Psalms 261Vindicate me, O Lord,
for I have integrity, ▼
▼ Heb “for I in my integrity walk.”
and I trust in the Lord without wavering.
2 Examine me, O Lord, and test me!
Evaluate my inner thoughts and motives! ▼
▼ Heb “evaluate my kidneys and my heart.” The kidneys and heart were viewed as the seat of one’s volition, conscience, and moral character.
3 For I am ever aware of your faithfulness, ▼
▼ Heb “for your faithfulness [is] before my eyes.”
and your loyalty continually motivates me. ▼
▼ Heb “and I walk about in your loyalty.”▼
▼ The psalmist’s awareness of the Lord’s faithfulness and…loyalty toward him motivates him to remain loyal to the Lord and to maintain his moral purity.
4 I do not associate ▼
▼ Heb “sit.”with deceitful men,
or consort ▼
▼ Heb “go.” The psalmist uses the imperfect form of the verb to emphasize that he does not make a practice of associating with such people.with those who are dishonest. ▼
▼ Heb “[those who] conceal themselves.”
5 I hate the mob ▼
▼ Heb “assembly, company.”of evil men,
and do not associate ▼
▼ Heb “sit.” The psalmist uses the imperfect form of the verb to emphasize that he does not make a practice of associating with such people.with the wicked.
6 I maintain a pure lifestyle, ▼
▼ Heb “I wash my hands in innocence.” The psalmist uses an image from cultic ritual to picture his moral lifestyle. The imperfect verbal emphasizes that this is his habit.
so I can appear before your altar, ▼
▼ Heb “so I can go around your altar” (probably in ritual procession). Following the imperfect of the preceding line, the cohortative with vav (ו) conjunctive indicates purpose or result.O Lord,
7 to give you thanks, ▼
▼ Heb “to cause to be heard the sound of thanksgiving.”
and to tell about all your amazing deeds. ▼
▼ The two infinitival forms (both with prefixed preposition -לְ, lamed) give the purpose for his appearance at the altar.
8 O Lord, I love the temple where you live, ▼
▼ Heb “the dwelling of your house.”
the place where your splendor is revealed. ▼
▼ Heb “the place of the abode of your splendor.”
9 Do not sweep me away ▼
▼ Heb “do not gather up my life with.”with sinners,
or execute me along with violent people, ▼
▼ Heb “or with men of bloodshed my life.” The verb is supplied; it is understood by ellipsis (see the preceding line).
10 who are always ready to do wrong ▼
▼ Heb “who [have] in their hands evil.”
or offer a bribe. ▼
▼ Heb “and their right hand is full of a bribe.”
11 But I have integrity! ▼
Rescue me ▼
▼ Or “redeem me.”and have mercy on me!
I am safe, ▼
▼ Heb “my foot stands in a level place.”
and among the worshipers I will praise the Lord.
▼ Psalm 27. The author is confident of the Lord’s protection and asks the Lord to vindicate him.
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