Psalms 811Shout for joy to God, our source of strength!
Shout out to the God of Jacob!
2 Sing ▼
▼ Heb “lift up.”a song and play the tambourine,
the pleasant sounding harp, and the ten-stringed instrument!
3 Sound the ram’s horn on the day of the new moon, ▼
▼ Heb “at the new moon.”▼
▼ New moon festivals were a monthly ritual in Israel (see R. de Vaux, Ancient Israel, 469–70). In this context the New Moon festival of the seventh month, when the Feast of Tabernacles was celebrated (note the reference to a “festival” in the next line), may be in view.
and on the day of the full moon when our festival begins. ▼
▼ Heb “at the full moon on the day of our festival.” The Hebrew word כֶּסֶה (keseh) is an alternate spelling of כֶּסֶא (kese’, “full moon”).▼
4 For observing the festival is a requirement for Israel; ▼
▼ Heb “because a statute for Israel [is] it.”
it is an ordinance given by the God of Jacob.
5 He decreed it as a regulation in Joseph,
when he attacked the land of Egypt. ▼
▼ Heb “in his going out against the land of Egypt.” This apparently refers to the general time period of Israel’s exodus from Egypt. The LXX reads, “from Egypt,” in which case “Joseph” (see the preceding line) would be the subject of the verb, “when he [Joseph = Israel] left Egypt.”
I heard a voice I did not recognize. ▼
▼ Heb “a lip I did not know, I heard.” Here the term “lip” probably stands for speech or a voice. Apparently the psalmist speaks here and refers to God’s voice, whose speech is recorded in the following verses.
6 It said: ▼
▼ The words “It said” are not included in the Hebrew text. They are supplied in the translation for clarification.“I removed the burden from his shoulder;
his hands were released from holding the basket. ▼
7 In your distress you called out and I rescued you.
I answered you from a dark thundercloud. ▼
I tested you at the waters of Meribah. ▼ (Selah)
8 I said, ▼ ‘Listen, my people!
I will warn ▼
▼ Or perhaps “command.”you!
O Israel, if only you would obey me! ▼
▼ The Hebrew particle אִם (“if”) and following prefixed verbal form here express a wish (GKC 321 #109.b). Note that the apodosis (the “then” clause of the conditional sentence) is suppressed.
9 There must be ▼ no other ▼
▼ Heb “different”; “illicit.”god among you.
You must not worship a foreign god.
10 I am the Lord, your God,
the one who brought you out of the land of Egypt.
Open your mouth wide and I will fill it!’
11 But my people did not obey me; ▼
▼ Heb “did not listen to my voice.”
Israel did not submit to me. ▼
12 I gave them over to their stubborn desires; ▼
▼ Heb “and I sent him away in the stubbornness of their heart.”
they did what seemed right to them. ▼
▼ Heb “they walked in their counsel.” The prefixed verbal form is either preterite (“walked”) or a customary imperfect (“were walking”).
13 If only my people would obey me! ▼
If only Israel would keep my commands! ▼
▼ Heb “[and if only] Israel would walk in my ways.”
14 Then I would quickly subdue their enemies,
and attack ▼ their adversaries.”
15 (May those who hate the Lord ▼ cower in fear ▼ before him!
May they be permanently humiliated!) ▼
▼ Heb “and may their time be forever.” The Hebrew term עִתָּם (’ittam, “their time”) must refer here to the “time” of the demise and humiliation of those who hate the Lord. Some propose an emendation to בַּעֲתָתָם (ba’atatam) or בִּעֻתָם (bi’utam; “their terror”; i.e., “may their terror last forever”), but the omission of bet (ב) in the present Hebrew text is difficult to explain, making the proposed emendation unlikely.▼
▼ The verb form at the beginning of the line is jussive, indicating that this is a prayer. The translation assumes that v. 15 is a parenthetical “curse” offered by the psalmist. Having heard the reference to Israel’s enemies (v. 14), the psalmist inserts this prayer, reminding the Lord that they are God’s enemies as well.
“I would feed Israel the best wheat, ▼
▼ Heb “and he fed him from the best of the wheat.” The Hebrew text has a third person form of the preterite with a vav (ו) consecutive attached. However, it is preferable, in light of the use of the first person in v. 14 and in the next line, to emend the verb to a first person form and understand the vav as conjunctive, continuing the apodosis of the conditional sentence of vv. 13–14. The third masculine singular pronominal suffix refers to Israel, as in v. 6.▼
and would satisfy your appetite ▼ with honey from the rocky cliffs.” ▼
▼ Psalm 82. The psalmist pictures God standing in the “assembly of El” where he accuses the “gods” of failing to promote justice on earth. God pronounces sentence upon them, announcing that they will die like men. Having witnessed the scene, the psalmist then asks God to establish his just rule over the earth.
A psalm of Asaph.16
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