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Psalms 16:1-11

Context
Psalm 16 1 

A prayer 2  of David.

16:1 Protect me, O God, for I have taken shelter in you. 3 

16:2 I say to the Lord, “You are the Lord,

my only source of well-being.” 4 

16:3 As for God’s chosen people who are in the land,

and the leading officials I admired so much 5 

16:4 their troubles multiply,

they desire other gods. 6 

I will not pour out drink offerings of blood to their gods, 7 

nor will I make vows in the name of their gods. 8 

16:5 Lord, you give me stability and prosperity; 9 

you make my future secure. 10 

16:6 It is as if I have been given fertile fields

or received a beautiful tract of land. 11 

16:7 I will praise 12  the Lord who 13  guides 14  me;

yes, during the night I reflect and learn. 15 

16:8 I constantly trust in the Lord; 16 

because he is at my right hand, I will not be upended.

16:9 So my heart rejoices

and I am happy; 17 

My life is safe. 18 

16:10 You will not abandon me 19  to Sheol; 20 

you will not allow your faithful follower 21  to see 22  the Pit. 23 

16:11 You lead me in 24  the path of life; 25 

I experience absolute joy in your presence; 26 

you always give me sheer delight. 27 

Psalms 57:1--60:12

Context
Psalm 57 28 

For the music director; according to the al-tashcheth style; 29  a prayer 30  of David, written when he fled from Saul into the cave. 31 

57:1 Have mercy on me, O God! Have mercy on me!

For in you I have taken shelter. 32 

In the shadow of your wings 33  I take shelter

until trouble passes.

57:2 I cry out for help to the sovereign God, 34 

to the God who vindicates 35  me.

57:3 May he send help from heaven and deliver me 36 

from my enemies who hurl insults! 37  (Selah)

May God send his loyal love and faithfulness!

57:4 I am surrounded by lions;

I lie down 38  among those who want to devour me; 39 

men whose teeth are spears and arrows,

whose tongues are a sharp sword. 40 

57:5 Rise up 41  above the sky, O God!

May your splendor cover the whole earth! 42 

57:6 They have prepared a net to trap me; 43 

I am discouraged. 44 

They have dug a pit for me. 45 

They will fall 46  into it! (Selah)

57:7 I am determined, 47  O God! I am determined!

I will sing and praise you!

57:8 Awake, my soul! 48 

Awake, O stringed instrument and harp!

I will wake up at dawn! 49 

57:9 I will give you thanks before the nations, O Master!

I will sing praises to you before foreigners! 50 

57:10 For your loyal love extends beyond the sky, 51 

and your faithfulness reaches the clouds.

57:11 Rise up 52  above the sky, O God!

May your splendor cover the whole earth! 53 

Psalm 58 54 

For the music director; according to the al-tashcheth style; 55  a prayer 56  of David.

58:1 Do you rulers really pronounce just decisions? 57 

Do you judge people 58  fairly?

58:2 No! 59  You plan how to do what is unjust; 60 

you deal out violence in the earth. 61 

58:3 The wicked turn aside from birth; 62 

liars go astray as soon as they are born. 63 

58:4 Their venom is like that of a snake, 64 

like a deaf serpent 65  that does not hear, 66 

58:5 that does not respond to 67  the magicians,

or to a skilled snake-charmer.

58:6 O God, break the teeth in their mouths!

Smash the jawbones of the lions, O Lord!

58:7 Let them disappear 68  like water that flows away! 69 

Let them wither like grass! 70 

58:8 Let them be 71  like a snail that melts away as it moves along! 72 

Let them be like 73  stillborn babies 74  that never see the sun!

58:9 Before the kindling is even placed under your pots, 75 

he 76  will sweep it away along with both the raw and cooked meat. 77 

58:10 The godly 78  will rejoice when they see vengeance carried out;

they will bathe their feet in the blood of the wicked.

58:11 Then 79  observers 80  will say,

“Yes indeed, the godly are rewarded! 81 

Yes indeed, there is a God who judges 82  in the earth!”

Psalm 59 83 

For the music director; according to the al-tashcheth style; 84  a prayer 85  of David, written when Saul sent men to surround his house and murder him. 86 

59:1 Deliver me from my enemies, my God!

Protect me 87  from those who attack me! 88 

59:2 Deliver me from evildoers! 89 

Rescue me from violent men! 90 

59:3 For look, they wait to ambush me; 91 

powerful men stalk 92  me,

but not because I have rebelled or sinned, O Lord. 93 

59:4 Though I have done nothing wrong, 94  they are anxious to attack. 95 

Spring into action and help me! Take notice of me! 96 

59:5 You, O Lord God, the invincible warrior, 97  the God of Israel,

rouse yourself and punish 98  all the nations!

