The Bible – Old Testament
1 A psalm of David. LORD, I call to you; come quickly to help me; listen to my plea when I call.
2 Let my prayer be incense before you; my uplifted hands an evening sacrifice.
Set a guard, LORD, before my mouth, a gatekeeper at my lips.
Do not let my heart incline to evil, or yield to any sin. I will never feast upon the fine food of evildoers.
3 Let the just strike me; that is kindness; let them rebuke me; that is oil for my head. All this I shall not refuse, but will pray despite these trials.
When their leaders are cast over the cliff, all will learn that my prayers were heard.
As when a farmer plows a field into broken clods, so their bones will be strewn at the mouth of Sheol.
My eyes are upon you, O GOD, my Lord; in you I take refuge; do not strip me of life.
Guard me from the trap they have set for me, from the snares of evildoers.
Into their own nets let all the wicked fall, while I make good my own escape.
1 [Psalm 141] A lament of an individual (⇒ Psalm 141:1-2) who is keenly aware that only the righteous can worship God properly and who therefore prays to be protected from the doomed wicked (3-10).
2  Incense: literally, “smoke,” i.e., the fragrant fumes arising from the altar at the burning of sacrificial animals or of aromatic spices; also used in ⇒ Rev 5:8 as a symbol of prayer. My plifted hands: the gesture of supplication. Cf ⇒ Psalm 28:2; ⇒ 63:5; ⇒ 88:10; ⇒ 119:48; ⇒ 134:2; ⇒ 143:6.
3 [5-7] the Hebrew text is obscure.