Tehillim / Psalms 107, ספר תהילים קז, Part 2, Praise the Lord for His Mighty Works

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In this week’s study from Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-43, the Psalm opens saying, 107:1 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, For His lovingkindness is everlasting. 107:2 Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary 107:3 And gathered from the lands, From the east and from the west, From the north and from the south. (NASB) The giving of thanks is connected to those who were redeemed from the hand of the adversary. Who is the psalmist speaking of in regards to the adversary? The Psalm continues saying, 107:4 They wandered in the wilderness in a desert region; They did not find a way to an inhabited city. 107:5 They were hungry and thirsty; Their soul fainted within them. 107:6 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He delivered them out of their distresses. (NASB) The Lord hears the cry of the distressed. Note how the people cried out to the Lord and not to another kingdom for help. The psalmist states, 107:7 He led them also by a straight way, To go to an inhabited city. 107:8 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! Notice how the Lord leads His people on the straight path and not on a winding difficult path. This is what Moshe said what he did in Devarim / Deuteronomy 30:11-12. The Word of God satisfies (107:9-10) and delivers one from misery and death. Note that calamity comes by reason of the Lord humbling our hearts (107:11-12) and so that we would seek the Lord God in heaven (107:13-14). The Lord multiplied his miracles so that we would know who He is (107:15). The psalmist states, 107:20 He sent His word and healed them, And delivered them from their destructions. 107:21 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:22 Let them also offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, And tell of His works with joyful singing. (NASB) The winds and the sea are again paralleled to the distress of the peoples (107:23-27) and it is interesting the parallel to the work of the Moshiach according to Tehillim / Psalms 107:28 Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, And He brought them out of their distresses. 107:29 He caused the storm to be still, So that the waves of the sea were hushed. 107:30 Then they were glad because they were quiet, So He guided them to their desired haven. (NASB) It is because of these things, we give thanks unto the Lord God in heaven and in the way in which He shows us His mercy each day. The Psalm concludes saying, 107:39 When they are diminished and bowed down Through oppression, misery and sorrow, 107:40 He pours contempt upon princes And makes them wander in a pathless waste. 107:41 But He sets the needy securely on high away from affliction, And makes his families like a flock. 107:42 The upright see it and are glad; But all unrighteousness shuts its mouth. 107:43 Who is wise? Let him give heed to these things, And consider the lovingkindnesses of the Lord. (NASB)

עברית Hebrew ארמי Aramaic ελληνικός Greek

ספר תהלים פרק קז

א הֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה כִּי-טוֹב כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ: ב יֹאמְרוּ גְּאוּלֵי יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר גְּאָלָם מִיַּד-צָר: ג וּמֵאֲרָצוֹת קִבְּצָם מִמִּזְרָח וּמִמַּעֲרָב מִצָּפוֹן וּמִיָּם: ד תָּעוּ בַמִּדְבָּר בִּישִׁימוֹן דָּרֶךְ עִיר מוֹשָׁב לֹא מָצָאוּ:

סםר טוביה פרק קז

א שבחו קדם יהוה ארום טב ארום לעלם טוביה׃ ב יימרון פריקיא דיהוה די פרקינון מן יד מעיקא׃ ג ומארעתא כנשינון ממדינחא וממערבא מציפונא ומן ימא סטר דרומא׃ ד על עמא דבית ישראל איתנבי ואמר עמא בית ישראל טעו במדברא בצדי אורחא קרתא דמיתבא לא אשכחו׃

ΨΑΛΜΟΙ 107

107:1 αλληλουια ἐξομολογεῖσθε τῷ κυρίῳ ὅτι χρηστός ὅτι εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα τὸ ἔλεος αὐτοῦ 107:2 εἰπάτωσαν οἱ λελυτρωμένοι ὑπὸ κυρίου οὓς ἐλυτρώσατο ἐκ χειρὸς ἐχθροῦ 107:3 ἐκ τῶν χωρῶν συνήγαγεν αὐτοὺς ἀπὸ ἀνατολῶν καὶ δυσμῶν καὶ βορρᾶ καὶ θαλάσσης 107:4 ἐπλανήθησαν ἐν τῇ ἐρήμῳ ἐν ἀνύδρῳ ὁδὸν πόλεως κατοικητηρίου οὐχ εὗρον

