1 For the leader. Of the Korachites; on alamoth. A song.
א לַמְנַצֵּחַ לִבְנֵי־קֹרַח עַל־עֲלָמוֹת שִׁיר׃
2 Hashem is our refuge and stronghold, a help in trouble, very near.
e-lo-HEEM LA-nu ma-kha-SEH va-OZ ez-RAH v’-tza-ROT nim-TZA m’-OD
ב אֱלֹהִים לָנוּ מַחֲסֶה וָעֹז עֶזְרָה בְצָרוֹת נִמְצָא מְאֹד׃
46:2 Our refuge and stronghold
Since it lies on the fault line of the Syrian-African rift, many earthquakes have hit the land of Israel over the course of its history. In fact, Sefer Amos (1:1) refers to a major earthquake that shook Eretz Yisrael in Biblical times. The psalmist, aware of this phenomenon, will not fear when the earth overturns or when the mountains take over the seas and vice versa (verses 3-4), because “Hashem is our refuge and stronghold, a help in trouble, very near.” Perhaps what he means by this is that not only does the Lord protect His people in times of trouble, but these ‘natural’ phenomenon seen as disasters are really Hashem’s mysterious way of offering protection to His people. One theory about this psalm is that it was written after the miraculous destruction of Sennacherib’s army during their attack on Yerushalayim (II Kings 19:35), when the Lord caused a war to cease (verse 10) overnight. Indeed, the Lord protected the children of Israel and helped them in their time of trouble.1 comment
3 Therefore we are not afraid though the earth reels, though mountains topple into the sea—
ג עַל־כֵּן לֹא־נִירָא בְּהָמִיר אָרֶץ וּבְמוֹט הָרִים בְּלֵב יַמִּים׃
4 its waters rage and foam; in its swell mountains quake. Selah.
ד יֶהֱמוּ יֶחְמְרוּ מֵימָיו יִרְעֲשׁוּ־הָרִים בְּגַאֲוָתוֹ סֶלָה׃
5 There is a river whose streams gladden Hashem’s city, the holy dwelling-place of the Most High.
ה נָהָר פְּלָגָיו יְשַׂמְּחוּ עִיר־אֱלֹהִים קְדֹשׁ מִשְׁכְּנֵי עֶלְיוֹן׃
6 Hashem is in its midst, it will not be toppled; by daybreak Hashem will come to its aid.
ו אֱלֹהִים בְּקִרְבָּהּ בַּל־תִּמּוֹט יַעְזְרֶהָ אֱלֹהִים לִפְנוֹת בֹּקֶר׃
7 Nations rage, kingdoms topple; at the sound of His thunder the earth dissolves.
ז הָמוּ גוֹיִם מָטוּ מַמְלָכוֹת נָתַן בְּקוֹלוֹ תָּמוּג אָרֶץ׃
8 God of hosts is with us; the God of Yaakov is our haven. Selah.
ח יְהוָה צְבָאוֹת עִמָּנוּ מִשְׂגָּב־לָנוּ אֱלֹהֵי יַעֲקֹב סֶלָה׃
9 Come and see what Hashem has done, how He has wrought desolation on the earth.
ט לְכוּ־חֲזוּ מִפְעֲלוֹת יְהוָה אֲשֶׁר־שָׂם שַׁמּוֹת בָּאָרֶץ׃
10 He puts a stop to wars throughout the earth, breaking the bow, snapping the spear, consigning wagons to the flames.
י מַשְׁבִּית מִלְחָמוֹת עַד־קְצֵה הָאָרֶץ קֶשֶׁת יְשַׁבֵּר וְקִצֵּץ חֲנִית עֲגָלוֹת יִשְׂרֹף בָּאֵשׁ׃
11 “Desist! Realize that I am Hashem! I dominate the nations; I dominate the earth.”
יא הַרְפּוּ וּדְעוּ כִּי־אָנֹכִי אֱלֹהִים אָרוּם בַּגּוֹיִם אָרוּם בָּאָרֶץ׃