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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
   

Tehillim - Psalms - Chapter 89

Tehillim - Psalms - Chapter 89

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Rashi's Commentary:

Chapter 89

1. A maskil of Ethan the Ezrahite.   א. מַשְׂכִּיל לְאֵיתָן הָאֶזְרָחִי:
of Ethan the Ezrahite: He, too, was one of the five musician brothers. [See above 88:1.] But our Sages (B.B. 15a) explained it as referring to our father Abraham, based on (Isa. 41:2): “Who aroused from the East (ממזרח).”  
2. The kindnesses of the Lord I shall sing forever; to generation after generation I shall make known Your faithfulness, with my mouth.   ב. חַסְדֵּי יְהֹוָה עוֹלָם אָשִׁירָה לְדֹר וָדֹר | אוֹדִיעַ אֱמוּנָתְךָ בְּפִי:
I shall make known Your faithfulness, with my mouth: What I know of You: that You keep Your promise and fulfill Your words.  
3. For I said, "Forever will it be built with kindness; as the heavens, with which You will establish Your faithfulness."   ג. כִּי אָמַרְתִּי עוֹלָם חֶסֶד יִבָּנֶה שָׁמַיִם | תָּכִן אֱמוּנָתְךָ בָהֶם:
For I said, “Forever will it be built with kindness”: For I said, “Forever the throne of David will be built with kindness,” as it is said (II Sam. 7:13): “and I shall establish the throne of his kingdom, etc.” Another explanation: I thought that the world would be built with Your kindness and that You would establish Your faithfulness in the heavens, to be established and made permanent. Now what is the faithfulness? That promise You promised David through Nathan the prophet, saying, “I formed a covenant with My chosen one to establish his seed until eternity.”  
4. I formed a covenant with My chosen one; I swore to David My servant.   ד. כָּרַתִּי בְרִית לִבְחִירִי נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי לְדָוִד עַבְדִּי:
5. Until eternity, I shall establish your seed, and I shall build your throne for all generations forever.   ה. עַד עוֹלָם אָכִין זַרְעֶךָ וּבָנִיתִי לְדֹר וָדוֹר כִּסְאֲךָ סֶלָה:
6. And the heavens acknowledge Your wonder, O Lord, also Your faithfulness in the congregation of holy ones.   ו. וְיוֹדוּ שָׁמַיִם פִּלְאֲךָ יְהֹוָה אַף אֱמוּנָתְךָ בִּקְהַל קְדֹשִׁים:
And the heavens acknowledge Your wonder: If You had kept Your promise.  
and Your faithfulness in the congregation of the holy ones: The realization of Your words they will acknowledge in the congregation of the holy ones.  
7. For who in the heavens is equal to the Lord? [Who] resembles the Lord among the sons of the mighty?   ז. כִּי מִי בַשַּׁחַק יַעֲרֹךְ לַיהֹוָה יִדְמֶה לַיהֹוָה בִּבְנֵי אֵלִים:
is equal to the Lord: Can be evaluated like Him.  
8. God is revered in the great council of the holy ones and feared by all around Him.   ח. אֵל נַעֲרָץ בְּסוֹד קְדֹשִׁים רַבָּה וְנוֹרָא עַל כָּל סְבִיבָיו:
in the great council of the holy ones: In the great council of the angels.  
9. O Lord, God of Hosts, who is like You, O Yah, Who are mighty? And Your faithfulness surrounds You.   ט. יְהֹוָה | אֱלֹהֵי צְבָאוֹת מִי כָמוֹךָ חֲסִין | יָהּ וֶאֱמוּנָתְךָ סְבִיבוֹתֶיךָ:
10. You rule over the pride of the sea; when it raises its waves, You humble them.   י. אַתָּה מוֹשֵׁל בְּגֵאוּת הַיָּם בְּשׂוֹא גַלָּיו אַתָּה תְשַׁבְּחֵם:
when it raises its waves: When its waves are raised.  
You humble them: Heb. תשבחם, You humble them, and similarly, (Prov. 29:11): “but afterwards a wise man will quiet it (ושבחנה) ” ; and similarly (above 65:8): “Who humbles (משביח) the roaring of the seas.”  
11. You crushed Rahab like one slain; with the arm of Your might You scattered Your enemies.   יא. אַתָּה דִכִּאתָ כֶחָלָל רָהַב בִּזְרוֹעַ עֻזְּךָ פִּזַּרְתָּ אוֹיְבֶיךָ:
Rahab: Egypt.  
