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Psalms 1:1-6

Context

Book 1
(Psalms 1-41)

Psalm 1 1 

1:1 How blessed 2  is the one 3  who does not follow 4  the advice 5  of the wicked, 6 

or stand in the pathway 7  with sinners,

or sit in the assembly 8  of scoffers! 9 

1:2 Instead 10  he finds pleasure in obeying the Lord’s commands; 11 

he meditates on 12  his commands 13  day and night.

1:3 He is like 14  a tree planted by flowing streams; 15 

it 16  yields 17  its fruit at the proper time, 18 

and its leaves never fall off. 19 

He succeeds in everything he attempts. 20 

1:4 Not so with the wicked!

Instead 21  they are like wind-driven chaff. 22 

1:5 For this reason 23  the wicked cannot withstand 24  judgment, 25 

nor can sinners join the assembly of the godly. 26 

1:6 Certainly 27  the Lord guards the way of the godly, 28 

but the way of the wicked ends in destruction. 29 

Psalms 34:1-22

Context
Psalm 34 30 

Written by David, when he pretended to be insane before Abimelech, causing the king to send him away. 31 

34:1 I will praise 32  the Lord at all times;

my mouth will continually praise him. 33 

34:2 I will boast 34  in the Lord;

let the oppressed hear and rejoice! 35 

34:3 Magnify the Lord with me!

Let’s praise 36  his name together!

34:4 I sought the Lord’s help 37  and he answered me;

he delivered me from all my fears.

34:5 Those who look to him for help are happy;

their faces are not ashamed. 38 

34:6 This oppressed man cried out and the Lord heard;

he saved him 39  from all his troubles.

34:7 The Lord’s angel camps around

the Lord’s 40  loyal followers 41  and delivers them. 42 

34:8 Taste 43  and see that the Lord is good!

How blessed 44  is the one 45  who takes shelter in him! 46 

34:9 Remain loyal to 47  the Lord, you chosen people of his, 48 

for his loyal followers 49  lack nothing!

34:10 Even young lions sometimes lack food and are hungry,

but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.

34:11 Come children! Listen to me!

I will teach you what it means to fear the Lord. 50 

34:12 Do you want to really live? 51 

Would you love to live a long, happy life? 52 

34:13 Then make sure you don’t speak evil words 53 

or use deceptive speech! 54 

34:14 Turn away from evil and do what is right! 55 

Strive for peace and promote it! 56 

34:15 The Lord pays attention to the godly

and hears their cry for help. 57 

34:16 But the Lord opposes evildoers

and wipes out all memory of them from the earth. 58 

34:17 The godly 59  cry out and the Lord hears;

he saves them from all their troubles. 60 

34:18 The Lord is near the brokenhearted;

he delivers 61  those who are discouraged. 62 

34:19 The godly 63  face many dangers, 64 

but the Lord saves 65  them 66  from each one of them.

34:20 He protects 67  all his bones; 68 

not one of them is broken. 69 

34:21 Evil people self-destruct; 70 

those who hate the godly are punished. 71 

34:22 The Lord rescues his servants; 72 

all who take shelter in him escape punishment. 73 

Psalms 37:1-40

Context
Psalm 37 74 

By David.

37:1 Do not fret 75  when wicked men seem to succeed! 76 

Do not envy evildoers!

37:2 For they will quickly dry up like grass,

and wither away like plants. 77 

37:3 Trust in the Lord and do what is right!

Settle in the land and maintain your integrity! 78 

37:4 Then you will take delight in the Lord, 79 

and he will answer your prayers. 80 

37:5 Commit your future to the Lord! 81 

Trust in him, and he will act on your behalf. 82 

37:6 He will vindicate you in broad daylight,

and publicly defend your just cause. 83 

37:7 Wait patiently for the Lord! 84 

Wait confidently 85  for him!

Do not fret over the apparent success of a sinner, 86 

a man who carries out wicked schemes!

37:8 Do not be angry and frustrated! 87 

Do not fret! That only leads to trouble!

37:9 Wicked men 88  will be wiped out, 89 

but those who rely on the Lord are the ones who will possess the land. 90 

37:10 Evil men will soon disappear; 91 

you will stare at the spot where they once were, but they will be gone. 92 

37:11 But the oppressed will possess the land

and enjoy great prosperity. 93 

37:12 Evil men plot against the godly 94 

and viciously attack them. 95 

37:13 The Lord laughs in disgust 96  at them,

for he knows that their day is coming. 97 

37:14 Evil men draw their swords

and prepare their bows,

to bring down 98  the oppressed and needy,

and to slaughter those who are godly. 99 

37:15 Their swords will pierce 100  their own hearts,

and their bows will be broken.

