(A psalm by Asaph.) What Pleases God 50 1From east to west, the powerful LORD God has been calling together everyone on earth. 2God shines brightly from Zion, the most beautiful city.   3Our God approaches, but not silently; a flaming fire comes first, and a storm surrounds him. 4God comes to judge his people. He shouts to the heavens and to the earth, 5“Call my followers together! They offered me a sacrifice, and we made an agreement.”   6The heavens announce, “God is the judge, and he is always honest.”   7My people, I am God! Israel, I am your God. Listen to my charges against you. 8Although you offer sacrifices and always bring gifts, 9I won't accept your offerings of bulls and goats.   10Every animal in the forest belongs to me, and so do the cattle on a thousand hills. 11I know all the birds in the mountains, and every wild creature is in my care.   12If I were hungry, I wouldn't tell you, because I own the world and everything in it. 13I don't eat the meat of bulls or drink the blood of goats. 14I am God Most High! The only sacrifice I want is for you to be thankful and to keep your word. 15Pray to me in time of trouble. I will rescue you, and you will honor me.   16But to the wicked I say: “You don't have the right to mention my laws or claim to keep our agreement! 17You refused correction and rejected my commands. 18You made friends with every crook you met, and you liked people who break their wedding vows. 19You talked only about violence and told nothing but lies; 20you sat around gossiping, ruining the reputation of your own relatives.”   21When you did all this, I didn't say a word, and you thought, “God is just like us!” But now I will accuse you. 22You have ignored me! So pay close attention or I will tear you apart, and no one can help you.   23The sacrifice that honors me is a thankful heart. Obey me,[I] and I, your God, will show my power to save.
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