"My God, My God, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?"

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Last Updated on May 24, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 201

Context: Imploringly the psalmist asks why God has forsaken him and has not helped him when he has moaned day and night without rest. He remembers that God heard the groans of his ancestors and delivered them. His friends have laughed him to scorn because he continues to trust in God, Who sustained him in his youth. His evil enemies with the strength of many bulls have encompassed him, piercing his hands and feet, gloating over him, and casting lots for his garments. He then begs God not to let these events occur and ends the psalm with a vow to praise the Lord in the congregation. The final lines of the poem are in stark contrast with the opening words:

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My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
O my god, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.
Jesus, hanging on the cross, his hands and his feet pierced, taunted by the crowds, his garments divided by lots among thieves, appropriately recalls the beginning words of this psalm of lament (Matthew 27:46 and Mark 15:34).

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