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Psalms 105

Psalm 105 1 

105:1 Give thanks to the Lord!

Call on his name!

Make known his accomplishments among the nations!

105:2 Sing to him!

Make music to him!

Tell about all his miraculous deeds!

105:3 Boast about his holy name!

Let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice!

105:4 Seek the Lord and the strength he gives!

Seek his presence continually!

105:5 Recall the miraculous deeds he performed,

his mighty acts and the judgments he decreed, 2 

105:6 O children 3  of Abraham, 4  God’s 5  servant,

you descendants 6  of Jacob, God’s 7  chosen ones!

105:7 He is the Lord our God;

he carries out judgment throughout the earth. 8 

105:8 He always remembers his covenantal decree,

the promise he made 9  to a thousand generations –

105:9 the promise 10  he made to Abraham,

the promise he made by oath to Isaac!

105:10 He gave it to Jacob as a decree,

to Israel as a lasting promise, 11 

105:11 saying, “To you I will give the land of Canaan

as the portion of your inheritance.”

105:12 When they were few in number,

just a very few, and resident aliens within it,

105:13 they wandered from nation to nation,

and from one kingdom to another. 12 

105:14 He let no one oppress them;

he disciplined kings for their sake,

105:15 saying, 13  “Don’t touch my chosen 14  ones!

Don’t harm my prophets!”

105:16 He called down a famine upon the earth;

he cut off all the food supply. 15 

105:17 He sent a man ahead of them 16 

Joseph was sold as a servant.

105:18 The shackles hurt his feet; 17 

his neck was placed in an iron collar, 18 

105:19 until the time when his prediction 19  came true.

The Lord’s word 20  proved him right. 21 

105:20 The king authorized his release; 22 

the ruler of nations set him free.

105:21 He put him in charge of his palace, 23 

and made him manager of all his property,

105:22 giving him authority to imprison his officials 24 

and to teach his advisers. 25 

105:23 Israel moved to 26  Egypt;

Jacob lived for a time 27  in the land of Ham.

105:24 The Lord 28  made his people very fruitful,

and made them 29  more numerous than their 30  enemies.

105:25 He caused them 31  to hate his people,

and to mistreat 32  his servants.

105:26 He sent his servant Moses,

and Aaron, whom he had chosen.

105:27 They executed his miraculous signs among them, 33 

and his amazing deeds in the land of Ham.

105:28 He made it dark; 34 

they did not disobey his orders. 35 

105:29 He turned their water into blood,

and killed their fish.

105:30 Their land was overrun by frogs,

which even got into the rooms of their kings.

105:31 He ordered flies to come; 36 

gnats invaded their whole territory.

105:32 He sent hail along with the rain; 37 

there was lightning in their land. 38 

105:33 He destroyed their vines and fig trees,

and broke the trees throughout their territory.

105:34 He ordered locusts to come, 39 

innumerable grasshoppers.

105:35 They ate all the vegetation in their land,

and devoured the crops of their fields. 40 

105:36 He struck down all the firstborn in their land,

the firstfruits of their reproductive power. 41 

105:37 He brought his people 42  out enriched 43  with silver and gold;

none of his tribes stumbled.

105:38 Egypt was happy when they left,

for they were afraid of them. 44 

105:39 He spread out a cloud for a cover, 45 

and provided a fire to light up the night.

105:40 They asked for food, 46  and he sent quails;

he satisfied them with food from the sky. 47 

105:41 He opened up a rock and water flowed out;

a river ran through dry regions.

105:42 Yes, 48  he remembered the sacred promise 49 

he made to Abraham his servant.

105:43 When he led his people out, they rejoiced;

his chosen ones shouted with joy. 50 

105:44 He handed the territory of nations over to them,

and they took possession of what other peoples had produced, 51 

105:45 so that they might keep his commands

and obey 52  his laws.

Praise the Lord!

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1 sn Psalm 105. The psalmist summons Israel to praise God because he delivered his people from Egypt in fulfillment of his covenantal promises to Abraham. A parallel version of vv. 1-15 appears in 1 Chr 16:8-22.

2 tn Heb “and the judgments of his mouth.”

3 tn Or “offspring”; Heb “seed.”

4 tc Some mss have “Israel,” which appears in the parallel version of this psalm in 1 Chr 16:13.

