God Help Us!
An EasyEnglish Translation with Notes (about 1200 word vocabulary) on Psalm 44
Words in boxes are from the Bible.
Words marked with a *star are described in the word list at the end.
The translated Bible text has yet to go through Advanced Checking.
The friends of Jesus came to him. They woke him and said, "*Lord, save us! We are dying". He said to them, "Why are you afraid? You do not have much faith". (Matthew 8:25-26) ("Faith" here means "*trusting in Jesus".)
We do not know who wrote Psalm 44. We do not know when they wrote it. When we read the psalm, two things are clear:
∑ someone had hurt the Jews
∑ the Jews had done nothing wrong.
We do not know when this happened. Perhaps it was when David was king, or up to 500 years after.
The psalm is in 3 parts. Verses 1-8 tell us what God did for the Jews when they came into their country. It was not the Jews that won the land for them, but God. His hand (verses 2 and 3) and his arm (verse 3) mean "what God did". (Some Christians say that Godís hand is "the *Holy Spirit" and his arm is Jesus.) The "light on your face" (verse 3) means "the good way that God looked at people so that he did good things for them". The enemies of the Jews were the people that lived in the land before they did.
But in verses 9 to 22 we read that something bad has happened.
The Jews had done nothing wrong, but their enemies had done bad things to them. This often happens to Christian people. Why does God let it happen? He does it to make his people strong. Sheep were animals that people killed for the meat. "Thrown us into other countries" means "put us in countries where we did not live before". The *covenant in verse 17 is what God agreed to do if his people obeyed him. Here, in verses 17-22, the people are saying that they kept their part of the *covenant, but God did not keep his. In other words, they obeyed God, but he did not care for them. We often feel *like this. When it happens we must remember that:
∑ God lets it happen to make us strong
∑ we must go on believing in God.
It happened to Jesus, and we must be *like him!
In verses 23 - 26 the person that wrote the psalm prays. He (or she) asks God to wake up and send help! Whatever happens, we must always ask God to send help!
Listen to the news on the radio or watch it on the television. When you hear about or see bad things happening to people, pray for them. If they are Godís people, pray harder! It does not mean that they are bad people, but it does mean that God is wanting to make them stronger.
all day long ~ either every day, or all through the day.
covenant ~ when two people agree they make a covenant.
darkness ~ where there is no light.
for ever (and ever) ~ always, with no end.
hate ~ the opposite of love.
heart ~ part of our body; the Jews thought that you used your *heart to think; so to know it Ďin your heartí or Ďby heartí means that you remember it.
holy ~ very very good; only God is really holy (because he always obeys his rules); Jerusalem was holy because people *worshipped God there.
Holy Spirit ~ a name for God.
like ~ another word for Ďasí.
lord ~ someone with authority (with a capital L a name for God, look after Psalm 25).
maskil ~ a psalm that teaches you something.
nation ~ a group of people (or a country) with a government.
neighbour ~ a person that lives near to you.
praise ~ (noun, or being something) words that say that someone or something is very good.
praise ~ (verb, or doing something) say that someone or something is very good.
praise God ~ say how great that God is.
scorn ~ laugh at someone in a bad way.
SELAH ~ a word often used in the psalms; we do not know what it means, probably stop and think, or pray, or make music.
sons of Korah ~ the people that sang in the *Temple (look in Psalm 43).
sword ~ a long sharp knife that soldiers used.
temple ~ a special building where people *worship God.
trust ~ (noun, or being something) believing that someone will help.
trust ~ (verb, or doing something) believe that someone will help.
worship ~ say that someone is very wonderful.
© 2001, Wycliffe Associates (UK)
This publication is written in EasyEnglish Level A (1200 words)
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