aListen, O my people, to my instruction; bIncline your ears to the words of my mouth.
I will aopen my mouth in a parable; I will utter bdark sayings of old,
Which we have heard and known, And aour fathers have told us.
We will anot conceal them from their children, But btell to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, And His strength and His cwondrous works that He has done.
For He established a atestimony in Jacob And appointed a blaw in Israel, Which He ccommanded our fathers That they should dteach them to their children,
aThat the generation to come might know, even bthe children yet to be born, That they may arise and ctell them to their children,
That they should put their confidence in God And anot forget the works of God, But bkeep His commandments,
And anot be like their fathers, A bstubborn and rebellious generation, A generation that cdid not prepare its heart And whose spirit was not dfaithful to God.
The sons of Ephraim were aarchers equipped with bows, Yet bthey turned back in the day of battle.
They adid not keep the covenant of God And refused to bwalk in His law;
They aforgot His deeds And His miracles that He had shown them.
aHe wrought wonders before their fathers In the land of Egypt, in the bfield of Zoan.
He adivided the sea and caused them to pass through, And He made the waters stand bup like a heap.
Then He led them with the cloud by aday And all the night with a blight of fire.
He asplit the rocks in the wilderness And gave them abundant drink like the ocean depths.
He abrought forth streams also from the rock And caused waters to run down like rivers.
Yet they still continued to sin against Him, To arebel against the Most High in the desert.
And in their heart they aput God to the test By asking bfood according to their desire.
Then they spoke against God; They said, "aCan God prepare a table in the wilderness?
"Behold, He astruck the rock so that waters gushed out, And streams were overflowing; Can He give bread also? Will He provide bmeat for His people?"
Therefore the Lord heard and was afull of wrath; And a fire was kindled against Jacob And anger also mounted against Israel,
Because they adid not believe in God And did not trust in His salvation.
Yet He commanded the clouds above And aopened the doors of heaven;
He arained down manna upon them to eat And gave them bfood from heaven.
Man did eat the bread of angels; He sent them food ain abundance.
He acaused the east wind to blow in the heavens And by His power He directed the south wind.
When He rained meat upon them like the dust, Even awinged fowl like the sand of the seas,
Then He let them fall in the midst of their camp, Round about their dwellings.
So they aate and were well filled, And their desire He gave to them.
Before they had satisfied their desire, aWhile their food was in their mouths,
The aanger of God rose against them And killed some of their bstoutest ones, And subdued the choice men of Israel.
In spite of all this they astill sinned And bdid not believe in His wonderful works.
So He brought atheir days to an end in futility And their years in sudden terror.
When He killed them, then they asought Him, And returned and searched bdiligently for God;
And they remembered that God was their arock, And the Most High God their bRedeemer.
But they adeceived Him with their mouth And blied to Him with their tongue.
For their heart was not asteadfast toward Him, Nor were they faithful in His covenant.
But He, being acompassionate, bforgave their iniquity and did not destroy them; And often He crestrained His anger And did not arouse all His wrath.
Thus aHe remembered that they were but bflesh, A cwind that passes and does not return.
How often they arebelled against Him in the wilderness And bgrieved Him in the cdesert!
Again and again they atempted God, And pained the bHoly One of Israel.
They adid not remember bHis power, The day when He credeemed them from the adversary,
When He performed His asigns in Egypt And His bmarvels in the field of Zoan,
And aturned their rivers to blood, And their streams, they could not drink.
He sent among them swarms of aflies which devoured them, And bfrogs which destroyed them.
He gave also their crops to the agrasshopper And the product of their labor to the blocust.
He destroyed their vines with ahailstones And their sycamore trees with frost.
He gave over their acattle also to the hailstones And their herds to bolts of lightning.
He asent upon them His burning anger, Fury and indignation and trouble, A band of destroying angels.
He leveled a path for His anger; He did not spare their soul from death, But agave over their life to the plague,
And asmote all the firstborn in Egypt, The bfirst issue of their virility in the tents of cHam.
But He aled forth His own people like sheep And guided them in the wilderness blike a flock;
He led them asafely, so that they did not fear; But bthe sea engulfed their enemies.
So aHe brought them to His holy land, To this bhill country cwhich His right hand had gained.
He also adrove out the nations before them And bapportioned them for an inheritance by measurement, And made the tribes of Israel dwell in their tents.
Yet they atempted and brebelled against the Most High God And did not keep His testimonies,
But turned back and aacted treacherously like their fathers; They bturned aside like a treacherous bow.
For they aprovoked Him with their bhigh places And caroused His jealousy with their dgraven images.
When God heard, He was filled with awrath And greatly babhorred Israel;
So that He aabandoned the bdwelling place at Shiloh, The tent which He had pitched among men,
And gave up His astrength to captivity And His glory binto the hand of the adversary.
He also adelivered His people to the sword, And was filled with wrath at His inheritance.
aFire devoured His young men, And His bvirgins had no wedding songs.
His apriests fell by the sword, And His bwidows could not weep.
Then the Lord aawoke as if from sleep, Like a bwarrior overcome by wine.
He adrove His adversaries backward; He put on them an everlasting reproach.
He also arejected the tent of Joseph, And did not choose the tribe of Ephraim,
But chose the tribe of Judah, Mount aZion which He loved.
And He abuilt His sanctuary like the heights, Like the earth which He has founded forever.
He also achose David His servant And took him from the sheepfolds;
From athe care of the ewes bwith suckling lambs He brought him To cshepherd Jacob His people, And Israel dHis inheritance.
So he shepherded them according to the aintegrity of his heart, And guided them with his skillful hands.