6 While 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
ו עָלֶיךָ 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.