Shalom, everyone! Psalm 48 is traditionally recited as the “psalm of the day” (Shir Shel Yom) for the second day of the week, which corresponds to Monday on the Gregorian calendar. The psalm is recited at the end of Monday morning prayer (Shacharit) services. According to post-Exilic Second Temple tradition, Psalm 48 was chosen for the second day of the week because of it’s relation to the second day of Creation.
Psalm 48 was written by the “sons of Korah,” also known as the Korahites, descendants of Kohath, the grandfather of Moses. Psalm 48 reminds of the beauty of the city of Jerusalem, and its importance to YAH The Most High. Within Jerusalem lies the “holy mountain” of YAH, the place where He chose to dwell among His people Israel. Jerusalem is the city of YAH. Control of Jerusalem has been the desire of many nations, however, YAH ultimately controls the city. Though many nations have conquered the city and exiled YAH‘s people, YAH will one day gather His people back to His city, and destroy all the enemy nations who defiled His holy real estate.
The following is Psalm 48 in English, taken from the Jewish Publication Society (JPS) 1917 version of the Tanakh. For a side-by-side modern Hebrew-English translation please click on the link below to Mechon-Mamre:
1 A Song; a Psalm of the sons of Korah.
2 Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised, in the city of our God, His holy mountain,
3 Fair in situation, the joy of the whole earth; even mount Zion, the uttermost parts of the north, the city of the great King.
4 God in her palaces hath made Himself known for a stronghold.
5 For, lo, the kings assembled themselves, they came onward together.
6 They saw, straightway they were amazed; they were affrighted, they hasted away.
7 Trembling took hold of them there, pangs, as of a woman in travail.
8 With the east wind Thou breakest the ships of Tarshish.
9 As we have heard, so have we seen in the city of the LORD of hosts, in the city of our God– God establish it for ever. Selah.
10 We have thought on Thy lovingkindness, O God, in the midst of Thy temple.
11 As is Thy name, O God, so is Thy praise unto the ends of the earth; Thy right hand is full of righteousness.
12 Let mount Zion be glad, let the daughters of Judah rejoice, because of Thy judgments.
13 Walk about Zion, and go round about her; count the towers thereof.
14 Mark ye well her ramparts, traverse her palaces; that ye may tell it to the generation following.
15 For such is God, our God, for ever and ever; He will guide us eternally.