For the leader. Of David. A psalm.
O LORD, You have examined me and know me.
When I sit down or stand up You know it;
You discern my thoughts from afar.
aMeaning of Heb. uncertain.You observe-a my walking and reclining,
and are familiar with all my ways.
There is not a word on my tongue
but that You, O LORD, know it well.
You hedge me before and behind;
You lay Your hand upon me.
It is beyond my knowledge;
it is a mystery; I cannot fathom it.
Where can I escape from Your spirit?
Where can I flee from Your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
if I descend to Sheol, You are there too.
If I take wing with the dawn
to come to rest on the western horizon,
even there Your hand will be guiding me,
Your right hand will be holding me fast.
If I say, “Surely darkness bCf. Rashi, Ibn Ezra; meaning of Heb. uncertain.will conceal me,
night will provide me with cover,”-b
darkness is not dark for You;
night is as light as day;
darkness and light are the same.
It was You who created my conscience;cLit. “kidneys.”
You fashioned me in my mother’s womb.
I praise You,
for I am awesomely, wondrously made;
Your work is wonderful;
I know it very well.
My frame was not concealed from You
when I was shaped in a hidden place,
knit together in the recesses of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed limbs;
they were all recorded in Your book;
in due time they were formed,
aMeaning of Heb. uncertain.to the very last one of them.-a
How weighty Your thoughts seem to me, O God,
how great their number!
I count them—they exceed the grains of sand;
I end—but am still with You.
O God, if You would only slay the wicked—
you murderers, away from me!—
aMeaning of Heb. uncertain.who invoke You for intrigue,
Your enemies who swear by You falsely.-a
O LORD, You know I hate those who hate You,
and loathe Your adversaries.
I feel a perfect hatred toward them;
I count them my enemies.
Examine me, O God, and know my mind;
probe me and know my thoughts.
See if I have vexatious ways,
and guide me in ways everlasting.