Have no mercy on any treacherous evildoers! (Selah)

59:6 They return in the evening;

they growl 99  like a dog

and prowl around outside 100  the city.

59:7 Look, they hurl insults at me

and openly threaten to kill me, 101 

for they say, 102 

“Who hears?”

59:8 But you, O Lord, laugh in disgust at them; 103 

you taunt 104  all the nations.

59:9 You are my source of strength! I will wait for you! 105 

For God is my refuge. 106 

59:10 The God who loves me will help me; 107 

God will enable me to triumph over 108  my enemies. 109 

59:11 Do not strike them dead suddenly,

because then my people might forget the lesson. 110 

Use your power to make them homeless vagabonds and then bring them down,

O Lord who shields us! 111 

59:12 They speak sinful words. 112 

So let them be trapped by their own pride

and by the curses and lies they speak!

59:13 Angrily wipe them out! Wipe them out so they vanish!

Let them know that God rules

in Jacob and to the ends of the earth! (Selah)

59:14 They return in the evening;

they growl 113  like a dog

and prowl around outside 114  the city.

59:15 They wander around looking for something to eat;

they refuse to sleep until they are full. 115 

59:16 As for me, I will sing about your strength;

I will praise your loyal love in the morning.

For you are my refuge 116 

and my place of shelter when I face trouble. 117 

59:17 You are my source of strength! I will sing praises to you! 118 

For God is my refuge, 119  the God who loves me. 120 

Psalm 60 121 

For the music director; according to the shushan-eduth style; 122  a prayer 123  of David written to instruct others. 124  It was written when he fought against Aram Naharaim and Aram-Zobah. That was when Joab turned back and struck down 125  12,000 Edomites 126  in the Valley of Salt. 127 

60:1 O God, you have rejected us. 128 

You suddenly turned on us in your anger. 129 

Please restore us! 130 

60:2 You made the earth quake; you split it open. 131 

Repair its breaches, for it is ready to fall. 132 

60:3 You have made your people experience hard times; 133 

you have made us drink intoxicating wine. 134 

60:4 You have given your loyal followers 135  a rallying flag,

so that they might seek safety from the bow. 136  (Selah)

60:5 Deliver by your power 137  and answer me, 138 

so that the ones you love may be safe. 139 

60:6 God has spoken in his sanctuary: 140 

“I will triumph! I will parcel out Shechem;

the Valley of Succoth I will measure off. 141 

60:7 Gilead belongs to me,

as does Manasseh! 142 

Ephraim is my helmet, 143 

Judah my royal scepter. 144 

60:8 Moab is my washbasin. 145 

I will make Edom serve me. 146 

I will shout in triumph over Philistia.” 147 

60:9 Who will lead me into the fortified city?

Who will bring me to Edom? 148 

60:10 Have you not rejected us, O God?

O God, you do not go into battle with our armies.

60:11 Give us help against the enemy,

for any help men might offer is futile. 149 

60:12 By God’s power we will conquer; 150 

he will trample down 151  our enemies.

1 sn Psalm 16. The psalmist seeks divine protection because he has remained loyal to God. He praises God for his rich blessings, and is confident God will vindicate him and deliver him from death.

2 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew term מִכְתָּם (mikhtam) is uncertain. HALOT 582-83 s.v. defines it as “inscription.”

3 tn The Hebrew perfect verbal form probably refers here to a completed action with continuing results (see 7:1; 11:1).

sn Taken shelter. “Taking shelter” in the Lord is an idiom for seeking his protection. Seeking his protection presupposes and even demonstrates the subject’s loyalty to the Lord. In the psalms those who “take shelter” in the Lord are contrasted with the wicked and equated with those who love, fear and serve the Lord (Pss 5:11-12; 31:17-20; 34:21-22).

4 tn Heb “my good [is] not beyond you.” For the use of the preposition עַל (’al) in the sense of “beyond,” see BDB 755 s.v. 2.

5 tn Heb “regarding the holy ones who [are] in the land, they; and the mighty [ones] in [whom is/was] all my desire.” The difficult syntax makes the meaning of the verse uncertain. The phrase “holy ones” sometimes refers to God’s angelic assembly (see Ps 89:5, 7), but the qualifying clause “who are in the land” suggests that here it refers to God’s people (Ps 34:9) or to their priestly leaders (2 Chr 35:3).

