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Psalms 37:12-15


37:12 Evil men plot against the godly 1 

and viciously attack them. 2 

37:13 The Lord laughs in disgust 3  at them,

for he knows that their day is coming. 4 

37:14 Evil men draw their swords

and prepare their bows,

to bring down 5  the oppressed and needy,

and to slaughter those who are godly. 6 

37:15 Their swords will pierce 7  their own hearts,

and their bows will be broken.

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

2 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.

3 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.

4 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.

5 tn Heb “to cause to fall.”

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

7 tn Heb “enter into.”

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