37:16 The little bit that a godly man owns is better than

the wealth of many evil men, 101 

37:17 for evil men will lose their power, 102 

but the Lord sustains 103  the godly.

37:18 The Lord watches over the innocent day by day 104 

and they possess a permanent inheritance. 105 

37:19 They will not be ashamed when hard times come; 106 

when famine comes they will have enough to eat. 107 

37:20 But 108  evil men will die;

the Lord’s enemies will be incinerated 109 

they will go up in smoke. 110 

37:21 Evil men borrow, but do not repay their debt,

but the godly show compassion and are generous. 111 

37:22 Surely 112  those favored by the Lord 113  will possess the land,

but those rejected 114  by him will be wiped out. 115 

37:23 The Lord grants success to the one

whose behavior he finds commendable. 116 

37:24 Even if 117  he trips, he will not fall headlong, 118 

for the Lord holds 119  his hand.

37:25 I was once young, now I am old.

I have never seen a godly man abandoned,

or his children 120  forced to search for food. 121 

37:26 All day long he shows compassion and lends to others, 122 

and his children 123  are blessed.

37:27 Turn away from evil! Do what is right! 124 

Then you will enjoy lasting security. 125 

37:28 For the Lord promotes 126  justice,

and never abandons 127  his faithful followers.

They are permanently secure, 128 

but the children 129  of evil men are wiped out. 130 

37:29 The godly will possess the land

and will dwell in it permanently.

37:30 The godly speak wise words

and promote justice. 131 

37:31 The law of their God controls their thinking; 132 

their 133  feet do not slip.

37:32 Evil men set an ambush for the godly

and try to kill them. 134 

37:33 But the Lord does not surrender the godly,

or allow them to be condemned in a court of law. 135 

37:34 Rely 136  on the Lord! Obey his commands! 137 

Then he will permit you 138  to possess the land;

you will see the demise of evil men. 139 

37:35 I have seen ruthless evil men 140 

growing in influence, like a green tree grows in its native soil. 141 

37:36 But then one passes by, and suddenly they have disappeared! 142 

I looked for them, but they could not be found.

37:37 Take note of the one who has integrity! Observe the godly! 143 

For the one who promotes peace has a future. 144 

37:38 Sinful rebels are totally destroyed; 145 

evil men have no future. 146 

37:39 But the Lord delivers the godly; 147 

he protects them in times of trouble. 148 

37:40 The Lord helps them and rescues them;

he rescues them from evil men and delivers them, 149 

for they seek his protection.

Psalms 112:1-10

Context
Psalm 112 150 

112:1 Praise the Lord!

How blessed is the one 151  who obeys 152  the Lord,

who takes great delight in keeping his commands. 153 

112:2 His descendants 154  will be powerful on the earth;

the godly 155  will be blessed.

112:3 His house contains wealth and riches;

his integrity endures. 156 

112:4 In the darkness a light 157  shines for the godly,

for each one who is merciful, compassionate, and just. 158 

112:5 It goes well for the one 159  who generously lends money,

and conducts his business honestly. 160 

112:6 For he will never be upended;

others will always remember one who is just. 161 

112:7 He does not fear bad news.

He 162  is confident; he trusts 163  in the Lord.

112:8 His resolve 164  is firm; he will not succumb to fear

before he looks in triumph on his enemies.

112:9 He generously gives 165  to the needy;

his integrity endures. 166 

He will be vindicated and honored. 167 

112:10 When the wicked 168  see this, they will worry;

they will grind their teeth in frustration 169  and melt away;

the desire of the wicked will perish. 170 

1 sn Psalm 1. In this wisdom psalm the author advises his audience to reject the lifestyle of the wicked and to be loyal to God. The psalmist contrasts the destiny of the wicked with that of the righteous, emphasizing that the wicked are eventually destroyed while the godly prosper under the Lord’s protective care.

2 tn The Hebrew noun is an abstract plural. The word often refers metonymically to the happiness that God-given security and prosperity produce (see v. 3; Pss 2:12; 34:9; 41:1; 65:4; 84:12; 89:15; 106:3; 112:1; 127:5; 128:1; 144:15).

3 tn Heb “[Oh] the happiness [of] the man.” Hebrew wisdom literature often assumes and reflects the male-oriented perspective of ancient Israelite society. The principle of the psalm is certainly applicable to all people, regardless of their gender or age. To facilitate modern application, we translate the gender and age specific “man” with the more neutral “one.” (Generic “he” is employed in vv. 2-3). Since the godly man described in the psalm is representative of followers of God (note the plural form צַדִּיקִים [tsadiqim, “righteous, godly”] in vv. 5-6), one could translate the collective singular with the plural “those” both here and in vv. 2-3, where singular pronouns and verbal forms are utilized in the Hebrew text (cf. NRSV). However, here the singular form may emphasize that godly individuals are usually outnumbered by the wicked. Retaining the singular allows the translation to retain this emphasis.

