Psalms 128


שִׁיר הַמַּעֲלוֹת אַשְׁרֵי כָּל־יְרֵא יְהוָה הַהֹלֵךְ בִּדְרָכָיו׃   128:1

Psal. 128:1   A song of ascendance:

                       Happy is everyone reverent of the Lord,

                                he who walks in His ways.

יְגִיעַ כַּפֶּיךָ כִּי תֹאכֵל אַשְׁרֶיךָ וְטוֹב לָךְ׃   128:2

Psal. 128:2   When you can eat the product of your hands,

                                happy shall you be,

                        and it will be pleasant for you.

אֶשְׁתְּךָ כְּגֶפֶן פֹּרִיָּה בְּיַרְכְּתֵי בֵיתֶךָ בָּנֶיךָ כִּשְׁתִלֵי זֵיתִים סָבִיב לְשֻׁלְחָנֶךָ׃   128:3

Psal. 128:3   Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the recesses of your house,

                                your children like transplanted shoots of olive trees

                        on your table's every side.

הִנֵּה כִי־כֵן יְבֹרַךְ גָּבֶר יְרֵא יְהוָה׃   128:4

Psal. 128:4   Behold!  Surely shall so be blessed any man reverent of the Lord.

יְבָרֶכְךָ יְהוָה מִצִּיּוֹן וּרְאֵה בְּטוּב יְרוּשָׁלִָם כֹּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ׃   128:5

Psal. 128:5   May the Lord bless you from Zion;

                                so look to the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life,

וּרְאֵה־בָנִים לְבָנֶיךָ שָׁלוֹם עַל־יִשְׂרָאֵל׃   128:6

Psal. 128:6   and see your children's children.

                                Peace be upon Israel!

Every second-person pronoun in this psalm is singular (vss. 2, 3, 5, and 6).  Ordinarily they would indicate to me that the scribe is addressing an entire body of people.  In this case, because all the third-person pronouns are also singular, I believe we have an exception to my rule here.  I believe the psalmist is speaking to individuals, not to the whole of Jerusalem.  However, in these last two verses, I believe the psalmist expresses his belief that if all its inhabitants are reverent, the city will be blessed with peace and prosperity.


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