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Psalm 106 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Psalm 106[a]

Israel’s Confession of Sin



Give thanks to the Lord, who is good,
    whose mercy endures forever.
Who can recount the mighty deeds of the Lord,
    proclaim in full God’s praise?
Blessed those who do what is right,
    whose deeds are always just.
Remember me, Lord, as you favor your people;
    come to me with your saving help,
That I may see the prosperity of your chosen ones,
    rejoice in the joy of your people,
    and glory with your heritage.


We have sinned like our ancestors;
    we have done wrong and are guilty.


Our ancestors in Egypt
    did not attend to your wonders.
They did not remember your manifold mercy;
    they defied the Most High at the Red Sea.
Yet he saved them for his name’s sake
    to make his power known.
He roared at the Red Sea and it dried up.
    He led them through the deep as through a desert.
10 He rescued them from hostile hands,
    freed them from the power of the enemy.
11 The waters covered their oppressors;
    not one of them survived.
12 Then they believed his words
    and sang his praise.


13 But they soon forgot all he had done;
    they had no patience for his plan.
14 In the desert they gave in to their cravings,
    tempted God in the wasteland.
15 So he gave them what they asked
    and sent a wasting disease against them.


16 In the camp they challenged Moses
    and Aaron, the holy one of the Lord.
17 The earth opened and swallowed Dathan,
    it closed on the followers of Abiram.
18 Against their company the fire blazed;
    flames consumed the wicked.


19 At Horeb they fashioned a calf,
    worshiped a metal statue.
20 They exchanged their glory[b]
    for the image of a grass-eating bull.
21 They forgot the God who had saved them,
    who had done great deeds in Egypt,
22 Amazing deeds in the land of Ham,
    fearsome deeds at the Red Sea.
23 He would have decreed their destruction,
    had not Moses, his chosen one,
Withstood him in the breach[c]
    to turn back his destroying anger.


24 Next they despised the beautiful land;
    they did not believe the promise.
25 In their tents they complained;
    they did not heed the voice of the Lord.
26 So with raised hand he swore
    he would destroy them in the desert,
27 And scatter their descendants among the nations,
    disperse them in foreign lands.


28 They joined in the rites of Baal of Peor,
    ate food sacrificed to the dead.
29 They provoked him by their actions,
    and a plague broke out among them.
30 Then Phinehas rose to intervene,
    and the plague was brought to a halt.
31 This was counted for him as a righteous deed
    for all generations to come.


32 At the waters of Meribah they angered God,
    and Moses suffered because of them.[d]
33 They so embittered his spirit
    that rash words crossed his lips.


34 They did not destroy the peoples
    as the Lord had commanded them,
35 But mingled with the nations
    and imitated their ways.
36 They served their idols
    and were ensnared by them.
37 They sacrificed to demons[e]
    their own sons and daughters,
38 Shedding innocent blood,
    the blood of their own sons and daughters,
Whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan,
    desecrating the land with bloodshed.
39 They defiled themselves by their actions,
    became adulterers by their conduct.
40 So the Lord grew angry with his people,
    abhorred his own heritage.
41 He handed them over to the nations,
    and their adversaries ruled over them.
42 Their enemies oppressed them,
    kept them under subjection.
43 Many times did he rescue them,
    but they kept rebelling and scheming
    and were brought low by their own guilt.
44 Still God had regard for their affliction
    when he heard their wailing.
45 For their sake he remembered his covenant
    and relented in his abundant mercy,
46 Winning for them compassion
    from all who held them captive.


47 Save us, Lord, our God;
    gather us from among the nations
That we may give thanks to your holy name
    and glory in praising you.
48 [f]Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,
    from everlasting to everlasting!
    Let all the people say, Amen!


  1. Psalm 106 Israel is invited to praise the God whose mercy has always tempered judgment of Israel (Ps 106:1–3). The speaker, on behalf of all, seeks solidarity with the people, who can always count on God’s fidelity despite their sin (Ps 106:4–5). Confident of God’s mercy, the speaker invites national repentance (Ps 106:6) by reciting from Israel’s history eight instances of sin, judgment, and forgiveness. The sins are the rebellion at the Red Sea (Ps 106:6–12; see Ex 14–15), the craving for meat in the desert (Ps 106:13–15; see Nm 11), the challenge to Moses’ authority (Ps 106:16–18; see Nm 16), the golden calf episode (Ps 106:19–23; see Ex 32–34), the refusal to take Canaan by the southern route (Ps 106:24–27; see Nm 13–14 and Dt 1–2), the rebellion at Baal-Peor (Ps 106:28–31; see Nm 25:1–10), the anger of Moses (Ps 106:32–33; see Nm 20:1–13), and mingling with the nations (Ps 106:34–47). The last, as suggested by its length and generalized language, may be the sin that invites the repentance of the present generation. The text gives the site of each sin: Egypt (Ps 106:7), the desert (Ps 106:14), the camp (Ps 106:16), Horeb (Ps 106:19), in their tents (Ps 106:25), Baal-Peor (Ps 106:28), the waters of Meribah (Ps 106:32), Canaan (Ps 106:38).
  2. 106:20 Their glory: meant as a reference to God.
  3. 106:23 Withstood him in the breach: the image is that of Moses standing in a narrow break made in the wall to keep anyone from entering.
  4. 106:32 Moses suffered because of them: Moses was not allowed to enter the promised land because of his rash words (Nm 20:12). According to Dt 1:37, Moses was not allowed to cross because of the people’s sin, not his own.
  5. 106:37 Demons: Hebrew shedim occurs in parallelism with “gods” in an important inscription from Transjordan and hence can also be translated “the gods.”
  6. 106:48 A doxology ending Book IV of the Psalter. It is not part of the Psalm.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Psalm 106 New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 106