4 tn Heb “walk in.” The three perfect verbal forms in v. 1 refer in this context to characteristic behavior. The sequence “walk–stand–sit” envisions a progression from relatively casual association with the wicked to complete identification with them.

5 tn The Hebrew noun translated “advice” most often refers to the “counsel” or “advice” one receives from others. To “walk in the advice of the wicked” means to allow their evil advice to impact and determine one’s behavior.

6 tn In the psalms the Hebrew term רְשָׁעִים (rÿshaim, “wicked”) describes people who are proud, practical atheists (Ps 10:2, 4, 11) who hate God’s commands, commit sinful deeds, speak lies and slander (Ps 50:16-20), and cheat others (Ps 37:21).

7 tn “Pathway” here refers to the lifestyle of sinners. To “stand in the pathway of/with sinners” means to closely associate with them in their sinful behavior.

8 tn Here the Hebrew term מוֹשַׁב (moshav), although often translated “seat” (cf. NEB, NIV), appears to refer to the whole assembly of evildoers. The word also carries the semantic nuance “assembly” in Ps 107:32, where it is in synonymous parallelism with קָהָל (qahal, “assembly”).

9 tn The Hebrew word refers to arrogant individuals (Prov 21:24) who love conflict (Prov 22:10) and vociferously reject wisdom and correction (Prov 1:22; 9:7-8; 13:1; 15:12). To “sit in the assembly” of such people means to completely identify with them in their proud, sinful plans and behavior.

10 tn Here the Hebrew expression כִּי־אִם (ki-im, “instead”) introduces a contrast between the sinful behavior depicted in v. 1 and the godly lifestyle described in v. 2.

11 tn Heb “his delight [is] in the law of the Lord.” In light of the following line, which focuses on studying the Lord’s law, one might translate, “he finds pleasure in studying the Lord’s commands.” However, even if one translates the line this way, it is important to recognize that mere study and intellectual awareness are not ultimately what bring divine favor. Study of the law is metonymic here for the correct attitudes and behavior that should result from an awareness of and commitment to God’s moral will; thus “obeying” has been used in the translation rather than “studying.”

12 tn The Hebrew imperfect verbal form draws attention to the characteristic behavior described here and lends support to the hyperbolic adverbial phrase “day and night.” The verb הָגָה (hagag) means “to recite quietly; to meditate” and refers metonymically to intense study and reflection.

13 tn Or “his law.”

14 tn The Hebrew perfect verbal form with vav (ו) consecutive here carries the same characteristic force as the imperfect in the preceding verse. According to the psalmist, the one who studies and obeys God’s commands typically prospers.

15 tn Heb “channels of water.”

16 tn Heb “which.”

17 tn The Hebrew imperfect verbal forms in v. 3 draw attention to the typical nature of the actions/states they describe.

18 tn Heb “in its season.”

19 tn Or “fade”; “wither.”

sn The author compares the godly individual to a tree that has a rich water supply (planted by flowing streams), develops a strong root system, and is filled with leaves and fruit. The simile suggests that the godly have a continual source of life which in turn produces stability and uninterrupted prosperity.

20 tn Heb “and all which he does prospers”; or “and all which he does he causes to prosper.” (The simile of the tree does not extend to this line.) It is not certain if the Hiphil verbal form (יַצְלִיחַ, yatsliakh) is intransitive-exhibitive (“prospers”) or causative (“causes to prosper”) here. If the verb is intransitive, then כֹּל (kol, “all, everything”) is the subject. If the verb is causative, then the godly individual or the Lord himself is the subject and כֹּל is the object. The wording is reminiscent of Josh 1:8, where the Lord tells Joshua: “This law scroll must not leave your lips! You must memorize it day and night so you can carefully obey all that is written in it. Then you will prosper (literally, “cause your way to prosper”) and be successful.”

21 tn Here the Hebrew expression כִּי־אִם (ki-im, “instead,” cf. v. 2) introduces a contrast between the prosperity of the godly depicted in v. 3 and the destiny of the wicked described in v. 4.

22 tn Heb “[they are] like the chaff which [the] wind blows about.” The Hebrew imperfect verbal form draws attention to the typical nature of the action described.

sn Wind-driven chaff. In contrast to the well-rooted and productive tree described in v. 3, the wicked are like a dried up plant that has no root system and is blown away by the wind. The simile describes the destiny of the wicked (see vv. 5-6).

