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Shmuel II - II Samuel - Chapter 22

Shmuel II - II Samuel - Chapter 22

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Chapter 22

1And David spoke to the Lord the words of this song, on the day that the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul;   אוַיְדַבֵּ֚ר דָּוִד֙ לַֽיהֹוָ֔ה אֶת־דִּבְרֵ֖י הַשִּׁירָ֣ה הַזֹּ֑את בְּיוֹם֩ הִצִּ֨יל יְהֹוָ֥ה אֹת֛וֹ מִכַּ֥ף כָּל־אֹיְבָ֖יו וּמִכַּ֥ף שָׁאֽוּל:
In the day that the Lord delivered him: In his later years when all his troubles had passed over him and he had been saved from them all.  
and out of the hand of Saul: But is not Saul included [among his enemies]? However he was his enemy and pursuer to a greater degree than all the others [and was therefore cited separately]. Similarly [we find]: “nineteen men and Asahel” (above 2:30). Similarly, “And King Solomon loved foreign women, and the daughter of Pharoah” (I Kings 11:1).  
2And he said, "The Lord is my rock and my fortress, and a rescuer to me.   בוַיֹּאמַ֑ר יְהֹוָ֛ה סַֽלְעִ֥י וּמְצֻדָתִ֖י וּמְפַלְטִי־לִֽי:
my rock and my fortress: Heb. סלעי ומצדתי. They are expressions of strength; סלעי, rock, requires no explanation; מצדתי, fortress refers to the fortresses of the forests which are called pljsdec in French. This is an allusion to the miracle which was performed on his behalf at the rock of Machloketh (I Sam. 23:28), and at the fortresses at Harsha (I Sam. 23:15 19).  
and a rescuer to me.: [He was] my rescuer [when I was] together with the army of Israel engaged in battle. On occasions, [however,] he rescued me when I was alone, as from Ishbi in Nob (Above 21:16).  
3God is my rock, under whom I take cover; My shield, and the horn of my salvation, my support, and my refuge; [He is] my savior Who saves me from violence.   גאֱלֹהֵ֥י צוּרִ֖י אֶחֱסֶה־בּ֑וֹ מָגִנִּ֞י וְקֶ֣רֶן יִשְׁעִ֗י מִשְׂגַּבִּי֙ וּמְנוּסִ֔י מֹשִׁעִ֕י מֵחָמָ֖ס תֹּשִׁעֵֽנִי:
my rock: Heb. צורי, synonymous with סלע. [He was his rock] since the rock protects travelers from the [force of] the rain and the wind, abriemant in French.  
under whom I take cover: Heb. אחסה, an expression of covering; I would cover myself waiting for [His] aid.  
my support: Heb. משגבי, my support.  
and my refuge: For I would run to Him for aid.  
4With praise, I call to the Lord, for from my enemies I shall be saved.   דמְהֻלָּ֖ל אֶקְרָ֣א יְהֹוָ֑ה וּמֵאֹיְבַ֖י אִוָּשֵֽׁעַ:
With praise I call to the Lord: Just as its Targum. Upon calling Him I [already] praise Him, for I am confidant that I will be saved. It is also plausible to interpret it: ‘I call and I am saved,’ in present sense.  
have encompassed me: Heb. אפפני, have encompassed me.  
pains of death: As its Targum: ‘Like a woman who sits on the travailing chair.’ This (משבר) is the term for the stone seat on which a woman gives birth.  
streams of scoundrels: Armies that overflow like a stream.  
5For the pains of death have encompassed me; streams of scoundrels would affright me.   הכִּ֥י אֲפָפֻ֖נִי מִשְׁבְּרֵי־מָ֑וֶת נַחֲלֵ֥י בְלִיַּ֖עַל יְבַעֲתֻֽנִי:
6Bands of [those that shall inherit] the nether world have surrounded me; the snares of death confronted me.   וחֶבְלֵ֥י שְׁא֖וֹל סַבֻּ֑נִי קִדְּמֻ֖נִי מֹֽקְשֵׁי־מָֽוֶת:
bands: Heb. חבלי, as its Targum: Bands, similar to: “Bands of prophets (חבל נביאים)” of I Sam. 10:10.  
confronted me: came before me.  
