A Song of Praise to God
At that time people will sing this song in Judah:
We have a strong city with strong walls and defenses.
But God gives us our salvation.*
Open the gates for the good people to enter.
They are the God’s faithful followers.
God, you give true peace
to people who depend on you,
to those who trust in you.
So trust the LORD always,
because in the LORD YAH you have a place of safety forever.
But he will destroy the proud city
and punish those who live there.
He will throw that high city down to the ground.
It will fall into the dust.
Then poor and humble people will walk on those ruins.
Honesty is the path good people follow.
They follow the path that is straight and true.
And God, you make that way smooth
and easy to follow.
But, LORD, we are waiting for your way of justice.
We want to honor you and your name.
At night my soul longs to be with you,
and the spirit in me wants to be with you at the dawn of every new day.
When your way of justice comes to the world,
people will learn the right way of living.
10 Evil people will not learn to do good,
even if you show them only kindness.
They will still do wrong, even if they live in a good world.
They never see the LORD’S greatness.
11 LORD, your arm is raised to punish them,
but they don’t see it.
Show them how strong your love is for your people.
Then those who are evil will be ashamed.
Yes, your fire will destroy your enemies.
12 LORD, you have succeeded in doing everything we tried to do,
so give us peace.
God Will Give New Life to His People
13 LORD, you are our God,
but in the past, we followed other lords.
We belonged to other masters,§
but now we want people to remember only one name—yours.
14 Those dead lords will not come to life.
Those ghosts will not rise from death.
You decided to destroy them,
and you destroyed everything that makes us think about them.
15 LORD, you have helped the nation you love.
You made our nation grow
and brought honor to yourself.*
16 LORD, people remember you
when they are in trouble.
So because of your punishment,
we called out to you.
17 LORD, because of you we were in pain,
like a woman giving birth,
who struggles and cries out when it is time.
18 But we struggled in pain for nothing.
We gave birth only to wind.
We did nothing to save the land.
No one was born to live in the world.
19  But the Lord says,
Your people have died,
but they will live again.
The bodies of my people
will rise from death.
Dead people in the ground,
stand and be happy!
The dew covering you is like
the dew sparkling in the light of a new day.
It shows that a new time is coming,
when the earth will give birth to the dead who are in it.”
Judgment: Reward or Punishment
20 My people, go into your rooms
and lock your doors.
Hide in there for a short time
until God’s anger is finished.
21 Look! The LORD is coming out from his place
to judge the people of the world for the bad things they have done.
The earth will reveal the blood that has been spilled on it.
It will no longer hide the proof of those murders.
* 26:1 Or “We have a strong city that provides us with salvation. It has strong walls and defenses.” 26:4 LORD YAH Or “YAH YAHWEH,” a Hebrew name for God. 26:11 strong … love The Hebrew word means strong feelings like love, hate, anger, zeal, or jealousy. § 26:13 we followed … masters This is a wordplay. It could also be translated, “Husbands other than you married us.” One word sounds like “Baal,” the other like a title for God. * 26:15 Or “You gathered together the nation you love, the nation you drove into faraway lands.” 26:21 his place Probably the Temple in Jerusalem.