23 tn Or “Therefore.”

24 tn Heb “arise in,” but the verb is used metonymically here in the sense of “stand”; “endure,” as in 1 Sam 13:14 and Job 8:15. The negated Hebrew imperfect verbal form is here taken as indicating incapability or lack of potential, though one could understand the verb form as indicating what is typical (“do not withstand”) or what will happen (“will not withstand”).

25 tn Heb “the judgment.” The article indicates a judgment that is definite in the mind of the speaker. In the immediate context this probably does not refer to the “final judgment” described in later biblical revelation, but to a temporal/historical judgment which the author anticipates. Periodically during the OT period, God would come in judgment, removing the wicked from the scene, while preserving a godly remnant (see Gen 6-9; Ps 37; Hab 3).

26 tn Heb “and sinners in the assembly (or “circle”) of [the] godly.” The negative particle and verb from the preceding line are assumed by ellipsis here (“will not arise/stand”).

sn The assembly of the godly is insulated from divine judgment (Ps 37:12-17, 28-29).

27 tn The translation understands כי as asseverative. Another option is to translate “for,” understanding v. 6 as a theological explanation for vv. 3-5, which contrasts the respective destinies of the godly and the wicked.

28 tn Heb “the Lord knows the way of the righteous.” To “know a way” means, in its most basic sense, “to recognize/acknowledge a pathway, route, or prescribed way of life” (see Josh 3:4; Job 21:14; Ps 67:2; Isa 42:16; Jer 5:4-5). Here it could refer to the Lord recognizing the behavior of the godly and, by metonymy, rewarding their godliness with security and prosperity (resulting in the translation, “the Lord rewards the behavior of the godly”). The present translation takes the verb in the sense of “mark out” (cf. Job 23:10), which metonymically could mean “watch over, protect, guard.” In this case the “way of the godly” is not their behavior, but their course of life or destiny; a translation reflecting this would be “the Lord protects the lives of the godly” or “the Lord watches over the destiny of the godly” (cf. NEB, NIV, NRSV). The Hebrew active participle יוֹדֵעַ (yodea’, “knows”) has here a characteristic durative force.

29 tn Heb “but the way of the wicked perishes.” The “way of the wicked” may refer to their course of life (Ps 146:9; Prov 4:19; Jer 12:1) or their sinful behavior (Prov 12:26; 15:9). The Hebrew imperfect verbal form probably describes here what typically happens, though one could take the form as indicating what will happen (“will perish”).

30 sn Psalm 34. In this song of thanksgiving the psalmist praises God for delivering him from distress. He encourages others to be loyal to the Lord, tells them how to please God, and assures them that the Lord protects his servants. The psalm is an acrostic; vv. 1-21 begin with successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet. (Verse 6 begins with the letter he (ה) and v. 7 with the letter zayin (ז). The letter vav (ו), which comes between ה and ז, seems to be omitted, although it does appear at the beginning of v. 6b. The final verse of the psalm, which begins with the letter pe (פ), is outside the acrostic scheme.

31 tn Heb “By David, when he changed his sense before Abimelech and he drove him away and he went.”

sn Pretended to be insane. The psalm heading appears to refer to the account in 1 Sam 21:10-15 which tells how David, fearful that King Achish of Gath might kill him, pretended to be insane in hopes that the king would simply send him away. The psalm heading names the king Abimelech, not Achish, suggesting that the tradition is confused on this point. However, perhaps “Abimelech” was a royal title, rather than a proper name. See P. C. Craigie, Psalms 1-50 (WBC), 278.

32 tn Heb “bless.”

33 tn Heb “continually [will] his praise [be] in my mouth.”

34 tn Heb “my soul will boast”; or better, “let my soul boast.” Following the cohortative form in v. 1, it is likely that the prefixed verbal form here is jussive.

35 tn The two prefixed verbal forms in this verse are best taken as jussives, for the psalmist is calling his audience to worship (see v. 3).

36 tn Or “exalt.”

37 tn Heb “I sought the Lord.”

38 tc Heb “they look to him and are radiant and their faces are not ashamed.” The third person plural subject (“they”) is unidentified; there is no antecedent in the Hebrew text. For this reason some prefer to take the perfect verbal forms in the first line as imperatives, “look to him and be radiant” (cf. NEB, NRSV). Some medieval Hebrew mss and other ancient witnesses (Aquila, the Syriac, and Jerome) support an imperatival reading for the first verb. In the second line some (with support from the LXX and Syriac) change “their faces” to “your faces,” which allows one to retain more easily the jussive force of the verb (suggested by the preceding אַל [’al]): “do not let your faces be ashamed.” It is probable that the verbal construction in the second line is rhetorical, expressing the conviction that the action in view cannot or should not happen. See GKC 322 §109.e.

