TORAH
FIVE BOOKS OF MOSES
NEVI'IM
PROPHETS
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WRITINGS

Psalms 71

1I seek refuge in You, Hashem; may I never be disappointed.

אבְּךָ־יְהֹוָה חָסִיתִי אַל־אֵבוֹשָׁה לְעוֹלָם׃

2As You are beneficent, save me and rescue me; incline Your ear to me and deliver me.

בבְּצִדְקָתְךָ תַּצִּילֵנִי וּתְפַלְּטֵנִי הַטֵּה־אֵלַי אָזְנְךָ וְהוֹשִׁיעֵנִי׃

3Be a sheltering rock for me to which I may always repair; decree my deliverance, for You are my rock and my fortress.

גהֱיֵה לִי לְצוּר מָעוֹן לָבוֹא תָּמִיד צִוִּיתָ לְהוֹשִׁיעֵנִי כִּי־סַלְעִי וּמְצוּדָתִי אָתָּה׃

4My Hashem, rescue me from the hand of the wicked, from the grasp of the unjust and the lawless.

דאֱ‍לֹהַי פַּלְּטֵנִי מִיַּד רָשָׁע מִכַּף מְעַוֵּל וְחוֹמֵץ׃

5For You are my hope, O Hashem, my trust from my youth.

הכִּי־אַתָּה תִקְוָתִי אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה מִבְטַחִי מִנְּעוּרָי׃

6While yet unborn, I depended on You; in the womb of my mother, You were my support; I sing Your praises always.

a-LE-kha nis-MAKH-tee mi-BE-ten mi-m'-AY i-MEE a-TAH go-ZEE b'-KHA t'-hi-la-TEE ta-MEED

ועָלֶיךָ נִסְמַכְתִּי מִבֶּטֶן מִמְּעֵי אִמִּי אַתָּה גוֹזִי בְּךָ תְהִלָּתִי תָמִיד׃

 71:6   In the womb of my mother, You were my support

David praises the Lord, saying he relied on God from the earliest age. The Hebrew phrase ata gozi (אתה גוזי), translated here as ‘You were my support,’ is hard to explain. Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch raises the possibility that it comes from the root word ג-ז-ז, meaning ‘to cut,’ resulting in the image of David being cut from the womb at birth. Hirsch, however, rejects this idea and suggests that the root ג-ז-ז not only connotes cutting but also ‘removing’ and ‘separating.’ David is expressing the idea that from the time of his birth he was always different from everyone else, set aside by God for something grand and significant. Indeed, we find David separate from his brothers when his father Yishai doesn’t even bring him in with the rest of his brothers to be considered as Hashem’s choice for king (I Samuel 16). However, in this moment of reflection, perhaps at the end of his life, David recalls the constant feelings of Hashem’s presence in his life and a mission of greatness.

7I have become an example for many, since You are my mighty refuge.

זכְּמוֹפֵת הָיִיתִי לְרַבִּים וְאַתָּה מַחֲסִי־עֹז׃

8My mouth is full of praise to You, glorifying You all day long.

חיִמָּלֵא פִי תְּהִלָּתֶךָ כָּל־הַיּוֹם תִּפְאַרְתֶּךָ׃

9Do not cast me off in old age; when my strength fails, do not forsake me!

טאַל־תַּשְׁלִיכֵנִי לְעֵת זִקְנָה כִּכְלוֹת כֹּחִי אַל־תַּעַזְבֵנִי׃

10For my enemies talk against me; those who wait for me are of one mind,

יכִּי־אָמְרוּ אוֹיְבַי לִי וְשֹׁמְרֵי נַפְשִׁי נוֹעֲצוּ יַחְדָּו׃

11saying, “Hashem has forsaken him; chase him and catch him, for no one will save him!”

יאלֵאמֹר אֱלֹהִים עֲזָבוֹ רִדְפוּ וְתִפְשׂוּהוּ כִּי־אֵין מַצִּיל׃

12O Hashem, be not far from me; my God, hasten to my aid!