12. The heaven is Yours, even the earth is Yours; the inhabited earth and the fullness thereof-You founded them.   יב. לְךָ שָׁמַיִם אַף לְךָ אָרֶץ תֵּבֵל וּמְלֹאָהּ אַתָּה יְסַדְתָּם:
13. North and south-You created them; Tabor and Hermon sing praises in Your name.   יג. צָפוֹן וְיָמִין אַתָּה בְרָאתָם תָּבוֹר וְחֶרְמוֹן בְּשִׁמְךָ יְרַנֵּנוּ:
14. You have an arm with might; Your hand is mighty, Your right hand is high.   יד. לְךָ זְרוֹעַ עִם גְּבוּרָה תָּעֹז יָדְךָ תָּרוּם יְמִינֶךָ:
15. Righteousness and judgment are the basis of Your throne; kindness and truth come before Your countenance.   טו. צֶדֶק וּמִשְׁפָּט מְכוֹן כִּסְאֶךָ חֶסֶד וֶאֱמֶת יְקַדְּמוּ פָנֶיךָ:
16. Fortunate is the people that know the blasting of the shofar; O Lord, may they walk in the light of Your countenance.   טז. אַשְׁרֵי הָעָם יֹדְעֵי תְרוּעָה יְהֹוָה בְּאוֹר פָּנֶיךָ יְהַלֵּכוּן:
that know the blasting of the shofar: Who know how to appease their Creator on Rosh Hashanah with the blasts, upon which they arrange the blessings of “malchuyoth” (manifestations of God’s dominion), “zichronoth” (remembrances), and “shofaroth.”  
17. With Your name they rejoice every day, and with Your righteousness they are exalted.   יז. בְּשִׁמְךָ יְגִילוּן כָּל הַיּוֹם וּבְצִדְקָתְךָ יָרוּמוּ:
18. For You are the glory of their might, and with Your favor our horns will be raised.   יח. כִּי תִפְאֶרֶת עֻזָּמוֹ אָתָּה וּבִרְצוֹנְךָ תָּרוּם קַרְנֵנוּ:
and with Your favor: that You are appeased by them (apayement in Old French), propitiation.  
19. For our shield is [devoted] to the Lord, and our king to the Holy One of Israel.   יט. כִּי לַיהֹוָה מָגִנֵּנוּ וְלִקְדוֹשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל מַלְכֵּנוּ:
20. Then You spoke in a vision to Your pious ones, and You said, "I placed help on a mighty man; I lifted up a chosen one from the people.   כ. אָז דִּבַּרְתָּ בְחָזוֹן לַחֲסִידֶיךָ וַתֹּאמֶר שִׁוִּיתִי עֵזֶר עַל גִּבּוֹר הֲרִימוֹתִי בָחוּר מֵעָם:
to Your pious ones: Nathan the prophet and Gad the seer.  
“I placed help”: on David, to help him constantly.  
21. I found David My servant, I anointed him with My holy oil.   כא. מָצָאתִי דָּוִד עַבְדִּי בְּשֶׁמֶן קָדְשִׁי מְשַׁחְתִּיו:
22. With whom My hand will be established, even My arm will strengthen him.   כב. אֲשֶׁר יָדִי תִּכּוֹן עִמּוֹ אַף זְרוֹעִי תְאַמְּצֶנּוּ:
23. No enemy will exact from him, neither will an unjust person afflict him.   כג. לֹא יַשִּׁיא אוֹיֵב בּוֹ וּבֶן עַוְלָה לֹא יְעַנֶּנּוּ:
No enemy will exact from him: No enemy will overwhelm him to become as his creditor.  
24. And I shall crush his adversaries from before him, and I shall strike his enemies.   כד. וְכַתּוֹתִי מִפָּנָיו צָרָיו וּמְשַׂנְאָיו אֶגּוֹף:
25. My faithfulness and My kindness will be with him, and with My name his horn will be raised.   כה. וֶאֱמוּנָתִי וְחַסְדִּי עִמּוֹ וּבִשְׁמִי תָּרוּם קַרְנוֹ:
26. I shall place his hand over the sea, and his right hand over the rivers.   כו. וְשַׂמְתִּי בַיָּם יָדוֹ וּבַנְּהָרוֹת יְמִינוֹ:
27. He will call to Me, 'You are my Father, my God, and the Rock of my salvation.'   כז. הוּא יִקְרָאֵנִי אָבִי אָתָּה אֵלִי וְצוּר יְשׁוּעָתִי:
28. I, too, shall make him a firstborn, the highest of the kings of the earth.   כח. אַף אָנִי בְּכוֹר אֶתְּנֵהוּ עֶלְיוֹן לְמַלְכֵי אָרֶץ:
shall make him a firstborn: I shall make him great.  