Praise the Lord.[a]

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

Who can proclaim the mighty acts of the Lord
    or fully declare his praise?
Blessed are those who act justly,
    who always do what is right.

Remember me, Lord, when you show favor to your people,
    come to my aid when you save them,
that I may enjoy the prosperity of your chosen ones,
    that I may share in the joy of your nation
    and join your inheritance in giving praise.

We have sinned, even as our ancestors did;
    we have done wrong and acted wickedly.
When our ancestors were in Egypt,
    they gave no thought to your miracles;
they did not remember your many kindnesses,
    and they rebelled by the sea, the Red Sea.[b]
Yet he saved them for his name’s sake,
    to make his mighty power known.
He rebuked the Red Sea, and it dried up;
    he led them through the depths as through a desert.
10 He saved them from the hand of the foe;
    from the hand of the enemy he redeemed them.
11 The waters covered their adversaries;
    not one of them survived.
12 Then they believed his promises
    and sang his praise.

13 But they soon forgot what he had done
    and did not wait for his plan to unfold.
14 In the desert they gave in to their craving;
    in the wilderness they put God to the test.
15 So he gave them what they asked for,
    but sent a wasting disease among them.

16 In the camp they grew envious of Moses
    and of Aaron, who was consecrated to the Lord.
17 The earth opened up and swallowed Dathan;
    it buried the company of Abiram.
18 Fire blazed among their followers;
    a flame consumed the wicked.
19 At Horeb they made a calf
    and worshiped an idol cast from metal.
20 They exchanged their glorious God
    for an image of a bull, which eats grass.
21 They forgot the God who saved them,
    who had done great things in Egypt,
22 miracles in the land of Ham
    and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.
23 So he said he would destroy them—
    had not Moses, his chosen one,
stood in the breach before him
    to keep his wrath from destroying them.

24 Then they despised the pleasant land;
    they did not believe his promise.
25 They grumbled in their tents
    and did not obey the Lord.
26 So he swore to them with uplifted hand
    that he would make them fall in the wilderness,
27 make their descendants fall among the nations
    and scatter them throughout the lands.

28 They yoked themselves to the Baal of Peor
    and ate sacrifices offered to lifeless gods;
29 they aroused the Lord’s anger by their wicked deeds,
    and a plague broke out among them.
30 But Phinehas stood up and intervened,
    and the plague was checked.
31 This was credited to him as righteousness
    for endless generations to come.
32 By the waters of Meribah they angered the Lord,
    and trouble came to Moses because of them;
33 for they rebelled against the Spirit of God,
    and rash words came from Moses’ lips.[c]

34 They did not destroy the peoples
    as the Lord had commanded them,
35 but they mingled with the nations
    and adopted their customs.
36 They worshiped their idols,
    which became a snare to them.
37 They sacrificed their sons
    and their daughters to false gods.
38 They shed innocent blood,
    the blood of their sons and daughters,
whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan,
    and the land was desecrated by their blood.
39 They defiled themselves by what they did;
    by their deeds they prostituted themselves.

40 Therefore the Lord was angry with his people
    and abhorred his inheritance.
41 He gave them into the hands of the nations,
    and their foes ruled over them.
42 Their enemies oppressed them
    and subjected them to their power.
43 Many times he delivered them,
    but they were bent on rebellion
    and they wasted away in their sin.
44 Yet he took note of their distress
    when he heard their cry;
45 for their sake he remembered his covenant
    and out of his great love he relented.
46 He caused all who held them captive
    to show them mercy.

47 Save us, Lord our God,
    and gather us from the nations,
that we may give thanks to your holy name
    and glory in your praise.

48 Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
    from everlasting to everlasting.

Let all the people say, “Amen!”

Praise the Lord.


  1. Psalm 106:1 Hebrew Hallelu Yah; also in verse 48
  2. Psalm 106:7 Or the Sea of Reeds; also in verses 9 and 22
  3. Psalm 106:33 Or against his spirit, / and rash words came from his lips
New International Version (NIV)

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

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