ה רְעֵבִים גַּם-צְמֵאִים נַפְשָׁם בָּהֶם תִּתְעַטָּף: ו וַיִּצְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם מִמְּצוּקוֹתֵיהֶם יַצִּילֵם: ז וַיַּדְרִיכֵם בְּדֶרֶךְ יְשָׁרָה לָלֶכֶת אֶל-עִיר מוֹשָׁב: ח יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: ט כִּי-הִשְֹבִּיעַ נֶפֶשׁ שֹׁקֵקָה וְנֶפֶשׁ רְעֵבָה מִלֵּא-טוֹב: י יֹשְׁבֵי חשֶׁךְ וְצַלְמָוֶת אֲסִירֵי עֳנִי וּבַרְזֶל: יא כִּי-הִמְרוּ אִמְרֵי-אֵל וַעֲצַת עֶלְיוֹן נָאָצוּ: יב וַיַּכְנַע בֶּעָמָל לִבָּם כָּשְׁלוּ וְאֵין עֹזֵר: יג וַיִּזְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם מִמְּצֻקוֹתֵיהֶם יוֹשִׁיעֵם: יד יוֹצִיאֵם מֵחשֶׁךְ וְצַלְמָוֶת וּמוֹסְרוֹתֵיהֶם יְנַתֵּק: טו יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: טז כִּי-שִׁבַּר דַּלְתוֹת נְחשֶׁת וּבְרִיחֵי בַרְזֶל גִּדֵּעַ: יז אֱוִלִים מִדֶּרֶךְ פִּשְׁעָם וּמֵעֲוֹנֹתֵיהֶם יִתְעַנּוּ: יח כָּל-אֹכֶל תְּתַעֵב נַפְשָׁם וַיַּגִּיעוּ עַד-שַׁעֲרֵי מָוֶת: יט וַיִּזְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם מִמְּצֻקוֹתֵיהֶם יוֹשִׁיעֵם: כ יִשְׁלַח דְּבָרוֹ וְיִרְפָּאֵם וִימַלֵּט מִשְּׁחִיתוֹתָם: כא יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: כב וְיִזְבְּחוּ זִבְחֵי תוֹדָה וִיסַפְּרוּ מַעֲשָֹיו בְּרִנָּה: כג יוֹרְדֵי הַיָּם בָּאֳנִיּוֹת עֹשֵֹי מְלָאכָה בְּמַיִם רַבִּים: כד הֵמָּה רָאוּ מַעֲשֵֹי יְהֹוָה וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו בִּמְצוּלָה: כה וַיֹּאמֶר וַיַּעֲמֵד רוּחַ סְעָרָה וַתְּרוֹמֵם גַּלָּיו: כו יַעֲלוּ שָׁמַיִם יֵרְדוּ תְהוֹמוֹת נַפְשָׁם בְּרָעָה תִתְמוֹגָג: כז יָחוֹגּוּ וְיָנוּעוּ כַּשִּׁכּוֹר וְכָל-חָכְמָתָם תִּתְבַּלָּע: כח וַיִּצְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם וּמִמְּצוּקֹתֵיהֶם יוֹצִיאֵם:

ה כפינין לחוד צהינין כפנין לחוד צהיין נפשתהון תשתלהיא׃ ו וצלו קדם יהוה כד עיק להון ממעקתהון פצא יתהון פצאינון׃ ז ודברינון והוליכינון בארחא תריצתא למיזל לירושלם קרתא דמיתבא׃ ח יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומישתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ ט ארום אשבע נפש סריקא ונפשא כפינא מלי טובא׃ י על צדקיהו ורברבני ישראל את בננבי ואמר צדקיהו ורברבני ישראל דגלו בבבל ויתיבו בחשוכא וטולא דמותא והוו אסירין בסיגוף שירי פרזלא׃ יא ארום סריבו על מימריה דאלהא ומלכת עילאה רחיקו׃ יב ותבר בליעותא לבהון אתקילו ולית דסעיד׃ יג וצלו קדם יהוה בדעיק להון ממעיקתהון פרקינון׃ יד אפיקינון מחשוכא וטולא דמותא ושלשלותהון ושושלוותהון יתרע׃ טו יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומשתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ טז ארום תבר דשי נחשא ועברי פרזלא קציץ׃ יז על חזקיה מלך שבטא דבית יהודה אתנבי ואמר חזקיהו מליך דבית יהודה דסריב למיסב אתתא אסתגיף היך שטין דמאורח מרדיהון ומעוייתהון מסתגיפין׃ יח כל מיכלא אוכלא תרחיק נפשהון ומטיין עד מעלני מותא׃ יט וצלו קדם יהוה כד עיק להון ממעיקתהון יפרקינון׃ כ ישדר שדי פתגמי אסותיה ויסי יתהון וישזיב מלחבלותהון׃ כא יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומשתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ כב ויכסון נכסי נכסת תודתא וישתכ עון עובדוי בדיצתא׃ כג על מלחיא דיונה בר אמיתי איתנבי ואמר מלחיא נחותי ימא באלפיא עבדי פולחנא במיין סגיעין׃ כד הינון חמון עובדיא דיהוה ופרישותיה במצולתא׃ כה ואמר במימריה ואקים זעפא ועלעולא ואתרוממו גללוי׃ כו סלקין צית שמיא נחתין עמקי תהומיא נפשתהון בבישא בבישותא תתמוגג׃ כז ירתתון ינועון ויטעון היך רוויא דחמר וכל חוכמתהון מסתלעמא׃ כח וצלו קדם יהוה כד עיק להון וממעיקתהון יפיק יתהון׃

