For the music director; according to the alumoth-labben style; 2 a psalm of David.
9:1 I will thank the Lord with all my heart!
I will tell about all your amazing deeds! 3
9:2 I will be happy and rejoice in you!
I will sing praises to you, O sovereign One! 4
9:3 When my enemies turn back,
they trip and are defeated 5 before you.
from your throne you pronounced a just decision. 7
you destroyed the wicked; 9
you permanently wiped out all memory of them. 10
you destroyed their cities; 12
all memory of the enemies has perished. 13
he reigns in a just manner. 16
9:8 He judges the world fairly;
he makes just legal decisions for the nations. 17
he provides safety in times of trouble. 20
for you, Lord, do not abandon those who seek your help. 22
Tell the nations what he has done! 24
“Have mercy on me, 29 Lord!
See how I am oppressed by those who hate me, 30
O one who can snatch me away 31 from the gates of death!
their feet were caught in the net they had hidden. 37
9:16 The Lord revealed himself;
he accomplished justice;
the hopes of the oppressed are not forever dashed. 44
Don’t let men be defiant! 46
May the nations be judged in your presence!
Let the nations know they are mere mortals! 48 (Selah)
10:1 Why, Lord, do you stand far off?
Why do you pay no attention during times of trouble? 50
10:4 The wicked man is so arrogant he always thinks,
“God won’t hold me accountable; he doesn’t care.” 61
He has no regard for your commands; 63
he disdains all his enemies. 64
“I will never 66 be upended,
because I experience no calamity.” 67
his tongue injures and destroys. 69
in hidden places he kills the innocent.
His eyes look for some unfortunate victim. 71
he lies in ambush, waiting to catch 73 the oppressed;
10:10 His victims are crushed and beaten down;
they are trapped in his sturdy nets. 76
“God overlooks it;
he does not pay attention;
he never notices.” 78
O God, strike him down! 80
Do not forget the oppressed!
The unfortunate victim entrusts his cause to you; 89
Hold him accountable for his wicked deeds, 93
which he thought you would not discover. 94
The nations are driven out of his land. 96
you make them feel secure because you listen to their prayer. 99
so that mere mortals may no longer terrorize them. 102
1 sn Psalm 9. The psalmist, probably speaking on behalf of Israel or Judah, praises God for delivering him from hostile nations. He celebrates God’s sovereignty and justice, and calls on others to join him in boasting of God’s greatness. Many Hebrew
2 tc The meaning of the Hebrew term עַלְמוּת (’almut) is uncertain. Some
4 tn Heb “[to] your name, O Most High.” God’s “name” refers metonymically to his divine characteristics as suggested by his name, in this case “Most High.” This divine title (עֶלְיוֹן, ’elyo/) pictures God as the exalted ruler of the universe who vindicates the innocent and judges the wicked. See especially Ps 47:2.
5 tn Or “perish”; or “die.” The imperfect verbal forms in this line either emphasize what typically happens or describe vividly the aftermath of a recent battle in which the
6 tn Heb “for you accomplished my justice and my legal claim.”
7 tn Heb “you sat on a throne [as] one who judges [with] righteousness.” The perfect verbal forms in v. 4 probably allude to a recent victory (see vv. 5-7). Another option is to understand the verbs as describing what is typical (“you defend…you sit on a throne”).
8 tn The verb גָּעַר (ga’ar) is often understood to mean “rebuke” and in this context taken to refer to the
9 tn The singular form is collective (note “nations” and “their name”). In the psalms the “wicked” (רְשָׁעִים, rÿsha’im) are typically proud, practical atheists (Ps 10:2, 4, 11) who hate God’s commands, commit sinful deeds, speak lies and slander (Ps 50:16-20), and cheat others (Ps 37:21). In this context the hostile nations who threaten Israel/Judah are in view.
10 tn Heb “their name you wiped out forever and ever.” The three perfect verbal forms in v. 5 probably refer to a recent victory (definite past or present perfect use), although they might express what is typical (characteristic use).
