Psalm 106 - Infidelities of the People of Israel




[New International Version] Psalm 106 belongs to Book IV of the Book of Psalms. It is a confession of individual and people’s sins. In so doing, the speaker recognizes God’s infinite mercy.

The PS 106 closes the Book IV Book of Ps , which is composed of a collection of texts 150 poetry books organized by five. The Book of Psalms, for its wisdom and basic principles of human action , is considered the heart of the Old Testament. Book IV encompasses Psalms 90 to 106 . Psalm 106 is divided into 48 Verses.

The Psalms are poems-prayers addressed to God, being the privileged way to address and speak to Him. These prayers represent human experiences and religious conscience . They portray the common man , with his faults, insecurities, fears and hopes and, even today, we can identify with the Psalmist and draw inspiration from these texts to pray and plead with God when we feel lost and anguished or to express our gratitude for some blessing received.

“There are enemies or friends, there is life or death, health or illness, pain or joy and, most of the time, there are no changes or gradations. Words are like stones and poetry like boulders carved by chisel”; “The Psalms are a bit like mountain paths, simple, especially when walking on snow, but they lead to the peaks; they are paths toward the peaks of meeting the Lord.” - Carlo Maria Martini, Cardinal of Milan

Psalm 106 - Israel’s Infidelities

1  Hallelujah!

Give thanks to the Lord, because He is good,
because His mercy is eternal.

2  Who can tell the Lord’s deeds
and proclaim all his praises?

3  Happy is he who observes law
and fulfills justice at all times.

4  Remember me, Lord, for the sake of your people,
come and visit me with your salvation,

5  that I may see the happiness of your chosen ones, that
I may rejoice in the joy of your people
and feel happy with your inheritance.

6  We have sinned, like our parents,
we have committed crimes and evils.

7  Our fathers in Egypt
did not understand your wonders;

they did not remember the greatness of your mercy,
and they revolted by the sea at the Red Sea.

8  But He saved them, to honor His name
and to manifest His power.

9  Threatened the Red Sea and it dried up
and made them walk in the depths as in a desert.

10  He
rescued them from the hand of those who hated them, and rescued them from the enemy’s hand.

11  The waters covered their adversaries;
so that not a single one of them survived.

12  Then they believed his word
if they sang his praise.

13  But they quickly forgot their works
and did not trust their project.

14  In the wilderness they were overcome by their appetites,
if God put them to the test in the open.

15  God granted them what they asked for,
and cast away decay from their souls.

16  But they were envious of Moses in the camp;
and of Aaron, the consecrated of the Lord.

17  Then the land opened up, and swallowed up Datan,
and it closed over the sect of Abiram;

18  the fire consumed his partisans,
and the flames devoured the wicked.

19 They  built a calf on Mount Horeb
and prostrated themselves before a statue.

20  They exchanged their glorious God
for the image of a bull that grinds grass.

21 They  forgot God, who had saved them,
working wonders in Egypt,

22  wonders in the country of Cam,
tremendous things by the Red Sea.

23  God declared that he would annihilate them,
were it not for Moses, his chosen one:

he stood as a barrier before God,
to prevent his wrath from destroying them.

24  They showed contempt for the delicious land, they
did not believe his word.

25 They  murmured in their tents
and did not listen to the voice of the Lord.

26  So he lifted up his hand against them,
swearing that he would make them fall into the wilderness,

27  who would cause his children to fall among the peoples,
scattering them among the nations.

28  Then they joined the god Baal of Peor
and ate sacrifices in honor of the dead.

29 They  provoked him with their iniquities,
and pestilence broke out among them.

30  Phinehas rose to secure the right,
and then the plague was over.

31  His action was recognized as just,
for all generations and forever.

32  They irritated God by the waters of Meribah,
and Moses had to suffer for their sakes,

33  because they embittered his spirit,
and he uttered folly with his lips.

34  They did not exterminate the peoples
that the Lord had appointed them.

35  On the contrary, they mingled with these peoples
and learned their customs.

36  They worshiped their idols,
which were a trap for them.

37  They offered up their sons
and daughters as a sacrifice to demons.

38  They shed innocent blood,
the blood of their sons and daughters,

which they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan;
and the earth was stained with blood.

39  They allowed themselves to be defiled with their works
and fornicated themselves with their crimes.

40  So the Lord was angry with his people,
and he was displeased with their inheritance.

41  Then he delivered them into the hands of the people,
and they were overpowered by those who hated them.

42  Their enemies oppressed them,
and they were brought under their power.

43  Many times He set them free,
but they were rebellious in their ideas
and more and more sank into their wickedness.

44  Yet He looked upon them in affliction,
hearing their laments.

45  He remembered his covenant with them
and had compassion on them in his immense mercy.

46  He caused them to be treated with benevolence
by their conquerors.

47  Save us, O Lord our God,
and gather us again from among the peoples,

to give thanks to your holy name
and to celebrate your praises.

