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Psalms 122

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Psalm 122 1 

A song of ascents, 2  by David.

122:1 I was glad because 3  they said to me,

“We will go to the Lord’s temple.”

122:2 Our feet are 4  standing

inside your gates, O Jerusalem.

122:3 Jerusalem 5  is a city designed

to accommodate an assembly. 6 

122:4 The tribes go up 7  there, 8 

the tribes of the Lord,

where it is required that Israel

give thanks to the name of the Lord. 9 

122:5 Indeed, 10  the leaders sit 11  there on thrones and make legal decisions,

on the thrones of the house of David. 12 

122:6 Pray 13  for the peace of Jerusalem!

May those who love her prosper! 14 

122:7 May there be peace inside your defenses,

and prosperity 15  inside your fortresses! 16 

122:8 For the sake of my brothers and my neighbors

I will say, “May there be peace in you!”

122:9 For the sake of the temple of the Lord our God

I will pray for you to prosper. 17 

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1 sn Psalm 122. The psalmist expresses his love for Jerusalem and promises to pray for the city’s security.

2 sn The precise significance of this title, which appears in Pss 120-134, is unclear. Perhaps worshipers recited these psalms when they ascended the road to Jerusalem to celebrate annual religious festivals. For a discussion of their background see L. C. Allen, Psalms 101-150 (WBC), 219-21.

3 tn Heb “in the ones saying to me.” After the verb שָׂמַח (samakh), the preposition בְּ (bet) usually introduces the reason for joy.

4 tn Or “were.”

5 map For location see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.

6 tc Heb “Jerusalem, which is built like a city which is joined to her together.” The meaning of the Hebrew text is unclear. Many regard this as a description of the compact way in which the city was designed or constructed. The translation assumes an emendation of the verb חֻבְּרָה (khubbÿrah, “is joined”) to a noun חֶבְרָה (khevrah, “association; company”). The text then reads literally, “Jerusalem, which is built like a city which has a company together.” This in turn can be taken as a reference to Jerusalem’s role as a city where people congregated for religious festivals and other civic occasions (see vv. 4-5).

7 tn Or “went up.”

8 tn Heb “which is where the tribes go up.”

9 tn Heb “[it is] a statute for Israel to give thanks to the name of the Lord.”

10 tn Or “for.”

11 tn Or “sat.”

12 tn Heb “Indeed, there they sit [on] thrones for judgment, [on] thrones [belonging] to the house of David.”

13 tn Heb “ask [for].”

14 tn Or “be secure.”

15 tn or “security.”

16 tn The psalmist uses second feminine singular pronominal forms to address personified Jerusalem.

17 tn Heb “I will seek good for you.” The psalmist will seek Jerusalem’s “good” through prayer.



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