29. I will forever keep My kindness for him, and My covenant will remain true to him.   כט. לְעוֹלָם אֶשְׁמָר לוֹ חַסְדִּי וּבְרִיתִי נֶאֱמֶנֶת לוֹ:
30. And I shall make his seed endure forever, and his throne as the days of the heavens.   ל. וְשַׂמְתִּי לָעַד זַרְעוֹ וְכִסְאוֹ כִּימֵי שָׁמָיִם:
31. If his sons forsake My Torah and do not walk in My judgments,   לא. אִם יַעַזְבוּ בָנָיו תּוֹרָתִי וּבְמִשְׁפָּטַי לֹא יֵלֵכוּן:
32. If they profane My statutes and do not keep My commandments,   לב. אִם חֻקֹּתַי יְחַלֵּלוּ וּמִצְו‍ֹתַי לֹא יִשְׁמֹרוּ:
33. I shall punish their transgression with a rod, and their iniquity with stripes.   לג. וּפָקַדְתִּי בְשֵׁבֶט פִּשְׁעָם וּבִנְגָעִים עֲו‍ֹנָם:
I shall punish their transgression with a rod: So did Nathan the prophet say to him concerning Solomon (II Sam. 7:14): “so that when he goes astray, I will chasten him with the rod of men.” This refers to Rezon the son of Eliada, who rose up as an adversary to him: “and with the stripes of the sons of Adam.” This refers to Ashmadai, according to the Sages of blessed memory.  
34. But I shall not cancel My kindness from him, and I shall not betray My faith.   לד. וְחַסְדִּי לֹא אָפִיר מֵעִמּוֹ וְלֹא אֲשַׁקֵּר בֶּאֱמוּנָתִי:
35. I shall not profane My covenant, neither shall I alter the utterance of My lips.   לה. לֹא אֲחַלֵּל בְּרִיתִי וּמוֹצָא שְֹפָתַי לֹא אֲשַׁנֶּה:
36. One thing have I sworn by My holiness, that I will not fail David.   לו. אַחַת נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי בְקָדְשִׁי אִם לְדָוִד אֲכַזֵּב:
that I will not fail David: Heb. אכזב, an expression of (Isa. 58: 11): “whose water does not fail (יכזבו) ,” faliance in Old French, failure; possibly from the Latin fallera, deception.  
37. His seed will be forever and his throne is like the sun before Me.   לז. זַרְעוֹ לְעוֹלָם יִהְיֶה וְכִסְאוֹ כַשֶּׁמֶשׁ נֶגְדִּי:
38. Like the moon, which is established forever, and it is a witness in the sky, eternally true."   לח. כְּיָרֵחַ יִכּוֹן עוֹלָם וְעֵד בַּשַּׁחַק נֶאֱמָן סֶלָה:
and it is a witness in the sky, true: The moon and the sun are witnesses to him that as long as they exist, his kingdom will exist, as it is written (Jer. 33:20f.): “If you break My covenant with the day and My covenant with the night, etc. Also My covenant with David will be broken.”  
39. But You abandoned and You rejected; You became wroth with Your anointed.   לט. וְאַתָּה זָנַחְתָּ וַתִּמְאָס הִתְעַבַּרְתָּ עִם מְשִׁיחֶךָ:
But You abandoned: You dealt strictly with his children in counting their iniquity until You abandoned them and You rejected them in the days of Zedekiah.  
40. You abrogated the covenant of Your servant; You profaned his crown to the ground.   מ. נֵאַרְתָּה בְּרִית עַבְדֶּךָ חִלַּלְתָּ לָאָרֶץ נִזְרוֹ:
You abrogated: You nullified.  
41. You breached all his fences; You made his fortifications a ruin.   מא. פָּרַצְתָּ כָל גְּדֵרֹתָיו שַׂמְתָּ מִבְצָרָיו מְחִתָּה:
all his fences: which he built in Jerusalem.  
his fortifications: The Temple Mount and the stronghold of Zion.  
