109. Do Not Be Silent, LORD God

Text Information
First Line: Do not be silent, LORD God
Title: Do Not Be Silent, LORD God
Versifier: Calvin Seerveld (1985)
Meter: PM
Language: English
Publication Date: 1987
Topic: Enemies & Persecution; Laments; Temptation & Trial (1 more...)
Copyright: © Calvin Seerveld
Tune Information
Meter: PM
Key: G Major

Text Information:

A plea asking God, the heavenly Judge, to deliver the psalmist from false accusers and to deal judicially with them.

Scripture References:
st. 1 = vv. 1-5, 15
st. 2 = vv. 6-19
st. 3 = vv. 20-31

Often singled out as the most harsh of the so-called "imprecatory" psalms, Psalm 109 does not so much curse the psalmist's enemies as plead for appropriate judgment on them (what they intended to do to the psalmist can be learned from what he asks God to do to them). The psalmist is deeply aggrieved because his attackers are people he has long befriended (st. 1). He appeals to God to deal out appropriate judicial penalties (st. 2) and pleads for deliverance from his vicious tormentors, concluding with a vow to publicly thank and praise the LORD, who protects the meek and needy (vv. 30-31; st. 3). Calvin Seerveld (PHH 22) versified this psalm in 1985 for the Psalter Hymnal.

Liturgical Use:
Appropriate when the church is under attack, especially in the form of slander intend¬ed to arouse hostility; Calvin Seerveld suggests singing this psalm "whenever atrocities and institutionalized evil in the world or land preoccupy people in their prayerful concern."

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

Johann (Hans) Kugelmann (b. Augsburg, Germany, c. 1495; d. Konigsberg, Germany, 1542) adapted NUN LOB, MEIN SEEL from the song “Weiss mir ein Blümlein blaue” and first published the tune in his Concentus Novi (1540). A bar form, this German chorale consists of six long lines sharing some similar melodic and rhythmic patterns. NUN LOB was originally associated with a setting of Psalm 103 ("My soul, now praise the LORD. . .") in the Lutheran tradition, but it has a solemnity appropriate for Psalm 109.

Johann Kugelmann was trumpeter, music director, and composer at the court of Margrave Albrecht V of Brandenburg. His compositions include music for two K&oumlnigsberg songbooks as well as melodies and harmonizations for a manuscript collection of devotional songs by Heinrich von Miltitz. Kugelmann's best known work, Concentus Novi (1540), contains thirty of his original compositions.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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