Psalm 78:63
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
Fire devoured their young men, and their young women had no marriage song.

King James Bible
The fire consumed their young men; and their maidens were not given to marriage.

American Standard Version
Fire devoured their young men; And their virgins had no marriage-song.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Fire consumed their young men: and their maidens were not lamented.

English Revised Version
Fire devoured their young men; and their maidens had no marriage-song.

Webster's Bible Translation
The fire consumed their young men; and their maidens were not given to marriage.

Psalm 78:63 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

When these plagues rose to the highest pitch, Israel became free, and removed, being led by its God, into the Land of Promise; but it continued still to behave there just as it had done in the desert. The poet in Psalm 78:49-51 brings the fifth Egyptian plague, the pestilence (Exodus 9:1-7), and the tenth and last, the smiting of the first-born (מכּת בּכרות), Exodus 11:1, together. Psalm 78:49 sounds like Job 20:23 (cf. below Psalm 78:64). מלאכי רעים are not wicked angels, against which view Hengstenberg refers to the scriptural thesis of Jacobus Ode in his work De Angelis, Deum ad puniendos malos homines mittere bonos angelos et ad castigandos pios usurpare malos, but angels that bring misfortune. The mode of construction belongs to the chapter of the genitival subordination of the adjective to the substantive, like אשׁת רע, Proverbs 6:24, cf. 1 Samuel 28:7; Numbers 5:18, Numbers 5:24; 1 Kings 10:15; Jeremiah 24:2, and the Arabic msjdu 'l-jâm‛, the mosque of the assembling one, i.e., the assembling (congregational) mosque, therefore: angels (not of the wicked ones equals wicked angels, which it might signify elsewhere, but) of the evil ones equals evil, misfortune-bringing angels (Ew. ֗287, a). The poet thus paraphrases the המּשׁחית that is collectively conceived in Exodus 12:13, Exodus 12:23; Hebrews 11:28. In Psalm 78:50 the anger is conceived of as a stream of fire, in Psalm 78:50 death as an executioner, and in 50c the pestilence as a foe. ראשׁית אונים (Genesis 49:3; Deuteronomy 21:17) is that which had sprung for the first time from manly vigour (plur. intensivus). Egypt is called חם as in Psalm 105 and Psalm 111:1-10 according to Genesis 10:6, and is also called by themselves in ancient Egyptian Kemi, Coptic Chmi, Kme (vid., Plutarch, De Iside et Osiride, ch. 33). When now these plagues which softened their Pharaoh went forth upon the Egyptians, God procured for His people a free departure, He guided flock-like (כּעדר like בּעדר, Jeremiah 31:24, with Dag. implicitum), i.e., as a shepherd, the flock of His people (the favourite figure of the Psalms of Asaph) through the desert, - He led them safely, removing all terrors out of the way and drowning their enemies in the Red Sea, to His holy territory, to the mountain which (זה) His right hand had acquired, or according to the accents (cf. supra, p. 104): to the mountain there (זה), which, etc. It is not Zion that is meant, but, as in the primary passage Exodus 15:16., in accordance with the parallelism (although this is not imperative) and the usage of the language, which according to Isaiah 11:9; Isaiah 57:13, is incontrovertible, the whole of the Holy Land with its mountains and valleys (cf. Deuteronomy 11:11). בּחבל נחלה is the poetical equivalent to בּנחלה, Numbers 34:2; Numbers 36:2, and frequently. The Beth is Beth essentiae (here in the same syntactical position as in Isaiah 48:10; Ezekiel 20:41, and also Job 22:24 surely): He made them (the heathen, viz., as in Joshua 23:4 their territories) fall to them (viz., as the expression implies, by lot, בגורל) as a line of inheritance, i.e., (as in Psalm 105:11) as a portion measured out as an inheritance. It is only in Psalm 78:56 (and not so early as Psalm 78:41) that the narration passes over to the apostate conduct of the children of the generation of the desert, that is to say, of the Israel of Canaan. Instead of עדוריו from עדוּת, the word here is עדוריו from עדה (a derivative of עוּד, not יעד). Since the apostasy did not gain ground until after the death of Joshua and Eleazar, it is the Israel of the period of the Judges that we are to think of here. קשׁת רמיּה, Psalm 78:57, is not: a bow of slackness, but: a bow of deceit; for the point of comparison, according to Hosea 7:16, is its missing the mark: a bow that discharges its arrow in a wrong direction, that makes no sure shot. The verb רמה signifies not only to allow to hang down slack (cogn. רפה), but also, according to a similar conception to spe dejicere, to disappoint, deny. In the very act of turning towards God, or at least being inclined towards Him by His tokens of power and loving-kindness, they turned (Jeremiah 2:21) like a vow that misses the mark and disappoints both aim and expectation. The expression in Psalm 78:58 is like Deuteronomy 32:16, Deuteronomy 32:21. שׁמע refers to their prayer to the Ba(a4lim (Judges 2:11). The word התעבּר, which occurs three times in this Psalm, is a word belonging to Deuteronomy (Deuteronomy 3:26). Psalm 78:59 is purposely worded exactly like Psalm 78:21. The divine purpose of love spurned by the children just as by the fathers, was obliged in this case, as in the former, to pass over into angry provocation.

Psalm 78:63 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

fire

Psalm 78:21 Therefore the LORD heard this, and was wroth: so a fire was kindled against Jacob, and anger also came up against Israel;

Deuteronomy 29:20 The LORD will not spare him, but then the anger of the LORD and his jealousy shall smoke against that man...

Deuteronomy 32:22 For a fire is kindled in my anger, and shall burn to the lowest hell, and shall consume the earth with her increase...

maidens

Isaiah 4:1 And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel...

Jeremiah 7:34 Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness...

Jeremiah 16:9 For thus said the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will cause to cease out of this place in your eyes, and in your days...

Jeremiah 25:10 Moreover I will take from them the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride...

given to marriage. Heb. praised

Cross References
Numbers 11:1
And the people complained in the hearing of the LORD about their misfortunes, and when the LORD heard it, his anger was kindled, and the fire of the LORD burned among them and consumed some outlying parts of the camp.

Numbers 21:28
For fire came out from Heshbon, flame from the city of Sihon. It devoured Ar of Moab, and swallowed the heights of the Arnon.

Isaiah 26:11
O LORD, your hand is lifted up, but they do not see it. Let them see your zeal for your people, and be ashamed. Let the fire for your adversaries consume them.

Jeremiah 7:34
And I will silence in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, for the land shall become a waste.

Jeremiah 16:9
For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Behold, I will silence in this place, before your eyes and in your days, the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride.

Jeremiah 48:45
"In the shadow of Heshbon fugitives stop without strength, for fire came out from Heshbon, flame from the house of Sihon; it has destroyed the forehead of Moab, the crown of the sons of tumult.

Lamentations 2:21
In the dust of the streets lie the young and the old; my young women and my young men have fallen by the sword; you have killed them in the day of your anger, slaughtering without pity.

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ESV Text Edition: 2016. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
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