Lord of Forgiveness – A Prayer Song

We are approaching the end of Slichot, the period of pleading for the Lord’s forgiveness on our nation

The time of forgiveness
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In this series, we highlight the all-important Fall Festivals, or Hagai Tishrei celebrations that begin with the New Moon on the first day of the month Tishrei, the 7th month in the Jewish lunar calendar. This year, the new moon will appear at sunset (God willing!) on the eve of September 18. Announced with a blast of the shofar, it is the Jewish New Year and inauguration of this climactic month on the biblical calendar and the beginning of the ten “Days of Awe” climaxing with the “Great” Feast of Tabernacles.

In the Bible’s yearly cycle, we are fast approaching the early Autumn celebratory holy days – the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement and the Feast of Tabernacles.

Here I will share with you a favorite Hebrew prayer that is sung at this time, daily, through the Hebrew month of Elul, the month of forgiveness/forgiving (Slichot), as we ask for forgiveness and mercy leading up to the Day of Atonement/Judgement (Yom Kippur).

In my childhood, in the early morning hours during Elul, I would hear a man call from below the window of our house: “Slichot, slichot, rise to prayer.” All the men would rise and head to synagogue. From outside, we couldn’t make out the words of their prayers, but when they reached this song, it’s words rang throughout the neighborhood. It would go on like this for more than 40 days. It was a very moving time.

The song cuts to the heart. It reveals how much we depend on God, who helps us and cares for us, because we are sinful and fall far short of perfection.
The verses call upon us to praise God and His infinite abilities. In Hebrew, the first letters of each line follow the alphabet. We call out to God to remind Him that we are aware of His greatness and that He is above all.

Although He already knows all, we nevertheless must call out with our voices in seeking forgiveness and repenting of our sins.

 

Lord of Forgiveness

Lord of forgiveness, Knower of thoughts.
Revealer of the Concealed, Speaker of truths.

We have sinned before You. Have mercy upon us.

Glorious in wonders, Ever-comforting;
Remembers ancestral covenant.
Knower of inner thoughts.

We have sinned before You. Have mercy upon us.

Good and beneficent to mankind.
Knowing all hidden things.
Overcomes sins.
Clothed in righteousness.

We have sinned before You. Have mercy upon us.

Full of purities.
Awesome in praises.
Forgiving of sins.
Answers in time of trouble.

We have sinned before You. Have mercy upon us.

Bringer of deliverance.
Seer of futures.
Calling to the generations.
Rider of clouds.
Who hears prayer.
Perfect in knowledge.

We have sinned before You. Have mercy upon us.

 

Adon Haselichot

Adon haselichot
Bochen levavot
Goleh amukot
Dover tzedakot

Chatanu lefaneicha
Rachem aleinu.
(x2)

Hadur benifla’ot
Vatik benechamot
Zocher brit amo
Choker kelayot

Chatanu lefaneicha
Rachem aleinu.
(x2)

Tov umayteev labriot
Yodea nistarot
Kovesh avonot
Lovesh tsedakot

Maleh zachuyut
Nora tehilot
Sole’ach avonot
Oneh be’et tzarot

Chatanu lefaneicha
Rachem aleinu.
(x2)

Poel tzedakot
Tsofeh atidot
Koreh hadorot
Rochev aravot
Shomea tefilot
Tamim de’ot

Chatanu lefaneicha
Rachem aleinu.
(x2)

 

אדון הסליחות – מן התפילה

אֲדוֹן הַסְּלִיחוֹת בּוֹחֵן לְבָבוֹת
גּוֹלֶה עֲמוּקוֹת דּוֹבֵר צְדָקוֹת
חָטָאנוּ לְפָנֶיךָ רַחֵם עָלֵינוּ

הָדוּר בְּנִפְלָאוֹת וָתִיק בְּנֶחָמוֹת
זוֹכֵר בְּרִית אָבוֹת חוֹקֵר כְּלָיוֹת
חָטָאנוּ לְפָנֶיךָ רַחֵם עָלֵינוּ

טוֹב וּמֵטִיב לַבְּרִיּוֹת יוֹדֵעַ כָּל נִסְתָּרוֹת
כּוֹבֵשׁ עֲוֹנוֹת לוֹבֵשׁ צְדָקוֹת
חָטָאנוּ לְפָנֶיךָ רַחֵם עָלֵינו

מָלֵא זְכֻיוֹת נוֹרָא תְהִלּוֹת
סוֹלֵחַ עֲוֹנוֹת עוֹנֶה בְּעֵת צָרוֹת
חָטָאנוּ לְפָנֶיךָ רַחֵם עָלֵינוּ

פּוֹעֵל יְשׁוּעוֹת צוֹפֶה עֲתִידוֹת
קוֹרֵא הַדּוֹרוֹת רוֹכֵב עֲרָבוֹת
שׁוֹמֵעַ תְּפִלּוֹת תְּמִים דֵּעוֹת
חָטָאנוּ לְפָנֶיךָ רַחֵם עָלֵינוּ

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