Psalms 34


לְדָוִד בְּשַׁנּוֹתוֹ אֶת־טַעְמוֹ לִפְנֵי אֲבִימֶלֶךְ וַיְגָרֲשֵׁהוּ וַיֵּלַךְ׃   34:1

Psal. 34:1   David's, upon his disguising himself his sanity before Abimelech, and he cast him out and he departed:

This psalm is another alphabetic acrostic.  The letter vav is missing (as in Psal. 25) and the letter peh is repeated in the last verse.  On another point, the incident mentioned in this verse is reminiscent of one described in 1Sam. (see 1Sam. 21:13 and 14), but there the king’s name is Achish, not Abimelech.  Thus this verse is open to much conjecture.

אֲבָרֲכָה אֶת־יְהוָה בְּכָל־עֵת תָּמִיד תְּהִלָּתוֹ בְּפִי׃   34:2

Psal. 34:2   I will bless the Lord on every occasion;

                              His praise shall be continually in my mouth.

בַּיהוָה תִּתְהַלֵּל נַפְשִׁי יִשְׁמְעוּ עֲנָוִים וְיִשְׂמָחוּ׃   34:3

Psal. 34:3   My soul shall glory in the Lord;

                               those poor shall hear and rejoice.

גַּדְּלוּ לַיהוָה אִתִּי וּנְרוֹמְמָה שְׁמוֹ יַחְדָּו׃   34:4

Psal. 34:4   Be great for the Lord with me,

                               and let us exalt His name together!

דָּרַשְׁתִּי אֶת־יְהוָה וְעָנָנִי וּמִכָּל־מְגוּרוֹתַי הִצִּילָנִי׃   34:5

Psal. 34:5   I seek the Lord and He answers me,

                               and delivers me from all my fears.

הִבִּיטוּ אֵלָיו וְנָהָרוּ וּפְנֵיהֶם אַל־יֶחְפָּרוּ׃   34:6

Psal. 34:6   They look to Him and they shine,

                               so let their faces not be ashamed.

The pronoun they in this verse must refer to those David includes in the pronoun us in v. 34:4.

זֶה עָנִי קָרָא וַיהוָה שָׁמֵעַ וּמִכָּל־צָרוֹתָיו הוֹשִׁיעוֹ׃   34:7

Psal. 34:7   This afflicted one calls out and the Lord hears,

                               and saves him from all his troubles.

חֹנֶה מַלְאַךְ־יְהוָה סָבִיב לִירֵאָיו וַיְחַלְּצֵם׃   34:8

Psal. 34:8   An angel of the Lord is encamped all about for those revering Him,

                               and he delivers them.

טַעֲמוּ וּרְאוּ כִּי־טוֹב יְהוָה אַשְׁרֵי הַגֶּבֶר יֶחֱסֶה־בּוֹ׃   34:9

Psal. 34:9   Test, and see that the Lord is good;

                               happy is the man who can put his trust in Him.

יְראוּ אֶת־יְהוָה קְדֹשָׁיו כִּי־אֵין מַחְסוֹר לִירֵאָיו׃   34:10

Psal. 34:10   Revere the Lord, His holy ones,

                                for there is nothing lacking for His reverent ones.

כְּפִירִים רָשׁוּ וְרָעֵבוּ וְדֹרְשֵׁי יְהוָה לֹא־יַחְסְרוּ כָל־טוֹב׃   34:11

Psal. 34:11   Young lions are wanting and are hungry,

                                but seekers of the Lord will not be lacking any good thing.

לְכוּ־בָנִים שִׁמְעוּ־לִי יִרְאַת יְהוָה אֲלַמֶּדְכֶם׃   34:12

Psal. 34:12   Come, children, listen to me!

                                 I will teach you reverence of the Lord.

מִי־הָאִישׁ הֶחָפֵץ חַיִּים אֹהֵב יָמִים לִרְאוֹת טוֹב׃   34:13

Psal. 34:13   Who is the one desiring life,

                                 loving days, seeing good?

נְצֹר לְשׁוֹנְךָ מֵרָע וּשְׂפָתֶיךָ מִדַּבֵּר מִרְמָה׃   34:14

Psal. 34:14   Keep your tongue from evil

                                 and your lips from speaking deceit.

סוּר מֵרָע וַעֲשֵׂה־טוֹב בַּקֵּשׁ שָׁלוֹם וְרָדְפֵהוּ׃   34:15

Psal. 34:15   Turn away from evil and do good;

                                seek peace and pursue it.

עֵינֵי יְהוָה אֶל־צַדִּיקִים וְאָזְנָיו אֶל־שַׁוְעָתָם׃   34:16

Psal. 34:16   The “eyes” of the Lord are toward righteous ones,

                                and His “ears” are toward their cry.

פְּנֵי יְהוָה בְּעֹשֵׂי רָע לְהַכְרִית מֵאֶרֶץ זִכְרָם׃   34:17

Psal. 34:17   The “face” of the Lord is against doers of evil,

                                 to cut off their remembrance from the earth.

צָעֲקוּ וַיהוָה שָׁמֵעַ וּמִכָּל־צָרוֹתָם הִצִּילָם׃   34:18

Psal. 34:18   They cry out and the Lord hears

                                 and delivers them from all their troubles.

The pronoun they couldn’t refer to the evil doers in the previous verse.  It must instead refer to the righteous ones in v. 34:16.

קָרוֹב יְהוָה לְנִשְׁבְּרֵי־לֵב וְאֶת־דַּכְּאֵי־רוּחַ יוֹשִׁיעַ׃   34:19

Psal. 34:19   The Lord is near to the broken of heart

                                 and saves the contrite of spirit.

רַבּוֹת רָעוֹת צַדִּיק וּמִכֻּלָּם יַצִּילֶנּוּ יְהוָה׃   34:20

Psal. 34:20   Many are the adversities of a righteous one,

                                 but the Lord shall deliver him from all of them.

Again David acknowledges that “bad” things can happen to “good” people.

שֹׁמֵר כָּל־עַצְמוֹתָיו אַחַת מֵהֵנָּה לֹא נִשְׁבָּרָה׃   34:21

Psal. 34:21   He guards all his bones;

                                 not one of them is broken.

תְּמוֹתֵת רָשָׁע רָעָה וְשֹׂנְאֵי צַדִּיק יֶאְשָׁמוּ׃   34:22

Psal. 34:22   Evil shall kill the wicked one,

                                 and the haters of any righteous one shall be held guilty.

פּוֹדֶה יְהוָה נֶפֶשׁ עֲבָדָיו וְלֹא יֶאְשְׁמוּ כָּל־הַחֹסִים בּוֹ׃   34:23

Psal. 34:23   The Lord is the Redeemer of the soul of His servants,

                                 and all taking refuge in Him will not be guilty.


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