42. All wayfarers have plundered him; he was a disgrace to his neighbors.   מב. שַׁסֻּהוּ כָּל עֹבְרֵי דָרֶךְ הָיָה חֶרְפָּה לִשְׁכֵנָיו:
43. You raised the right hand of his adversaries; You caused all his enemies to rejoice.   מג. הֲרִימוֹתָ יְמִין צָרָיו הִשְׂמַחְתָּ כָּל אוֹיְבָיו:
44. You even turned back the sharp edge of his sword, and You did not raise him up in battle.   מד. אַף תָּשִׁיב צוּר חַרְבּוֹ וְלֹא הֲקֵמֹתוֹ בַּמִּלְחָמָה:
You even turned back the sharp edge of his sword: You turned back and reversed the sharp edge of his sword, as (Josh. 5: 2): “sharp (צרים) knives,” and likewise (Isa. 54:17): “Any weapon whetted (יוצר) against you.”  
and You did not raise him up in battle: And You did not hold him upright so that he should not fall.  
45. You have brought an end to his shining, and his throne You have cast down to earth.   מה. הִשְׁבַּתָּ מִטֳּהָרוֹ וְכִסְאוֹ לָאָרֶץ מִגַּרְתָּה:
You have brought an end to his shining: Heb. מטהרו, his shining, as צהרים, noon, is translated טהרא, and like (Exod. 24: 10): “and like the appearance of the heaven for splendor (לטהר).”  
You have cast down to the earth: Heb. מגרת. You have humbled and destroyed. Every expression of bending down is, in Targum Jonathan, מגר.  
46. You have shortened the days of his youth; You have enwrapped him with shame forever.   מו. הִקְצַרְתָּ יְמֵי עֲלוּמָיו הֶעֱטִיתָ עָלָיו בּוּשָׁה סֶלָה:
47. How long, O Lord? Will You hide forever? Will Your anger burn like fire?   מז. עַד מָה יְהֹוָה תִּסָּתֵר לָנֶצַח תִּבְעַר כְּמוֹ אֵשׁ חֲמָתֶךָ:
48. I am mindful what my old age is; for what futility have You created all the sons of man?   מח. זְכָר אֲנִי מֶה חָלֶד עַל מַה שָּׁוְא בָּרָאתָ כָל בְּנֵי אָדָם:
I am mindful what my old age is: Heb. חלד. What old age do I have? Are not my days few? It should suffice You to punish me with my premature death.  
for what futility: Heb. שוא. For nothing and for vanity have You created all the sons of man?  
49. Who is a man who will live and not see death, who will rescue his soul from the grasp of the grave forever?   מט. מִי גֶבֶר יִחְיֶה וְלֹא יִרְאֶה מָּוֶת יְמַלֵּט נַפְשׁוֹ מִיַּד שְׁאוֹל סֶלָה:
50. Where are Your former acts of kindness, O Lord, which You swore to David in your trust?   נ. אַיֵּה חֲסָדֶיךָ הָרִאשֹׁנִים | אֲדֹנָי נִשְׁבַּעְתָּ לְדָוִד בֶּאֱמוּנָתֶךָ:
51. Remember, O Lord, the disgrace of Your servants, which I bear in my bosom, [the disgrace] of all great nations.   נא. זְכֹר אֲדֹנָי חֶרְפַּת עֲבָדֶיךָ שְׂאֵתִי בְחֵיקִי כָּל רַבִּים עַמִּים:
which I bear in my bosom, of all great nations: In exile I bear their burden and their load.  
52. Which Your enemies disgraced, O Lord, which they disgraced the ends of Your anointed.   נב. אֲשֶׁר חֵרְפוּ אוֹיְבֶיךָ | יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר חֵרְפוּ עִקְּבוֹת מְשִׁיחֶךָ:
the ends of Your anointed: Heb. עקבות, the ends of the King Messiah. This is the language of the Mishnah (Sotah 49b): At the ends of the Messiah, audacity will increase; i.e., at the end of the exile, prior to the advent of the Messiah.  
53. Blessed is the Lord forever. Amen and Amen.   נג. בָּרוּךְ יְהֹוָה לְעוֹלָם אָמֵן | וְאָמֵן:
Blessed is the Lord forever: For all that He did for us.  
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