Psalm 59:3
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
For behold, they lie in wait for my life; fierce men stir up strife against me. For no transgression or sin of mine, O LORD,

King James Bible
For, lo, they lie in wait for my soul: the mighty are gathered against me; not for my transgression, nor for my sin, O LORD.

American Standard Version
For, lo, they lie in wait for my soul; The mighty gather themselves together against me: Not for my transgression, nor for my sin, O Jehovah.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For behold they have caught my soul: the mighty have rushed in upon me:

English Revised Version
For, lo, they lie in wait for my soul; the mighty gather themselves together against me: not for my transgression, nor for my sin, O LORD.

Webster's Bible Translation
For lo, they lie in wait for my soul: the mighty are gathered against me; not for my transgression, nor for my sin, O LORD.

Psalm 59:3 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The verb הרס is used much in the same way in Psalm 58:7 as ἀράσσειν (e.g., Iliad, xiii. 577, ἀπὸ δὲ τρυφάλειαν ἄραξεν), which presents a similar onomatope. The form ימּאסוּ is, as in Job 7:5, equals ימּסּוּ. The Jewish expositors, less appropriately, compare צנאכם, Numbers 32:24, and בּזאוּ equals בּזזוּ, Isaiah 18:2, Isaiah 18:7; שׁאסיך, Chethb, Jeremiah 30:16, and ראמה, Zechariah 14:10, more nearly resemble it. The treading (bending) of the bow is here, as in Psalm 64:4, transferred to the arrows ( equals כּונן, Psalm 11:2): he bends and shoots off his arrows, they shall be as though cut off in the front, i.e., as inoperative as if they had no heads or points (כּמו as in Isaiah 26:18). In Psalm 58:9 follow two figures to which the apprecatory "let them become" is to be supplied. Or is it perhaps to be rendered: As a snail, which Thou causest to melt away, i.e., squashest with the foot (תּמס, as in Psalm 39:12, fut. Hiph. of מסה equals מסס), let him perish? The change of the number does not favour this; and according to the usage of the language, which is fond of construing הלך with gerunds and participles, and also with abstract nouns, e.g., הלך תּם, הלך קרי, the words תּמס יהלך belong together, and they are also accented accordingly: as a snail or slug which goes along in dissolution, goes on and dissolves as it goes (תּמס after the form תּבל form בּלל

(Note: In the Phoenician, the Cyprian copper mine Ταμασσός appears to have taken its name from תמס, liquefactio (Levy, Phnizische Studien, iii.7).)).

The snail has received its name from this apparent dissolving into slime. For שׁבּלוּל (with Dag. dirimens for שׁבלוּל) is the naked slimy snail or slug (Targum, according to ancient conception, זחיל תּבללא "the slimeworm"), from שׁבלל, to make wet, moist.

(Note: "God has created nothing without its use," says the Talmud, B. Shabbath 77b; "He has created the snail (שׁבלול לכתית) to heal bruises by laying it upon them:" cf. Genesis Rabba, ch. 51 init., where שׁבלול is explained by לימצא, סיליי, כיליי, κογχύλη, σέσιλος, limax. Abraham b. David of Fez, the contemporary of Saadia, has explained it in his Arabico-Hebrew Lexicon by אלחלזון, the slug. Nevertheless this is properly the name of the snail with a house (נרתיק), Talmudic חלּזון, and even at the present day in Syria and Palestine Arab. ḥlzûn (which is pronounced ḥalezôn); whereas שׁבלול, in conformity with the etymon and with the figure, is the naked snail or slug. The ancient versions perhaps failed to recognise this, because the slug is not very often to be seen in hot eastern countries; but שׁבלול in this signification can be looked upon as traditional. The rendering "a rain-brook or mountain-torrent (Arabic seil sâbil) which running runs away," would, to say nothing more, give us, as Rosenmller has already observed, a figure that has been made use of already in Psalm 58:8.)