6 tn Heb “their troubles multiply, another, they pay a dowry.” The meaning of the text is unclear. The Hebrew term עַצְּבוֹתָם (’atsÿvotam, “troubles”) appears to be a plural form of עַצֶּבֶת (’atsÿvet, “pain, wound”; see Job 9:28; Ps 147:3). Because idolatry appears to be in view (see v. 4b), some prefer to emend the noun to עַצְּבִים (’atsÿvim, “idols”). “Troubles” may be a wordplay on “idols” or a later alteration designed to emphasize that idolatry leads to trouble. The singular form אחר (“another”) is syntactically problematic here. Perhaps the form should be emended to a plural אֲחֵרִים (’akherim, “others”). (The final mem [ם] could have been lost by haplography; note the mem [מ] at the beginning of the next word.) In this case it might be taken as an abbreviated form of the well-attested phrase אֱלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים (’elohimakherim, “other gods”). (In Isa 42:8 the singular form אַחַר (’akher, “another”) is used of another god.) The verb מָהַר (mahar) appears in the Qal stem; the only other use of a Qal verbal form of a root מָהַר is in Exod 22:15, where the denominative verb מָהֹר (mahor, “purchase [a wife]”) appears; cf. the related noun מֹהַר (mohar, “bride money, purchase price for a wife”). If that verb is understood here, then the idolaters are pictured as eager bridegrooms paying the price to acquire the object of their desire. Another option is to emend the verb to a Piel and translate, “hurry (after).”

7 tn Heb “I will not pour out their drink offerings of blood.” The third masculine plural suffix would appear to refer back to the people/leaders mentioned in v. 3. However, if we emend אֲחֵר (’akher, “another”) to the plural אֲחֵרִים (’akherim, “other [gods]”) in v. 4, the suffix can be understood as referring to these gods – “the drink offerings [made to] them.” The next line favors this interpretation. Perhaps this refers to some type of pagan cultic ritual. Elsewhere wine is the prescribed content of drink offerings.

8 tn Heb “and I will not lift up their names upon my lips.” The expression “lift up the name” probably refers here to swearing an oath in the name of deity (see Exod 20:7; Deut 5:11). If so, the third masculine plural suffix on “names” likely refers to the pagan gods, not the people/leaders. See the preceding note.

9 tn Heb “O Lord, the portion of my possession and my cup”; or “the Lord [is] the portion of my possession and my cup.” The psalmist compares the Lord to landed property, which was foundational to economic stability in ancient Israel, and to a cup of wine, which may symbolize a reward (in Ps 11:6 it symbolizes the judgment one deserves) or divine blessing (see Ps 23:5). The metaphor highlights the fact that God is the psalmist’s source of security and prosperity.

10 tc Heb “you take hold of my lot.” The form תּוֹמִיךְ (tomikh) should be emended to a participle, תוֹמֵךְ (tomekh). The psalmist pictures the Lord as casting his lot (a method used to allot landed property) for him, thus assuring that he will receive a fertile piece of land (see v. 6). As in the previous line, land represents security and economic stability, thus “you make my future secure.”

11 tn Heb “measuring lines have fallen for me in pleasant [places]; yes, property [or “an inheritance”] is beautiful for me.” On the dative use of עַל, see BDB 758 s.v. II.8. Extending the metaphor used in v. 5, the psalmist compares the divine blessings he has received to a rich, beautiful tract of land that one might receive by allotment or inheritance.

12 tn Heb “bless,” that is, “proclaim as worthy of praise.”

13 tn Or “because.”

14 tn Or “counsels, advises.”

15 tn Heb “yes, [during] nights my kidneys instruct [or “correct”] me.” The “kidneys” are viewed here as the seat of the psalmist’s moral character (see Ps 26:2). In the quiet darkness the Lord speaks to his inner being, as it were, and enables him to grow in moral understanding.

16 tn Heb “I set the Lord before me continually.” This may mean that the psalmist is aware of the Lord’s presence and sensitive to his moral guidance (see v. 7), or that he trusts in the Lord’s protection (see the following line).

17 tn Heb “my glory is happy.” Some view the Hebrew term כְּבוֹדִי (kÿvodiy, “my glory”) as a metonymy for man’s inner being (see BDB 459 s.v. II כָּבוֹד 5), but it is preferable to emend the form to כְּבֵדִי (kÿvediy, “my liver”). Like the heart, the liver is viewed as the seat of one’s emotions. See also Pss 30:12; 57:9; 108:1, as well as H. W. Wolff, Anthropology of the Old Testament, 64, and M. Dahood, Psalms (AB), 1:90. For an Ugaritic example of the heart/liver as the source of joy, see G. R. Driver, Canaanite Myths and Legends, 47-48: “her [Anat’s] liver swelled with laughter, her heart was filled with joy, the liver of Anat with triumph.”

18 tn Heb “yes, my flesh dwells securely.” The psalmist’s “flesh” stands by metonymy for his body and, by extension, his physical life.

19 tn Or “my life.” The suffixed form of נֶפֶשׁ (nefesh, “being”) is often equivalent to a pronoun in poetic texts.

