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The Apocryphal Old Testament Collection of the most important non-canonical Old Testament books designed for general use.

Chapter V

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Text Commentary

A Psalm. Of Solomon.

1

O Lord God, I will praise thy name with joy,  In the midst of those who have knowledge of thy righteous judgements. 2 For thou art good and merciful, the refuge of the poor: (3) 2When I cry unto thee, do not disregard me in silence. (4) 3For no one will take spoil from a mighty man; (5) And who shall take of all that thou hast made, unless thou thyself give it? (6) 4For man and his portion lie before thee in the balance:  He cannot make increase beyond what is prescribed by thee, 1 Lit. ‘beyond thy judgement’. O God. (7) 5When we are afflicted we will call upon thee for help,  And thou wilt not turn back our prayer,  Because thou art our God. (8) 6Make not thy hand heavy upon us,  Lest, from distress, 2 Or ‘under restraint’. we sin. (9) 7And if thou dost not restore us, yet we will not keep away,  But unto thee will we come. (10) 8For if I hunger, I will cry unto thee, O God;  And thou wilt give to me. (11) 9Thou dost feed the birds and the fish,  When thou givest rain to the steppes that green grass may spring up, 10So as to provide 3 So the MSS. Von Gebhardt conjectured ‘Thou hast provided’. fodder on the steppe for every living thing; (12) And if they hunger, they lift their face to thee. (13) 11Kings and rulers and peoples dost thou nourish, O God,  And who is the hope of the poor and the needy, unless it be thou, Lord? (14) 12And thou wilt listen (for who is good and kind but thou?),  Making glad the soul of the humble by opening thy hand in mercy? (15) 13Man's goodness is grudging and …; 4 Gk. ‘and the morrow’ (similarly Syr., expanded), which cannot be right. Possibly the underlying Heb. was bmḥr (‘at a price’).  And if he repeat it without murmuring, that too is marvellous. (16) 14But thy gift is great in goodness and generous;  And he whose hope is in thee will not be sparing in giving. (17) 15Thy mercy, Lord, is upon the whole earth, in goodness. (18) 16Happy is the man whom God remembers and supplies with what he needs in moderation. 5 Lit. ‘remembers in due proportion of sufficiency’. (19) If man has an excess, then he sins. (20) 17Sufficient are moderate means with righteousness,  And in this the blessing of the Lord becomes abundance with righteousness. (21) 18 May those that fear the Lord rejoice 6 May … rejoice: MSS ‘rejoiced’. in prosperity,  And let thy goodness be upon Israel in thy kingdom. 19 Blessed is the glory of the Lord, for he is our king.

Notes:

1 Lit. ‘beyond thy judgement’.

2 Or ‘under restraint’.

3 So the MSS. Von Gebhardt conjectured ‘Thou hast provided’.

4 Gk. ‘and the morrow’ (similarly Syr., expanded), which cannot be right. Possibly the underlying Heb. was bmḥr (‘at a price’).

5 Lit. ‘remembers in due proportion of sufficiency’.

6 May … rejoice: MSS ‘rejoiced’.

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