39 tn The pronoun refers back to “this oppressed man,” namely, the psalmist.

40 tn Heb “his”; the referent (the Lord) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

41 tn Heb “those who fear him.”

42 tn The prefixed verb with vav (ו) consecutive here carries the same generalizing force as the active participle in the first line. See GKC 329 §111.u.

43 tn This verb is normally used of tasting or savoring food. The metaphor here appears to compare the Lord to a tasty meal.

44 tn The Hebrew noun is an abstract plural. The word often refers metonymically to the happiness that God-given security and prosperity produce (see Pss 1:1, 3; 2:12; 41:1; 65:4; 84:12; 89:15; 106:3; 112:1; 127:5; 128:1; 144:15).

45 tn Heb “man.” The principle of the psalm is certainly applicable to all people, regardless of their gender or age. To facilitate modern application, we translate the gender and age specific “man” with the more neutral “one.”

46 tn “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 2:12; 5:11-12; 31:17-20; 34:21-22).

47 tn Heb “fear.”

48 tn Heb “O holy ones of his.”

49 tn Heb “those who fear him.”

50 tn Heb “the fear of the Lord I will teach you.” In vv. 13-14 the psalmist explains to his audience what it means to “fear” the Lord.

51 tn Heb “Who is the man who desires life?” The rhetorical question is used to grab the audience’s attention. “Life” probably refers here to quality of life, not just physical existence or even duration of life. See the following line.

52 tn Heb “[Who] loves days to see good?”

53 tn Heb “guard your tongue from evil.”

54 tn Heb “and your lips from speaking deception.”

55 tn Or “do good.”

56 tn Heb “seek peace and pursue it.”

57 tn Heb “the eyes of the Lord [are] toward the godly, and his ears [are] toward their cry for help.”

58 tn Heb “the face of the Lord [is] against the doers of evil to cut off from the earth memory of them.”

59 tn Heb “they” (i.e., the godly mentioned in v. 15).

60 tn The three perfect verbal forms are taken in a generalizing sense in v. 17 and translated with the present tense (note the generalizing mood of vv. 18-22).

61 tn The Hebrew imperfect verbal form highlights the generalizing statement and draws attention to the fact that the Lord typically delivers the oppressed and needy.

62 tn Heb “the crushed in spirit.”

63 tn The Hebrew text uses the singular form; the representative or typical godly person is envisioned.

64 tn Or “trials.”

65 tn The Hebrew imperfect verbal form highlights the generalizing statement and draws attention to the fact that the Lord typically delivers the godly.

66 tn Heb “him,” agreeing with the singular form in the preceding line.

67 tn The Hebrew participial form suggests such protection is characteristic.

68 tn That is, he protects the godly from physical harm.

69 sn Not one of them is broken. The author of the Gospel of John saw a fulfillment of these words in Jesus’ experience on the cross (see John 19:31-37), for the Roman soldiers, when they saw that Jesus was already dead, did not break his legs as was customarily done to speed the death of crucified individuals. John’s use of the psalm seems strange, for the statement in its original context suggests that the Lord protects the godly from physical harm. Jesus’ legs may have remained unbroken, but he was brutally and unjustly executed by his enemies. John seems to give the statement a literal sense that is foreign to its original literary context by applying a promise of divine protection to a man who was seemingly not saved by God. However, John saw in this incident a foreshadowing of Jesus’ ultimate deliverance and vindication. His unbroken bones were a reminder of God’s commitment to the godly and a sign of things to come. Jesus’ death on the cross was not the end of the story; God vindicated him, as John goes on to explain in the following context (John 19:38-20:18).

70 tn Heb “evil kills the wicked [one].” The singular form is representative; the typical evil person is envisioned. The Hebrew imperfect verbal form draws attention to the typical nature of the action.

71 tn Heb “are guilty,” but the verb is sometimes used metonymically with the meaning “to suffer the consequences of guilt,” the effect being substituted for the cause.

72 tn Heb “redeems the life of his servants.” The Hebrew participial form suggests such deliverance is characteristic.

73 tn “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 2:12; 5:11-12; 31:19).

74 sn Psalm 37. The psalmist urges his audience not to envy the wicked, but to trust in and obey the Lord, for he will destroy sinners and preserve the godly. When the smoke of judgment clears, the wicked will be gone, but the godly will remain and inherit God’s promised blessings. The psalm is an acrostic; every other verse begins with a successive letter of the Hebrew alphabet.

