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Psalms 78:60-72

Context

78:60 He abandoned 1  the sanctuary at Shiloh,

the tent where he lived among men.

78:61 He allowed the symbol of his strong presence to be captured; 2 

he gave the symbol of his splendor 3  into the hand of the enemy. 4 

78:62 He delivered his people over to the sword,

and was angry with his chosen nation. 5 

78:63 Fire consumed their 6  young men,

and their 7  virgins remained unmarried. 8 

78:64 Their 9  priests fell by the sword,

but their 10  widows did not weep. 11 

78:65 But then the Lord awoke from his sleep; 12 

he was like a warrior in a drunken rage. 13 

78:66 He drove his enemies back;

he made them a permanent target for insults. 14 

78:67 He rejected the tent of Joseph;

he did not choose the tribe of Ephraim.

78:68 He chose the tribe of Judah,

and Mount Zion, which he loves.

78:69 He made his sanctuary as enduring as the heavens above; 15 

as secure as the earth, which he established permanently. 16 

78:70 He chose David, his servant,

and took him from the sheepfolds.

78:71 He took him away from following the mother sheep, 17 

and made him the shepherd of Jacob, his people,

and of Israel, his chosen nation. 18 

78:72 David 19  cared for them with pure motives; 20 

he led them with skill. 21 

1 tn Or “rejected.”

2 tn Heb “and he gave to captivity his strength.” The expression “his strength” refers metonymically to the ark of the covenant, which was housed in the tabernacle at Shiloh.

3 tn Heb “and his splendor into the hand of an enemy.” The expression “his splendor” also refers metonymically to the ark of the covenant.

4 sn Verses 60-61 refer to the Philistines’ capture of the ark in the days of Eli (1 Sam 4:1-11).

5 tn Heb “his inheritance.”

6 tn Heb “his.” The singular pronominal suffix is collective, referring back to God’s “people” (v. 62).

7 tn Heb “his.” The singular pronominal suffix is collective, referring back to God’s “people” (v. 62).

8 tn Heb “were not praised,” that is, in wedding songs. The young men died in masses, leaving no husbands for the young women.

9 tn Heb “his.” The singular pronominal suffix is collective, referring back to God’s “people” (v. 62).

10 tn Heb “his.” The singular pronominal suffix is collective, referring back to God’s “people” (v. 62).

11 sn Because of the invading army and the ensuing panic, the priests’ widows had no time to carry out the normal mourning rites.

12 tn Heb “and the master awoke like one sleeping.” The Lord’s apparent inactivity during the time of judgment is compared to sleep.

13 tn Heb “like a warrior overcome with wine.” The Hebrew verb רוּן (run, “overcome”) occurs only here in the OT. The phrase “overcome with wine” could picture a drunken warrior controlled by his emotions and passions (as in the present translation), or it could refer to a warrior who awakes from a drunken stupor.

14 tn Heb “a permanent reproach he made them.”

15 tc Heb “and he built like the exalting [ones] his sanctuary.” The phrase כְּמוֹ־רָמִים (kÿmo-ramim, “like the exalting [ones]”) is a poetic form of the comparative preposition followed by a participial form of the verb רוּם (rum, “be exalted”). The text should be emended to כִּמְרֹמִים (kimromim, “like the [heavenly] heights”). See Ps 148:1, where “heights” refers to the heavens above.

16 tn Heb “like the earth, [which] he established permanently.” The feminine singular suffix on the Hebrew verb יָסַד (yasad, “to establish”) refers to the grammatically feminine noun “earth.”

17 tn Heb “from after the ewes he brought him.”

18 tn Heb “to shepherd Jacob, his people, and Israel, his inheritance.”

19 tn Heb “He”; the referent (David, God’s chosen king, mentioned in v. 70) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

20 tn Heb “and he shepherded them according to the integrity of his heart.”

21 tn Heb “and with the understanding of his hands he led them.”



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