7When I am in distress, I call upon the Lord, yes I call upon my God: and out of His abode He hears my voice, and my cry enters His ears.   זבַּצַּר־לִי֙ אֶקְרָ֣א יְהֹוָ֔ה וְאֶל־אֱלֹהַ֖י אֶקְרָ֑א וַיִּשְׁמַ֚ע מֵהֵֽיכָלוֹ֙ קוֹלִ֔י וְשַׁוְעָתִ֖י בְּאָזְנָֽיו:
I call upon… He hears: Heb. וישמע lit. He heard. That is the nature of the present tense, it speaks in past and future tense simultaneously.  
8Then the earth shook and quaked, the [very] foundations of heaven did tremble; and they were shaken when he was angered.   חוַיִּתְגָּעַ֚שׁ (כתיב וִַתְגָּעַ֚שׁ) וַתִּרְעַשׁ֙ הָאָ֔רֶץ מוֹסְד֥וֹת הַשָּׁמַ֖יִם יִרְגָּ֑זוּ וַיִּֽתְגָּעֲשׁ֖וּ כִּֽי־חָ֥רָה לֽוֹ:
the earth shook, etc.: Not in reference to the miracles that took place on his own behalf was this said, but in reference to the miracles that were performed on behalf of all Israel. Now the beginning of the verse is connected to the end.  
when he was angered: [The word] כי is used here as ‘when’ with the following interpretation: Now when he was angered by those that rouse His temper, the earth shook and quaked… and the very foundations of the earth did tremble.  
9Smoke went up in His nostrils, and fire out of His mouth did devour; coals flamed forth from Him.   טעָלָ֚ה עָשָׁן֙ בְּאַפּ֔וֹ וְאֵ֥שׁ מִפִּ֖יו תֹּאכֵ֑ל גֶּחָלִ֖ים בָּעֲר֥וּ מִמֶּֽנּוּ:
smoke went up in His nostrils: So it is with one who is angry, smoke comes forth from his nostrils. Similarly: “These are a smoke from My nostrils” (Isa 65:5). Now this is always the meaning of the term חרון אף; the nose snorts and raises up vapors.  
and fire out of His mouth did devour: Due to the command from His mouth, a fire consumed the wicked.  
10And He bent the heavens and He came down; and thick darkness was under His feet.   יוַיֵּ֥ט שָׁמַ֖יִם וַיֵּרַ֑ד וַעֲרָפֶ֖ל תַּ֥חַת רַגְלָֽיו:
and He bent the heavens: To avenge Himself of His enemies; i.e., from Egypt and Pharoah.  
11And He rode upon a cherub and did fly; He was seen upon the wings of the wind.   יאוַיִּרְכַּ֥ב עַל־כְּר֖וּב וַיָּעֹ֑ף וַיֵּרָ֖א עַל־כַּנְפֵי־רֽוּחַ:
12And He fixed darkness about Him as booths; gathering of waters, thick clouds of the skies.   יבוַיָּ֥שֶׁת ח֛שֶׁךְ סְבִיבֹתָ֖יו סֻכּ֑וֹת חַֽשְׁרַת־מַ֖יִם עָבֵ֥י שְׁחָקִֽים:
And he fixed darkness, etc.: As a booth, just as it stated: “and the cloud and darkness separated between the Egyptians and Israelites!” (Ex 14:20).  
gathering of waters, thick clouds of the skies: Now from where did this darkness emanate? There were thick clouds of the skies that would distill water upon the earth.  
gathering: Heb. חשרת, synonymous with כברה [a sieve] since it distills [the water] onto the earth drop by drop And so it is stated in numerous aggodot: “They [the clouds] distill it [the rain] as a sieve (חושרין אותו ככברה)” Gen. R. 13:10. It is further possible to interpret it as ‘a knotting,’ since the skies become knotted with clouds on account of the water similar to וחשוריהם mentioned in reference to the wheels of the bases (I Kings 7: 33), which are wooden spokes that fasten and join its rings together.  