20 sn In ancient Israelite cosmology Sheol is the realm of the dead, viewed as being under the earth’s surface. See L. I. J. Stadelmann, The Hebrew Conception of the World, 165-76.

21 tn A “faithful follower” (חָסִיד [khasid], traditionally rendered “holy one”) is one who does what is right in God’s eyes and remains faithful to God (see Pss 4:3; 12:1; 18:25; 31:23; 37:28; 86:2; 97:10). The psalmist here refers to himself, as the parallel line (“You will not abandon me to Sheol”) indicates.

22 tn That is, “experience.” The psalmist is confident that the Lord will protect him in his present crisis (see v. 1) and prevent him from dying.

sn According to Peter, the words of Ps 16:8-11 are applicable to Jesus (Acts 2:25-29). Peter goes on to argue that David, being a prophet, foresaw future events and spoke of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead (Acts 2:30-33). Paul seems to concur with Peter in this understanding (see Acts 13:35-37). For a discussion of the NT application of these verses to Jesus’ resurrection, see R. B. Chisholm, Jr., “A Theology of the Psalms,” A Biblical Theology of the Old Testament, 292-95.

23 tn The Hebrew word שָׁחַת (shakhat, “pit”) is often used as a title for Sheol (see Pss 30:9; 49:9; 55:24; 103:4). Note the parallelism with the previous line.

24 tn Heb “cause me to know”; or “cause me to experience.”

25 tn This is a metaphorical way of saying, “you preserve my life.” The phrase “path of life” stands in contrast to death/Sheol in Prov 2:18-19; 5:5-6; 15:24.

26 tn Heb “abundance of joy [is] with your face.” The plural form of the noun שִׂמְחָה (simkhah, “joy”) occurs only here and in Ps 45:15. It may emphasize the degree of joy experienced.

27 tn Heb “delight [is] in your right hand forever.” The plural form of the adjective נָעִים (naim, “pleasant, delightful”) may here emphasize the degree of delight experienced (see Job 36:11).

28 sn Psalm 57. The psalmist asks for God’s protection and expresses his confidence that his ferocious enemies will be destroyed by their own schemes.

29 tn Heb “do not destroy.” Perhaps this refers to a particular style of music, a tune title, or a musical instrument. These words also appear in the heading to Pss 58-59, 75.

30 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew word מִכְתָּם (miktam), which also appears in the heading to Pss 16, 56, 58-60 is uncertain. HALOT 582-83 s.v. defines it as “inscription.”

31 sn According to the superscription, David wrote this psalm on the occasion when he fled from Saul and hid in “the cave.” This probably refers to either the incident recorded in 1 Sam 22:1 or to the one recorded in 1 Sam 24:3.

32 tn Heb “my life has taken shelter.” The Hebrew perfect verbal form probably refers here to a completed action with continuing results.

33 sn In the shadow of your wings. The metaphor likens God to a protective mother bird (see also Pss 17:8; 36:7).

34 tn Heb “to God Most High.” The divine title “Most High” (עֶלְיוֹן, ’elyon) pictures God as the exalted ruler of the universe who vindicates the innocent and judges the wicked. See especially Ps 47:2.

35 tn Or “avenges in favor of.”

36 tn Heb “may he send from heaven and deliver me.” The prefixed verbal forms are understood as jussives expressing the psalmist’s prayer. The second verb, which has a vav (ו) conjunctive prefixed to it, probably indicates purpose. Another option is to take the forms as imperfects expressing confidence, “he will send from heaven and deliver me” (cf. NRSV).

37 tn Heb “he hurls insults, one who crushes me.” The translation assumes that this line identifies those from whom the psalmist seeks deliverance. (The singular is representative; the psalmist is surrounded by enemies, see v. 4.) Another option is to understand God as the subject of the verb חָרַף (kharaf), which could then be taken as a homonym of the more common root חָרַף (“insult”) meaning “confuse.” In this case “one who crushes me” is the object of the verb. One might translate, “he [God] confuses my enemies.”

38 tn The cohortative form אֶשְׁכְּבָה (’eshkÿvah, “I lie down”) is problematic, for it does not seem to carry one of the normal functions of the cohortative (resolve or request). One possibility is that the form here is a “pseudo-cohortative” used here in a gnomic sense (IBHS 576-77 §34.5.3b).

39 tn The Hebrew verb לָהַט (lahat) is here understood as a hapax legomenon meaning “devour” (see HALOT 521 s.v. II להט), a homonym of the more common verb meaning “to burn.” A more traditional interpretation takes the verb from this latter root and translates, “those who are aflame” (see BDB 529 s.v.; cf. NASB “those who breathe forth fire”).

