18:16 He reached down 1 from above and took hold of me;
he pulled me from the surging water. 2
18:17 He rescued me from my strong enemy, 3
from those who hate me,
for they were too strong for me.
1 tn Heb “stretched.” Perhaps “his hand” should be supplied by ellipsis (see Ps 144:7). In this poetic narrative context the three prefixed verbal forms in this verse are best understood as preterites indicating past tense, not imperfects.
2 tn Heb “mighty waters.” The waters of the sea symbolize the psalmist’s powerful enemies, as well as the realm of death they represent (see v. 4 and Ps 144:7).
3 tn The singular refers either to personified death or collectively to the psalmist’s enemies. The following line, which refers to “those [plural] who hate me,” favors the latter.