Psalms 1431O Lord, hear my prayer!
Pay attention to my plea for help!
Because of your faithfulness and justice, answer me!
2 Do not sit in judgment on ▼
▼ Heb “do not enter into judgment with.”your servant,
for no one alive is innocent before you. ▼
▼ Heb “for no one living is innocent before you.”
3 Certainly ▼
▼ Or “for.”my enemies ▼ chase me.
They smash me into the ground. ▼
▼ Heb “he crushes on the ground my life.”
They force me to live ▼
▼ Or “sit.”in dark regions, ▼
like those who have been dead for ages.
4 My strength leaves me; ▼
▼ Heb “my spirit grows faint.”
I am absolutely shocked. ▼
5 I recall the old days; ▼
▼ Or “ancient times”; Heb “days from before.”
I meditate on all you have done;
I reflect on your accomplishments. ▼
▼ Heb “the work of your hands.”
6 I spread my hands out to you in prayer; ▼
▼ The words “in prayer” are supplied in the translation to clarify that the psalmist is referring to a posture of prayer.
my soul thirsts for you in a parched ▼ land. ▼
▼ Heb “my soul like a faint land for you.” A verb (perhaps “thirsts”) is implied (see Ps 63:1). The translation assumes an emendation of the preposition -כְּ (ke, “like”) to -בְּ (be, “in,” see Ps 63:1; cf. NEB “athirst for thee in a thirsty land”). If the MT is retained, one might translate, “my soul thirsts for you, as a parched land does for water/rain” (cf. NIV, NRSV).
7 Answer me quickly, Lord!
My strength is fading. ▼
▼ Heb “my spirit is failing.”
Do not reject me, ▼
or I will join ▼
▼ Heb “I will be equal with.”those descending into the grave. ▼
8 May I hear about your loyal love in the morning, ▼
▼ Heb “cause me to hear in the morning your loyal love.” Here “loyal love” probably stands metonymically for an oracle of assurance promising God’s intervention as an expression of his loyal love.▼
for I trust in you.
Show me the way I should go, ▼
because I long for you. ▼
9 Rescue me from my enemies, O Lord!
I run to you for protection. ▼
▼ Heb “to you I cover,” which makes no sense. The translation assumes an emendation to נַסְתִּי (nastiy, “I flee,” a Qal perfect, first singular form from נוּס, nos). Confusion of kaf (כ) and nun (נ) is attested elsewhere (see P. K. McCarter, Textual Criticism [GBS], 48). The collocation of נוּס (“flee”) with אֶל (’el, “to”) is well-attested.
10 Teach me to do what pleases you, ▼
for you are my God.
May your kind presence ▼
lead me ▼ into a level land. ▼
11 O Lord, for the sake of your reputation, ▼
▼ Heb “name,” which here stands metonymically for God’s reputation.revive me! ▼
Because of your justice, rescue me from trouble! ▼
▼ Heb “by your justice bring out my life from trouble.”
As a demonstration of your loyal love, ▼
▼ Heb “in [or “by”] your faithfulness.”destroy my enemies!
▼ The perfect with vav (ו) consecutive carries on the mood of the preceding imperfect.all who threaten my life, ▼
▼ Heb “all the enemies of my life.”
for I am your servant.
▼ Psalm 144. The psalmist expresses his confidence in God, asks for a mighty display of divine intervention in an upcoming battle, and anticipates God’s rich blessings on the nation in the aftermath of military victory.
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