2:12 Give sincere homage! 1
Otherwise he 2 will be angry, 3
and you will die because of your behavior, 4
when his anger quickly ignites. 5
How blessed 6 are all who take shelter in him! 7
34:9 Remain loyal to 8 the Lord, you chosen people of his, 9
for his loyal followers 10 lack nothing!
For the music director; a psalm of David.
41:1 How blessed 12 is the one who treats the poor properly! 13
When trouble comes, 14 the Lord delivers him. 15
65:4 How blessed 16 is the one whom you choose,
and allow to live in your palace courts. 17
May we be satisfied with the good things of your house –
your holy palace. 18
84:12 O Lord who rules over all, 19
how blessed are those who trust in you! 20
89:15 How blessed are the people who worship you! 21
O Lord, they experience your favor. 22
106:3 How blessed are those who promote justice,
and do what is right all the time!
112:1 Praise the Lord!
How blessed is the one 24 who obeys 25 the Lord,
who takes great delight in keeping his commands. 26
127:5 How blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them!
They will not be put to shame 27 when they confront 28 enemies at the city gate.
A song of ascents. 30
128:1 How blessed is every one of the Lord’s loyal followers, 31
each one who keeps his commands! 32
144:15 How blessed are the people who experience these things! 33
How blessed are the people whose God is the Lord!
1 tn Traditionally, “kiss the son” (KJV). But בַּר (bar) is the Aramaic word for “son,” not the Hebrew. For this reason many regard the reading as suspect. Some propose emendations of vv. 11b-12a. One of the more popular proposals is to read בִּרְעָדָה נַשְּׁקוּ לְרַגְלָיו (bir’adah nashÿqu lÿraslayv, “in trembling kiss his feet”). It makes better sense to understand בַּר (bar) as an adjective meaning “pure” (see Pss 24:4; 73:1 and BDB 141 s.v. בַּר 3) functioning here in an adverbial sense. If read this way, then the syntactical structure of exhortation (imperative followed by adverbial modifier) corresponds to the two preceding lines (see v. 11). The verb נָשַׁק (nashaq, “kiss”) refers metonymically to showing homage (see 1 Sam 10:1; Hos 13:2). The exhortation in v. 12a advocates a genuine expression of allegiance and warns against insincerity. When swearing allegiance, vassal kings would sometimes do so insincerely, with the intent of rebelling when the time was right. The so-called “Vassal Treaties of Esarhaddon” also warn against such an attitude. In this treaty the vassal is told: “If you, as you stand on the soil where this oath [is sworn], swear the oath with your words and lips [only], do not swear with your entire heart, do not transmit it to your sons who will live after this treaty, if you take this curse upon yourselves but do not plan to keep the treaty of Esarhaddon…may your sons and grandsons because of this fear in the future” (see J. B. Pritchard, ed., The Ancient Near East, 2:62).
2 tn Throughout the translation of this verse the third person masculine pronouns refer to the
3 tn The implied subject of the verb is the
4 tn Heb “and you will perish [in the] way.” The Hebrew word דֶּרֶךְ (derekh, “way”) here refers to their rebellious behavior (not to a pathway, as often understood). It functions syntactically as an adverbial accusative in relation to the verb “perish.”
5 tn Or “burns.” The
6 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; 34:9; 41:1; 65:4; 84:12; 89:15; 106:3; 112:1; 127:5; 128:1; 144:15).
7 sn Who take shelter in him. “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).
8 tn Heb “fear.”
9 tn Heb “O holy ones of his.”
10 tn Heb “those who fear him.”
11 sn Psalm 41. The psalmist is confident (vv. 11-12) that the Lord has heard his request to be healed (vv. 4-10), and he anticipates the joy he will experience when the Lord intervenes (vv. 1-3). One must assume that the psalmist is responding to a divine oracle of assurance (see P. C. Craigie, Psalms 1-50 [WBC], 319-20). The final verse is a fitting conclusion to this psalm, but it is also serves as a fitting conclusion to the first “book” (or major editorial division) of the Psalter. Similar statements appear at or near the end of each of the second, third, and fourth “books” of the Psalter (see Pss 72:19, 89:52, and 106:48 respectively).
12 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; 34:9; 65:4; 84:12; 89:15; 106:3; 112:1; 127:5; 128:1; 144:15).
13 sn One who treats the poor properly. The psalmist is characterizing himself as such an individual and supplying a reason why God has responded favorably to his prayer. The Lord’s attitude toward the merciful mirrors their treatment of the poor.
14 tn Heb “in the day of trouble” (see Ps 27:5).
15 tn That is, the one who has been kind to the poor. The prefixed verbal form could be taken as jussive of prayer (“may the
16 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; 2:12; 34:9; 41:1; 84:12; 89:15; 106:3; 112:1; 127:5; 128:1; 144:15).
17 tn Heb “[whom] you bring near [so that] he might live [in] your courts.”
18 tn Or “temple.”
19 tn Traditionally “
20 tn Heb “[Oh] the happiness [of] the man [who] trusts in you.” Hebrew literature often assumes and reflects the male-oriented perspective of ancient Israelite society. The principle stated here 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 plural “those.” The individual referred to here is representative of all followers of God, as the use of the plural form in v. 12b indicates.
21 tn Heb “who know the shout.” “Shout” here refers to the shouts of the
22 tn Heb “in the light of your face they walk.” The idiom “light of your face” probably refers to a smile (see Eccl 8:1), which in turn suggests favor and blessing (see Num 6:25; Pss 4:6; 31:16; 44:3; 67:1; 80:3, 7, 19; Dan 9:17).
23 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.
24 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.
25 tn Heb “fears.”
26 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.
27 tn Being “put to shame” is here metonymic for being defeated, probably in a legal context, as the reference to the city gate suggests. One could be humiliated (Ps 69:12) or deprived of justice (Amos 5:12) at the gate, but with strong sons to defend the family interests this was less likely to happen.
28 tn Heb “speak with.”
29 sn Psalm 128. The psalmist observes that the godly individual has genuine happiness because the Lord rewards such a person with prosperity and numerous children.
30 sn The precise significance of this title, which appears in Pss 120-134, is unclear. Perhaps worshipers recited these psalms when they ascended the road to Jerusalem to celebrate annual religious festivals. For a discussion of their background see L. C. Allen, Psalms 101-150 (WBC), 219-21.
31 tn Heb “every fearer of the
32 tn Heb “the one who walks in his ways.”
33 tn Heb “[O] the happiness of the people who [it is] such to them.”