A Prayer for the Oppressed

Why, O Lord, do you stand far off?
Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?

In his arrogance the wicked man
Hunts down the weak.
He lies in wait near the villages;
From ambush he murders the innocent,
Watching in secret for his victims.

His victims are crushed, they collapse;
They fall under his strength.
He says to himself, “God has forgotten;
He covers his face and never sees.”

Arise, Lord! Lift up your hand, O God.
Do not forget the helpless.

But you, O God, do see trouble and grief;
You consider it to take it in hand.
The victim commits himself to you;
You are the helper of the fatherless.

Break the arm of the wicked man;
Call him to account for his wickedness
That would not be found out.

The Lord is King for ever and ever.

You hear, O Lord, the desire of the afflicted;
You encourage them, and you listen to their cry,
Defending the fatherless and the oppressed,
In order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more.

From Psalm 10

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