Lectionary Year A
June 16, 2002
Psalm 116:1-2, 12-19

Initial Acquaintance/Rough Translation

A. Comparing Translations

(JFC) Psalm 116 is translated a bit differently in the Contemporary English Version and the New Revised Standard Version, as these notes indicate:

1 I love you, LORD! You answered my prayers. - CEV
I love the Lord, because he has heard my voice and my supplications. - NRSV

2 You paid attention to me, and so I will pray to you - CEV
Because he inclined his ear to me, therefore I will call on his name - NRSV

12 What must I give to you, LORD, for being so good to me? - CEV
What shall I return to the Lord for all his bounty to me? - NRSV

13 I will pour out an offering of wine to you, and I will pray in your name because you have saved me. - CEV
I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the LORD, - NRSV

15 You are deeply concerned when one of your loyal people faces death. - CEV
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful ones. - NRSV

16 I worship you, LORD, just as my mother did, - CEV
O Lord I am your servant; I am your servant, the child of your serving girl. - NRSV
and you have rescued me from the chains of death. - CEV
You have loosed my bonds. - NRSV

19 gather at your temple in Jerusalem. Shout praises to the LORD! - CEV
in the courts of the house of the LORD, in your midst, O Jerusalem. Praise the LORD! - NRSV

B. Textual Criticism

(JFC) 1 For the qal perfect first person common singular yTib.h;a', the editors suggest ^yTib.h;a', second person, or yki hwhy yTib.h;a', "I shall love YHWH for", or yTiab.', "I shall come in or enter", all of which seem acceptable at this early stage of this study. We'll see. Perhaps it depends on who is using this Psalm for personal and/or corporate prayer, like when, at funerals, I sometimes read the 23rd Psalm using plural pronouns, "The Lord is our shepherd, we shall not want. . . ." Then for the qal, third person singular, imperfect [m;v.yI, it is wondered if a second person, imperative [m;v, might have been more original. Could it depend on the various perspectives of the original psalmist/pray-er of this prayer. Surely, it will get clearer as this study progresses, or quite possibly it doesn't matter in the long run. Next, for yliAq, the editors read with the Septuagint, Jerome and the Syriac, lAq, obviously without the pronominal suffix, and/or without the accusative designation -ta,.
2 For ym;y"b.W, several Septuagint Manuscripts read wm;y"b.W with a third person suffix; while the editors of BH3 suggest we read ~wyob., or perhaps ymiwyob., singulars, while yet another suggestion reads, y/y ~v;b.W, all of which seem to be rather minor alternatives to the printed text.
14 This entire verse is omitted, referring to verse 18, which repeats it verbatim.

C. Rough Translation

(JFC) 1 I am loving (qal perfect) for was/will be hearing (qal imperfect) Yahweh my voice my supplications. 2 Because he turned his ear to me and in a day/time/year I was calling. 12 What shall I return (hiphil, imperfect) to Yahweh all my benefit/act of grace to me? 13 A cup of salvation I will lift up (qal imperfect) and in the name of Yahweh I will call out/cry (qal imperfect) 14 My vows to Yahweh I will pay/complete/make whole now before/in the presence of all his people. 15 Precious/costly/valuable in the eyes of Yahweh is the death of his faithful ones. 16 Ah now Yahweh for I am your servant I am your servant child of your maid-servant/handmaid You freed/loosened (piel, perfect) belonging to me my bonds. 17 Unto you I will sacrifice a sacrifice thanksgiving and in the name of Yahweh I will call out. 18 My vows unto Yahweh I will pay/complete/make whole now before/in the presence of all his people. 19 In the courts of the house of Yahweh in the midst of Jerusalem praise (piel, imperative) Yahweh.

| Return to Gospel text listings | Return to Epistle text listings |
| Return to Old Testament listings | Return to Psalm listings |
| User response form |