107:5 πεινῶντες καὶ διψῶντες ἡ ψυχὴ αὐτῶν ἐν αὐτοῖς ἐξέλιπεν 107:6 καὶ ἐκέκραξαν πρὸς κύριον ἐν τῷ θλίβεσθαι αὐτούς καὶ ἐκ τῶν ἀναγκῶν αὐτῶν ἐρρύσατο αὐτοὺς 107:7 καὶ ὡδήγησεν αὐτοὺς εἰς ὁδὸν εὐθεῖαν τοῦ πορευθῆναι εἰς πόλιν κατοικητηρίου 107:8 ἐξομολογησάσθωσαν τῷ κυρίῳ τὰ ἐλέη αὐτοῦ καὶ τὰ θαυμάσια αὐτοῦ τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων 107:9 ὅτι ἐχόρτασεν ψυχὴν κενὴν καὶ ψυχὴν πεινῶσαν ἐνέπλησεν ἀγαθῶν 107:10 καθημένους ἐν σκότει καὶ σκιᾷ θανάτου πεπεδημένους ἐν πτωχείᾳ καὶ σιδήρῳ 107:11 ὅτι παρεπίκραναν τὰ λόγια τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τὴν βουλὴν τοῦ ὑψίστου παρώξυναν 107:12 καὶ ἐταπεινώθη ἐν κόποις ἡ καρδία αὐτῶν ἠσθένησαν καὶ οὐκ ἦν ὁ βοηθῶν 107:13 καὶ ἐκέκραξαν πρὸς κύριον ἐν τῷ θλίβεσθαι αὐτούς καὶ ἐκ τῶν ἀναγκῶν αὐτῶν ἔσωσεν αὐτοὺς 107:14 καὶ ἐξήγαγεν αὐτοὺς ἐκ σκότους καὶ σκιᾶς θανάτου καὶ τοὺς δεσμοὺς αὐτῶν διέρρηξεν 107:15 ἐξομολογησάσθωσαν τῷ κυρίῳ τὰ ἐλέη αὐτοῦ καὶ τὰ θαυμάσια αὐτοῦ τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων 107:16 ὅτι συνέτριψεν πύλας χαλκᾶς καὶ μοχλοὺς σιδηροῦς συνέκλασεν 107:17 ἀντελάβετο αὐτῶν ἐξ ὁδοῦ ἀνομίας αὐτῶν διὰ γὰρ τὰς ἀνομίας αὐτῶν ἐταπεινώθησαν 107:18 πᾶν βρῶμα ἐβδελύξατο ἡ ψυχὴ αὐτῶν καὶ ἤγγισαν ἕως τῶν πυλῶν τοῦ θανάτου 107:19 καὶ ἐκέκραξαν πρὸς κύριον ἐν τῷ θλίβεσθαι αὐτούς καὶ ἐκ τῶν ἀναγκῶν αὐτῶν ἔσωσεν αὐτούς 107:20 ἀπέστειλεν τὸν λόγον αὐτοῦ καὶ ἰάσατο αὐτοὺς καὶ ἐρρύσατο αὐτοὺς ἐκ τῶν διαφθορῶν αὐτῶν 107:21 ἐξομολογησάσθωσαν τῷ κυρίῳ τὰ ἐλέη αὐτοῦ καὶ τὰ θαυμάσια αὐτοῦ τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων 107:22 καὶ θυσάτωσαν θυσίαν αἰνέσεως καὶ ἐξαγγειλάτωσαν τὰ ἔργα αὐτοῦ ἐν ἀγαλλιάσει 107:23 οἱ καταβαίνοντες εἰς τὴν θάλασσαν ἐν πλοίοις ποιοῦντες ἐργασίαν ἐν ὕδασι πολλοῖς 107:24 αὐτοὶ εἴδοσαν τὰ ἔργα κυρίου καὶ τὰ θαυμάσια αὐτοῦ ἐν τῷ βυθῷ 107:25 εἶπεν καὶ ἔστη πνεῦμα καταιγίδος καὶ ὑψώθη τὰ κύματα αὐτῆς 107:26 ἀναβαίνουσιν ἕως τῶν οὐρανῶν καὶ καταβαίνουσιν ἕως τῶν ἀβύσσων ἡ ψυχὴ αὐτῶν ἐν κακοῖς ἐτήκετο 107:27 ἐταράχθησαν ἐσαλεύθησαν ὡς ὁ μεθύων καὶ πᾶσα ἡ σοφία αὐτῶν κατεπόθη

כט יָקֵם סְעָרָה לִדְמָמָה וַיֶּחֱשׁוּ גַּלֵּיהֶם: ל וַיִּשְֹמְחוּ כִי-יִשְׁתֹּקוּ וַיַּנְחֵם אֶל-מְחוֹז חֶפְצָם: לא יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: לב וִירֹמְמוּהוּ בִּקְהַל-עָם וּבְמוֹשַׁב זְקֵנִים יְהַלְלוּהוּ: לג יָשֵֹם נְהָרוֹת לְמִדְבָּר וּמֹצָאֵי מַיִם לְצִמָּאוֹן: לד אֶרֶץ פְּרִי לִמְלֵחָה מֵרָעַת ישְׁבֵי בָהּ: לה יָשֵֹם מִדְבָּר לַאֲגַם-מַיִם וְאֶרֶץ צִיָּה לְמֹצָאֵי מָיִם: לו וַיּוֹשֶׁב שָׁם רְעֵבִים וַיְכוֹנְנוּ עִיר מוֹשָׁב: לז וַיִּזְרָעוּ שָֹדוֹת וַיִּטְּעוּ כְרָמִים וַיַּעֲשֹוּ פְּרִי תְבוּאָה: לח וַיְבָרֲכֵם וַיִּרְבּוּ מְאֹד וּבְהֶמְתָּם לֹא יַמְעִיט: לט וַיִּמְעֲטוּ וַיָּשֹׁחוּ מֵעֹצֶר רָעָה וְיָגוֹן: מ שֹׁפֵךְ בּוּז עַל-נְדִיבִים וַיַּתְעֵם בְּתֹהוּ לֹא-דָרֶךְ: מא וַיְשַֹגֵּב אֶבְיוֹן מֵעוֹנִי וַיָּשֶֹם כַּצֹּאן מִשְׁפָּחוֹת: מב יִרְאוּ יְשָׁרִים וְיִשְֹמָחוּ וְכָל-עַוְלָה קָפְצָה פִּיהָ: מג מִי-חָכָם וְיִשְׁמָר-אֵלֶּה וְיִתְבּוֹנְנוּ חַסְדֵי יְהֹוָה:

