peace,

but he is really thinking about war.

His words are easy to listen to,

but they hurt like sharp knives.

22 Take your problems to the Lord.

He will take care of you.

He will never let his own people fall.

55:22See 1 Peter 5:7.

23 And as for wicked people,

you, God, will send them to their graves.

They will go down into the deep hole of death

while they are still young.

That is what will happen to those cruel people,

who kill and cheat others.

But I will trust in you, God.