Chapter 26

1On that day, this song shall be sung in the land of Judah: "The city that was our strength-salvation shall He place [for] walls and a bulwark.   אבַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֔וּא יוּשַׁ֥ר הַשִּׁיר־הַזֶּ֖ה בְּאֶ֣רֶץ יְהוּדָ֑ה עִ֣יר עָז־לָ֔נוּ יְשׁוּעָ֥ה יָשִׁ֖ית חוֹמ֥וֹת וָחֵֽל:
The city that was our strength, salvation shall He place: The city of Jerusalem, which was always our strength from time immemorial, the Savior shall place salvation for its walls and its bulwark.  
and a bulwark: a low wall before the high wall.  
2Open the gates, so that a righteous nation, awaiting the realization [of God's promise], may enter.   בפִּתְח֖וּ שְׁעָרִ֑ים וְיָבֹ֥א גֽוֹי־צַדִּ֖יק שֹׁמֵ֥ר אֱמֻנִֽים:
Open the gates: I.e., open her gates, and let a righteous nation, awaiting, that waited and longed in its exile many days for the faith of the Holy One, blessed be He, that He fulfill His promise through His prophets, to redeem them.  
awaiting: (שֹׁמֵר) waiting. Comp. (Gen. 37:11) “And his father awaited (שָׁמַר) the matter.” Similarly (Deut. 7:12), “And the Lord, your God, shall await (וְשָׁמַר) the covenant for you.”  
3The creature that relied, You shall guard, [that there be] peace, peace, for they trusted in You.   גיֵ֣צֶר סָמ֔וּךְ תִּצֹּ֖ר שָׁל֣וֹם | שָׁל֑וֹם כִּ֥י בְךָ֖ בָּטֽוּחַ:
The creature: that relied on the Holy One, blessed be He, and depended on Him steadfastly, that did not deviate from his faith because of any fear or torture.  
You shall guard: that there be peace, for he trusted in You. It is, therefore, fitting for You to guard him.  
4Trust in the Lord forever, for in Yah the Lord, is the Rock of eternity.   דבִּטְח֥וּ בַֽיהֹוָ֖ה עֲדֵי־עַ֑ד כִּי בְּיָ֣הּ יְהֹוָ֔ה צ֖וּר עֽוֹלָמִֽים:
for in Yah, the Lord: For we must rely on Him for He is the fear of God, the rock and everlasting shelter.  
5For He humbled the inhabitants of the high places, the fortified city; He brings it low, he brings it low even to the earth, he makes it reach even to the dust.   הכִּ֚י הֵשַׁח֙ יֹֽשְׁבֵ֣י מָר֔וֹם קִרְיָ֖ה נִשְׂגָּבָ֑ה יַשְׁפִּילֶ֚נָּה יַשְׁפִּילָהּ֙ עַד־אֶ֔רֶץ יַגִּיעֶ֖נָּה עַד־עָפָֽר:
the inhabitants of the high places: Tyre and other lands. ([Manuscripts yield:] Tyre and Rome and Italy. [Parshandatha])  
6A foot shall trample it, the feet of a poor man, the soles of the impoverished.   ותִּרְמְסֶ֖נָּה רָ֑גֶל רַגְלֵ֥י עָנִ֖י פַּֽעֲמֵ֥י דַלִּֽים:
the feet of a poor man: The King Messiah, who is referred to as a poor man riding on a donkey (Zech. 9:9).  
the soles of the impoverished: Israel, who were heretofore impoverished.  
7The way of the righteous that is straight-O Upright One, the path of the righteous, You shall weigh.   זאֹ֥רַח לַצַּדִּ֖יק מֵֽישָׁרִ֑ים יָשָׁ֕ר מַעְגַּ֥ל צַדִּ֖יק תְּפַלֵּֽס:
The way of the righteous that is straight: A way that is straight for the reception of the reward of the righteous You, O God, Who are an upright God, shall weigh the path of the righteous man, to lead him in that way, that he receive his reward. The righteous man is Jacob and his descendants. We must render in this manner: the straight way for the righteous man. ([Printed editions read:] The way for the righteous man to receive the reward for the upright deeds he performed.)  
O Upright One: You, the Holy One, blessed be He, the path of the feet of the righteous man, You shall weigh that way for him. This weighing is an expression of kontrepajjs in O.F., You counterbalance, equalize. Like a king who sits and thinks and weighs in his mind, which way is better, this one or that one. So, judge with equity to lead him in the way of receiving the reward for performing his deeds before You with propriety.  