כט יקים עלעולא לשתיקותא וישתקון ושתקן גלליהון׃ ל וחדון ארום שתקין ודברינון למחוז רעייתהון רעותהון׃ לא יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומשתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ לב ומרוממין יתיה בכנשת עמא בית ישראל ובסנהדרין דחכימיא ישבחון יתיה׃ לג על דרא דיואל בר פתואל אתנבי ואמר כד מרדו בית ישראל ביומי דיואל נבייא אייתי בצורתא בעלמא שווי נהרוותא היך מדברא ומפקנות מיא היך צהותא׃ לד ארעא דישראל דעבדא פירי צדא היך סדום דאתהפיכת מן בישות יתבין בה׃ לה כד תבו לאוריתא שוי מדברא היך אריתא דמיא וארע ציהייא צדיא למפקנות מיא׃ לו ואשרי תמן כפינים ואתקינו קרתא מייתבא׃ לז וזרעו חקלין ונציבו ונסיבו כרמיא ועבדו פרי אבא׃ לח ובריכינון ויסגון וסגו לחדא ובעיריהון לא יזעיר׃ לט וכד חבו אזערו ואתמסכנו מן אניק בישתא ודבונא׃ מ שדי בסרנותא על רברבניא ואטעיאונון ואתעינון בלמא דלא אורחא׃ מא וכד תבו לאוריתא שגיב חשוכא ממסכינותא ושוי היך עני גניסיא׃ מב יחמון תריציא ויחדון וכל ועל מרי שקרא שוורת פומה ואתחסמת׃ מג מן חכימא וינטור אילין ויתבוננון ויתביינון חסדייא דיהוה׃

107:28 καὶ ἐκέκραξαν πρὸς κύριον ἐν τῷ θλίβεσθαι αὐτούς καὶ ἐκ τῶν ἀναγκῶν αὐτῶν ἐξήγαγεν αὐτοὺς 107:29 καὶ ἐπέταξεν τῇ καταιγίδι καὶ ἔστη εἰς αὔραν καὶ ἐσίγησαν τὰ κύματα αὐτῆς 107:30 καὶ εὐφράνθησαν ὅτι ἡσύχασαν καὶ ὡδήγησεν αὐτοὺς ἐπὶ λιμένα θελήματος αὐτῶν 107:31 ἐξομολογησάσθωσαν τῷ κυρίῳ τὰ ἐλέη αὐτοῦ καὶ τὰ θαυμάσια αὐτοῦ τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων 107:32 ὑψωσάτωσαν αὐτὸν ἐν ἐκκλησίᾳ λαοῦ καὶ ἐν καθέδρᾳ πρεσβυτέρων αἰνεσάτωσαν αὐτόν 107:33 ἔθετο ποταμοὺς εἰς ἔρημον καὶ διεξόδους ὑδάτων εἰς δίψαν 107:34 γῆν καρποφόρον εἰς ἅλμην ἀπὸ κακίας τῶν κατοικούντων ἐν αὐτῇ 107:35 ἔθετο ἔρημον εἰς λίμνας ὑδάτων καὶ γῆν ἄνυδρον εἰς διεξόδους ὑδάτων 107:36 καὶ κατῴκισεν ἐκεῖ πεινῶντας καὶ συνεστήσαντο πόλιν κατοικεσίας 107:37 καὶ ἔσπειραν ἀγροὺς καὶ ἐφύτευσαν ἀμπελῶνας καὶ ἐποίησαν καρπὸν γενήματος 107:38 καὶ εὐλόγησεν αὐτούς καὶ ἐπληθύνθησαν σφόδρα καὶ τὰ κτήνη αὐτῶν οὐκ ἐσμίκρυνεν 107:39 καὶ ὠλιγώθησαν καὶ ἐκακώθησαν ἀπὸ θλίψεως κακῶν καὶ ὀδύνης 107:40 ἐξεχύθη ἐξουδένωσις ἐπ᾽ ἄρχοντας καὶ ἐπλάνησεν αὐτοὺς ἐν ἀβάτῳ καὶ οὐχ ὁδῷ 107:41 καὶ ἐβοήθησεν πένητι ἐκ πτωχείας καὶ ἔθετο ὡς πρόβατα πατριάς 107:42 ὄψονται εὐθεῖς καὶ εὐφρανθήσονται καὶ πᾶσα ἀνομία ἐμφράξει τὸ στόμα αὐτῆς 107:43 τίς σοφὸς καὶ φυλάξει ταῦτα καὶ συνήσουσιν τὰ ἐλέη τοῦ κυρίου

Tehillim / Psalms 107

107:1 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, For His lovingkindness is everlasting. 107:2 Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary 107:3 And gathered from the lands, From the east and from the west, From the north and from the south. 107:4 They wandered in the wilderness in a desert region; They did not find a way to an inhabited city. 107:5 They were hungry and thirsty; Their soul fainted within them. 107:6 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He delivered them out of their distresses. 107:7 He led them also by a straight way, To go to an inhabited city. 107:8 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:9 For He has satisfied the thirsty soul, And the hungry soul He has filled with what is good. 107:10 There were those who dwelt in darkness and in the shadow of death, Prisoners in misery and chains, 107:11 Because they had rebelled against the words of God And spurned the counsel of the Most High. 107:12 Therefore He humbled their heart with labor; They stumbled and there was none to help. 107:13 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He saved them out of their distresses. 107:14 He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death And broke their bands apart. 107:15 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:16 For He has shattered gates of bronze And cut bars of iron asunder. 107:17 Fools, because of their rebellious way, And because of their iniquities, were afflicted. 107:18 Their soul abhorred all kinds of food, And they drew near to the gates of death. 107:19 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He saved them out of their distresses. 107:20 He sent His word and healed them, And delivered them from their destructions. (NASB)

