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Psalm chapter 43

New International Version

1 Vindicate me, my God, and plead my cause against an unfaithful nation. Rescue me from those who are deceitful and wicked. 2 You are God my stronghold. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy? 3 Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell.
4 Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God. 5 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.
English Standard Version

1 Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly people, from the deceitful and unjust man deliver me! 2 For you are the God in whom I take refuge; why have you rejected me? Why do I go about mourning because of the oppression of the enemy? 3 Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling! 4 Then I will go to the altar of God, to God my exceeding joy, and I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God. 5 Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.
King James Version

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: why dost thou cast me off? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy? 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. 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.
New American Standard Bible

1 Vindicate me, God, and plead my case against an ungodly nation; Save me from the deceitful and unjust person! 2 For You are the God of my strength; why have You rejected me? Why do I go about mourning because of the oppression of the enemy? 3 Send out Your light and Your truth, they shall lead me; They shall bring me to Your holy hill And to Your dwelling places. 4 Then I will go to the altar of God, To God my exceeding joy; And I will praise You on the lyre, God, my God. 5 Why are you in despair, my soul? And why are you restless within me? Wait for God, for I will again praise Him For the help of His presence, my God.
New Living Translation

1 Declare me innocent, O God! Defend me against these ungodly people. Rescue me from these unjust liars. 2 For you are God, my only safe haven. Why have you tossed me aside? Why must I wander around in grief, oppressed by my enemies? 3 Send out your light and your truth; let them guide me. Let them lead me to your holy mountain, to the place where you live. 4 There I will go to the altar of God, to God--the source of all my joy. I will praise you with my harp, O God, my God!
5 Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again--my Savior and my God!
Christian Standard Bible

1 Vindicate me, God, and champion my cause against an unfaithful nation; rescue me from the deceitful and unjust person.
2 For you are the God of my refuge. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about in sorrow because of the enemy's oppression? 3 Send your light and your truth; let them lead me. Let them bring me to your holy mountain, to your dwelling place.
4 Then I will come to the altar of God, to God, my greatest joy. I will praise you with the lyre, God, my God. 5 Why, my soul, are you so dejected? Why are you in such turmoil? Put your hope in God, for I will still praise him, my Savior and my God.

What does Psalm chapter 43 mean?

Many Hebrew manuscripts join Psalm 42 and Psalm 43 as a single work. It's possible they were separated, at some point, for unknown reasons. The themes of Psalm 43 echo those of the prior song. Overall, the psalmist honestly expresses frustration with his suffering. Yet he makes a conscious effort to remember God's faithfulness and resolves to look to the future with hope.

The psalm opens with an appeal for justice. Because he is being oppressed and slandered, the writer asks why God has not yet come to the rescue. This is followed by a request echoing a prior desire to return to a place of worship (Psalm 42:4). The psalmist refers to God's truth, and His light, which are common themes in the Bible. The appeal ends on a hopeful note, with the assumption that the writer will be able to worship God in the temple once again (Psalm 43:1–4).

The final verse of this psalm is the exact phrase used twice in the prior song (Psalm 42:5, 11). This is a statement, poetically phrased as a question whose answer should be obvious. It's natural to be tempted towards despair and discouragement. Despite our feelings, we know God is faithful and that He will vindicate His people, eventually. For that reason, we can be encouraged to put all our trust in the Lord (Psalm 43:5).