8Even [for] the way of Your judgments, O Lord, have we hoped for You; for Your Name and for Your remembrance was the desire of [our] soul.   חאַ֣ף אֹ֧רַח מִשְׁפָּטֶ֛יךָ יְהֹוָ֖ה קִוִּינ֑וּךָ לְשִׁמְךָ֥ וּלְזִכְרְךָ֖ תַּֽאֲוַת־נָֽפֶשׁ:
Even [for] the way of Your judgments, O Lord, have we hoped for You: When we looked forward to receiving benefit from You, likewise we hoped that You would show us the way of the judgments of Your revenge upon the wicked. ([Manuscripts read:] Upon the wicked Esau.)  
for Your Name and Your remembrance was the desire of [our] soul: Our soul longed to see the name You will gain from them, by wreaking vengeance upon Your adversaries.  
9[With] my soul I longed for you at night; even [with] my spirit within me I beseeched You, for when Your judgments [come] to the earth, the inhabitants of the world learn justification.   טנַפְשִׁ֚י אִוִּיתִ֙ךָ֙ בַּלַּ֔יְלָה אַף־רוּחִ֥י בְקִרְבִּ֖י אֲשַֽׁחֲרֶ֑ךָּ כִּ֞י כַּֽאֲשֶׁ֚ר מִשְׁפָּטֶ֙יךָ֙ לָאָ֔רֶץ צֶ֥דֶק לָֽמְד֖וּ יֹֽשְׁבֵ֥י תֵבֵֽל:
[With] my soul I longed for You: in my exile, which resembles night, to perform these.  
even [with] my spirit within me I beseeched you: I beseeched You for all this. Why? Because, when Your judgments come to the earth, when you execute justice upon the wicked.  
the inhabitants of the world learn justification: They learn to justify Your judgment and to acknowledge Your standards for they see the sinner punished and the righteous receiving a good reward.  
10Shall the wicked be favored-who did not learn righteousness? In the land of uprightness he deals unjustly, and he does not see the pride of the Lord.   ייֻחַ֚ן רָשָׁע֙ בַּל־לָמַ֣ד צֶ֔דֶק בְּאֶ֥רֶץ נְכֹח֖וֹת יְעַוֵּ֑ל וּבַל־יִרְאֶ֖ה גֵּא֥וּת יְהֹוָֽה:
Shall the wicked be favored who did not learn righteousness: Should you favor the wicked Esau, who lived between two righteous men and did not learn righteousness?  
in the land of uprightness: Jerusalem and the Temple, he will deal unjustly, to pillage and spoil and to destroy.  
and he does not see the pride of the Lord: He did not regard Your pride and greatness. The expression, וּבַל יִרְאֶה, (lit., he shall not see,) is an expression of a habitual act, meaning: he did not see, he did not regard. Comp. (Job 1:5) “In this manner, Job was wont to do (יַעֲשֶׂה).”  
11O Lord, Your hand has been taken away that they not see; let them see and be ashamed. The envy of a people, even the fire that shall consume Your enemies.   יאיְהֹוָ֛ה רָ֥מָה יָֽדְךָ֖ בַּל־יֶחֱזָי֑וּן יֶֽחֱז֚וּ וְיֵבֹ֙שׁוּ֙ קִנְאַת־עָ֔ם אַף־אֵ֖שׁ צָרֶ֥יךָ תֹֽאכְלֵֽם:
O Lord, Your hand has been taken away: I have seen many Aggadic Midrashim on the verses of the above section and the following, but they are not appropriate, either because of the grammatical forms of the language or because of the context of the verses. I had to explain it according to its order. There is an Aggadic Midrash that states that the prophet begs that the nations not see the bounty of the Holy One, blessed be He, when He lavishes good upon Israel. The Holy One, blessed be He, replied, “It is better that they see and be ashamed,” (Eliyahu Zuta ch. 21). (The Midrash explains the verse as follows: O Lord, take away Your hand, so that they see not. I.e., the prophet begs that God conceal His might from the nations that they see it not. Thereupon, God replies, “Let them see and be ashamed…”) This does not fit with the language, however, since it does not say, “Raise Your hand.” Moreover, this word differs from all similar words. Every יָד רָמָה is accented on the final syllable, whereas this one is accented on the first syllable. Comp. (Gen. 37:7) “Behold, my sheaf rose (קָמָה).” Comp. also (Ruth 1:9) “Behold your sister in law has returned (שָׁבָה).” All of these are in the past tense. This too is to be explained: The hand of Your might has been taken away from upon Your enemies so that they see not Your might for they have seen that their way has prospered. I beg of You, let them see and be ashamed.  
the envy of a people: Let them see the bounty that You shall lavish upon Your people, Even they themselves shall see the judgment of Your vengeance, that the fire (of envy) shall consume them.  
