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Psalms 90:7-10

Context

90:7 Yes, 1  we are consumed by your anger;

we are terrified by your wrath.

90:8 You are aware of our sins; 2 

you even know about our hidden sins. 3 

90:9 Yes, 4  throughout all our days we experience your raging fury; 5 

the years of our lives pass quickly, like a sigh. 6 

90:10 The days of our lives add up to seventy years, 7 

or eighty, if one is especially strong. 8 

But even one’s best years are marred by trouble and oppression. 9 

Yes, 10  they pass quickly 11  and we fly away. 12 

1 tn Or “for.”

2 tn Heb “you set our sins in front of you.”

3 tn Heb “what we have hidden to the light of your face.” God’s face is compared to a light or lamp that exposes the darkness around it.

4 tn Or “for.”

5 tn Heb “all our days pass by in your anger.”

6 tn Heb “we finish our years like a sigh.” In Ezek 2:10 the word הֶגֶה (hegeh) elsewhere refers to a grumbling or moaning sound. Here a brief sigh or moan is probably in view. If so, the simile pictures one’s lifetime as transient. Another option is that the simile alludes to the weakness that characteristically overtakes a person at the end of one’s lifetime. In this case the phrase could be translated, “we end our lives with a painful moan.”

7 tn Heb “the days of our years, in them [are] seventy years.”

8 tn Heb “or if [there is] strength, eighty years.”

9 tn Heb “and their pride [is] destruction and wickedness.” The Hebrew noun רֹהַב (rohav) occurs only here. BDB 923 s.v. assigns the meaning “pride,” deriving the noun from the verbal root רהב (“to act stormily [boisterously, arrogantly]”). Here the “pride” of one’s days (see v. 9) probably refers to one’s most productive years in the prime of life. The words translated “destruction and wickedness” are also paired in Ps 10:7. They also appear in proximity in Pss 7:14 and 55:10. The oppressive and abusive actions of evil men are probably in view (see Job 4:8; 5:6; 15:35; Isa 10:1; 59:4).

10 tn or “for.”

11 tn Heb “it passes quickly.” The subject of the verb is probably “their pride” (see the preceding line). The verb גּוּז (guz) means “to pass” here; it occurs only here and in Num 11:31.

12 sn We fly away. The psalmist compares life to a bird that quickly flies off (see Job 20:8).



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