Chapter 81

1For the conductor, on the gittith, of Asaph.   אלַֽמְנַצֵּ֬חַ | עַל־הַגִּתִּ֬ית לְאָסָֽף:
on the gittith: A musical instrument that comes from Gath.  
2Sing praises to the God Who is our might, sound the shofar to the God of Jacob.   בהַרְנִינוּ לֵֽאלֹהִ֣ים עוּזֵּ֑נוּ הָ֜רִ֗יעוּ לֵֽאלֹהֵ֥י יַֽעֲקֹֽב:
sound the shofar: on Rosh Hashanah.  
3Raise [your voice in] song and give forth [with] a timbrel, a pleasant harp with a lyre.   גשְֽׂאוּ־זִ֖מְרָה וּתְנוּ־תֹ֑ף כִּנּ֖וֹר נָעִ֣ים עִם־נָֽבֶל:
a pleasant harp with a lyre: Rabbi Chiyya bar Abba says: The “kinnor” and the “nevel” are the same. Rabbi Simon says: The [number of] strings distinguishes one from the other. Why is it called “nevel” ? Because it puts all other types of music to shame.  
4Sound the shofar on the New Moon, on the appointed time for the day of our festival.   דתִּקְע֣וּ בַחֹ֣דֶשׁ שׁוֹפָ֑ר בַּ֜כֶּ֗סֶה לְי֣וֹם חַגֵּֽנוּ:
on the New Moon: When the moon renews itself.  
on the appointed time: The appointed day for it, and so (Prov. 7:20): “on the appointed day (בכסה) he will come home”; to the appointed time that had been fixed.  
5For it is a statute for Israel, the judgment of the God of Jacob.   הכִּ֚י חֹ֣ק לְיִשְׂרָאֵ֣ל ה֑וּא מִ֜שְׁפָּ֗ט לֵֽאלֹהֵ֥י יַֽעֲקֹֽב:
For it is a statute: for Israel from the Holy One, blessed be He, to sound the shofar on that day, the day of the judgment of the Holy One, blessed be He.  
6As a testimony for Jehoseph, He ordained it, when he went forth over the land of Egypt, [when] I understood a language that I had not known.   ועֵ֚דוּת | בִּֽיה֘וֹסֵ֚ף שָׂמ֗וֹ בְּ֖צֵאתוֹ עַל־אֶ֣רֶץ מִצְרָ֑יִם שְׂפַ֖ת לֹֽא־יָדַ֣עְתִּי אֶשְׁמָֽע:
As a testimony for Jehoseph He ordained it: On Rosh Hashanah, Joseph went out of prison.  
[when] I understood a language that I had not known: It is explained in tractate Sotah (36b) that [the angel] Gabriel taught him seventy languages.  
7I removed his shoulder from burdens; his hands were removed from the cauldron.   זהֲסִיר֣וֹתִי מִסֵּ֣בֶל שִׁכְמ֑וֹ כַּ֜פָּ֗יו מִדּ֥וּד תַּֽעֲבֹֽרְנָה:
from the cauldron: From slave labor to cook the pots in the manner of other slaves.  
from the cauldron: Heb. מדוד, a pot, as (I Sam. 2: 14): “And he would thrust into the fire-pot or into the pot (הדוד).”  
8In distress, you called and I released you; I answered you-[though you called] in secret- with thunder; I tried you by the waters of Meribah, forever.   חבַּצָּרָ֥ה קָרָ֗אתָ וָֽאֲחַ֫לְּצֶ֥ךָּ אֶֽ֖עֶנְךָ בְּסֵ֣תֶר רַ֑עַם אֶבְחָֽנְךָ֨ עַל־מֵ֖י מְרִיבָ֣ה סֶֽלָה:
In distress, you called: to Me, all of you. You called from the distress of the labor of the burdens of Egypt, and I released you.  
I answered you in secret with thunder: You called in secret between Me and you, but I answered you with a voice of thunder; I made known My might and My awesome deeds in public.  
