Psalm 56 – New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 56[a]

For the director of music. To the tune of “A Dove on Distant Oaks.” Of David. A miktam.[b] When the Philistines had seized him in Gath.

  1. Be merciful to me, my God, for my enemies are in hot pursuit; all day long they press their attack.
  2. My adversaries pursue me all day long; in their pride many are attacking me.
  3. When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.
  4. In God, whose word I praise— in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?
  5. All day long they twist my words; all their schemes are for my ruin.
  6. They conspire, they lurk, they watch my steps, hoping to take my life.
  7. Because of their wickedness do not[c] let them escape; in your anger, God, bring the nations down.
  8. Record my misery; list my tears on your scroll[d]— are they not in your record?
  9. Then my enemies will turn back when I call for help. By this I will know that God is for me.
  10. In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise—
  11. in God I trust and am not afraid. What can man do to me?
  12. I am under vows to you, my God; I will present my thank offerings to you.
  13. For you have delivered me from death and my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before God in the light of life.


a. Psalm 56:1 In Hebrew texts 56:1-13 is numbered 56:2-14.
b. Psalm 56:1 Title: Probably a literary or musical term
c. Psalm 56:7 Probable reading of the original Hebrew text; Masoretic Text does not have do not.
d. Psalm 56:8 Or misery; / put my tears in your wineskin

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Psalm 56 – King James Version (KJV)

To the chief Musician upon Jonath-elem-rechokim, Michtam of David, when the Philistines took him in Gath.

  1. Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up; He fighting daily oppresseth me.
  2. Mine enemies would daily swallow me up: For they be many that fight against me, O thou most High.
  3. What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.
  4. In God I will praise his word, In God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.
  5. Every day they wrest my words: All their thoughts are against me for evil.
  6. They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, They mark my steps, when they wait for my soul.
  7. Shall they escape by iniquity? In thine anger cast down the people, O God.
  8. Thou tellest my wanderings: Put thou my tears into thy bottle: Are they not in thy book?
  9. When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back: This I know; for God is for me.
  10. In God will I praise his word: In the LORD will I praise his word.
  11. In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.
  12. Thy vows are upon me, O God: I will render praises unto thee.
  13. For thou hast delivered my soul from death: wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling, That I may walk before God in the light of the living?