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Psalms 44:5-9

Context

44:5 By your power 1  we will drive back 2  our enemies;

by your strength 3  we will trample down 4  our foes! 5 

44:6 For I do not trust in my bow,

and I do not prevail by my sword.

44:7 For you deliver 6  us from our enemies;

you humiliate 7  those who hate us.

44:8 In God I boast all day long,

and we will continually give thanks to your name. (Selah)

44:9 But 8  you rejected and embarrassed us!

You did not go into battle with our armies. 9 

1 tn Heb “by you.”

2 tn Heb “gore” (like an ox). If this portion of the psalm contains the song of confidence/petition the Israelites recited prior to battle, then the imperfects here and in the next line may express their expectation of victory. Another option is that the imperfects function in an emphatic generalizing manner. In this case one might translate, “you [always] drive back…you [always] trample down.”

sn The Hebrew verb translated “drive back” is literally “gore”; the imagery is that of a powerful wild ox that “gores” its enemies and tramples them underfoot.

3 tn Heb “in your name.” The Lord’s “name” refers here to his revealed character or personal presence. Specifically in this context his ability to deliver, protect, and energize for battle is in view (see Ps 54:1).

4 sn The image of the powerful wild ox continues; see the note on the phrase “drive back” in the preceding line.

5 tn Heb “those who rise up [against] us.”

6 tn Or “have delivered,” if past successes are in view. Another option is to take the perfect as rhetorical, emphasizing that victory is certain (note the use of the imperfect in vv. 5-6).

7 tn Or “have humiliated,” if past successes are in view. Another option is to take the perfect as rhetorical, emphasizing that victory is certain (note the use of the imperfect in vv. 5-6).

8 tn The particle אַף (’af, “but”) is used here as a strong adversative contrasting the following statement with what precedes.

9 tn Heb “you did not go out with our armies.” The prefixed verbal form is a preterite (without vav [ו] consecutive).



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