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Psalms 102:4-5

Context

102:4 My heart is parched 1  and withered like grass,

for I am unable 2  to eat food. 3 

102:5 Because of the anxiety that makes me groan,

my bones protrude from my skin. 4 

1 tn Heb “struck, attacked.”

2 tn Heb “I forget.”

3 sn I am unable to eat food. During his time of mourning, the psalmist refrained from eating. In the following verse he describes metaphorically the physical effects of fasting.

4 tn Heb “from the sound of my groaning my bone[s] stick to my flesh.” The preposition at the beginning of the verse is causal; the phrase “sound of my groaning” is metonymic for the anxiety that causes the groaning. The point seems to be this: Anxiety (which causes the psalmist to groan) keeps him from eating (v. 4). This physical deprivation in turn makes him emaciated – he is turned to “skin and bones,” so to speak.



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