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Psalm 43:1

ESV Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly people, from the deceitful and unjust man deliver me!
NIV Vindicate me, my God, and plead my cause against an unfaithful nation. Rescue me from those who are deceitful and wicked.
NASB Vindicate me, God, and plead my case against an ungodly nation; Save me from the deceitful and unjust person!
CSB Vindicate me, God, and champion my cause against an unfaithful nation; rescue me from the deceitful and unjust person.
NLT Declare me innocent, O God! Defend me against these ungodly people. Rescue me from these unjust liars.
KJV Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.

What does Psalm 43:1 mean?

Because Psalm 43 shares themes—even some exact phrases—with Psalm 42, scholars believe they may have originally been a single work. This segment starts with an appeal for God to deliver righteous justice, in the face of sinful oppression. In an Old Testament context, use of the phrase "ungodly people" suggests Gentiles. Some commentators believe the psalmist was an exile in Babylon; others believe he was an exile in the northern region of the Jordan. Psalm 42:6 weighs heavily in favor of the latter view, because the psalmist says, "I remember you from the land of Jordan and of Hermon."

Whatever his location, the writer longs to return to Jerusalem and asks the Lord to "vindicate" him. The psalmist's situation and plea for vindication may foreshadow righteous Jews in the tribulation. They will be persecuted by unrighteous Gentiles, who are led by an ungodly and unjust man who poses as Israel's messiah. He is portrayed in 2 Thessalonians 2:3–4 as "the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God."
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