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Many say about me,
“God will not deliver him.”[a] (Selah)[b]
But you, Lord, are a shield that protects me;[c]
you are my glory[d] and the one who restores me.[e]
To the Lord I cried out,[f]
and he answered me from his holy hill.[g] (Selah)

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  1. Psalm 3:2 tn Heb “there is no deliverance for him in God.”
  2. Psalm 3:2 sn The function of the Hebrew term סֶלָה (selah), transliterated here “Selah,” is uncertain. It may be a musical direction of some kind.
  3. Psalm 3:3 tn Heb “a shield round about me.”
  4. Psalm 3:3 tn Heb “my glory,” or “my honor.” The psalmist affirms that the Lord is his source of honor, i.e., the one who gives him honor in the sight of others. According to BDB 459 s.v. II כָּבוֹד 7, the phrase refers to God as the one to whom the psalmist gives honor. But the immediate context focuses on what God does for the psalmist, not vice-versa.
  5. Psalm 3:3 tn Heb “[the one who] lifts my head.” This phrase could be understood to refer to a general strengthening of the psalmist by God during difficult circumstances. However, if one takes the suggestion of the superscription that this is a Davidic psalm written during the revolt of Absalom, the phrase “lift the head” could refer to the psalmist’s desire for restoration to his former position (cf. Gen 40:13 where the same phrase is used). Like the Hebrew text, the present translation (“who restores me”) can be understood in either sense.
  6. Psalm 3:4 tn The prefixed verbal form could be an imperfect, yielding the translation “I cry out,” but the verb form in the next line (a vav [ו] consecutive with the preterite) suggests this is a brief narrative of what has already happened. Consequently the verb form in v. 4a is better understood as a preterite, “I cried out.” (For another example of the preterite of this same verb form, see Ps 30:8.) Sometime after the crisis arose, the psalmist prayed to the Lord and received an assuring answer. Now he confidently awaits the fulfillment of the divine promise.
  7. Psalm 3:4 sn His holy hill. That is, Zion (see Pss 2:6; 48:1-2). The psalmist recognizes that the Lord dwells in his sanctuary on Mount Zion.

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