75 tn The verb form is singular (see vv. 3-10 as well, where the second person verbs and pronouns are also singular). The psalmist’s exhortation has a wisdom flavor to it; it is personalized for each member of his audience.

76 tn Heb “over sinners.” The context indicates that the psalmist has in mind the apparent power and success of sinners. See v. 7b.

77 tn Heb “like green vegetation.”

78 tn Heb “tend integrity.” The verb רָעָה (raah, “tend, shepherd”) is probably used here in the sense of “watch over, guard.” The noun אֱמוּנָה (’emunah, “faithfulness, honesty, integrity”) is understood as the direct object of the verb, though it could be taken as an adverbial accusative, “[feed] securely,” if the audience is likened to a flock of sheep.

79 tn Following the imperatives of v. 3 the prefixed verbal forms with vav (ו) in v. 4 indicate result. Faith and obedience (v. 3) will bring divine blessing (v. 4).

80 tn Or “and he will give you what you desire most.” Heb “and he will grant to you the requests of your heart.”

81 tn Heb “roll your way upon the Lord.” The noun “way” may refer here to one’s activities or course of life.

82 tn Heb “he will act.” Verse 6 explains what is meant; the Lord will vindicate those who trust in him.

83 tn Heb “and he will bring out like light your vindication, and your just cause like noonday.”

84 tn Heb “Be quiet before the Lord!”

85 tc The Hebrew text has וְהִתְחוֹלֵל (vÿhitkholel, Hitpolel of חִיל, khil, “writhe with fear, suffer”) but this idea fits awkwardly here. The text should be changed to וְתוֹחֵל (vÿtokhel; Hiphil of יָחַל, yakhal, “wait”). It appears that the Hebrew text is the product of dittography: (1) the initial וה (vav-he) is accidentally repeated from the preceding word (יְהוָה, yÿhvah) and (2) the final lamed (ל) is accidentally repeated (note the preceding lamed and the initial lamed on the following form, לו).

86 tn Heb “over one who causes his way to be successful.”

87 tn Heb “Refrain from anger! Abandon rage!”

88 tn Heb “for evil men.” The conjunction כִּי (ki, “for”) relates to the exhortations in v. 8; there is no reason to be frustrated, for the evildoers will be punished in due time.

89 tn Or “cut off, removed.”

90 tn Heb “and those who wait on the Lord, they will possess the land.”

91 tn Heb “and yet, a little, there will be no wicked [one].”

92 tn Heb “and you will carefully look upon his place, but he will not be [there].” The singular is used here in a representative sense; the typical evildoer is in view.

93 tn Heb “and they will take delight in (see v. 4) abundance of peace.”

94 tn Or “innocent.” The singular is used here in a representative sense; the typical evildoer and the typical godly individual are in view.

95 tn Heb “and gnashes at him with his teeth” (see Ps 35:16). The language may picture the evil men as wild animals. The active participles in v. 12 are used for purposes of dramatic description.

96 tn Heb “laughs.” As the next line indicates, this refers to derisive laughter (see 2:4). The Hebrew imperfect verbal form describes the action from the perspective of an eye-witness who is watching the divine response as it unfolds before his eyes.

97 tn Heb “for he sees that his day is coming.” As the following context makes clear (vv. 15, 17, 19-20), “his day” refers to the time when God will destroy evildoers.

98 tn Heb “to cause to fall.”

99 tn Heb “the upright in way,” i.e., those who lead godly lives.

100 tn Heb “enter into.”

101 tn Heb “Better [is] a little to the godly one than the wealth of many evil ones.” The following verses explain why this is true. Though a godly individual may seem to have only meager possessions, he always has what he needs and will eventually possess the land. The wicked may prosper for a brief time, but will eventually be destroyed by divine judgment and lose everything.

102 tn Heb “for the arms of the evil ones will be broken.”

103 tn The active participle here indicates this is characteristically true.

104 tn Heb “the Lord knows the days of the innocent ones.” He “knows” their days in the sense that he is intimately aware of and involved in their daily struggles. He meets their needs and sustains them.

105 tn Heb “and their inheritance is forever.”

106 tn Heb “in a time of trouble.”

107 tn Heb “in days of famine they will be satisfied.”

108 tn Or “for,” but Hebrew כי in this case would have to extend all the way back to v. 17a. Another option is to understand the particle as asseverative, “surely” (see v. 22).

