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Psalms 48:5-6

Context

48:5 As soon as they see, 1  they are shocked; 2 

they are terrified, they quickly retreat. 3 

48:6 Look at them shake uncontrollably, 4 

like a woman writhing in childbirth. 5 

1 tn The object of “see” is omitted, but v. 3b suggests that the Lord’s self-revelation as the city’s defender is what they see.

2 tn Heb “they look, so they are shocked.” Here כֵּן (ken, “so”) has the force of “in the same measure.”

3 tn The translation attempts to reflect the staccato style of the Hebrew text, where the main clauses of vv. 4-6 are simply juxtaposed without connectives.

4 tn Heb “trembling seizes them there.” The adverb שָׁם (sham, “there”) is used here, as often in poetic texts, to point “to a spot in which a scene is localized vividly in the imagination” (BDB 1027 s.v.).

5 tn Heb “[with] writhing like one giving birth.”

sn The language of vv. 5-6 is reminiscent of Exod 15:15.



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