1 Of David. Hashem, I call to You; my rock, do not disregard me, for if You hold aloof from me, I shall be like those gone down into the Pit.
l’-da-VID ay-LE-kha a-do-NAI ek-RA tzu-REE al te-khe-RASH mi-ME-nee pen te-khe-SHEH mi-ME-nee v’-nim-SHAL-tee im yo-r’-DAY VOR
א לְדָוִד אֵלֶיךָ יְהוָה אֶקְרָא צוּרִי אַל־תֶּחֱרַשׁ מִמֶּנִּי פֶּן־תֶּחֱשֶׁה מִמֶּנִּי וְנִמְשַׁלְתִּי עִם־יוֹרְדֵי בוֹר׃
28:1 I shall be like those gone down into the Pit
In this verse, King David declares that if Hashem remains silent to his request he will die. The metaphor he uses for death is descent into a pit. Sefer Bereishit (chapter 37) describes the descent of Yosef into a pit at the suggestion of Reuven. Rashi (ibid.) explains that though the pit was empty of water, it was filled with snakes and scorpions. By Jewish law, Yosef would be considered dead, due to the extreme danger of the situation. However, the verse says that by throwing him into the pit, Reuven actually saved Yosef from his brothers (Genesis 37:21), while the sages criticize Yehuda for taking Yosef out of the pit and selling him into slavery. Rabbi Chaim of Volozhin explains that living in Eretz Yisrael, even surrounded by dangers such as snakes and scorpions, is better than living outside of Israel in relative security.1 comment
2 Listen to my plea for mercy when I cry out to You, when I lift my hands toward Your inner sanctuary.
ב שְׁמַע קוֹל תַּחֲנוּנַי בְּשַׁוְּעִי אֵלֶיךָ בְּנָשְׂאִי יָדַי אֶל־דְּבִיר קָדְשֶׁךָ׃
3 Do not count me with the wicked and evildoers who profess goodwill toward their fellows while malice is in their heart.
ג אַל־תִּמְשְׁכֵנִי עִם־רְשָׁעִים וְעִם־פֹּעֲלֵי אָוֶן דֹּבְרֵי שָׁלוֹם עִם־רֵעֵיהֶם וְרָעָה בִּלְבָבָם׃
4 Pay them according to their deeds, their malicious acts; according to their handiwork pay them, give them their deserts.
ד תֶּן־לָהֶם כְּפָעֳלָם וּכְרֹעַ מַעַלְלֵיהֶם כְּמַעֲשֵׂה יְדֵיהֶם תֵּן לָהֶם הָשֵׁב גְּמוּלָם לָהֶם׃
5 For they do not consider Hashem’s deeds, the work of His hands. May He tear them down, never to rebuild them!
ה כִּי לֹא יָבִינוּ אֶל־פְּעֻלֹּת יְהוָה וְאֶל־מַעֲשֵׂה יָדָיו יֶהֶרְסֵם וְלֹא יִבְנֵם׃
6 Blessed is Hashem, for He listens to my plea for mercy.
ו בָּרוּךְ יְהוָה כִּי־שָׁמַע קוֹל תַּחֲנוּנָי׃
7 Hashem is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him. I was helped, and my heart exulted, so I will glorify Him with my song.
ז יְהוָה עֻזִּי וּמָגִנִּי בּוֹ בָטַח לִבִּי וְנֶעֱזָרְתִּי וַיַּעֲלֹז לִבִּי וּמִשִּׁירִי אֲהוֹדֶנּוּ׃
8 Hashem is their strength; He is a stronghold for the deliverance of His anointed.
ח יְהוָה עֹז־לָמוֹ וּמָעוֹז יְשׁוּעוֹת מְשִׁיחוֹ הוּא׃
9 Deliver and bless Your very own people; tend them and sustain them forever.
ט הוֹשִׁיעָה אֶת־עַמֶּךָ וּבָרֵךְ אֶת־נַחֲלָתֶךָ וּרְעֵם וְנַשְּׂאֵם עַד־הָעוֹלָם׃