12O Lord, You shall prepare peace for us, for also the recompense for all our deeds have You dealt to us.   יביְהֹוָ֕ה תִּשְׁפֹּ֥ת שָׁל֖וֹם לָ֑נוּ כִּ֛י גַּם־כָּל־מַֽעֲשֵׂ֖ינוּ פָּעַ֥לְתָּ לָּֽנוּ:
You shall prepare: (תִּשְׁפֹּת) you shall prepare. Comp. (II Kings 4:38) “Prepare (שְׁפוֹת) the… pot.” Also (Ps. 22:16), “And for the dust of death You have prepared me (תִּשְׁפְּתֵנִי).” (All) these can (likewise) be interpreted as an expression of placing, (or establishing). You shall establish peace for us.  
for also the recompense of all our deeds: (our) evil (deeds).  
have You dealt to us: commensurate punishment for them we have received from Your hand for all our sins.  
13O Lord, our God, masters other than You have possessed us. Only concerning You will we mention Your name.   יגיְהֹוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֵ֔ינוּ בְּעָל֥וּנוּ אֲדֹנִ֖ים זֽוּלָתֶ֑ךָ לְבַד־בְּךָ֖ נַזְכִּ֥יר שְׁמֶֽךָ:
have possessed us: They have become our masters and have oppressed us.  
other than You: In a matter contrary to Your will, to seek other Gods, to transgress Your Torah, but we - only concerning You have we mentioned Godliness, and we will not ascribe the name of His Godliness to another God, only to Him alone.  
Your name: The name of Your Godliness we will mention, saying that our God alone is God.  
14The dead shall not live, slackers shall not rise; therefore, You visited [upon them] and You destroyed them; You have put an end to any memory of them.   ידמֵתִים֙ בַּל־יִ֣חְי֔וּ רְפָאִ֖ים בַּל־יָקֻ֑מוּ לָכֵ֚ן פָּקַ֙דְתָּ֙ וַתַּשְׁמִידֵ֔ם וַתְּאַבֵּ֥ד כָּל־זֵ֖כֶר לָֽמוֹ:
The dead shall not live: May it be Your will that these wicked men shall not live in the World to Come, and that these slackers who slackened their hands from Your commandments shall not have restoration.  
therefore, You visited [upon them] and You destroyed them: Have You not already visited upon them and destroyed them with the words of Your mouth, like the matter that is stated (Exodus 17:14): “For I will surely erase the memory of Amalek.”  
15You have added to the nation, O Lord; You have added to the nation and have been honored; You have rejected all the ends of the earth.   טויָסַ֚פְתָּ לַגּוֹי֙ יְהֹוָ֔ה יָסַ֥פְתָּ לַגּ֖וֹי נִכְבָּ֑דְתָּ רִחַ֖קְתָּ כָּל־קַצְוֵי־אָֽרֶץ:
You have added to the nation: to Israel (Tan. Pinchas 16) You added to them Torah and greatness and honor, and the more that You added to them, the more You were honored, for they thank You and praise You for all the bounty, unlike the custom of the heathens (var. of Esau). Therefore, You rejected from before You all other ends of the earth, i.e., all distant nations. Behold, in their bounty, in this manner the Israelites bestow praise and honor upon You, and in their straits.  
16O Lord, in their straits they remembered You; they pour out prayer when Your chastening is upon them.   טזיְהֹוָ֖ה בַּצַּ֣ר פְּקָד֑וּךָ צָק֣וּן לַ֔חַשׁ מוּסָֽרְךָ֖ לָֽמוֹ:
O Lord, in their straits they remembered You: They do not question Your retributions.  
they pour out prayer: the pouring of speech and prayer.  
when Your chastening is upon them: When they are chastened, when Your chastening comes upon them; and so is their prayer.  
17As a pregnant woman comes near to give birth, she shudders, she screams in her pangs, so were we because of You, O Lord.   יזכְּמ֚וֹ הָרָה֙ תַּקְרִ֣יב לָלֶ֔דֶת תָּחִ֥יל תִּזְעַ֖ק בַּֽחֲבָלֶ֑יהָ כֵּ֛ן הָיִ֥ינוּ מִפָּנֶ֖יךָ יְהֹוָֽה:
As a pregnant woman comes near to give birth, etc.: So were we because of You; we see troubles being renewed, and we think that they are sorts of indications of salvation and redemption, for we are promised to be redeemed out of straits, as a woman giving birth.  
because of You: Because of Your decrees.  