13From the brightness before Him flamed forth coals of fire.   יגמִנֹּ֖גַהּ נֶגְדּ֑וֹ בָּעֲר֖וּ גַּחֲלֵי־אֵֽשׁ:
from the brightness before Him: In order that one not [be led to] say that He dwells in darkness [for] there is a brightness from within the partition [of the cloud] and from this brightness that is before Him flame forth coals of fire, which were sent as arrows upon the Egyptians.  
14The Lord thundered from heaven; and the Most High gave forth His voice.   ידיַרְעֵ֥ם מִן־שָׁמַ֖יִם יְהֹוָ֑ה וְעֶלְי֖וֹן יִתֵּ֥ן קוֹלֽוֹ:
15And He sent out arrows and He scattered them, lightning and He discomfited them.   טווַיִּשְׁלַ֥ח חִצִּ֖ים וַיְפִיצֵ֑ם בָּרָ֖ק וַיָּהֹֽם (כתיב וַיָּהֹֽמם) :
16And the depths of the sea appeared; the foundations of the world were laid bare, by the rebuke of the Lord and the blast of the breath of His nostrils.   טזוַיֵּֽרָאוּ֙ אֲפִ֣קֵי יָ֔ם יִגָּל֖וּ מֹסְד֣וֹת תֵּבֵ֑ל בְּגַעֲרַ֣ת יְהֹוָ֔ה מִנִּשְׁמַ֖ת ר֥וּחַ אַפּֽוֹ:
and the depths of the sea appeared: The very interior of the earth split. For when the Sea of Reeds split, all the waters of the world [simultaneously] split.  
17He sent from on high [and] He took me; He drew me out of many waters.   יזיִשְׁלַ֥ח מִמָּר֖וֹם יִקָּחֵ֑נִי יַֽמְשֵׁ֖נִי מִמַּ֥יִם רַבִּֽים:
18He delivered me from my mighty enemy; from them that hated me; for they were too powerful for me.   יחיַצִּילֵ֕נִי מֵאֹיְבִ֖י עָ֑ז מִשּׂ֣נְאַ֔י כִּ֥י אָמְצ֖וּ מִמֶּֽנִי:
For they were too powerful: When they were too powerful.  
19They confronted me on the day of my calamity; but the Lord was a support to me.   יטיְקַדְּמֻ֖נִי בְּי֣וֹם אֵידִ֑י וַיְהִ֧י יְהֹוָ֛ה מִשְׁעָ֖ן לִֽי:
20And He brought me forth into a wide place; He delivered me because He took delight in me.   כוַיֹּצֵ֥א לַמֶּרְחָ֖ב אֹתִ֑י יְחַלְּצֵ֖נִי כִּי־חָ֥פֵֽץ בִּֽי:
21The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness; According to the cleanness of my hands He recompensed me.   כאיִגְמְלֵ֥נִי יְהֹוָ֖ה כְּצִדְקָתִ֑י כְּבֹ֥ר יָדַ֖י יָשִׁ֥יב לִֽי:
according to the righteousness: When they went out after Him into the desert and relied on His promise.  
