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 יְהֹוָה 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 (Genesis 37:28) 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.