11 tn Heb “the enemy – they have come to an end [in] ruins permanently.” The singular form אוֹיֵב (’oyev, “enemy”) is collective. It is placed at the beginning of the verse to heighten the contrast with יְהוָה (yÿhvah, “the
12 tn Heb “you uprooted cities.”
13 tn Heb “it has perished, their remembrance, they.” The independent pronoun at the end of the line is in apposition to the preceding pronominal suffix and lends emphasis (see IBHS 299 §16.3.4). The referent of the masculine pronoun is the nations/enemies (cf. v. 5), not the cities (the Hebrew noun עָרִים [’arim, “cities”] is grammatically feminine). This has been specified in the present translation for clarity; many modern translations retain the pronoun “them,” resulting in ambiguity (cf. NRSV “their cities you have rooted out; the very memory of them has perished”).
16 tn Heb “he establishes for justice his throne.”
18 tn Following the imperfect in v. 9, the construction vav (ו) conjunctive + shortened form of the prefixed verb הָיָה (hayah) indicates a consequence or result of the preceding statement. The construction functions this same way in Pss 81:15 and 104:20.
19 tn Heb “and the
20 tn Heb “[he is] an elevated place for times in trouble.” Here an “elevated place” refers to a stronghold, a defensible, secure position that represents a safe haven in times of unrest or distress (cf. NEB “tower of strength”; NIV, NRSV “stronghold”).
21 tn Heb “and the ones who know your name trust in you.” The construction vav (ו) conjunctive + imperfect at the beginning of the verse expresses another consequence of the statement made in v. 8. “To know” the
22 tn Heb “the ones who seek you.”
24 tn Heb “declare among the nations his deeds.”
25 tn Heb “for the one who seeks shed blood remembered them.” The idiomatic expression “to seek shed blood” seems to carry the idea “to seek payment/restitution for one’s shed blood.” The plural form דָּמִים (damim, “shed blood”) occurs only here as the object of דָּרַשׁ (darash); the singular form דָּם (dam, “blood”) appears with the verb in Gen 9:5; 42:22; Ezek 33:6. “Them,” the pronominal object of the verb “remembered,” refers to the oppressed, mentioned specifically in the next line, so the referent has been specified in the translation for clarity.
26 tn Heb “did not forget.”
27 tn Heb “the cry for help of the oppressed.” In this context the “oppressed” are the psalmist and those he represents, whom the hostile nations have threatened.
28 tn The words “when they prayed,” though not represented in the Hebrew text, are supplied in the translation for clarification. The petition in vv. 13-14 is best understood as the cry for help which the oppressed offered to God when the nations threatened. The
29 tn Or “show me favor.”
30 tn Heb “see my misery from the ones who hate me.”
31 tn Heb “one who lifts me up.”
32 tn Or “so that I might.”
33 tn Heb “all your praise.” “Praise” stands by metonymy for the mighty acts that prompt it.
34 sn Daughter Zion is an idiomatic title for Jerusalem. It appears frequently in the prophets, but only here in the psalms.
35 tn Heb “in your deliverance.”
36 tn Heb “sank down.”
38 tn Heb “by the work of his hands [the] wicked [one] was ensnared. The singular form רָשָׁע (rasha’, “wicked”) is collective or representative here (see vv. 15, 17). The form נוֹקֵשׁ (noqesh) appears to be an otherwise unattested Qal form (active participle) from נָקַשׁ (naqash), but the form should be emended to נוֹקַשׁ (noqash), a Niphal perfect from יָקַשׁ (yaqash).
39 tn This is probably a technical musical term.
40 tn Heb “the wicked turn back to Sheol.” The imperfect verbal form either emphasizes what typically happens or describes vividly the aftermath of the
41 tn The words “this is the destiny of” are supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons. The verb “are turned back” is understood by ellipsis (see the preceding line).
42 tn Heb “forget.” “Forgetting God” refers here to worshiping false gods and thereby refusing to recognize his sovereignty (see also Deut 8:19; Judg 3:7; 1 Sam 12:9; Isa 17:10; Jer 3:21; Ps 44:20). The nations’ refusal to acknowledge God’s sovereignty accounts for their brazen attempt to attack and destroy his people.
43 tn Or “forgotten.”
