The Bible – Old Testament
1 Give thanks to the LORD, who is good, whose love endures forever.
Let the house of Israel say: God’s love endures forever.
Let the house of Aaron say, God’s love endures forever.
Let those who fear the LORD say, God’s love endures forever.
In danger I called on the LORD; the LORD answered me and set me free.
The LORD is with me; I am not afraid; what can mortals do against me?
The LORD is with me as my helper; I shall look in triumph on my foes.
Better to take refuge in the LORD than to put one’s trust in mortals.
Better to take refuge in the LORD than to put one’s trust in princes.
All the nations surrounded me; in the LORD’S name I crushed them.
They surrounded me on every side; in the LORD’S name I crushed them.
They surrounded me like bees; they blazed like fire among thorns; in the LORD’S name I crushed them.
I was hard pressed and falling, but the LORD came to my help.
The LORD, my strength and might, came to me as savior.
The joyful shout of deliverance is heard in the tents of the victors: “The LORD’S right hand strikes with power;
the LORD’S right hand is raised; the LORD’S right hand strikes with power.”
I shall not die but live and declare the deeds of the LORD.
The LORD chastised me harshly, but did not hand me over to death.
Open the gates of victory; I will enter and thank the LORD.
2 This is the LORD’S own gate, where the victors enter.
I thank you for you answered me; you have been my savior.
3 The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.
By the LORD has this been done; it is wonderful in our eyes.
This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice in it and be glad.
4 LORD, grant salvation! LORD, grant good fortune!
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD. We bless you from the LORD’S house.
The LORD is God and has given us light. Join in procession with leafy branches up to the horns of the altar.
You are my God, I give you thanks; my God, I offer you praise.
Give thanks to the LORD, who is good, whose love endures forever.
1 [Psalm 118] A thanksgiving liturgy accompanying a victory procession of the king and the people into the temple precincts. After an invocation in the form of a litany (⇒ Psalm 118:1-4), the psalmist (very likely speaking in the name of the community) describes how the people confidently implored God’s help (⇒ Psalm 118:5-9) when hostile peoples threatened its life (⇒ Psalm 118:10-14); vividly God’s rescue is recounted (⇒ Psalm 118:15-18). Then follows a dialogue at the temple gates between the priests and the psalmist as the latter enters to offer the thanksgiving sacrifice (⇒ Psalm 118:19-25). Finally, the priests impart their blessing (⇒ Psalm 118:26-27), and the psalmist sings in gratitude (⇒ Psalm 118:28-29).
2  Where the victors enter: their victory has demonstrated that God favors them; they are “just” in the biblical sense.
3  The stone the builders rejected: a proverb: what is insignificant to human beings has become great through divine election. The “stone” may originally have meant the foundation stone or capstone of the temple. The New Testament interpreted the verse as referring to the death and resurrection of Christ (⇒ Matthew 21:42; ⇒ Acts 4:11; cf ⇒ Isaiah 28:16 and ⇒ Romans 9:33; ⇒ 1 Peter 2:7).
4  Grant salvation: the Hebrew for this cry has come into English as “Hosanna.” This cry and the words in ⇒ Psalm 118:26 were used in the gospels to welcome Jesus entering the temple on Palm Sunday (⇒ Mark 11:9-10).