40 tn Heb “my life, in the midst of lions, I lie down, devouring ones, sons of mankind, their teeth a spear and arrows and their tongue a sharp sword.” The syntax of the verse is difficult. Another option is to take “my life” with the preceding verse. For this to make sense, one must add a verb, perhaps “and may he deliver” (cf. the LXX), before the phrase. One might then translate, “May God send his loyal love and faithfulness and deliver my life.” If one does take “my life” with v. 4, then the parallelism of v. 5 is altered and one might translate: “in the midst of lions I lie down, [among] men who want to devour me, whose teeth….”

41 tn Or “be exalted.”

42 tn Heb “over all the earth [be] your splendor.” Though no verb appears, the tone of the statement is a prayer or wish. (Note the imperative form in the preceding line.)

43 tn Heb “for my feet.”

44 tn Heb “my life bends low.” The Hebrew term נֶפֶשׁ (nefesh) with a pronominal suffix is often equivalent to a pronoun, especially in poetry (see BDB 660 s.v. נֶפֶשׁ 4.a).

45 tn Heb “before me.”

46 tn The perfect form is used rhetorically here to express the psalmist’s certitude. The demise of the enemies is so certain that he can speak of it as already accomplished.

47 tn Or perhaps “confident”; Heb “my heart is steadfast.” The “heart” is viewed here as the seat of the psalmist’s volition and/or emotions.

48 tn Heb “glory,” but that makes little sense in the context. Some view כָּבוֹד (kavod, “glory”) here as a metonymy for man’s inner being (see BDB 459 s.v. II כָּבוֹד 5), but it is preferable to emend the form to כְּבֵדִי (kÿvediy, “my liver”). Like the heart, the liver is viewed as the seat of one’s emotions. See also Pss 16:9; 30:12; 108:1, as well as H. W. Wolff, Anthropology of the Old Testament, 64, and M. Dahood, Psalms (AB), 1:90. For an Ugaritic example of the heart/liver as the source of joy, see G. R. Driver, Canaanite Myths and Legends, 47-48: “her [Anat’s] liver swelled with laughter, her heart was filled with joy, the liver of Anat with triumph.”

49 tn BDB 1007 s.v. שַׁחַר takes “dawn” as an adverbial accusative, though others understand it as a personified direct object. “Dawn” is used metaphorically for the time of deliverance and vindication the psalmist anticipates. When salvation “dawns,” the psalmist will “wake up” in praise.

50 tn Or “the peoples.”

51 tn Heb “for great upon the sky [or “heavens”] [is] your loyal love.”

52 tn Or “be exalted.”

53 tn Heb “over all the earth [be] your splendor.” Though no verb appears, the tone of the statement is a prayer or wish. (Note the imperative form in the preceding line.)

54 sn Psalm 58. The psalmist calls on God to punish corrupt judges because a vivid display of divine judgment will convince observers that God is the just judge of the world who vindicates the godly.

55 tn Heb “do not destroy.” Perhaps this refers to a particular style of music, a tune title, or a musical instrument. These words also appear in the heading to Pss 57, 59, and 75.

56 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew word מִכְתָּם (miktam) which also appears in the heading to Pss 16 and 56-57, 59-60 is uncertain. HALOT 582-83 s.v. defines it as “inscription.”

57 tn Heb “Really [in] silence, what is right do you speak?” The Hebrew noun אֵלֶם (’elem, “silence”) makes little, if any, sense in this context. Some feel that this is an indictment of the addressees’ failure to promote justice; they are silent when they should make just decisions. The present translation assumes an emendation to אֵלִם (’elim), which in turn is understood as a defectively written form of אֵילִים (’elim, “rulers,” a metaphorical use of אַיִל, ’ayil, “ram”; see Exod 15:15; Ezek 17:13). The rhetorical question is sarcastic, challenging their claim to be just. Elsewhere the collocation of דָּבַר (davar, “speak”) with צֶדֶק (tsedeq, “what is right”) as object means “to speak the truth” (see Ps 52:3; Isa 45:19). Here it refers specifically to declaring what is right in a legal setting, as the next line indicates.

58 tn Heb “the sons of mankind.” The translation assumes the phrase is the object of the verb “to judge.” Some take it as a vocative, “Do you judge fairly, O sons of mankind?” (Cf. NASB; see Ezek 20:4; 22:2; 23:36.)

59 tn The particle אַף (’af, “no”) is used here as a strong adversative emphasizing the following statement, which contrasts reality with the rulers’ claim alluded to in the rhetorical questions (see Ps 44:9).

60 tn Heb “in the heart unjust deeds you do.” The phrase “in the heart” (i.e., “mind”) seems to refer to their plans and motives. The Hebrew noun עַוְלָה (’avlah, “injustice”) is collocated with פָּעַל (paal, “do”) here and in Job 36:23 and Ps 119:3. Some emend the plural form עוֹלֹת (’olot, “unjust deeds”; see Ps 64:6) to the singular עָוֶל (’avel, “injustice”; see Job 34:32), taking the final tav (ת) as dittographic (note that the following verbal form begins with tav). Some then understand עָוֶל (’avel, “injustice”) as a genitive modifying “heart” and translate, “with a heart of injustice you act.”