Toviyah / Psalms 107

107:1 Sing praise in the presence of the Lord, for he is good, for his goodness is forever. 107:2 The redeemed of the Lord will say [it], whom he redeemed from the hand of the oppressor. 107:3 And whom he gathered from the lands, from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the sea in the south. 107:4 Concerning the people of the house of Israel he prophesied and said, “The people of the house of Israel have wandered in the wilderness in a desolate path; they did not find an inhabited city.” 107:5 Thirsty, yes, and hungry, their souls will grow weary. 107:6 And they prayed in the presence of the Lord went it went ill with them; he delivered them from their distress. 107:7 And he guided them on a straight way, to come to Jerusalem, the inhabited city. 107:8 Let them give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. 107:9 For he has satisfied the soul of the empty, and filled with good things the soul of the hungry. 107:10 Concerning Zedekiah and the leaders of Israel he prophesied and said, “O Zedekiah and the leaders of Israel, who were exiled to Babylon and dwelt in darkness and the shadow of death, and became prisoners in the pain of iron fetters.” 107:11 For they rebelled against the word of God, and rejected the counsel of the Most High. 107:12 And he broke their heart with toil; they stumbled, and there was none to help. 107:13 And they prayed in the presence of the Lord when it went ill with them; he redeemed them from their distress. 107:14 He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death; and he will break their chains. 107:15 They will give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. 107:16 For he shattered the doors of bronze, and cut down the bars of iron. (EMC)

Psalmoi / Psalms 107

107:1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his mercy endures for ever. 107:2 Let them say so who have been redeemed by the Lord, whom he has redeemed from the hand of the enemy; 107:3 and gathered them out of the countries, from the east, and west, and north, and south. 107:4 They wandered in the wilderness in a dry land; they found no way to a city of habitation. 107:5 Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them. 107:6 Then they cried to the Lord in their affliction, and he delivered them out of their distresses. 107:7 And he guided them into a straight path, that they might go to a city of habitation. 107:8 Let them acknowledge to the Lord his mercies, and his wonderful works to the children of men. 107:9 For he satisfies the empty soul, and fills the hungry soul with good things, 107:10 even them that sit in darkness and the shadow of death, fettered in poverty and iron; 107:11 because they rebelled against the words of God, and provoked the counsel of the Most High. 107:12 So their heart was brought low with troubles; they were weak, and there was no helper. 107:13 Then they cried to the Lord in their affliction, and he saved them out of their distresses. 107:14 And he brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and broke their bonds asunder. 107:15 Let them acknowledge to the Lord his mercies, and his wonders to the children of men. 107:16 For he broke to pieces the brazen gates, and crushed the iron bars. 107:17 He helped them out of the way of their iniquity; for they were brought low because of their iniquities. 107:18 Their soul abhorred all meat; and they drew near to the gates of death. 107:19 Then they cried to the Lord in their affliction, and he saved them out of their distresses. 107:20 He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them out of their destructions. (LXX)

Tehillim / Psalms 107

107:21 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:22 Let them also offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, And tell of His works with joyful singing. 107:23 Those who go down to the sea in ships, Who do business on great waters; 107:24 They have seen the works of the Lord, And His wonders in the deep. 107:25 For He spoke and raised up a stormy wind, Which lifted up the waves of the sea. 107:26 They rose up to the heavens, they went down to the depths; Their soul melted away in their misery. 107:27 They reeled and staggered like a drunken man, And were at their wits’ end. 107:28 Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, And He brought them out of their distresses. 107:29 He caused the storm to be still, So that the waves of the sea were hushed. 107:30 Then they were glad because they were quiet, So He guided them to their desired haven. 107:31 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:32 Let them extol Him also in the congregation of the people, And praise Him at the seat of the elders. 107:33 He changes rivers into a wilderness And springs of water into a thirsty ground; 107:34 A fruitful land into a salt waste, Because of the wickedness of those who dwell in it. 107:35 He changes a wilderness into a pool of water And a dry land into springs of water; 107:36 And there He makes the hungry to dwell, So that they may establish an inhabited city, 107:37 And sow fields and plant vineyards, And gather a fruitful harvest. 107:38 Also He blesses them and they multiply greatly, And He does not let their cattle decrease. 107:39 When they are diminished and bowed down Through oppression, misery and sorrow, 107:40 He pours contempt upon princes And makes them wander in a pathless waste. (NASB)

Toviyah / Psalms 107

107:17 Concerning Hezekiah, king of the tribe of the house of Judah, he prophesied and said, “Hezekiah, king of the house of Judah, who refused to take a wife, was punished as the fools are punished because of their rebellious way and because of their iniquities.” 107:18 Their soul will reject all food, and they arrive at the portals of death. 107:19 And they prayed in the presence of the Lord when it went ill with them, and he will redeem them from their distresses. 107:20 He will send the words of his healing and will heal them, and deliver [them] from being harmed. 107:21 They will give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. 107:22 And they will sacrifice thanksgiving sacrifices, and will tell of his deeds in gladness. 107:23 Concerning the sailors of Jonah son of Amittai, he prophesied and said, “The sailors, those who go down to the sea in ships, those who do work on many waters 107:24 They saw the deeds of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep.” 107:25 And he gave command by his word, and raised up the storm and the gale, and its waves were lifted up high. 107:26 They go up towards heaven, they go down to the depths of the abysses; their souls will melt in misery. 107:27 They will tremble, they will totter like a man drunk with wine; and all their wisdom is destroyed. 107:28 And they prayed in the presence of the Lord when it went ill with them, and he will bring them out of their troubles. 107:29 He will make the wind cease to quietness, and their waves will be silent. 107:30 And they rejoiced, for they are silent; and he led them to the harbor they desired. 107:31 They will give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. 107:32 And they exalt him in the assembly of the people, the house of Israel; and in the Sanhedrin of the wise they will praise him. (EMC)

