Psalm 42 and 43

Note: these two psalms are a pair, both using the same or very similar refrain, and also connected by replication of a key sentence. The fine structure is difficult to see  but the overall pattern is clear.

To the chief Musician, Maschil, for the sons of Korah.

A.

a. 42:1 As the hart panteth after the water brooks,
so panteth my soul after thee, O God.
2 My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God:
when shall I come and appear before God?
3 My tears have been my meat day and night,
while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God?

b. 4 When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me:
for I had gone with the multitude,
I went with them to the house of God,
with the voice of joy and praise,
with a multitude that kept holyday.

B. 5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul?
and why art thou disquieted in me?
hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him
for the help of his countenance.

A’.

b’. 6 O my God, my soul is cast down within me: therefore will I remember thee from the land of Jordan,
and of the Hermonites, from the hill Mizar.
7 Deep calleth unto deep at the noise of thy waterspouts:
all thy waves and thy billows are gone over me.

a’. 8 Yet the LORD will command his lovingkindness in the daytime,
and in the night his song shall be with me,
and my prayer unto the God of my life.
9 I will say unto God my rock, Why hast thou forgotten me?
why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?
10 As with a sword in my bones, mine enemies reproach me;
while they say daily unto me, Where is thy God?

B’. 11 Why art thou cast down, O my soul?
and why art thou disquieted within me?
hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him,
who is the health of my countenance, and my God.

2A. 43:1 Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation:
O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.
2 For thou art the God of my strength:

2B. why dost thou cast me off?
why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?

2A’. 3 O send out thy light and thy truth:
let them lead me;
let them bring me unto thy holy hill,
and to thy tabernacles.
4 Then will I go unto the altar of God,
unto God my exceeding joy:
yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God.

2B’. 5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul?
and why art thou disquieted within me?
hope in God: for I shall yet praise him,
who is the health of my countenance, and my God.

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