5 tn Heb “his”; the referent (God) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

6 tn Heb “sons.”

7 tn Heb “his”; the referent (God) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

8 tn Heb “in all the earth [are] his judgments.”

9 tn Heb “[the] word he commanded.” The text refers here to God’s unconditional covenantal promise to Abraham and the patriarchs, as vv. 10-12 make clear.

10 tn Heb “which.”

11 tn Or “eternal covenant.”

12 tn Heb “and from a kingdom to another nation.”

13 tn The word “saying” is supplied in the translation for clarification and for stylistic reasons.

14 tn Heb “anointed.”

15 tn Heb “and every staff of food he broke.” The psalmist refers to the famine that occurred in Joseph’s time (see v. 17 and Gen 41:53-57).

16 tn After the reference to the famine in v. 16, v. 17 flashes back to events that preceded the famine (see Gen 37).

17 tn Heb “they afflicted his feet with shackles.”

18 tn Heb “his neck came [into] iron.” The Hebrew term נֶפֶשׁ (nefesh) with the suffix could mean simply “he” or “his life.” But the nuance “neck” makes good sense here (note the reference to his “feet” in the preceding line). See L. C. Allen, Psalms 101-150 (WBC), 38.

19 tn Heb “word,” probably referring to Joseph’s prediction about the fate of Pharaoh’s cupbearer and baker (see Gen 41:9-14).

20 tn This line may refer to Joseph’s prediction of the famine in response to Pharaoh’s dream. Joseph emphasized to Pharaoh that the interpretation of the dream came from God (see Gen 41:16, 25, 28, 32, 39).

21 tn Heb “refined him.”

22 tn Heb “[the] king sent and set him free.”

23 tn Heb “he made him master of his house.”

24 tn Heb “to bind his officials by his will.”

25 tn Heb “and his elders he taught wisdom.”

26 tn Heb “entered.”

27 tn Heb “lived as a resident alien.”

28 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (the Lord) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

29 tn Heb “him,” referring to “his people.”

30 tn Heb “his,” referring to “his people.”

31 tn Heb “their heart.”

32 tn Or “to deal deceptively.” The Hitpael of נָכַל (nakhal) occurs only here and in Gen 37:18, where it is used of Joseph’s brothers “plotting” to kill him.

33 tn Apparently the pronoun refers to “his servants” (i.e., the Israelites, see v. 25).

34 tn Heb “he sent darkness and made it dark.”

sn He made it dark. The psalmist begins with the ninth plague (see Exod 10:21-29).

35 tn Heb “they did not rebel against his words.” Apparently this refers to Moses and Aaron, who obediently carried out God’s orders.

36 tn Heb “he spoke and flies came.”

37 tn Heb “he gave their rains hail.”

38 tn Heb “fire of flames [was] in their land.”

39 tn Heb “he spoke and locusts came.”

40 tn Heb “the fruit of their ground.”

41 tn Heb “the beginning of all their strength,” that is, reproductive power (see Ps 78:51).

sn Verses 28-36 recall the plagues in a different order than the one presented in Exodus: v. 28 (plague 9), v. 29 (plague 1), v. 30 (plague 2), v. 31a (plague 4), v. 31b (plague 3), vv. 32-33 (plague 7), vv. 34-35 (plague 8), v. 36 (plague 10). No reference is made in Ps 105 to plagues 5 and 6.

42 tn Heb “them”; the referent (the Lord’s people) has been supplied in the translation for clarity.

43 tn The word “enriched” is supplied in the translation for clarification and for stylistic reasons.

44 tn Heb “for fear of them had fallen upon them.”

45 tn Or “curtain.”

46 tn Heb “he [i.e., his people] asked.” The singular form should probably be emended to a plural שָׁאֲלוּ (shaalu, “they asked”), the vav (ו) having fallen off by haplography (note the vav at the beginning of the following form).

47 tn Or “bread of heaven.” The reference is to manna (see Exod 16:4, 13-15).

48 tn Or “for.”

49 tn Heb “his holy word.”

50 tn Heb “and he led his people out with joy, with a ringing cry, his chosen ones.”

51 tn Heb “and the [product of the] work of peoples they possessed.”

52 tn Heb “guard.”

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