61 tn Heb “in the earth the violence of your hands you weigh out.” The imagery is from the economic realm. The addressees measure out violence, rather than justice, and distribute it like a commodity. This may be ironic, since justice was sometimes viewed as a measuring scale (see Job 31:6).

62 tn Heb “from the womb.”

63 tn Heb “speakers of a lie go astray from the womb.”

64 tn Heb “[there is] venom to them according to the likeness of venom of a snake.”

65 tn Or perhaps “cobra” (cf. NASB, NIV). Other suggested species of snakes are “asp” (NEB) and “adder” (NRSV).

66 tn Heb “[that] stops up its ear.” The apparent Hiphil jussive verbal form should be understood as a Qal imperfect with “i” theme vowel (see GKC 168 §63.n).

67 tn Heb “does not listen to the voice of.”

68 tn Following the imperatival forms in v. 6, the prefixed verbal form is understood as a jussive expressing the psalmist’s wish. Another option is to take the form as an imperfect (indicative) and translate, “they will scatter” (see v. 9). The verb מָאַס (maas; which is a homonym of the more common מָאַס, “to refuse, reject”) appears only here and in Job 7:5, where it is used of a festering wound from which fluid runs or flows.

69 tn Heb “like water, they go about for themselves.” The translation assumes that the phrase “they go about for themselves” is an implied relative clause modifying “water.” Another option is to take the clause as independent and parallel to what precedes. In this case the enemies would be the subject and the verb could be taken as jussive, “let them wander about.”

70 tc The syntax of the Hebrew text is difficult and the meaning uncertain. The text reads literally, “he treads his arrows (following the Qere; Kethib has “his arrow”), like they are cut off/dry up.” It is not clear if the verbal root is מָלַל (malal, “circumcise”; BDB 576 s.v. IV מָלַל) or the homonymic מָלַל (“wither”; HALOT 593-94 s.v. I מלל). Since the verb מָלַל (“to wither”) is used of vegetation, it is possible that the noun חָצִיר (khatsir, “grass,” which is visually similar to חִצָּיו, khitsayv, “his arrows”) originally appeared in the text. The translation above assumes that the text originally was כְּמוֹ חָצִיר יִתְמֹלָלוּ(kÿmo khatsir yitmolalu, “like grass let them wither”). If original, it could have been accidentally corrupted to חִצָּיר כְּמוֹ יִתְמֹלָלוּ (“his arrow(s) like they dry up”) with דָּרַךְ (darakh, “to tread”) being added later in an effort to make sense of “his arrow(s).”

71 tn There is no “to be” verb in the Hebrew text at this point, but a jussive tone can be assumed based on vv. 6-7.

72 tn Heb “like a melting snail [that] moves along.” A. Cohen (Psalms [SoBB], 184) explains that the text here alludes “to the popular belief that the slimy trail which the snail leaves in its track is the dissolution of its substance.”

73 tn The words “let them be like” are supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons. The jussive mood is implied from the preceding context, and “like” is understood by ellipsis (see the previous line).

74 tn This rare word also appears in Job 3:16 and Eccles 6:3.

75 tn Heb “before your pots perceive thorns.”

76 tn Apparently God (v. 6) is the subject of the verb here.

77 tn Heb “like living, like burning anger he will sweep it away.” The meaning of the text is unclear. The translation assumes that within the cooking metaphor (see the previous line) חַי (khay, “living”) refers here to raw meat (as in 1 Sam 2:15, where it modifies בָּשָׂר, basar, “flesh”) and that חָרוּן (kharun; which always refers to God’s “burning anger” elsewhere) here refers to food that is cooked. The pronominal suffix on the verb “sweep away” apparently refers back to the “thorns” of the preceding line. The image depicts swift and sudden judgment. Before the fire has been adequately kindled and all the meat cooked, the winds of judgment will sweep away everything in their path.

78 tn The singular is representative here, as is the singular from “wicked” in the next line.

79 tn Following the imperfects of v. 10, the prefixed verbal form with vav (ו) conjunctive probably indicates a result or consequence of what precedes.

80 tn Heb “man.” The singular is representative here.

81 tn Heb “surely [there] is fruit for the godly.”

82 tn The plural participle is unusual here if the preceding אֱלֹהִים (’elohim) is here a plural of majesty, referring to the one true God. Occasionally the plural of majesty does take a plural attributive (see GKC 428-29 §132.h). It is possible that the final mem (ם) on the participle is enclitic, and that it was later misunderstood as a plural ending. Another option is to translate, “Yes indeed, there are gods who judge in the earth.” In this case, the statement reflects the polytheistic mindset of pagan observers who, despite their theological ignorance, nevertheless recognize divine retribution when they see it.

