Years ago (we won’t say how many) I learned and memorized for solo/ensemble contest the sacred classic art song derived from Psalm 84. It’s been replaying in my memory lately, so this morning I’m printing and posting the entire Psalm to think and meditate on, my backdrop for today. The version I learned was KJV so I’ll of course be drawn to some of the differences between it and the NLT as I reflect today.
Selah, or Interlude, provides a moment to stop and think about the ramifications of the text just sung.
I hope you’ll enjoy this Psalm with me today.
(New Living Translation)
For the choir director: A psalm of the descendants of Korah, to be accompanied by a stringed instrument.[a]
1 How lovely is your dwelling place,
O Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
2 I long, yes, I faint with longing
to enter the courts of the Lord.
With my whole being, body and soul,
I will shout joyfully to the living God.
3 Even the sparrow finds a home,
and the swallow builds her nest and raises her young
at a place near your altar,
O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, my King and my God!
4 What joy for those who can live in your house,
always singing your praises.
5 What joy for those whose strength comes from the Lord,
who have set their minds on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem.
6 When they walk through the Valley of Weeping,[b]
it will become a place of refreshing springs.
The autumn rains will clothe it with blessings.
7 They will continue to grow stronger,
and each of them will appear before God in Jerusalem.[c]
8 O Lord God of Heaven’s Armies, hear my prayer.
Listen, O God of Jacob.
9 O God, look with favor upon the king, our shield!
Show favor to the one you have anointed.
10 A single day in your courts
is better than a thousand anywhere else!
I would rather be a gatekeeper in the house of my God
than live the good life in the homes of the wicked.
11 For the Lord God is our sun and our shield.
He gives us grace and glory.
The Lord will withhold no good thing
from those who do what is right.
12 O Lord of Heaven’s Armies,
what joy for those who trust in you.
- Psalm 84:1 Hebrew according to the gittith.
- Psalm 84:6 Or Valley of Poplars; Hebrew reads valley of Baca.
- Psalm 84:7 Hebrew Zion.
Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers.