Psalm 26 continues with the reasons why he think YHWH should “vindicate” or decide in his favor, and now he turns more toward religious practices in the Temple. Again, the psalmist is unafraid to make his claim of innocence and therefore give reasons to God for delivering him. I wonder if praying like this will both bolster our confidence and, at the very same time, remind us of our own unworthiness.
Psa. 26:1 Vindicate me, LORD,
for I have led a blameless life;
I have trusted in the LORD
and have not faltered.
2 Test me, LORD, and try me,
examine my heart and my mind;
3 for I have always been mindful of your unfailing love
and have lived in reliance on your faithfulness.
Psa. 26:4 I do not sit with the deceitful,
nor do I associate with hypocrites.
5 I abhor the assembly of evildoers
and refuse to sit with the wicked.
6 I wash my hands in innocence,
and go about your altar, LORD,
7 proclaiming aloud your praise
and telling of all your wonderful deeds.
Psa. 26:8 LORD, I love the house where you live,
the place where your glory dwells.
9 Do not take away my soul along with sinners,
my life with those who are bloodthirsty,
10 in whose hands are wicked schemes,
whose right hands are full of bribes.
11 I lead a blameless life;
redeem me and be merciful to me.
Psa. 26:12 My feet stand on level ground;
in the great congregation I will praise the LORD.