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Psalms 4:2-3


4:2 You men, 1  how long will you try to turn my honor into shame? 2 

How long 3  will you love what is worthless 4 

and search for what is deceptive? 5  (Selah)

4:3 Realize that 6  the Lord shows the godly special favor; 7 

the Lord responds 8  when I cry out to him.

1 tn Heb “sons of man.”

2 tn Heb “how long my honor to shame?”

3 tn The interrogative construction עַד־מֶה (’ad-meh, “how long?”), is understood by ellipsis in the second line.

4 tn Heb “emptiness.”

5 tn Heb “a lie.” Some see the metonymic language of v. 2b (“emptiness, lie”) as referring to idols or false gods. However, there is no solid immediate contextual evidence for such an interpretation. It is more likely that the psalmist addresses those who threaten him (see v. 1) and refers in a general way to their sinful lifestyle. (See R. Mosis, TDOT 7:121.) The two terms allude to the fact that sinful behavior is ultimately fruitless and self-destructive.

6 tn Heb “and know that.”

7 tn Heb “that the Lord sets apart a faithful one for himself.” The psalmist states a general principle, though the singular form and the parallel line indicate he has himself in mind as the representative godly person. A חָסִיד (khasid; here translated as “the godly”) is one who does what is right in God’s eyes and remains faithful to God (see Pss 12:1; 18:25; 31:23; 37:28; 86:2; 97:10).

8 tn Heb “hears.”

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