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Psalms 30:1-2

Context
Psalm 30 1 

A psalm – a song used at the dedication of the temple; 2  by David.

30:1 I will praise you, O Lord, for you lifted me up, 3 

and did not allow my enemies to gloat 4  over me.

30:2 O Lord my God,

I cried out to you and you healed me. 5 

Psalms 30:9

Context

30:9 “What 6  profit is there in taking my life, 7 

in my descending into the Pit? 8 

Can the dust of the grave 9  praise you?

Can it declare your loyalty? 10 

1 sn Psalm 30. The author thanks the Lord for delivering him from death and urges others to join him in praise. The psalmist experienced divine discipline for a brief time, but when he cried out for help the Lord intervened and restored his favor.

2 tn Heb “a song of the dedication of the house.” The referent of “house” is unclear. It is possible that David wrote this psalm for the dedication ceremony of Solomon’s temple. Another possibility is that the psalm was used on the occasion of the dedication of the second temple following the return from exile, or on the occasion of the rededication of the temple in Maccabean times.

3 tn Elsewhere the verb דָּלָה (dalah) is used of drawing water from a well (Exod 2:16, 19; Prov 20:5). The psalmist was trapped in the pit leading to Sheol (see v. 3), but the Lord hoisted him up. The Piel stem is used here, perhaps suggesting special exertion on the Lord’s part.

4 tn Or “rejoice.”

5 sn You healed me. Apparently the psalmist was plagued by a serious illness that threatened his life. See Ps 41.

6 sn The following two verses (vv. 9-10) contain the prayer (or an excerpt of the prayer) that the psalmist offered to the Lord during his crisis.

7 tn Heb “What profit [is there] in my blood?” “Blood” here represents his life.

8 tn The Hebrew term שָׁחַת (shakhat, “pit”) is often used as a title for Sheol (see Pss 16:10; 49:9; 55:24; 103:4).

9 tn Heb “dust.” The words “of the grave” are supplied in the translation for clarification.

10 tn The rhetorical questions anticipate the answer, “Of course not!”

sn According to the OT, those who descend into the realm of death/Sheol are cut off from God’s mighty deeds and from the worshiping covenant community that experiences divine intervention (Pss 6:5; 88:10-12; Isa 38:18). In his effort to elicit a positive divine response, the psalmist reminds God that he will receive no praise or glory if he allows the psalmist to die. Dead men do not praise God!



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