יבאֱלֹהִים אַל־תִּרְחַק מִמֶּנִּי אֱלֹהַי לְעֶזְרָתִי חישה [חוּשָׁה׃]

13Let my accusers perish in frustration; let those who seek my ruin be clothed in reproach and disgrace!

יגיֵבֹשׁוּ יִכְלוּ שֹׂטְנֵי נַפְשִׁי יַעֲטוּ חֶרְפָּה וּכְלִמָּה מְבַקְשֵׁי רָעָתִי׃

14As for me, I will hope always, and add to the many praises of You.

ידוַאֲנִי תָּמִיד אֲיַחֵל וְהוֹסַפְתִּי עַל־כָּל־תְּהִלָּתֶךָ׃

15My mouth tells of Your beneficence, of Your deliverance all day long, though I know not how to tell it.

טופִּי יְסַפֵּר צִדְקָתֶךָ כָּל־הַיּוֹם תְּשׁוּעָתֶךָ כִּי לֹא יָדַעְתִּי סְפֹרוֹת׃

16I come with praise of Your mighty acts, O Hashem; I celebrate Your beneficence, Yours alone.

טזאָבוֹא בִּגְבֻרוֹת אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה אַזְכִּיר צִדְקָתְךָ לְבַדֶּךָ׃

17You have let me experience it, Hashem, from my youth; until now I have proclaimed Your wondrous deeds,

יזאֱ‍לֹהִים לִמַּדְתַּנִי מִנְּעוּרָי וְעַד־הֵנָּה אַגִּיד נִפְלְאוֹתֶיךָ׃

18and even in hoary old age do not forsake me, Hashem, until I proclaim Your strength to the next generation, Your mighty acts, to all who are to come,

יחוְגַם עַד־זִקְנָה וְשֵׂיבָה אֱלֹהִים אַל־תַּעַזְבֵנִי עַד־אַגִּיד זְרוֹעֲךָ לְדוֹר לְכָל־יָבוֹא גְּבוּרָתֶךָ׃

19Your beneficence, high as the heavens, O Hashem, You who have done great things; O Hashem, who is Your peer!

יטוְצִדְקָתְךָ אֱלֹהִים עַד־מָרוֹם אֲשֶׁר־עָשִׂיתָ גְדֹלוֹת אֱלֹהִים מִי כָמוֹךָ׃

20You who have made me undergo many troubles and misfortunes will revive me again, and raise me up from the depths of the earth.

כאֲשֶׁר הראיתנו [הִרְאִיתַנִי ] צָרוֹת רַבּוֹת וְרָעוֹת תָּשׁוּב תחיינו [תְּחַיֵּינִי] וּמִתְּהֹמוֹת הָאָרֶץ תָּשׁוּב תַּעֲלֵנִי׃

21You will grant me much greatness, You will turn and comfort me.

כאתֶּרֶב גְּדֻלָּתִי וְתִסֹּב תְּנַחֲמֵנִי׃

22Then I will acclaim You to the music of the lyre for Your faithfulness, O my God; I will sing a hymn to You with a harp, O Holy One of Yisrael.

כבגַּם־אֲנִי אוֹדְךָ בִכְלִי־נֶבֶל אֲמִתְּךָ אֱלֹהָי אֲזַמְּרָה לְךָ בְכִנּוֹר קְדוֹשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

23My lips shall be jubilant, as I sing a hymn to You, my whole being, which You have redeemed.

כגתְּרַנֵּנָּה שְׂפָתַי כִּי אֲזַמְּרָה־לָּךְ וְנַפְשִׁי אֲשֶׁר פָּדִיתָ׃

24All day long my tongue shall recite Your beneficent acts, how those who sought my ruin were frustrated and disgraced.

כדגַּם־לְשׁוֹנִי כָּל־הַיּוֹם תֶּהְגֶּה צִדְקָתֶךָ כִּי־בֹשׁוּ כִי־חָפְרוּ מְבַקְשֵׁי רָעָתִי׃