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2 Samuel 22:2-3

Context
22:2 He said:

“The Lord is my high ridge, 1  my stronghold, 2  my deliverer.

22:3 My God 3  is my rocky summit where I take shelter, 4 

my shield, the horn that saves me, 5  my stronghold,

my refuge, my savior. You save me from violence! 6 

2 Samuel 22:32

Context

22:32 Indeed, 7  who is God besides the Lord?

Who is a protector 8  besides our God? 9 

2 Samuel 22:47

Context

22:47 The Lord is alive! 10 

My protector 11  is praiseworthy! 12 

The God who delivers me 13  is exalted as king! 14 

1 tn Traditionally “is my rock”; CEV “mighty rock”; TEV “is my protector.” This metaphor pictures God as a rocky, relatively inaccessible summit, where one would be able to find protection from enemies. See 1 Sam 23:25, 28.

2 tn Traditionally “my fortress”; TEV “my strong fortress”; NCV “my protection.”

sn My stronghold. David often found safety in such strongholds. See 1 Sam 22:4-5; 24:22; 2 Sam 5:9, 17; 23:14.

3 tc The translation (along with many English versions, e.g., NAB, NIV, NRSV, NLT) follows the LXX in reading אֱלֹהִי (’elohi, “my God”) rather than MT’s אֱלֹהֵי (’elohe, “the God of”). See Ps 18:2.

4 tn Or “in whom.”

5 tn Heb “the horn of my salvation,” or “my saving horn.”

sn Though some see “horn” as referring to a horn-shaped peak of a hill, or to the “horns” of an altar where one could find refuge, it is more likely that the horn of an ox underlies the metaphor (see Deut 33:17; 1 Kgs 22:11; Ps 92:10). The horn of the wild ox is frequently a metaphor for military strength; the idiom “exalt the horn” signifies military victory (see 1 Sam 2:10; Pss 89:17, 24; 92:10; Lam 2:17). In the ancient Near East powerful warrior-kings would sometimes compare themselves to a goring bull that uses its horns to kill its enemies. For examples, see P. Miller, “El the Warrior,” HTR 60 (1967): 422-25, and R. B. Chisholm, “An Exegetical and Theological Study of Psalm 18/2 Samuel 22” (Th.D. diss., Dallas Theological Seminary, 1983), 135-36. 2 Sam 22:3 uses the metaphor of the horn in a slightly different manner. Here the Lord himself is compared to a horn. He is to the psalmist what the horn is to the ox, a source of defense and victory.

6 tn The parallel version of the song in Ps 18 does not include this last line.

7 tn Or “for.” The translation assumes that כִּי (ki) is asseverative here.

8 tn Heb “rocky cliff,” which is a metaphor of protection.

9 tn The rhetorical questions anticipate the answer, “No one.” In this way the psalmist indicates that the Lord is the only true God and reliable source of protection. See also Deut 32:39, where the Lord affirms that he is the only true God. Note as well the emphasis on his role as protector (צוּר, tsur, “rocky cliff”) in Deut 32:4, 15, 17-18, 30.

10 tn Elsewhere the construction חַי־יְהוָה (khay-yÿhvah) as used exclusively as an oath formula, but this is not the case here, for no oath follows. Here the statement is an affirmation of the Lord’s active presence and intervention. In contrast to pagan deities, he demonstrates that he is the living God by rescuing and empowering the psalmist.

11 tn Heb “my rocky cliff,” which is a metaphor for protection.

12 tn Or “blessed [i.e., praised] be.”

13 tn Heb “the God of the rock of my deliverance.” The term צוּר (tsur, “rock”) is probably accidentally repeated from the previous line. The parallel version in Ps 18:46 has simply “the God of my deliverance.”

14 tn The words “as king” are supplied in the translation for clarification. In the Psalms the verb רוּם (rum, “be exalted”) when used of God, refers to his exalted position as king (Pss 99:2; 113:4; 138:6) and/or his self-revelation as king through his mighty deeds of deliverance (Pss 21:13; 46:10; 57:5, 11).



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