18We conceived, we shuddered, as though we bore wind; we wreak no salvations [in] the land, neither do the inhabitants of the world fall.   יחהָרִ֣ינוּ חַ֔לְנוּ כְּמ֖וֹ יָלַ֣דְנוּ ר֑וּחַ יְשׁוּעֹת֙ בַּל־נַ֣עֲשֶׂה אֶ֔רֶץ וּבַֽל־יִפְּל֖וּ יֹֽשְׁבֵ֥י תֵבֵֽל:
We conceived, we shuddered: a shudder like a woman giving birth, as though we had given birth, as though we were close to being redeemed, yet it was wind and no salvation.  
we wreak no salvation [in] the land: We have suffered everything, and our troubles (sic) we do not understand for ourselves a salvation. [Rashi in Nach Lublin] ([Warsaw edition reads:] With all our suffering and our trouble, we do not prepare salvation for ourselves.) ([K’li Paz reads:] with all our pains and our troubles, we do not bring salvation for ourselves.) ([Some manuscripts read:] Throughout our troubles we do not see any salvation.) ([Others read:] We do not recognize any salvation.) ([Others read:] We cannot prepare for ourselves any salvation.)  
neither do the inhabitants of the world fall: The nations (var. the children of Esau), who are the inhabitants of the world, since they conquered and filled the earth, do not fall. And Jonathan rendered יִפְּלוּ as an expression related to (Ex. 33:16): “And wonders shall be wrought (וְנִפְלִינוּ) for me and Your people.” The inhabitants of the world cannot perform a wonder.  
19May Your dead live, 'My corpses shall rise; awaken and sing, you who dwell in the dust, for a dew of lights is your dew, and [to the] earth You shall cast the slackers.   יטיִֽחְי֣וּ מֵתֶ֔יךָ נְבֵֽלָתִ֖י יְקוּמ֑וּן הָקִ֨יצוּ וְרַנְּנ֜וּ שֹֽׁכְנֵ֣י עָפָ֗ר כִּ֣י טַ֚ל אוֹרֹת֙ טַלֶּ֔ךָ וָאָ֖רֶץ רְפָאִ֥ים תַּפִּֽיל:
May Your dead live: Above (v. 14) he prayed that the wicked should not live, and here he prayed that the righteous should live. I beseech You that those who were slain for Your sake come to life. May a royal edict emanate from You saying, “My corpses shall rise.” The corpses of My people who made themselves corpses for My sake, they shall be raised up. This is the opposite of what is written above (v. 14): “Slackers shall not rise.” These, however, shall rise.  
awaken and sing: All this the Holy One, blessed be He, shall say to them. “Awaken and sing,” is an imperative form.  
for a dew of lights is Your dew: For it is fitting for You to do so, that the dew of Your Torah and Your commandments shall be to them dew of light.  
and [to the] earth You shall cast the slackers: And to the earth and to the dust You shall cast the land of (sic) the slackers who slackened their hands from Your Torah.  
You shall cast the slackers: Since he stated (v. 18) “Neither do the inhabitants of the world fall,” he repeats, “You cast them down, for our merits do not suffice to cast them down.”  
20Go, My people, come into your chambers and close your door about you; hide for but a moment, until the wrath passes.   כלֵ֚ךְ עַמִּי֙ בֹּ֣א בַֽחֲדָרֶ֔יךָ וּֽסְגֹ֥ר דְּלָֽתְךָ֖ (כתיב דְּלָֽתְיךָ֖) בַּֽעֲדֶ֑ךָ חֲבִ֥י כִמְעַט־רֶ֖גַע עַד־יַֽעֲבָר־ (כתיב יַֽעֲבָור־) זָֽעַם:
Go, My people, come into your chambers: This reply they replied to the prophet, “Go, My people, come into your chambers,” into the synagogues and the study houses. Alternatively, think about your deeds, in the chambers of your heart. In this manner Rabbi Tanhuma expounded it.  
close your door about you: Jonathan renders: Do good deeds that will protect you. Rabbi Tanhuma, however, expounded: Close the doors of your mouth so as not to question the divine standard of justice.  
hide: Hide a little until the wrath passes, for indeed I will visit upon your enemies.  
21For behold the Lord comes forth from His place to visit the iniquity of the dweller of the land upon him: and the land shall reveal its blood and it shall no longer conceal its slain ones.   כאכִּֽי־הִנֵּ֚ה יְהֹוָה֙ יֹצֵ֣א מִמְּקוֹמ֔וֹ לִפְקֹ֛ד עֲו‍ֹ֥ן יֽשֵׁב־הָאָ֖רֶץ עָלָ֑יו וְגִלְּתָ֚ה הָאָ֙רֶץ֙ אֶת־דָּמֶ֔יהָ וְלֹֽא־תְכַסֶּ֥ה ע֖וֹד עַל־הֲרוּגֶֽיהָ:
For behold the Lord comes forth: from the divine standard of mercy to the divine standard of justice.  
the dweller of the land: That is Mount Seir. ([Some manuscripts read:] That is Esau and Mount Seir.) ([Others read:] That is Esau on Mount Seir.)  
its slain ones: that they slew of Israel.