Psalm 18; Matthew 2

The Lord Is My Rock and My Fortress

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David, fthe servant of the Lord, gwho addressed the words of this hsong to the Lord on the day when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul. He said:

18  I love you, O Lord, my strength.

The Lord is my irock and my jfortress and my deliverer,

my God, my irock, in kwhom I take refuge,

my lshield, and mthe horn of my salvation, my nstronghold.

I call upon the Lord, who is oworthy to be praised,

and I am saved from my enemies.

pThe cords of death encompassed me;

qthe torrents of destruction assailed me;1

pthe cords of Sheol entangled me;

the snares of death confronted me.

rIn my distress I called upon the Lord;

to my God I cried for help.

From his stemple he heard my voice,

and my cry to him reached his ears.

Then the earth treeled and rocked;

the foundations also of the mountains trembled

and quaked, because he was angry.

Smoke went up from his nostrils,2

and devouring ufire from his mouth;

glowing coals flamed forth from him.

He vbowed the heavens and wcame down;

xthick darkness was under his feet.

10  He rode on a cherub and flew;

he came swiftly on zthe wings of the wind.

11  He made darkness his covering, his acanopy around him,

thick clouds bdark with water.

12  Out of the brightness before him

chailstones and coals of fire broke through his clouds.

13  The Lord also dthundered in the heavens,

and the Most High uttered his evoice,

hailstones and coals of fire.

14  And he sent out his farrows and scattered them;

he flashed forth lightnings and grouted them.

15  Then hthe channels of the sea were seen,

and the foundations of the world were laid bare

at your irebuke, O Lord,

at the blast of jthe breath of your nostrils.

16  He ksent from on high, he took me;

he ldrew me out of mmany waters.

17  He rescued me from my strong enemy

and from those who hated me,

for they were ntoo mighty for me.

18  They confronted me in the day of my calamity,

but the Lord was my support.

19  He brought me out into oa broad place;

he rescued me, because he pdelighted in me.

20  The Lord dealt with me qaccording to my righteousness;

according to rthe cleanness of my hands he rewarded me.

21  For I have skept the ways of the Lord,

and have not wickedly departed from my God.

22  For tall his rules3 were before me,

and his statutes I did not put away from me.

23  I was ublameless before him,

and I kept myself from my guilt.

24  So the Lord has rewarded me according to my righteousness,

according to the cleanness of my hands in his sight.

25  With vthe merciful you show yourself merciful;

with the blameless man you show yourself blameless;

26  with the purified you show yourself pure;

and with wthe crooked you make yourself seem tortuous.

27  For you save xa humble people,

but ythe haughty eyes you bring down.

28  For it is you who light my zlamp;

the Lord my God lightens my darkness.

29  For by you I can run against a troop,

and by my God I can aleap over ba wall.

30  This Godhis way is cperfect;4

the word of the Lord dproves true;

he is ea shield for all those who ftake refuge in him.

31  For gwho is God, but the Lord?

And who is ha rock, except our God?

32  the God who iequipped me with strength

and made my way jblameless.

33  He made my feet like the feet of a kdeer

and set me secure on lthe heights.

34  He mtrains my hands for war,

so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.

35  You have given me the shield of your salvation,

and your right hand nsupported me,

and your ogentleness made me great.

36  You pgave a wide place for my steps under me,

and my feet did not slip.

37  I pursued my enemies and overtook them,

and did not turn back till they were consumed.

38  I thrust them through, so that they were not able to rise;

they fell under my feet.

39  For you equipped me with strength for the battle;

you made those who rise against me sink under me.

40  You made my enemies qturn their backs to me,5

and those who hated me I destroyed.

41  rThey cried for help, but there was none to save;

they cried to the Lord, but he did not answer them.

42  I beat them fine as sdust before the wind;

I cast them out like tthe mire of the streets.

43  You delivered me from ustrife with the people;

you made me vthe head of the nations;

wpeople whom I had not known served me.

44  As soon as they heard of me they obeyed me;

xforeigners ycame cringing to me.

45  xForeigners lost heart

and zcame trembling out of their fortresses.

46  The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock,

and exalted be the God of my salvation

47  the God who gave me vengeance

and asubdued peoples under me,

48  who rescued me from my enemies;

yes, you bexalted me above those who rose against me;

you delivered me from cthe man of violence.

49  dFor this I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations,

and esing to your name.

50  Great fsalvation he brings to his king,

and shows steadfast love to his ganointed,

to hDavid and his offspring forever.


The Visit of the Wise Men

Now hafter Jesus was born in iBethlehem of Judea jin the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men1 from kthe east came to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he who has been born lking of the Jews? For we saw mhis star when it rose2 and have come to nworship him. When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where othe Christ was to be born. They told him, In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:

pAnd you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,

are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;

for from you shall come a ruler

who will qshepherd my people Israel.

Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him. After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, rthey offered him gifts, sgold and tfrankincense and umyrrh. 12 And vbeing warned win a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.

The Flight to Egypt

13 Now when they had departed, behold, xan angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him. 14 And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt 15 and remained there until the death of Herod. yThis was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, zOut of Egypt I called my son.

Herod Kills the Children

16 Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, became furious, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had ascertained from the wise men. 17 aThen was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:

18  bA voice was heard in Ramah,

weeping and loud lamentation,

Rachel weeping for her children;

she refused to be comforted, because they care no more.

The Return to Nazareth

19 But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, 20 saying, Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for dthose who sought the child’s life are dead. 21 And he rose and took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel. 22 But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there, and ebeing warned in a dream he withdrew to the district of Galilee. 23 And he went and lived in a city called fNazareth, gso that what was spoken by the prophets might be fulfilled, that he would be called a Nazarene.