Psalmoi / Psalms 107

107:21 Let them acknowledge to the Lord his mercies, and his wonderful works to the children of men. 107:22 And let them offer to him the sacrifice of praise, and proclaim this works with exultation. 107:23 They that go down to the sea in ships, doing business in many waters; 107:24 these men have seen the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. 107:25 He speaks, and the stormy wind arises, and its waves are lifted up. 107:26 They go up to the heavens, and go down to the depths; their soul melts because of troubles. 107:27 They are troubled, they stagger as a drunkard, and all their wisdom is swallowed up. 107:28 Then they cry to the Lord in their affliction, and he brings them out of their distresses. 107:29 And he commands the storm, and it is calmed into a gentle breeze, and its waves are still. 107:30 And they are glad, because they are quiet; and he guides them to their desire haven. 107:31 Let them acknowledge to the Lord his mercies, and his wonderful works to the children of men. 107:32 Let them exalt him in the congregation of the people, and praise him in the seat of the elders. 107:33 He turns rivers into a desert, and streams of water into a dry land; 107:34 a fruitful land into saltness, for the wickedness of them that dwell in it. 107:35 He turns a wilderness into pools of water, and a dry land into streams of water. 107:36 And there he causes the hungry to dwell, and they establish for themselves cities of habitation. 107:37 And they sow fields, and plant vineyards, and they yield fruit of increase. 107:38 And he blesses them, and they multiply exceedingly, and he diminishes not the number of their cattle. 107:39 Again they become few, and are brought low, by the pressure of evils and pain. 107:40 Contempt is poured upon their princes, and he causes them to wander in a desert and trackless land. (LXX)

Tehillim / Psalms 107

107:41 But He sets the needy securely on high away from affliction, And makes his families like a flock. 107:42 The upright see it and are glad; But all unrighteousness shuts its mouth. 107:43 Who is wise? Let him give heed to these things, And consider the lovingkindnesses of the Lord. (NASB)

Toviyah / Psalms 107

107:33 Concerning the generation of Joel son of Pethuel he prophesied and said: “When the house of Israel rebelled in the days of Joel the prophet, he brought a drought into the world; he made the rivers like the desert, and the sources of water like thirst.” 107:34. The land of Israel that produces fruit became a waste like Sodom, which was overthrown because of the evil of its inhabitants. 107:35 When they returned to the Torah, he made the desert like a channel of water, and the parched land [became] sources of water. 107:36 And he made the hungry dwell there, and they set up an inhabited city. 107:37 And they sowed fields and planted vineyards, and they yielded fruit of produce. 107:38 And he blessed them and they multiplied greatly, and their livestock will not diminish. 107:39 And when they sinned, they diminished and became poor because of the affliction of misery and pain. 107:40 He pours contempt on the leaders, and made them wander in a void without a path. 107:41 But when they returned to the Torah, he exalted the needy from poverty, and made [them] like the flocks of the well-born families. 107:42 The upright will see and rejoice, but every liar’s mouth is closed and sealed. 107:43 Would that the wise man keep these things, and discern the kindnesses of the Lord! (EMC)

Psalmoi / Psalms 107

107:41 But he helps the poor out of poverty, and makes him families as a flock. 107:42 The upright shall see and rejoice; and all iniquity shall stop her mouth. 107:43 Who is wise, and will observe these things, and understand the mercies of the Lord? (LXX)

In this week’s study from Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-43, the Psalm opens saying, א הֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה כִּי-טוֹב כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ: ב יֹאמְרוּ גְּאוּלֵי יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר גְּאָלָם מִיַּד-צָר: ג וּמֵאֲרָצוֹת קִבְּצָם מִמִּזְרָח וּמִמַּעֲרָב מִצָּפוֹן וּמִיָּם: 107:1 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, For His lovingkindness is everlasting. 107:2 Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary 107:3 And gathered from the lands, From the east and from the west, From the north and from the south. (NASB) It is interesting how the psalmist calls for being grateful for what we have. This is important since we presently live in an age of entitlement and of prosperity. Not only does our generation seem to think that it deserves the most lavish of riches, but it has also enjoyed the most lavish riches of any generation that has gone before. This sense of entitlement and culture of prosperity has fostered a sense of being entitled to certain blessings. With this being the cultural norm, is it difficult to be truly grateful for them? The psalmist states that the giving of thanks is connected to those who were redeemed from the hand of the adversary. Who is the psalmist speaking of in regards to the adversary? This psalm gives us a series of pictures about the Lord bringing His people up out of captivity. Notice in the opening words the Psalm speaks of the Lord God gathering His people from the north and from the south and from the east and from the west. The Psalmist is describing the people being brought from their dispersion from all over the earth. Because of the sins of God’s people and for their humbling, the Lord God had sent His people Israel into captivity into Babylon. However, as a result of His mercy and His covenant, He gathered His people back to the Land of Israel. As the Lord gathers them back, He provides us with a series of images of what it was like for the people to be in captivity. These pictures describe the spiritual state (aspects) of being under the discipline of God and provide us with reasons why we ought to be grateful for his redemption. In Tehillim / Psalms 107:8, we are told, “Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness and for His wonders to the sons of men.” Two things are set forth here, (i) they are to give thanks because of the covenant promises of God, because of the unfailing love of the Lord and of His lovingkindness, His Chesed (mercy), and (ii) they are to give thanks for the wonders that He’s done. So, it’s not only God’s love, His character, His person, His love for His people, and the deeds that He’s done on our behalf, for His wondrous deeds that we are eternally grateful, we are also called to simply give praise unto His Name for the life that He has given us! The opening words of this Psalm say that God’s people are called upon to give thanks having redeemed us from the hands of the adversary and gathered from the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south. This is a call for all of God’s people, from the west, from the north, from the east, and from the south (world wide) to give thanks to Him because He has redeemed us, this seems to be a picture of His having drawn us to Himself. His redemption involves the calling us back, the revealing of His truth in our lives, and His wondrous power to bring us up out of our dispersion, out of our wicked ways, out of our sins. The importance of giving praise and having gratitude is found in Luke 17:15-16. In the gospel of Luke, we are told that Yeshua had healed some men, and “one of them, when he saw that he had been healed, turned back, glorifying God with a loud voice, and he fell on his face at His feet, giving thanks to Him. And he was a Samaritan.” The significance of this event is based upon the fact that 90% of those who were healed did not take the time to express thanks. It is amazing how having been healed, these men failed in their opportunity to be thankful. Only one man decided it important enough to give the glory to our Father in heaven for his healing. It is difficult to say who the adversary was the Psalmist is referring to, but it was the lack of gratefulness that lead the people into sin in the wilderness and cause them to wonder for 40 years before taking hold of the promises of God and entering into the Land of Israel.