22For I have kept the ways of the Lord and have not wickedly departed from [the commandments of] my God.   כבכִּ֥י שָׁמַ֖רְתִּי דַּרְכֵ֣י יְהֹוָ֑ה וְלֹ֥א רָשַׁ֖עְתִּי מֵאֱלֹהָֽי:
23For all His ordinances were before me; and [as for] His statutes, I did not depart from it.   כגכִּ֥י כָל־מִשְׁפָּטָ֖יו (כתיב מִשְׁפָּטָ֖ו) לְנֶגְדִּ֑י וְחֻקֹּתָ֖יו לֹא־אָס֥וּר מִמֶּֽנָּה:
24And I was single-hearted toward Him, and I kept myself from my iniquity.   כדוָאֶהְיֶ֥ה תָמִ֖ים ל֑וֹ וָאֶשְׁתַּמְּרָ֖ה מֵעֲו‍ֹנִֽי:
25And the Lord has recompensed me according to my righteousness; according to my cleanness before His eyes.   כהוַיָּ֧שֶׁב יְהֹוָ֛ה לִ֖י כְּצִדְקָתִ֑י כְּבֹרִ֖י לְנֶ֥גֶד עֵינָֽיו:
26With a kind one, You show Yourself kind. With an upright mighty man, You show Yourself upright.   כועִם־חָסִ֖יד תִּתְחַסָּ֑ד עִם־גִּבּ֥וֹר תָּמִ֖ים תִּתַּמָּֽם:
kind… upright… pure: [The three expressions] represent the three forefathers to whom the Holy One, Blessed be He, had paid the reward for their righteousness to their children.  
27With a pure one, You show Yourself pure; But with a perverse one, You deal crookedly.   כזעִם־נָבָ֖ר תִּתָּבָ֑ר וְעִם־עִקֵּ֖שׁ תִּתַּפָּֽל:
But with a perverse one: Pharoah.  
crookedly: Heb. תתפל. Its meaning is crooked and perverse [compare to Deut. 32:5]. Now in the book [of Psalms 18:27] it is written תתפתל. An alternate explanation is:  
He sent from on High, He took me: He said it regarding himself when he was rushing to escape from Saul at Sela Hamachlekoth and was nearly captured, an angel came to Saul saying: “Make haste and go, for the Philistines have spread out, etc.” (I Sam. 23:27).  
And recompensed me according to my righteousness: for I did not kill him [Saul] when I severed the skirt of his coat (I Sam. 24:5).  
28And the humble people You do deliver; But Your eyes are upon the haughty [in order] to humble them.   כחוְאֶת־עַ֥ם עָנִ֖י תּוֹשִׁ֑יעַ וְעֵינֶ֖יךָ עַל־רָמִ֥ים תַּשְׁפִּֽיל:
29For You are my lamp, O' Lord; And the Lord does light my darkness.   כטכִּֽי־אַתָּ֥ה נֵירִ֖י יְהֹוָ֑ה וַיהֹוָ֖ה יַגִּ֥יהַּ חָשְׁכִּֽי:
30For by You I run upon a troop; By my God I scale a wall.   לכִּ֥י בְכָ֖ה אָר֣וּץ גְּד֑וּד בֵּאלֹהַ֖י אֲדַלֶּג־שֽׁוּר:
31[He is] the God Whose way is perfect; The word of the Lord is tried; He is a shield unto all them that trust in him.   לאהָאֵ֖ל תָּמִ֣ים דַּרְכּ֑וֹ אִמְרַ֚ת יְהֹוָה֙ צְרוּפָ֔ה מָגֵ֣ן ה֔וּא לְכֹ֖ל הַחֹסִ֥ים בּֽוֹ:
The word of the Lord: The word of the Lord is pure; He promises and performs.  
32For who is God, save the Lord? And who is a rock, save our God?   לבכִּ֥י מִי־אֵ֖ל מִבַּלְעֲדֵ֣י יְהֹוָ֑ה וּמִ֥י צ֖וּר מִֽבַּלְעֲדֵ֥י אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ:
33God is He who has fortified me with strength; and He looseth perfectly my path.   לגהָאֵ֥ל מָעוּזִּ֖י חָ֑יִל וַיַּתֵּ֥ר תָּמִ֖ים דַּרְכִּֽי (כתיב דַּרְכִּֽו) :
He looseth perfectly my path: From every stumbling block, from every sin, and from every fence until it is perfect and paved.  