83 sn Psalm 59. The psalmist calls down judgment on his foreign enemies, whom he compares to ravenous wild dogs.

84 tn Heb “do not destroy.” Perhaps this refers to a particular style of music, a tune title, or a musical instrument. These words also appear in the superscription to Pss 57-58, 75.

85 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew word מִכְתָּם (miktam), which also appears in the heading to Pss 16, 56-58, 60 is uncertain. HALOT 582-83 s.v. defines it as “inscription.”

86 tn Heb “when Saul sent and they watched his house in order to kill him.”

sn According to the superscription, David wrote this psalm on the occasion when Saul sent assassins to surround David’s house and kill him in the morning (see 1 Sam 19:11). However, the psalm itself mentions foreign enemies (vv. 5, 8). Perhaps these references reflect a later adaptation of an original Davidic psalm.

87 tn Or “make me secure”; Heb “set me on high.”

88 tn Heb “from those who raise themselves up [against] me.”

89 tn Heb “from the workers of wickedness.”

90 tn Heb “from men of bloodshed.”

91 tn Heb “my life.”

92 tn The Hebrew verb is from the root גּוּר (gur), which means “to challenge, attack” in Isa 54:15 and “to stalk” (with hostile intent) in Ps 56:8.

93 sn The point is that the psalmist’s enemies have no justifiable reason for attacking him. He has neither rebelled or sinned against the Lord.

94 tn Heb “without sin.”

95 tn Heb “they run and they are determined.”

96 tn Heb “arise to meet me and see.” The Hebrew verb קָרָא (qara’, “to meet; to encounter”) here carries the nuance of “to help.”

97 tn HebLord, God, Hosts.” One expects the construct form אֱלֹהֵי (’elohey) before צְבָאוֹת (tsÿvaot, “hosts”). See Ps 89:9, but יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים (yÿhvahelohim) precedes צְבָאוֹת (tsÿvaot) in Pss 80:4, 19; 84:8 as well.

98 tn Heb “wake up to punish” (see Pss 35:23; 44:23).

99 tn Or “howl”; or “bark.”

100 tn Heb “go around.”

101 tn Heb “look, they gush forth with their mouth, swords [are] in their lips.”

102 tn The words “for they say” are supplied in the translation for clarification. The following question (“Who hears?”) is spoken by the psalmist’s enemies, who are confident that no one else can hear their threats against the psalmist. They are aggressive because they feel the psalmist is vulnerable and has no one to help him.

103 sn Laugh in disgust. See Pss 2:4; 37:13.

104 tn Or “scoff at”; or “deride”; or “mock” (see Ps 2:4).

105 tc Heb “his strength, for you I will watch.” “His strength” should be emended to “my strength” (see v. 17). Some also emend אֶשְׁמֹרָה (’eshmorah, “I will watch”) to אֱזַמֵּרָה (’ezammerah, “I will sing praises [to you]”) See v. 17.

106 tn Or “my elevated place” (see Ps 18:2).

107 tn Heb “the God of my [Qere (marginal reading); the Kethib (consonantal text) has “his”] loyal love will meet me.”

108 tn Heb “will cause me to look upon.”

109 tn Heb “those who watch me [with evil intent].” See also Pss 5:8; 27:11; 54:5; 56:2.

110 tn Heb “do not kill them, lest my people forget.”

sn My people might forget the lesson. Swift, sudden destruction might be quickly forgotten. The psalmist wants God’s judgment to be prolonged so that it might be a continual reminder of divine justice.

111 tn Heb “make them roam around by your strength and bring them down, O our shield, the Lord.”

112 tn Heb “the sin of their mouth [is] the word of their lips.”

113 tn Or “howl”; or “bark.”

114 tn Heb “go around.”

115 tn Heb “if they are not full, they stay through the night.”

116 tn Or “my elevated place” (see Ps 18:2).

117 tn Heb “and my shelter in the day of my distress.”

118 tn Heb “my strength, to you I will sing praises.”

119 tn Or “my elevated place” (see Ps 18:2).

120 tn Heb “the God of my loyal love.”

121 sn Psalm 60. The psalmist grieves over Israel’s humiliation, but in response to God’s assuring word, he asks for divine help in battle and expresses his confidence in victory.

122 tn The Hebrew expression means “lily of the testimony.” It may refer to a particular music style or to a tune title.

123 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew word מִכְתָּם (miktam), which also appears in the heading to Pss 16, 56-59, is uncertain. HALOT 582-83 s.v. defines it as “inscription.”