The Psalm continues saying, ד תָּעוּ בַמִּדְבָּר בִּישִׁימוֹן דָּרֶךְ עִיר מוֹשָׁב לֹא מָצָאוּ: ה רְעֵבִים גַּם-צְמֵאִים נַפְשָׁם בָּהֶם תִּתְעַטָּף: ו וַיִּצְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם מִמְּצוּקוֹתֵיהֶם יַצִּילֵם: 107:4 They wandered in the wilderness in a desert region; They did not find a way to an inhabited city. 107:5 They were hungry and thirsty; Their soul fainted within them. 107:6 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He delivered them out of their distresses. (NASB) The Lord hears the cry of the distressed. Note how the people cried out to the Lord and not to another kingdom for help. Throughout history, believers have cried out to the Lord God in times of distress. Based upon the historical account according to the Scriptures, our crying out may extend for years before we are given direction and deliverance. Many have wondered why there are such powerful results from simply crying out to the Lord God of Israel? The Scriptures make this point clear saying, “Call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me” (Tehillim / Psalm 50:15). The point is that we are to bring glory to the Name of the Lord in times of trouble, and doing so giving thanks for what we have, while maintaining our faith in Him who is able to deliver.

  • “Call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver you, and you shalt glorify me” (Tehillim / Psalm 50:15).
  • “Call unto me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you know not” (Jeremiah 33:3).
  • “The righteous cry, and the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles” (Tehillim / Psalm 34:17).
  • “When I cry unto thee, then will mine enemies turn back: this I know; for God is for me” (Tehillim / Psalm 56:9).

Note that within the plea for God’s help, we find the characteristics of genuine humility, unconditional surrender, the calling out for mercy, personal helplessness, having faith in God’s power and abilities, and our desperation for help. Though we may have many calamities come upon us, we are to maintain our faith and walk in God’s ways.

The psalmist states, ז וַיַּדְרִיכֵם בְּדֶרֶךְ יְשָׁרָה לָלֶכֶת אֶל-עִיר מוֹשָׁב: ח יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: 107:7 He led them also by a straight way, To go to an inhabited city. 107:8 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! Notice how the Lord leads His people on the straight path and not on a winding difficult path. Yeshua said in Matthew 7:13 Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. (NASB) The way the psalmist and Yeshua describe the Lord in heaven coupled to His loving kindness, the way we choose to live is to choose a narrow gate. This narrow gate or straight way is more difficult than the easy way of the world. These things describe the level of commitment that we are to have in our walk before God. Choosing the narrow way, the more difficult path, causes to stretch us to learn and brings much reward, those things which the easy way would not cause us to experience. Is the “narrow” or “straight” gate the way you choose to live? Or, are you choosing the smooth way, the way that meets the least resistance? Moshe describes the narrow and straight way in the Torah in the following way, according to Devarim / Deuteronomy 30:11-12.

Devarim / Deuteronomy 30:10-18

30:10 if you obey the Lord your God to keep His commandments and His statutes which are written in this book of the law, if you turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and soul. 30:11 ‘For this commandment which I command you today is not too difficult for you, nor is it out of reach. 30:12 ‘It is not in heaven, that you should say, ‘Who will go up to heaven for us to get it for us and make us hear it, that we may observe it?’ 30:13 ‘Nor is it beyond the sea, that you should say, ‘Who will cross the sea for us to get it for us and make us hear it, that we may observe it?’ 30:14 ‘But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may observe it. 30:15 ‘See, I have set before you today life and prosperity, and death and adversity; 30:16 in that I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His judgments, that you may live and multiply, and that the Lord your God may bless you in the land where you are entering to possess it. 30:17 ‘But if your heart turns away and you will not obey, but are drawn away and worship other gods and serve them, 30:18 I declare to you today that you shall surely perish. You will not prolong your days in the land where you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess it. (NASB)

