Sunday, January 15, 2012

The psalmist's confrontation with God

Returning to our little group (you are invited to join us) at Robert Geiss' Psalm Challenge meme, I add some illustrations for Psalm 44.

1We have heard with our ears, O God, our ancestors have told us, what deeds you performed in their days, in the days of old:

2you with your own hand drove out the nations, but them you planted; you afflicted the peoples, but them you set free;

3for not by their own sword did they win the land, nor did their own arm give them victory; but your right hand, and your arm, and the light of your countenance, for you delighted in them.

4You are my King and my God; you command victories for Jacob.

5Through you we push down our foes; through your name we tread down our assailants.

6For not in my bow do I trust, nor can my sword save me.

7But you have saved us from our foes, and have put to confusion those who hate us.

8In God we have boasted continually, and we will give thanks to your name forever. Selah

9Yet you have rejected us and abased us, and have not gone out with our armies.

10You made us turn back from the foe, and our enemies have gotten spoil.

11You have made us like sheep for slaughter, and have scattered us among the nations.

12You have sold your people for a trifle, demanding no high price for them.

13You have made us the taunt of our neighbors, the derision and scorn of those around us.

14You have made us a byword among the nations, a laughingstock among the peoples.

15All day long my disgrace is before me, and shame has covered my face

16at the words of the taunters and revilers, at the sight of the enemy and the avenger.

17All this has come upon us, yet we have not forgotten you, or been false to your covenant.

18Our heart has not turned back, nor have our steps departed from your way,

19yet you have broken us in the haunt of jackals, and covered us with deep darkness.

20If we had forgotten the name of our God, or spread out our hands to a strange god,

21would not God discover this? For he knows the secrets of the heart.

22Because of you we are being killed all day long, and accounted as sheep for the slaughter.

23Rouse yourself! Why do you sleep, O Lord? Awake, do not cast us off forever!

24Why do you hide your face? Why do you forget our affliction and oppression?

25For we sink down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground.

26Rise up, come to our help. Redeem us for the sake of your steadfast love.

Translation is NRSV. Hebrew original and an older translation are here. See also Rabbi Segal's study of this psalm.
A sculpture at the Israel Museum.
Sheep grazing in the Jura Mountains, Switzerland.
A dead jackal in my village.
"The [Aztec] god Nanauatzin" by Yifah Adir, Mamilla mall, Jerusalem.
Grandson Dean at the Children's Wing, Israel Museum.


mirae said...

thankyou beautiful Dina for those powerful photos.
isn't your grandson beautiful!
love and light

Travelogue for the Universe said...

Thank you Dina, for you words and photos and for the link. Have a great week. mary

Leif Hagen said...

WAHOO!!!! You're back, Dina! Great news and a great Psalm Challenge series of photos!
Warmest regards from wintery EAGAN

Theanne said...

Dina...your photos are perfect illustrations for the Psalm and the verses...a delight to see and read!

So happy you've returned from your "blogspot" nightmare!

Robert Geiss said...

oh ! what increase of tention while reading and looking at the pictures.

Thank you very much for your effort and kind participation !

Please have a kind new week ahead and please join again soon.

NixBlog said...

Wonderful illustrations to this psalm, Dina! Enjoy your week and welcome back to blogland!

Pat said...

Your photos are wonderful illustrations of Psalm 44, Dina. Your grandson looks so sweet. I'm glad you got your blog back!

Petrea Burchard said...

You always find the most wonderful photos for these. The dead jackal is a very sad photo but the light is beautiful. And the grazing sheep--what a picture!

Cloudia said...

Well done, modern blogger-psalmist

glad you're back WHEW!

Aloha from Waikiki
Comfort Spiral

> < } } ( ° >


Reader Wil said...

You found the right images for this difficult psalm! I am so glad that your blog returned. I missed you!

Don Connor said...

So glad to see that you're back on-line with your blog. I wondered what was going on. Isn't technology frustrating sometimes?! Have a great week!

Louis la Vache said...

A superb rendition of the Psalm, Dina.

Sara said...

Wow Dina, you have found some very different but just right photos to illustrate Psalm 44.

Spiderdama said...

Some touching and some nice pictures to this psalm.
I like the sheep very much, do not think we have that brown sheep here.. they are black or white.

Pasadena Adjacent said...

An Aztec god in Israel? now thats curious (and really weird looking).

Joan Elizabeth said...

Illustrated with a a nice wit that made me smile.

VP said...

I like the dead jackal...

JM said...

The sheep shot is so beautiful! Also love the Aztec God and that 'thing' on the bottom shot is absolutely cool!