In the second figure, the only sense in which נפל אשׁת belong together is "the untimely birth of a woman;" and rather than explain with the Talmud (B. Med katan 6b) and Targum (contrary to the accents): as an abortion, a mole,

(Note: The mole, which was thought to have no eyes, is actually called in post-biblical Hebrew אשׁת, plur. אישׁות (vid., Keelim xxi. 3).)

one would alter אשׁת into אשׁה. But this is not necessary, since the construct form אשׁת is found also in other instances (Deuteronomy 21:11; 1 Samuel 28:7) out of the genitival relation, in connection with a close coordinate construction. So here, where בּל־הזוּ שׁמשׁ, according to Job 3:16; Ecclesiastes 6:3-5, is an attributive clause to נפל אשׁת (the falling away of a woman equals abortions), which is used collectively (Ew. 176, b). The accentuation also harmonizes here with the syntactic relation of the words. In Psalm 58:10, אטד (plural in African, i.e., Punic, in Dioscorides atadi'n) is the rhamnus or buckthorn, which, like רתם, the broom, not only makes a cheerful crackling fire, but also produces an ash that retains the heat a long time, and is therefore very useful in cooking. The alternative כּמו - כּמו signifies sive, sive, whether the one or the other. חי is that which is living, fresh, viz., the fresh, raw meat still having the blood in it, the opposite of מבשּׁל (1 Samuel 2:15); חרון, a fierce heat or fire, here a boiling heat. There is no need to understand חרון metonymically, or perhaps as an adjective equals charrôn, of boiled meat: it is a statement of the condition. The suffix of ישׁערנּוּ, however, refers, as being neuter, to the whole cooking apparatus, and more especially to the contents of the pots. The rendering therefore is: whether raw or in a state of heat, i.e., of being cooked through, He (Jahve) carries it away as with a whirlwind. Hengstenberg rightly remarks, "To the raw meat correspond the immature plots, and to the cooked the mature ones." To us, who regard the Psalm as belonging to the time of Absalom, and not, like Hengstenberg, to the time of Saul, the meat in the pots is the new kingship of Absalom. The greater the self-renunciation with which David at that time looked on at the ripening revolt, disclaiming all action of his own, the stronger the confidence with which he expected the righteous interposition of God that did actually follow, but (as he here supposes possible) not until the meat in the pot was almost done through; yet, on the other side, so quickly, that the pots had scarcely felt the crackling heat which should fully cook the meat.

Psalm 59:3 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

they

Psalm 10:9,10 He lies in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lies in wait to catch the poor: he does catch the poor...

Psalm 37:32,33 The wicked watches the righteous, and seeks to slay him...

Psalm 38:12 They also that seek after my life lay snares for me: and they that seek my hurt speak mischievous things...

Psalm 56:6 They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, they mark my steps, when they wait for my soul.

1 Samuel 19:1 And Saul spoke to Jonathan his son, and to all his servants, that they should kill David.

Proverbs 12:6 The words of the wicked are to lie in wait for blood: but the mouth of the upright shall deliver them.

Micah 7:2 The good man is perished out of the earth: and there is none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood...

Acts 23:21 But do not you yield to them: for there lie in wait for him of them more than forty men, which have bound themselves with an oath...

the mighty

Psalm 2:2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying,

Acts 4:26,27 The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ...

not

Psalm 7:3-6 O LORD my God, If I have done this; if there be iniquity in my hands...

Psalm 69:4 They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of my head: they that would destroy me, being my enemies wrongfully...

1 Samuel 24:11,17 Moreover, my father, see, yes, see the skirt of your robe in my hand: for in that I cut off the skirt of your robe, and killed you not...

1 Samuel 26:18 And he said, Why does my lord thus pursue after his servant? for what have I done? or what evil is in my hand?

John 15:25 But this comes to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.

Cross References
1 Samuel 24:11
See, my father, see the corner of your robe in my hand. For by the fact that I cut off the corner of your robe and did not kill you, you may know and see that there is no wrong or treason in my hands. I have not sinned against you, though you hunt my life to take it.

Psalm 7:3
O LORD my God, if I have done this, if there is wrong in my hands,

Psalm 7:4
if I have repaid my friend with evil or plundered my enemy without cause,

Psalm 10:9
he lurks in ambush like a lion in his thicket; he lurks that he may seize the poor; he seizes the poor when he draws him into his net.

Psalm 56:6
They stir up strife, they lurk; they watch my steps, as they have waited for my life.

Psalm 69:4
More in number than the hairs of my head are those who hate me without cause; mighty are those who would destroy me, those who attack me with lies. What I did not steal must I now restore?

Psalm 94:21
They band together against the life of the righteous and condemn the innocent to death.

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