109 tc The meaning of the MT (כִּיקַר כָּרִים [kiqar karim], “like what is precious among the pastures/rams”) is uncertain. One possibility is to take the noun כָּרִים as “pastures” and interpret “what is precious” as referring to flowers that blossom but then quickly disappear (see v. 2 and BDB 430 s.v. יָקָר 3). If כָּרִים is taken as “rams,” then “what is precious” might refer to the choicest portions of rams. The present translation follows a reading in the Dead Sea Scrolls (4QpPs37), כיקוד כורם (“like the burning of an oven”). The next line, which pictures the Lord’s enemies being consumed in smoke, supports this reading, which assumes confusion of the Hebrew letters resh (ר) and dalet (ד) at the end of the first word in the sequence.

110 tn Heb “they perish in smoke, they perish.” In addition to repeating the verb for emphasis, the psalmist uses the perfect form of the verb to picture the enemies’ demise as if it had already taken place. In this way he draws attention to the certitude of their judgment.

111 tn Heb “an evil [man] borrows and does not repay; but a godly [man] is gracious and gives.” The singular forms are used in a representative sense; the typical evildoer and godly individual are in view. The three active participles and one imperfect (“repay”) draw attention to the characteristic behavior of the two types.

112 tn The particle כִּי is best understood as asseverative or emphatic here.

113 tn Heb “those blessed by him.” The pronoun “him” must refer to the Lord (see vv. 20, 23), so the referent has been specified in the translation for clarity.

114 tn Heb “cursed.”

115 tn Or “cut off”; or “removed” (see v. 9).

116 tn Heb “from the Lord the steps of a man are established, and in his way he delights.” The second line qualifies the first. The man whose behavior is commendable in God’s sight is the one whose ways are established by God. Another option is that the second line refers to the godly man delighting in God’s “way,” namely the lifestyle which he prescribes for men. In this case one might translate, “The Lord grants success to the one who desires to obey his commands.”

117 tn Other translation options for כִּי in this context are “when” (so NASB) or “though” (so NEB, NIV, NRSV).

118 tn Heb “be hurled down.”

119 tn The active participle indicates this is characteristically true. See v. 17.

120 tn Or “offspring”; Heb “seed.”

121 tn Heb “or his offspring searching for food.” The expression “search for food” also appears in Lam 1:11, where Jerusalem’s refugees are forced to search for food and to trade their valuable possessions for something to eat.

122 tn The active participles describe characteristic behavior.

123 tn Or “offspring”; Heb “seed.”

124 tn Or “Do good!” The imperatives are singular (see v. 1).

125 tn Heb “and dwell permanently.” The imperative with vav (ו) is best taken here as a result clause after the preceding imperatives.

126 tn Heb “loves.” The verb “loves” is here metonymic; the Lord’s commitment to principles of justice causes him to actively promote these principles as he governs the world. The active participle describes characteristic behavior.

127 tn The imperfect verbal form draws attention to this generalizing statement.

128 tn Or “protected forever.”

129 tn Or “offspring”; Heb “seed.”

130 tn Or “cut off”; or “removed.” The perfect verbal forms in v. 28b state general truths.

131 tn Heb “The mouth of the godly [one] utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks justice.” The singular form is used in a representative sense; the typical godly individual is in view. The imperfect verbal forms draw attention to the characteristic behavior of the godly.

132 tn Heb “the law of his God [is] in his heart.” The “heart” is here the seat of one’s thoughts and motives.

133 tn Heb “his.” The pronoun has been translated as plural to agree with the representative or typical “godly” in v. 30.

134 tn Heb “an evil [one] watches the godly [one] and seeks to kill him.” The singular forms are used in a representative sense; the typical evildoer and godly individual are in view. The active participles describe characteristic behavior.

135 tn Heb “the Lord does not abandon him into his hand or condemn him when he is judged.” The imperfects draw attention to the Lord’s characteristic behavior in this regard.

136 tn Or “wait.”

137 tn Heb “keep his way.” The Lord’s “way” refers here to the “conduct required” by the Lord. In Ps 25 the Lord’s “ways” are associated with his covenantal demands (see vv. 4, 9-10). See also Ps 119:3 (cf. vv. 1, 4), as well as Deut 8:6; 10:12; 11:22; 19:9; 26:17; 28:9; 30:16.

138 tn Heb “and he will lift you up.” The prefixed verbal form with vav (ו) is best taken here as a result clause following the imperatives in the preceding lines.

139 tn Heb “when evil men are cut off you will see.”

140 tn The Hebrew uses the representative singular again here.

