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Psalms 56:12-13


56:12 I am obligated to fulfill the vows I made to you, O God; 1 

I will give you the thank-offerings you deserve, 2 

56:13 when you deliver 3  my life from death.

You keep my feet from stumbling, 4 

so that I might serve 5  God as I enjoy life. 6 

1 tn Heb “upon me, O God, [are] your vows.”

2 tn Heb “I will repay thank-offerings to you.”

3 tn The perfect verbal form is probably future perfect; the psalmist promises to make good on his vows once God has delivered him (see Pss 13:5; 52:9). (2) Another option is to understand the final two verses as being added later, after the Lord intervened on the psalmist’s behalf. In this case one may translate, “for you have delivered.” Other options include taking the perfect as (3) generalizing (“for you deliver”) or (4) rhetorical (“for you will”).

4 tn Heb “are not my feet [kept] from stumbling?” The rhetorical question expects the answer, “Of course they are!” The question has been translated as an affirmation for the sake of clarification of meaning.

5 tn Heb “walk before.” For a helpful discussion of the background and meaning of this Hebrew idiom, see M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 254; cf. the same idiom in 2 Kgs 20:3; Isa 38:3.

6 tn Heb “in the light of life.” The phrase is used here and in Job 33:30.

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