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Psalms 89:8-13

Context

89:8 O Lord, sovereign God! 1 

Who is strong like you, O Lord?

Your faithfulness surrounds you.

89:9 You rule over the proud sea. 2 

When its waves surge, 3  you calm them.

89:10 You crushed the Proud One 4  and killed it; 5 

with your strong arm you scattered your enemies.

89:11 The heavens belong to you, as does the earth.

You made the world and all it contains. 6 

89:12 You created the north and the south.

Tabor and Hermon 7  rejoice in your name.

89:13 Your arm is powerful,

your hand strong,

your right hand 8  victorious. 9 

1 tn Traditionally “God of hosts.” The title here pictures the Lord as enthroned in the midst of the angelic hosts of heaven.

2 tn Heb “the majesty of the sea.”

3 tn Heb “rise up.”

4 tn Heb “Rahab.” The name “Rahab” means “proud one.” Since it is sometimes used of Egypt (see Ps 87:4; Isa 30:7), the passage may allude to the exodus. However, the name is also used of the sea (or the mythological sea creature) which symbolizes the disruptive forces of the world that seek to replace order with chaos (see Job 9:13; 26:12). Isa 51:9 appears to combine the mythological and historical referents. The association of Rahab with the sea in Ps 89 (see v. 9) suggests that the name carries symbolic force in this context. In this case the passage may allude to creation (see vv. 11-12), when God overcame the great deep and brought order out of chaos.

5 tn Heb “like one fatally wounded.”

6 tn Heb “the world and its fullness, you established them.”

7 sn Tabor and Hermon were two of the most prominent mountains in Palestine.

8 sn The Lord’s arm, hand, and right hand all symbolize his activities, especially his exploits in war.

9 tn Heb “is lifted up.” The idiom “the right hand is lifted up” refers to victorious military deeds (see Pss 89:42; 118:16).



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