44 tn Heb “the hope of the afflicted does [not] perish forever.” The negative particle is understood by ellipsis; note the preceding line. The imperfect verbal forms express what typically happens.
45 sn Rise up,
46 tn Or “prevail.”
47 tn Heb “place,
48 tn Heb “let the nations know they [are] man[kind]”; i.e., mere human beings (as opposed to God).
49 sn Psalm 10. Many Hebrew
50 tn Heb “you hide for times in trouble.” The interrogative “why” is understood by ellipsis; note the preceding line. The Hiphil verbal form “hide” has no expressed object. Some supply “your eyes” by ellipsis (see BDB 761 s.v. I עָלַם Hiph and HALOT 835 s.v. I עלם hif) or emend the form to a Niphal (“you hide yourself,” see BHS, note c; cf. NEB, NIV, NRSV).
51 tn Heb “because of the pride of [the] wicked he burns [i.e. hotly pursues] [the] oppressed.” The singular forms רָשָׁע (rasha’, “wicked”) and עָנִי (’aniy, “oppressed”) are collective and representative, as indicated in the next line, which uses plural verb forms to describe the actions of both.
53 tn Heb “they are trapped in the schemes which they have thought up.” The referents of the two pronominal suffixes on the verbs have been specified in the translation for clarity. The referent of the first suffix (“they”) is taken as the oppressed, while the referent of the second (“they”) is taken to be the wicked (cf. NIV, which renders “wicked” in the previous line as a collective singular). Others take the referent of both occurrences of “they” in the line to be the wicked (cf. NRSV, “let them be caught in the schemes they have devised”).
54 tn The translation assumes כִּי (ki) is asseverative: “indeed, certainly.” Another option is to translate “for,” understanding v. 3 as giving the reason why the wicked so arrogantly seek to destroy the helpless (so NASB, NRSV).
56 tn Heb “the wicked [one] boasts on account of the desire of his appetite.” The translation assumes that the preposition עַל (’al) introduces the reason why the wicked boasts (cf. this use of עַל with הָלַל (halal) in Ps 119:164 and Ezra 3:11). In this case, the “desire of his appetite” refers by metonymy to the object desired and acquired.
57 tn The translation assumes the active participle is substantival, referring to the wicked man mentioned in the preceding line. The substantival participle is then understood as the subject of the following verbs. For other examples of the participle of בָּצַע (batsar) used of those who desire and/or acquire wealth through dishonest and/or violent means, see Prov 1:19; 15:27; Jer 6:13; 8:10; Hab 2:9.
58 tn The verb בָּרַךְ (barakh) normally means “to bless,” but in a few cases it exhibits the polarized meaning “to curse” (1 Kgs 21:10, 13; Job 1:5-11; 2:5-9). (Some regard this use of בָּרַךְ as a mere euphemism.) The verb refers to the act of pronouncing or calling down a formal curse upon the object of one’s anger.
59 tn The conjunction “and” is supplied in the translation; it does not appear in the Hebrew text.
60 tn Another option is to translate, “he blesses one who robs others, [but] he curses the
61 tn Heb “the wicked [one], according to the height of his nose, he does not seek, there is no God, all his thoughts.” The phrase “height of his nose” probably refers to an arrogant or snooty attitude; it likely pictures one with his nose turned upward toward the sky in pride. One could take the “wicked” as the subject of the negated verb “seek,” in which case the point is that the wicked do not “seek” God. The translation assumes that this statement, along with “there is no God,” is what the wicked man thinks to himself. In this case God is the subject of the verb “seek,” and the point is that God will not hold the wicked man accountable for his actions. Verse 13 strongly favors this interpretation. The statement “there is no God” is not a philosophical assertion that God does not exist, but rather a confident affirmation that he is unconcerned about how men live morally and ethically (see v. 11).
63 tc Heb “[on a] height, your judgments from before him.” If the MT is retained, then the idea may be that God’s “judgments” are high above (i.e., not recognized) by the wicked man. However, the syntax is awkward. The translation assumes an emendation of מָרוֹם (marom, “height”) to סָרוּ (saru, “[your judgments] are turned aside”), the final mem (ם) being dittographic (note the initial mem on the immediately following word [מִשְׁפָּטֶיךָ, mishÿfatekha, “your judgments”). “Judgments” probably refers here to God’s laws or commands, rather than his judicial decisions or acts of judgment.
