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The New Oxford Annotated Bible New Revised Standard Study Bible that provides essential scholarship and guidance for Bible readers.

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Commentary on Psalms

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Ps 44 : Prayer for divine help after a national defeat.

A communal lament, in view of an unknown national military disaster involving the loss of the land.

1 :

Days of old, the settlement era, when God's power was understood to be especially visible (see Judg 6.13 ).

3 :

Victory is not by might of arms, but by the luminous appearance of the Divine Warrior (v. 6; Ex 14.24 ).

8 :

Selah, see Ps 3.2n.

9–12 :

Defeat is followed by exile.

13–16 :

Derision by victorious foes and the shame of the defeated (Ps 22.7; 79.4; 80.6 ).

20 :

Breach of the first commandment of the Sinai covenant (v. 17; Ex 20.3 ).

22 :

Because of you might suggest that members of the community have been killed as martyrs, though this is a rare and late biblical idea.

23–26 :

God's inattention to the plight of the community (sleeping, hiding the divine luminous face).

25 :

The vanquished, prostrate before the victors (Josh 10.24 ).

26 :

God owes Israel steadfast love as a result of the covenant; this, along with the desire of God to be praised, is invoked elsewhere, especially in psalms (e.g., Ps 6.4; 69.13; 85.7; cf. Num 14.19 ) to convince God to relent.

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