124 tn Heb “to teach.”

125 tn In Josh 8:21 and Judg 20:48 the two verbs “turn back” and “strike down” are also juxtaposed. There they refer to a military counter-attack.

126 tn Heb “12,000 of Edom.” Perhaps one should read אֲרַם (’aram, “Aram”) here rather than אֱדוֹם (’edom, “Edom”).

127 sn The heading apparently refers to the military campaign recorded in 2 Sam 10 and 1 Chr 19.

128 sn You have rejected us. See Pss 43:2; 44:9, 23.

129 tn Heb “you broke out upon us, you were angry.”

130 tn The imperfect verbal form here expresses the psalmist’s wish or prayer.

131 tn The verb פָּצַם (patsam, “split open”) occurs only here in the OT. An Arabic cognate means “crack,” and an Aramaic cognate is used in Tg. Jer 22:14 with the meaning “break open, frame.” See BDB 822 s.v. and Jastrow 1205 s.v. פְּצַם.

sn You made the earth quake; you split it open. The psalmist uses the imagery of an earthquake to describe the nation’s defeat.

132 sn It is ready to fall. The earth is compared to a wall that has been broken by the force of the earthquake (note the preceding line) and is ready to collapse.

133 tn Heb “you have caused your people to see [what is] hard.”

134 tn Heb “wine of staggering,” that is, intoxicating wine that makes one stagger in drunkenness. Intoxicating wine is here an image of divine judgment that makes its victims stagger like drunkards. See Isa 51:17-23.

135 tn Heb “those who fear you.”

136 tn There is a ray of hope in that God has allowed his loyal followers to rally under a battle flag. The translation assumes the verb is from the root נוּס (nus, “flee”) used here in the Hitpolel in the sense of “find safety for oneself” (HALOT 681 s.v. נוס) or “take flight for oneself” (BDB 630-31 s.v. נוּס). Another option is to take the verb as a denominative from נֵס (nes, “flag”) and translate “that it may be displayed” (BDB 651 s.v. II נסס) or “that they may assemble under the banner” (HALOT 704 s.v. II נסס). Here קֹשֶׁט (qoshet) is taken as an Aramaized form of קֶשֶׁת (qeshet, “bow”; BDB 905-6 s.v. קֶשֶׁת), though some understand the homonymic קֹשְׁטְ (qosht, “truth”) here (see Prov 22:21; cf. NASB). If one follows the latter interpretation, the line may be translated, “so that they might assemble under the banner for the sake of truth.”

137 tn Heb “right hand.”

138 tn The Qere (marginal reading) has “me,” while the Kethib (consonantal text) has “us.”

139 tn Or “may be rescued.” The lines are actually reversed in the Hebrew text, “So that the ones you love may be rescued, deliver by your power and answer me.”

140 tn Heb “in his holy place.”

141 sn Shechem stands for the territory west of the Jordan, the Valley of Succoth for the region east of the Jordan.

142 sn Gilead was located east of the Jordan. Half of the tribe of Manasseh lived east of the Jordan in the region of Bashan.

143 tn Heb “the protection of my head.”

sn Ephraim, named after one of Joseph’s sons, was one of two major tribes located west of the Jordan. By comparing Ephraim to a helmet, the Lord suggests that the Ephraimites played a primary role in the defense of his land.

144 sn Judah, like Ephraim, was the other major tribe west of the Jordan. The Davidic king, symbolized here by the royal scepter, came from this tribe.

145 sn The metaphor of the washbasin, used to rinse one’s hands and feet, suggests that Moab, in contrast to Israel’s elevated position (vv. 6-7), would be reduced to the status of a servant.

146 tn Heb “over Edom I will throw my sandal.” The point of the metaphor is not entirely clear. Some interpret this as idiomatic for “taking possession of,” i.e., “I will take possession of Edom.” Others translate עַל (’al) as “to” and understand this as referring to a master throwing his dirty sandal to a servant so that the latter might dust it off.

147 tc Heb “over me, O Philistia, shout in triumph.” The translation follows the text of Ps 108:9. When the initial עֲלֵיוֹ (’aleyo, “over”) was misread as עָלַי (’alay, “over me”), the first person verb form was probably altered to an imperative to provide better sense to the line.

148 sn In v. 9 the psalmist speaks again and acknowledges his need for help in battle. He hopes God will volunteer, based on the affirmation of sovereignty over Edom in v. 8, but he is also aware that God has seemingly rejected the nation (v. 10, see also v. 1).

149 tn Heb “and futile [is] the deliverance of man.”

150 tn Heb “in God we will accomplish strength.” The statement refers here to military success (see Num 24:18; 1 Sam 14:48; Pss 108:13; 118:15-16).

151 sn Trample down. On this expression see Ps 44:5.



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