64 tn Heb “all his enemies, he snorts against them.” This may picture the wicked man defiantly challenging his enemies because he is confident of success. Another option is to take יָפִיחַ (yafiakh) from the root יָפַח (yafakh, “to testify”) and translate “he testifies against all his enemies,” implying that he gets the upper hand over them in legal battles. The noun יָפֵחַ (yafeakh, “witness”) is attested in biblical Hebrew (see Prov 6:19; 12:17; 14:5, 25; 19:5, 9, and Hab 2:3). The verb, however, is not clearly attested.
65 tn Heb “he says in his heart/mind.”
66 tn Heb “for a generation and a generation.” The traditional accentuation of the MT understands these words with the following line.
67 tn Heb “who, not in calamity.” If אֲשֶׁר (’asher) is taken as a relative pronoun here, then one could translate, “[I] who [am] not in calamity.” Some emend אֲשֶׁר to אֹשֶׁר (’osher, “happiness”; see HALOT 99 s.v. אֹשֶׁר); one might then translate, “[I live in] happiness, not in calamity.” The present translation assumes that אֲשֶׁר functions here as a causal conjunction, “because, for.” For this use of אֲשֶׁר, see BDB 83 s.v. אֲשֶׁר 8.c (where the present text is not cited).
68 tn Heb “[with] a curse his mouth is full, and lies and injury.”
70 tn Heb “he sits in the ambush of the villages.”
71 tn Heb “his eyes for an unfortunate person lie hidden.” The language may picture a lion (see v. 9) peering out from its hiding place in anticipation that an unsuspecting victim will soon come strolling along.
72 tn Or “in its den.”
75 tn Or “when he [i.e., the wicked man] pulls in his net.”
sn The background of the imagery is hunting, where the hunter uses a net to entrap an unsuspecting bird or wild animal.
76 tn Heb “he crushes, he is bowed down, and he falls into his strong [ones], [the] unfortunate [ones].” This verse presents several lexical and syntactical difficulties. The first word (יִדְכֶּה, yidekeh) is an otherwise unattested Qal form of the verb דָּכָה (dakhah, “crush”). (The Qere [marginal] form is imperfect; the consonantal text [Kethib] has the perfect with a prefixed conjunction vav [ו].) If the wicked man’s victim is the subject, which seems to be the case (note the two verbs which follow), then the form should be emended to a Niphal (יִדָּכֶה, yiddakheh). The phrase בַּעֲצוּמָיו (ba’atsumayv, “into his strong [ones]”), poses interpretive problems. The preposition -בְּ (bet) follows the verb נָפַל (nafal, “fall”), so it may very well carry the nuance “into” here, with “his strong [ones]” then referring to something into which the oppressed individual falls. Since a net is mentioned in the preceding verse as the instrument used to entrap the victim, it is possible that “strong [ones]” here refers metonymically to the wicked man’s nets or traps. Ps 35:8 refers to a man falling into a net (רֶשֶׁת, reshet), as does Ps 141:10 (where the plural of מִכְמָר [mikhmar, “net”] is used). A hunter’s net (רֶשֶׁת), is associated with snares (פַּח [pakh], מֹקְשִׁים, [moqÿshim]) and ropes (חֲבָלִים, khavalim) in Ps 140:5. The final word in the verse (חֶלְכָּאִים (khelka’im, “unfortunate [ones]”) may be an alternate form of חֵלְכָח (khelkhakh, “unfortunate [one]”; see vv. 8, 14). The Qere (marginal reading) divides the form into two words, חֵיל כָּאִים (khel ka’im, “army/host of disheartened [ones]”). The three verb forms in v. 10 are singular because the representative “oppressed” individual is the grammatical subject (see the singular עָנִי [’aniy] in v. 9).
78 tn Heb “God forgets, he hides his face, he never sees.”