34He makes my feet like hinds; And sets me upon my high places.   לדמְשַׁוֶּ֥ה רַגְלַ֖י (כתיב רַגְלַ֖יו) כָּאַיָּל֑וֹת וְעַ֥ל בָּמוֹתַ֖י יַעֲמִדֵֽנִי:
35He trains my hand for war, so that mine arms do bend a brass bow.   להמְלַמֵּ֥ד יָדַ֖י לַמִּלְחָמָ֑ה וְנִחַ֥ת קֶֽשֶׁת־נְחוּשָׁ֖ה זְרֹעֹתָֽי:
do bend a brass bow: And a brass bow was bent by my hands for I possess the strength to bend it. David had bows hanging in his palace and foreign kings would come and see them and say to each other: Do you suppose that he can actually bend them? They are merely intended to frighten us. And David would overhear and would take them [the brass bows] and crush them before their eyes (sic). Now נחת is an expression of bending. And so we find “Your arrows were flung [by bending the bow] into me” (Ps. 38:3).  
36And You have given me the shield of Your salvation; And You have increased Your modesty for me.   לווַתִּתֶּן־לִ֖י מָגֵ֣ן יִשְׁעֶ֑ךָ וַעֲנֹתְךָ֖ תַּרְבֵּֽנִי:
and You have increased your modesty for me: You have increased for me Your trait of humility.  
37You have enlarged my step[s] beneath me; And my ankles have not slipped.   לזתַּרְחִ֥יב צַעֲדִ֖י תַּחְתֵּ֑נִי וְלֹ֥א מָעֲד֖וּ קַרְסֻלָּֽי:
enlarged my steps beneath me: When a man keeps his feet one next to the other it is easy [for him] to fall. And so it is written: “When you walk, your steps shall not be narrow” (Prov. 4:12).  
ankles: heels.  
38I have pursued my enemies and have destroyed them; Never turning back until they were consumed.   לחאֶרְדְּפָ֥ה אֹיְבַ֖י וָאַשְׁמִידֵ֑ם וְלֹ֥א אָשׁ֖וּב עַד־כַּלּוֹתָֽם:
39And I have consumed them, and I have crushed them that they cannot rise; Yes, they are fallen under my feet.   לטוָאֲכַלֵּ֥ם וָאֶמְחָצֵ֖ם וְלֹ֣א יְקוּמ֑וּן וַֽיִּפְל֖וּ תַּ֥חַת רַגְלָֽי:
40For You have girded me with strength for the battle; You have subdued under me those that rose up against me.   מוַתַּזְרֵ֥נִי חַ֖יִל לַמִּלְחָמָ֑ה תַּכְרִ֥יעַ קָמַ֖י תַּחְתֵּֽנִי:
41And of my enemies You have given me the back of their necks; them that hate me, that I may cut them off.   מאוְאֹ֣יְבַ֔י תַּ֥תָּה לִּ֖י עֹ֑רֶף מְשַׂנְאַ֖י וָאַצְמִיתֵֽם:
42They looked about, but there was no one to save them; [Even] to the Lord, but He answered them not.   מביִשְׁע֖וּ וְאֵ֣ין משִׁ֑יעַ אֶל־יְהֹוָ֖ה וְלֹ֥א עָנָֽם:
They looked about but there was none to save them: This is a transposed verse: “They look to the Lord but He answered them not, there was none to save him,” similar to: “man looks towards his Creator (ישעו אדם אל עשתו)” of Isa 17:7 [where it is so be taken as] similar to יפנה, to turn towards. Now Menahem has associated it with וישע ה׳ אל הבל interpreting it as ‘entreaty.’ Now this term is applicable to both the beseecher and the beseeched, as in “And Isaac beseeched the Lord (ויעתר יצחק אל ה׳) ”; “and the Lord hearkened to him (ויעתר לו ה׳)” of Gen. 25:21. Here too ישעו ואין מושיע refers to the beseecher, while וישע ה׳ (Gen. 4:4) refers grammatically to the one who is being beseeched.  