I tried you by the waters of Meribah, forever: Although it was revealed and tried before Me that you were destined to provoke Me with the waters of Meribah. So it was taught in Mechilta (Exod. 19:2).  
9Hearken, My people, and I shall admonish you, Israel, if you hearken to Me.   טשְׁמַ֣ע עַ֖מִּי וְאָעִ֣ידָה בָּ֑ךְ יִ֜שְׂרָאֵ֗ל אִם־תִּשְׁמַע־לִֽי:
Hearken, My people: Since I did all this for you, it is fitting for you to hearken to Me.  
10No strange god shall be within you, neither shall you prostrate yourself to a foreign god.   ילֹֽא־יִהְיֶ֣ה בְ֖ךָ אֵ֣ל זָ֑ר וְלֹ֥א תִֽ֜שְׁתַּֽחֲוֶ֗ה לְאֵ֣ל נֵכָֽר:
11I am the Lord, your God, Who brought you up from the land of Egypt; open your mouth wide, and I shall fill it.   יאאָֽנֹכִ֨י | יְהֹ֘וָ֚ה אֱלֹהֶ֗יךָ הַ֖מַּֽעַלְךָ מֵאֶ֣רֶץ מִצְרָ֑יִם הַרְחֶב־פִּ֜֗יךָ וַֽאֲמַלְאֵֽהוּ:
open your mouth wide: to request of Me whatever your heart desires.  
and I shall fill it: According to whatever you ask I will fill.  
12But My people did not hearken to My voice, neither did Israel desire to [follow] Me.   יבוְלֹֽא־שָׁמַ֣ע עַמִּ֣י לְקוֹלִ֑י וְ֜יִשְׂרָאֵ֗ל לֹא־אָ֥בָה לִֽי:
13So I let them go after their heart's fantasies; let them go in their counsels.   יגוָֽאֲשַׁלְּחֵהוּ בִּשְׁרִיר֣וּת לִבָּ֑ם יֵֽ֜לְכ֗וּ בְּֽמֽוֹעֲצֽוֹתֵיהֶֽם:
after their heart’s fantasies: Heb. בשרירותלבם, after the views of their heart, as (above 5: 9): “because of those who lie in wait for me (שוררי).”  
14If only My people would hearken to Me, if Israel would go in My ways.   ידל֣וּ עַ֖מִּי שֹׁמֵ֣עַ לִ֑י יִ֜שְׂרָאֵ֗ל בִּדְרָכַ֥י יְהַלֵּֽכוּ:
If only My people would hearken to Me: Still, if they desired to return to Me and to hearken to Me…  
15In a short time I would subdue their enemies and upon their enemies I would return My hand.   טוכִּמְעַט אֽוֹיְבֵיהֶ֣ם אַכְנִ֑יעַ וְעַל־צָֽ֜רֵיהֶ֗ם אָשִׁ֥יב יָדִֽי:
In a short time I would subdue their enemies: In a short time I would subdue their enemies.  
I would return My hand: I would return my blow from upon you to lay it upon them, and then…  
16The enemies of the Lord would lie to Him, and their time would be forever.   טזמְשַׂנְאֵ֣י יְ֖הֹוָה יְכַֽחֲשׁוּ־ל֑וֹ וִיהִ֖י עִתָּ֣ם לְעוֹלָֽם:
The enemies of the Lord would lie to Him, and their time would be: [The time of] their retribution [would be] forever.  
17Then He would feed them with the fat of wheat and I would sate you with honey from a rock.   יזוַיַּֽאֲכִילֵהוּ מֵחֵ֣לֶב חִטָּ֑ה וּ֜מִצּ֗וּר דְּבַ֣שׁ אַשְׂבִּיעֶֽךָּ:
Then He would feed them: Israel.  
and… from a rock: He sated them with honey when they went in His ways, as the matter that is stated (Deut. 32:13): “He suckled them with honey from the rock.”