79 sn Rise up, O
80 tn Heb “lift up your hand.” Usually the expression “lifting the hand” refers to praying (Pss 28:2; 134:2) or making an oath (Ps 106:26), but here it probably refers to “striking a blow” (see 2 Sam 18:28; 20:21). Note v. 15, where the psalmist asks the
81 tn The rhetorical question expresses the psalmist’s outrage that the wicked would have the audacity to disdain God.
83 tn Here the wicked man addresses God directly.
84 tn Heb “you will not seek.” The verb דָרַשׁ (darash, “seek”) is used here in the sense of “seek an accounting.” One could understand the imperfect as generalizing about what is typical and translate, “you do not hold [people] accountable.”
85 tn Heb “you see.” One could translate the perfect as generalizing, “you do take notice.”
86 tn If the preceding perfect is taken as generalizing, then one might understand כִּי (ki) as asseverative: “indeed, certainly.”
87 tn Here the imperfect emphasizes God’s typical behavior.
88 tn Heb “destruction and suffering,” which here refers metonymically to the wicked, who dish out pain and suffering to their victims.
89 tn Heb “to give into your hand, upon you, he abandons, [the] unfortunate [one].” The syntax is awkward and the meaning unclear. It is uncertain who or what is being given into God’s hand. Elsewhere the idiom “give into the hand” means to deliver into one’s possession. If “to give” goes with what precedes (as the accentuation of the Hebrew text suggests), then this may refer to the wicked man being delivered over to God for judgment. The present translation assumes that “to give” goes with what follows (cf. NEB, NIV, NRSV). The verb יַעֲזֹב (ya’azov) here has the nuance “entrust” (see Gen 39:6; Job 39:11); the direct object (“[his] cause”) is implied.
90 tn Or “help.”
sn The fatherless. Because they were so vulnerable and were frequently exploited, fatherless children are often mentioned as epitomizing the oppressed (see Pss 68:5; 82:3; 94:6; 146:9; as well as Job 6:27; 22:9; 24:3, 9; 29:12; 31:17, 21).
92 sn The arm symbolizes the strength of the wicked, which they use to oppress and exploit the weak.
93 tn Heb “you seek his wickedness.” As in v. 13, the verb דָרַשׁ (darash, “seek”) is used here in the sense of “seek an accounting.” One could understand the imperfect as describing a fact, “you hold him accountable,” or as anticipating divine judgment, “you will hold him accountable.” However, since the verb is in apparent parallelism with the preceding imperative (“break”), it is better to understand the imperfect as expressing the psalmist’s desire or request.
94 tn Heb “you will not find.” It is uncertain how this statement relates to what precedes. Some take בַל (bal), which is used as a negative particle in vv. 4, 6, 11, 18, as asseverative here, “Indeed find (i.e., judge his wickedness).” The translation assumes that the final words are an asyndetic relative clause which refers back to what the wicked man boasted in God’s face (“you will not find [i.e., my wickedness]”). See v. 13.
95 tn Heb “the
96 tn Or “the nations perish from his land.” The perfect verb form may express what is typical or it may express rhetorically the psalmist’s certitude that God’s deliverance is “as good as done.”
sn The nations may be the underlying reality behind the psalmist’s references to the “wicked” in the earlier verses. This reference to the nations may have motivated the combining of Ps 10 with Ps 9 (see Ps 9:5, 15, 19).
97 sn You have heard. The psalmist is confident that God has responded positively to his earlier petitions for divine intervention. The psalmist apparently prayed the words of vv. 16-18 after the reception of an oracle of deliverance (given in response to the confident petition of vv. 12-15) or after the Lord actually delivered him from his enemies.
98 tn Heb “desire.”
99 tn Heb “you make firm their heart, you cause your ear to listen.”
100 tn Heb “to judge (on behalf of),” or “by judging (on behalf of).”
102 tn Heb “he will not add again [i.e., “he will no longer”] to terrify, man from the earth.” The Hebrew term אֱנוֹשׁ (’enosh, “man”) refers here to the wicked nations (v. 16). By describing them as “from the earth,” the psalmist emphasizes their weakness before the sovereign, eternal king.