Sunday, February 2, 2014

Week 22 (Book 5): Reviewing the First Week of Adar - Psalms 64-66; 77:4-6; 89:23

PSALMS (Introductions and Translations from

Chapter 64
The masters of homiletics interpret this psalm as alluding to Daniel, who was thrown into the lion's den. With divine inspiration, David foresaw the event and prayed for him. Daniel was a descendant of David, as can be inferred from G-d's statement to Hezekiah (himself of Davidic lineage), "And from your children, who will issue forth from you, they will take, and they (referring to, amongst others, Daniel) will be minesters in the palace of the king of Babylon."
1. For the Conductor, a psalm by David. 2. Hear my voice, O G-d, as I recount [my woes]; preserve my life from the terror of the enemy. 3. Shelter me from the schemes of the wicked, from the conspiracy of evildoers, 4. who have sharpened their tongue like the sword, aimed their arrow-a bitter word- 5. to shoot at the innocent from hidden places; suddenly they shoot at him, they are not afraid. 6. They encourage themselves in an evil thing, they speak of laying traps; they say: "Who will see them?” 7. They sought pretexts; [and when] they completed a diligent search, each man [kept the plot] inside, deep in the heart. 8. But G-d shot at them; [like] a sudden arrow were their blows. 9. Their own tongues caused them to stumble; all who see them shake their heads [derisively]. 10. Then all men feared, and recounted the work of G-d; they perceived His deed. 11. Let the righteous one rejoice in the Lord and take refuge in Him, and let them take pride-all upright of heart.

Chapter 65
This psalm contains awe-inspiring and glorious praises to G-d, as well as entreaties and prayers concerning our sins. It declares it impossible to recount G-d's greatness, for who can recount His mighty acts? Hence, silence is His praise.
1. For the Conductor, a psalm by David, a song. 2. Silence is praise for You, O G-d [Who dwells in] Zion; and to You vows will be paid. 3. O Heeder of prayer, to You does all flesh come. 4. Matters of sin overwhelm me; You will pardon our transgressions. 5. Fortunate is [the nation] whom You choose and draw near, to dwell in Your courtyards; may we be sated with the goodness of Your House, with the holiness of Your Sanctuary. 6. Answer us with awesome deeds as befits Your righteousness, O G-d of our salvation, the security of all [who inhabit] the ends of the earth and distant seas. 7. With His strength He prepares [rain for] the mountains; He is girded with might. 8. He quiets the roar of the seas, the roar of their waves and the tumult of nations. 9. Those who inhabit the ends [of the earth] fear [You] because of Your signs; the emergences of morning and evening cause [man] to sing praise. 10. You remember the earth and water it, you enrich it abundantly [from] G-d's stream filled with water. You prepare their grain, for so do You prepare it. 11. You saturate its furrows, gratifying its legions; with showers You soften it and bless its growth. 12. You crown the year of Your goodness [with rain], and Your clouds drip abundance. 13. They drip on pastures of wilderness, and the hills gird themselves with joy. 14. The meadows don sheep, and the valleys cloak themselves with grain; they sound blasts, indeed they sing.

Chapter 66
This psalm describes the praises and awe-inspiring prayers that we will offer G-d upon the ingathering of the exiles.
1. For the Conductor, a song, a psalm. Raise your voices in jubilation to G-d, all the earth! 2. Sing the glory of His Name; make glorious His praise. 3. Say to G-d, "How awesome are Your deeds!" Because of Your great strength, Your enemies will [admit] their treachery to You. 4. All the earth will bow to You, and sing to You; they will sing praise to Your Name forever! 5. Go and see the works of G-d, awesome in His deeds toward mankind. 6. He turned the sea into dry land, and they passed through the river on foot; we rejoiced in Him there. 7. He rules the world with His might, and His eyes watch the nations; let the rebellious not exalt themselves, Selah. 8. Bless our G-d, O nations, and let the voice of His praise be heard. 9. He has kept us alive, and did not allow our feet to falter. 10. For You tested us, O G-d; You refined us as one refining silver. 11. You brought us into prison; You placed a chain upon our loins. 12. You mounted men over our head; we went through fire and water, and You brought us out to abundance. 13. I will enter Your House with burnt-offerings, I will pay to You my vows, 14. which my lips uttered and my mouth spoke in my distress. 15. I will offer up to You burnt-offerings of fat animals, with the smoke of rams; I will prepare cattle with he-goats, Selah. 16. Come listen, all you who fear G-d, and I will relate what He has done for my soul. 17. I called to Him with my mouth, with exaltation beneath my tongue. 18. Had I seen iniquity in my heart, my Lord would not have listened. 19. But in truth, G-d heard; He gave ear to the voice of my prayer. 20. Blessed is G-d Who has not turned away my prayer or His kindness from me.


Chapter 77

4. I remember G-d and I stir; I speak and my spirit becomes faint, forever.
5. You held fast the awakenings of my eyes; I throb and I do not speak.

6. I think of days of yore, ancient years.


23. No enemy will exact from him, neither will an unjust person afflict him.   

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