Chapter 41

1For the leader. A psalm of David.

אלַמְנַצֵּחַ מִזְמוֹר לְדָוִד׃

2Happy is he who is thoughtful of the wretched; in bad times may Hashem keep him from harm.

באַשְׁרֵי מַשְׂכִּיל אֶל־דָּל בְּיוֹם רָעָה יְמַלְּטֵהוּ יְהֹוָה׃

3May Hashem guard him and preserve him; and may he be thought happy in the land. Do not subject him to the will of his enemies.

גיְהֹוָה יִשְׁמְרֵהוּ וִיחַיֵּהוּ יאשר [וְאֻשַּׁר] בָּאָרֶץ וְאַל־תִּתְּנֵהוּ בְּנֶפֶשׁ אֹיְבָיו׃

4Hashem will sustain him on his sickbed; You shall wholly transform his bed of suffering.

דיְהֹוָה יִסְעָדֶנּוּ עַל־עֶרֶשׂ דְּוָי כָּל־מִשְׁכָּבוֹ הָפַכְתָּ בְחָלְיוֹ׃

5I said, “Hashem, have mercy on me, heal me, for I have sinned against You.”

האֲ‍נִי־אָמַרְתִּי יְהֹוָה חָנֵּנִי רְפָאָה נַפְשִׁי כִּי־חָטָאתִי לָךְ׃

6My enemies speak evilly of me, “When will he die and his name perish?”

ואוֹיְבַי יֹאמְרוּ רַע לִי מָתַי יָמוּת וְאָבַד שְׁמוֹ׃

7If one comes to visit, he speaks falsely; his mind stores up evil thoughts; once outside, he speaks them.

זוְאִם־בָּא לִרְאוֹת שָׁוְא יְדַבֵּר לִבּוֹ יִקְבָּץ־אָוֶן לוֹ יֵצֵא לַחוּץ יְדַבֵּר׃

8All my enemies whisper together against me, imagining the worst for me.

חיַחַד עָלַי יִתְלַחֲשׁוּ כָּל־שֹׂנְאָי עָלַי יַחְשְׁבוּ רָעָה לִי׃

9“Something baneful has settled in him; he'll not rise from his bed again.”

טדְּבַר־בְּלִיַּעַל יָצוּק בּוֹ וַאֲשֶׁר שָׁכַב לֹא־יוֹסִיף לָקוּם׃

10My ally in whom I trusted, even he who shares my bread, has been utterly false to me.

יגַּם־אִישׁ שְׁלוֹמִי אֲשֶׁר־בָּטַחְתִּי בוֹ אוֹכֵל לַחְמִי הִגְדִּיל עָלַי עָקֵב׃

11But You, Hashem, have mercy on me; let me rise again and repay them.

יאוְאַתָּה יְהֹוָה חָנֵּנִי וַהֲקִימֵנִי וַאֲשַׁלְּמָה לָהֶם׃

12Then shall I know that You are pleased with me: when my enemy cannot shout in triumph over me.

יבבְּזֹאת יָדַעְתִּי כִּי־חָפַצְתָּ בִּי כִּי לֹא־יָרִיעַ אֹיְבִי עָלָי׃

13You will support me because of my integrity, and let me abide in Your presence forever.

יגוַאֲנִי בְּתֻמִּי תָּמַכְתָּ בִּי וַתַּצִּיבֵנִי לְפָנֶיךָ לְעוֹלָם׃

14Blessed is Hashem, God of Yisrael, from eternity to eternity. Amen and Amen.

ba-RUKH a-do-NAI e-lo-HAY yis-ra-AYL may-ha-o-LAM v'-ad ha-o-LAM a-MAYN v'-a-MAYN

ידבָּרוּךְ יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל מֵהָעוֹלָם וְעַד הָעוֹלָם אָמֵן וְאָמֵן׃

 41:14   Blessed is Hashem

Sefer Tehillim is traditionally subdivided into five books, parallel to the five books of the Torah. Psalm 41 concludes the first of these five books with a blessing. The word for blessing, beracha (ברכה), comes from the root ב-ר-כ which also produces words like ‘crevice’, ‘tunnel’, and ‘knees’. All these reflect the notion of going from above to something below. In his book Jewish Meditation, Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan explains that our mission is to bring Hashem down from above to become an integral part of our lives. In contrast, the word tehilla (תהילה), meaning ‘praise,’ implies God’s transcendence. Yet, the two words together, tehilla and beracha, ‘praise’ and ‘blessing,’ are the essence of man’s relationship with the Lord. We must strive to both praise Hashem as transcendent above place and time, and bless Him as being very immanent and closely involved in our lives.