Men. For that the leaders took the lead in Israel --
Women. For that the people offered themselves willingly --
Tutti. Bless ye the LORD!
Men. Hear, O ye kings --
Women. Give ear, O ye princes --
Men. I, even I, will sing unto the LORD --
Women. I will sing praise to the LORD, the God of Israel.
Tutti. Lord, when thou wentest forth out of Seir, When thou marchedst out of the field of Edom,
The earth trembled, the heavens also dropped,
Yea, the clouds dropped water.
The mountains flowed down at the presence of the LORD, Even yon Sinai at the presence of the LORD, the God of Israel.
1. THE DESOLATION
Men. In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath,
In the days of Jael,
The highways were unoccupied,
And the travellers walked through byways;
The rulers ceased in Israel,
They ceased --
Women. Until that I, Deborah, arose,
That I arose a mother in Israel.
They chose new gods;
Then was war in the gates:
Was there a shield or spear seen
Among forty thousand in Israel?
Men. My heart is toward the governors of Israel --
Women. Ye that offered yourselves willingly among the people --
Tutti. Bless ye the LORD!
Men. Tell of it, ye that ride on white asses, Ye that sit on rich carpets,
And ye that walk by the way: --
Women. Far from the noise of archers,
In the places of drawing water: --
Tutti. There shall they rehearse the righteous acts of the LORD, Even the righteous acts of his rule in Israel.
2. THE MUSTER
Tutti. Then the people of the LORD went down to the gates --
(Men. Awake, awake, Deborah,
Awake, awake, utter a song: --
Women. Arise, Barak,
And lead thy captivity captive, thou son of Abinoam.)
Tutti. Then came down a remnant of the nobles,
The people of the LORD came down for me against the mighty.
Women. Out of Ephraim came down they whose root is in Amalek --
Men. After thee, Benjamin, among thy peoples --
Women. Out of Machir came down governors --
Men. And out of Zebulun they that handle the marshal's staff
Women. And the princes of Issachar were with Deborah --
Men. As was Issachar, so was Barak:
Tutti. Into the valley they rushed forth at his feet.
Men. By the watercourses of Reuben
There were great resolves of heart.
Women. Why satest thou among the sheepfolds,
To hear the pipings for the flocks?
Men. At the watercourses of Reuben
There were great searchings of heart!
Women. Gilead abode beyond Jordan --
Men. And Dan, why did he remain in ships? --
Women. Asher sat still at the haven of the sea,
And abode by his creeks.
Men. Zebulun was a people that jeoparded their lives unto the death,
And Naphtali upon the high places of the field.
3. THE BATTLE AND ROUT
Men. The kings came and fought;
Then fought the kings of Canaan,
In Taanach by the waters of Megiddo: --
They took no gain of money!
Women. They fought from heaven,
The stars in their courses fought against Sisera.
The river Kishon swept them away, --
That ancient river, the river Kishon!
Men. O my soul, march on with strength!
Then did the horsehoofs stamp
By reason of the pransings,
The pransings of their strong ones.
Women. Curse ye Meroz, said the angel of the LORD, Curse ye bitterly the inhabitants thereof;
Because they came not to the help of the LORD,
To the help of the LORD against the mighty!
4. THE RETRIBUTION
Men. Blessed above women shall Jael be, the wife of Heber the Kenite,
Blessed shall she be above women in the tent!
He asked water, and she gave him milk;
She brought him butter in a lordly dish.
She put her hand to the nail,
And her right hand to the workman's hammer;
And with the hammer she smote Sisera.
She smote through his head,
Yea, she pierced and struck through his temples.
At her feet he bowed, he fell, he lay:
At her feet he bowed, he fell:
Where he bowed, there he fell down dead!
Women. Through the window she looked forth, and cried, The mother of Sisera, through the lattice,
|Why is his chariot so long in coming?
Why tarry the wheels of his chariots?|
Her wise ladies answered her,
Yea, she returned answer to herself,
|Have they not found,
Have they not divided the spoil?
A damsel, two damsels to every man;
To Sisera a spoil of divers colours,
A spoil of divers colours of embroidery,
Of divers colours of embroidery on both
sides, on the necks of the spoil!|
Tutti. So let all thine enemies perish, O LORD:
But let them that love him be as the sun
when he goeth forth in his might!