43Then I ground them as the dust of the earth, as the mud of the streets I did tread upon them, I did stamp them down.   מגוְאֶשְׁחָקֵ֖ם כַּעֲפַר־אָ֑רֶץ כְּטִיט־חוּצ֥וֹת אֲדִקֵּ֖ם אֶרְקָעֵֽם:
stamp them down: Heb. ארקעם. Now it is found numerous times in Ezekiel: “and stamp (ורקע) with your foot” (Ezek. 6:11), [and] “and you have stamped (ורקעך) with your feet” (Ezek. 15:6).  
44And You have allowed me to escape from the contenders amongst my people; You shall keep me as head of nations; a people whom I have not known serve me.   מדוַֽתְּפַלְּטֵ֔נִי מֵרִיבֵ֖י עַמִּ֑י תִּשְׁמְרֵ֙נִי֙ לְרֹ֣אשׁ גּוֹיִ֔ם עַ֥ם לֹא־יָדַ֖עְתִּי יַעַבְדֻֽנִי:
contenders: From Doeg, Ahithophel, Saul, and the Ziphites.  
shall keep me as head of nations: You have preserved me for this. Now the Midrash Aggadah [interprets it]: Said David, Lord of the Universe, spare me from the judgment of Israel, for if I err or force the Israelites into my service I shall be punished. Place me instead as head of the Philistines for they will serve me and for them I shall not be punished.  
45Strangers lie to me; as soon as their ears hear, they obey me.   מהבְּנֵ֥י נֵכָ֖ר יִתְכַּֽחֲשׁוּ־לִ֑י לִשְׁמ֥וֹעַ אֹ֖זֶן יִשָּׁ֥מְעוּ לִֽי:
deceive me: Because of their fear, they lie to me.  
as soon as their ears hear, they obey me: Though they are not before me, they fear me. Hence from the moment their ears hear they turn to obey my command.  
46The strangers will wilt, and become lame from their bondage.   מובְּנֵ֥י נֵכָ֖ר יִבֹּ֑לוּ וְיַחְגְּר֖וּ מִמִּסְגְּרוֹתָֽם:
will wilt: Heb. יבלו. Its usage is as: “and the leaf wilts (נבל) ” (Jer. 8:13); pleistre in French.  
shall become lame: ויחגרו, an expression meaning lame.  
from their bondage: From the great pains of the imprisonment with which I punish them.  
47The Lord lives, and blessed be my Rock; And exalted be the God, [who is] my rock of salvation.   מזחַי־יְהֹוָ֖ה וּבָר֣וּךְ צוּרִ֑י וְיָרֻ֕ם אֱלֹהֵ֖י צ֥וּר יִשְׁעִֽי:
the Lord lives: The One who performs all this for me.  
48The God who takes vengeance for me; And brings down peoples under me.   מחהָאֵ֕ל הַנֹּתֵ֥ן נְקָמֹ֖ת לִ֑י וּמֹרִ֥יד עַמִּ֖ים תַּחְתֵּֽנִי:
49And that brings me forth from my enemies; And above those that rise against me, You have lifted me; from the violent man You deliver me.   מטוּמוֹצִיאִ֖י מֵאֹֽיְבָ֑י וּמִקָּמַי֙ תְּר֣וֹמְמֵ֔נִי מֵאִ֥ישׁ חֲמָסִ֖ים תַּצִּילֵֽנִי:
50Therefore I will give thanks to You, O' Lord, among the nations, and to your name I will sing praises.   נעַל־כֵּ֛ן אוֹדְךָ֥ יְהֹוָ֖ה בַּגּוֹיִ֑ם וּלְשִׁמְךָ֖ אֲזַמֵּֽר:
51He gives great salvation to His king, and He performs kindness to His anointed; to David and to his seed, forevermore.   נאמִגְדּ֖וֹל (כתיב מִגְדֹּ֖יל) יְשׁוּע֣וֹת מַלְכּ֑וֹ וְעֹֽשֶׂה־חֶ֧סֶד לִמְשִׁיח֛וֹ לְדָוִ֥ד וּלְזַרְע֖וֹ עַד־עוֹלָֽם:
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