141 tn Heb “being exposed [?] like a native, luxuriant.” The Hebrew form מִתְעָרֶה (mitareh) appears to be a Hitpael participle from עָרָה (’arah, “be exposed”), but this makes no sense in this context. Perhaps the form is a dialectal variant of מִתְעָלָה (“giving oneself an air of importance”; see Jer 51:3), from עָלָה (’alah, “go up”; see P. C. Craigie, Psalms 1-50 [WBC], 296). The noun אֶזְרָח (’ezrakh, “native, full citizen”) refers elsewhere to people, but here, where it is collocated with “luxuriant, green,” it probably refers to a tree growing in native soil.

142 tn Heb “and he passes by and, look, he is not [there].” The subject of the verb “passes by” is probably indefinite, referring to any passerby. Some prefer to change the form to first person, “and I passed by” (cf. NEB; note the first person verbal forms in preceding verse and in the following line).

143 tn Or “upright.”

144 tn Heb “for [there is] an end for a man of peace.” Some interpret אַחֲרִית (’akharit, “end”) as referring to offspring (see the next verse and Ps 109:13; cf. NEB, NRSV).

145 tn Or “destroyed together.” In this case the psalmist pictures judgment sweeping them away as a group.

146 tn Heb “the end of evil men is cut off.” As in v. 37, some interpret אַחֲרִית (’akharit, “end”) as referring to offspring (see Ps 109:13). The perfect verbal forms in v. 38 probably express general truths. Another option is that they are used emphatically to state with certitude that the demise of the wicked is as good as done.

147 tn Heb “and the deliverance of the godly [ones] [is] from the Lord.”

148 tn Heb “[he is] their place of refuge in a time of trouble.”

149 tn The prefixed verbal forms with vav (ו) consecutive carry on the generalizing tone of the preceding verse.

150 sn Psalm 112. This wisdom psalm lists some of the benefits of living a godly life. The psalm is an acrostic. After the introductory call to praise, every poetic line (twenty-two in all) begins with a successive letter of the Hebrew alphabet.

151 tn Heb “[Oh] the happiness [of] the man.” Hebrew wisdom literature often assumes and reflects the male-oriented perspective of ancient Israelite society. The individual is representative of a larger group, called the “godly” in vv. 3-4. The principle of the psalm is certainly applicable to all people, regardless of their gender. To facilitate modern application, we translate the gender specific “man” with the more neutral “one.” The generic masculine pronoun is used in the following verses.

152 tn Heb “fears.”

153 tn Heb “in his commands he delights very much.” The words “in keeping” are supplied in the translation for clarification. Taking delight in the law is metonymic here for obeying God’s moral will. See Ps 1:2.

154 tn Or “offspring”; Heb “seed.”

155 tn Heb “His seed will be mighty on the earth, the generation of the godly.” The Hebrew term דוֹר (dor, “generation”) could be taken as parallel to “offspring” and translated “posterity,” but the singular more likely refers to the godly as a class. See BDB 189-90 s.v. for other examples where “generation” refers to a class of people.

156 tn Heb “stands forever.”

157 tn In this context “light” symbolizes divine blessing in its various forms (see v. 2), including material prosperity and stability.

158 tn Heb “merciful and compassionate and just.” The Hebrew text has three singular adjectives, which are probably substantival and in apposition to the “godly” (which is plural, however). By switching to the singular, the psalmist focuses on each individual member of the group known as the “godly.” Note how vv. 5-9, like vv. 1-2a, use the singular to describe the representative godly individual who typifies the whole group.

159 tn Heb “man.”

160 tn Heb “he sustains his matters with justice.”

161 tn Heb “for an eternal memorial a just [one] will be.”

162 tn Heb “his heart,” viewed here as the seat of the volition and emotions (see Ps 108:1).

163 tn The passive participle בָּטֻחַ [בָּטוּחַ] (batuakh [batuakh]) expresses a state that results from the subject’s action. See Isa 26:3.

164 tn Heb “his heart,” viewed here as the seat of the volition.

165 tn Heb “he scatters, he gives.”

166 tn Heb “stands forever.”

167 tn Heb “his horn will be lifted up in honor.” 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/lift up the horn” signifies military victory (see 1 Sam 2:10; Pss 89:17, 24; 92:10; Lam 2:17).

168 tn The Hebrew text uses the singular; the representative wicked individual is in view as typifying the group (note the use of the plural form in v. 10).

169 tn Heb “his teeth he will gnash.” In Pss 35:16 and 37:12 this action is associated with a vicious attack.

170 tn This could mean that the desires of the wicked will go unfulfilled. Another possibility is that “desire” refers by metonymy to the object desired and acquired. In this case the point is that the wicked will lose what they desired so badly and acquired by evil means (see Ps 10:3).



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