48  Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
from ever and forever.

And tell all the people: “Amen!”
Hallelujah!

Meaning and interpretation

The Psalm 106 is a collective supplication Psalm , where it is a review of the sins committed by the people throughout its history. Hence, it presents itself as a natural continuation of the historical exposition made in Ps 105 and similarly to what also happens in Ps 78 .

The Psalmist places particular emphasis on the vicissitudes of the forty years in the wilderness (Verses 13-33). The confession of one’s faults , past and present, offers the speaker the opportunity to exalt God’s infinite mercy.

The Psalms of Supplication are very present in the Book of Psalms. They speak of human frailty and the most basic feelings of your mortal condition. Times of peace and plenty contrast with war and individual or community destruction. The Psalmist pleads for God’s help and asks him to end his situation of affliction , ending with the certainty of having been heard .

In spiritual practice, the supplication and request to God reflects a lot the meaning of prayer, being the privileged way to establish contact and raise the voice to the Divine. In numerous Psalms, supplication seems to be the most immediate motivation and the greatest concern. When turning to God, the speaker / Psalmist finds tenderness, justice, compassion, reconciliation, purification, in short, peace itself.

The narratives and feelings involved in these prayers are varied and basic; affect humanity over the millennia, and are still current today. They reflect multiple interior , individual and collective experiences, and the relationship between people and peoples. They address topics such as the deadly threat of disease, persecution, aging, violence, war, betrayal, loneliness, enemy aggression and how these feelings alter consciousnesswe have of ourselves, of our relationship with others and with God.

Situations that prompt supplication can be bitter and desperate , but the Psalms generally express a state of mind of trust and end in thanksgiving . The Psalmist cries out to God for his help and forgiveness in a profound expression of limitless trust in divine compassion and justice. Even the cry of the Psalmist is already a fighting speech, change will, of inner transformation, confidence and hope for a free future evil, the suffering and the wicked .

The Psalms of Supplication they are classified as individual supplication and collective supplication. Those of Individual Supplication comprise Psalm 3; 5-7; 13; 17; 22; 26; 27; 28; 31; 35; 39; 42-43; 51; 54-57; 59; 61; 63; 64; 69-71; 88; 102; 109; 120; 130; 140-143. and those of  Collective Supplication Ps 12; 44; 58; 60; 74; 80; 83; 85; 90; 94; 108; 123; 127.

The Book of Psalms

The Joy and Happiness of the Righteous in Communion with God

The Psalms are prayer-poems addressed to God, being the privileged way to address and speak to Him. Depicting the common man , with his failures, insecurities, fears and hopes, we can still identify with the Psalmist and be inspired today in Psalms to make prayers and supplications to God in times of trouble or express our gratitude for some blessing received.

The Psalms, despite being written in Antiquity, still move , sensitize , awaken feelings , inspire and enchant . In them, we can identify anguish and joy , deeply human feelings, praises, supplications, teachings of reflection on spiritual wisdom and prophetic words.

Written for different situations , some Psalms are intimate, revealing the author’s personal relationship with God; others provide guidelines and advice for life, others are compositions for specific liturgical events such as rituals and pilgrimages.

The Book of Psalms is composed of a collection of 150 poetic texts and is divided into five parts, called Psalm Books or Booklets. Each Book closes with short hymns of praise to God . The division into five parts was considered to correspond to the five books of Moses and it is assumed that each passage in the Pentateuch (first five books of the Bible, called Torah by the Jews) was read in parallel with the corresponding Psalm. Its main forms are lamentation , supplication , praise and gratitude .

The Power of Prayer in Dialogue with the Divine

The Psalms elevate our thoughts to the Divine and prayer is the power of the word . Prayer is the language of faith. Any thought, word or image addressed to God is called prayer . It is through it that we come into contact with our God within and, therefore, it is so powerful in transforming life . Prayer can produce miracles , turn dreams into reality, give us hope for change , harmony and peace with ourselves and the world.

Each Psalm has an intention that helps us meditate and walk with our God . For many theologians, the Book of Psalms has a prophetic or messianic tone as its verses refer to the coming of Christ into the world of men to guide them through the uncertainty and doubts of Human existence.

The prayer has the power to call the Spiritual Universe full mode, honest, sincere, conscious, for the purpose of spiritual self-protection, family protection and those who are dear to us, to have peace of mind, spiritual and physical, for prosperity and success, to protect health and relationships, to ward off negative energies and, above all, to connect us to something bigger than ourselves. From this peace , well-being, hope and goodness in front of everyone and everything result.

The faith can change our lives. It gives us tranquility and spiritual strength to face challenges. It helps us to meditate on our mission in life and to create a balanced and healthy environment for ourselves and those we love. When you pray, fill your heart with love and determination . The Psalms will guide you on a path of peace and communion with the higher energy .