י כִּי תִשְׁמַע בְּקוֹל יְהוָֹה אֱלֹהֶיךָ לִשְׁמֹר מִצְוֹתָיו וְחֻקֹּתָיו הַכְּתוּבָה בְּסֵפֶר הַתּוֹרָה הַזֶּה כִּי תָשׁוּב אֶל-יְהוָֹה אֱלֹהֶיךָ בְּכָל-לְבָבְךָ וּבְכָל-נַפְשֶׁךָ: ס [ששי] יא כִּי הַמִּצְוָה הַזֹּאת אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוְּךָ הַיּוֹם לֹא-נִפְלֵאת הִוא מִמְּךָ וְלֹא-רְחֹקָה הִוא: יב לֹא בַשָּׁמַיִם הִוא לֵאמֹר מִי יַעֲלֶה-לָּנוּ הַשָּׁמַיְמָה וְיִקָּחֶהָ לָּנוּ וְיַשְׁמִעֵנוּ אֹתָהּ וְנַעֲשֶֹנָּה: יג וְלֹא-מֵעֵבֶר לַיָּם הִוא לֵאמֹר מִי יַעֲבָר-לָנוּ אֶל-עֵבֶר הַיָּם וְיִקָּחֶהָ לָּנוּ וְיַשְׁמִעֵנוּ אֹתָהּ וְנַעֲשֶֹנָּה: יד כִּי-קָרוֹב אֵלֶיךָ הַדָּבָר מְאֹד בְּפִיךָ וּבִלְבָבְךָ לַעֲשֹתוֹ: טו רְאֵה נָתַתִּי לְפָנֶיךָ הַיּוֹם אֶת-הַחַיִּים וְאֶת-הַטּוֹב וְאֶת-הַמָּוֶת וְאֶת-הָרָע: טז אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוְּךָ הַיּוֹם לְאַהֲבָה אֶת-יְהוָֹה אֱלֹהֶיךָ לָלֶכֶת בִּדְרָכָיו וְלִשְׁמֹר מִצְוֹתָיו וְחֻקֹּתָיו וּמִשְׁפָּטָיו וְחָיִיתָ וְרָבִיתָ וּבֵרַכְךָ יְהוָֹה אֱלֹהֶיךָ בָּאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר-אַתָּה בָא-שָׁמָּה לְרִשְׁתָּהּ: יז וְאִם-יִפְנֶה לְבָבְךָ וְלֹא תִשְׁמָע וְנִדַּחְתָּ וְהִשְׁתַּחֲוִיתָ לֵאלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים וַעֲבַדְתָּם: יח הִגַּדְתִּי לָכֶם הַיּוֹם כִּי אָבֹד תֹּאבֵדוּן לֹא-תַאֲרִיכֻן יָמִים עַל-הָאֲדָמָה אֲשֶׁר אַתָּה עֹבֵר אֶת-הַיַּרְדֵּן לָבוֹא שָׁמָּה לְרִשְׁתָּהּ:

Moshe speaks of turning to the Lord our God to keep His commands and statutes which are written in the Torah. In doing so, we will turn our hearts and souls to the Lord and live in the fullness of what He would have for us. Moshe describes the commands as not being difficult to reach, and obeying the commands of God are synonymous to life, as opposed to disobedience which leads to sin and death. Modern theologies today teach something different than what the Scriptures tell us. Moshe says, “love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His judgments, that you may live and multiply, and that the Lord your God may bless you in the land where you are entering to possess it.” (Devarim / Deuteronomy 30:16) An interesting interpretation that I run into recently was that this verse from the Torah (30:16) causes the Torah to be only obligatory to the people of Israel and therefore the Christian is not obligated to obey. The reason was based around replacement theology and the idea that these verses speak of the commands in relation to the Land of Israel, and that the gentile believers would not enter into the Land to possess the Land and therefore these verses do not apply. The interesting point is that based upon his interpretation, obedience to the Torah required one to take possession of the Land of Israel. Do you think that sort of interpretation is necessary when considering the Gentile responsibility to obey the Torah? The non-Jewish person entering into a covenant with God through faith in the Messiah Yeshua, and then living his life in obedience to the Torah does not presuppose that such a person becomes the root (Israel), but that he or she is grafted into the vine and partakes in the blessing of God. For a people to whom the Scriptures were written (Israel) the reference is to the Land of Israel, however, to a people who would join themselves to Israel, the land in which they already possess (elsewhere) may be applied to where one presently lives, such that he or she will live in peace, the Lord God of Israel would bless, and make him to be at peace with his or her enemies. The Scriptures say obedience to the Torah is for the purpose of prolonging our days by walking in God’s ways as opposed to disobedience which will shorten the days of our lives. (30:17-18)

The psalmist continues saying the following:

Tehillim / Psalms 107:9-15

107:9 For He has satisfied the thirsty soul, And the hungry soul He has filled with what is good. 107:10 There were those who dwelt in darkness and in the shadow of death, Prisoners in misery and chains, 107:11 Because they had rebelled against the words of God And spurned the counsel of the Most High. 107:12 Therefore He humbled their heart with labor; They stumbled and there was none to help. 107:13 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He saved them out of their distresses. 107:14 He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death And broke their bands apart. 107:15 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men!

ט כִּי-הִשְֹבִּיעַ נֶפֶשׁ שֹׁקֵקָה וְנֶפֶשׁ רְעֵבָה מִלֵּא-טוֹב: י יֹשְׁבֵי חשֶׁךְ וְצַלְמָוֶת אֲסִירֵי עֳנִי וּבַרְזֶל: יא כִּי-הִמְרוּ אִמְרֵי-אֵל וַעֲצַת עֶלְיוֹן נָאָצוּ: יב וַיַּכְנַע בֶּעָמָל לִבָּם כָּשְׁלוּ וְאֵין עֹזֵר: יג וַיִּזְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם מִמְּצֻקוֹתֵיהֶם יוֹשִׁיעֵם: יד יוֹצִיאֵם מֵחשֶׁךְ וְצַלְמָוֶת וּמוֹסְרוֹתֵיהֶם יְנַתֵּק: טו יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם:

The psalmist speaks of the Lord satisfying the thirsty and hungry soul, to fill one with what is good. This is contrasted to those who dwell in darkness and in the shadow of death, in sin, in prison, and in chains. This is paralleled to the Lord sending His people to Babylon for the purpose of humbling them, and then bringing them back from darkness, and setting His people free. The way the psalmist describes the lost may be applied to all peoples on the face of the earth, where by the light of God’s truth, He can set free and loose the bonds of sin.

The Aramaic Targum states, ט ארום אשבע נפש סריקא ונפשא כפינא מלי טובא׃ י על צדקיהו ורברבני ישראל את בננבי ואמר צדקיהו ורברבני ישראל דגלו בבבל ויתיבו בחשוכא וטולא דמותא והוו אסירין בסיגוף שירי פרזלא׃ יא ארום סריבו על מימריה דאלהא ומלכת עילאה רחיקו׃ יב ותבר בליעותא לבהון אתקילו ולית דסעיד׃ יג וצלו קדם יהוה בדעיק להון ממעיקתהון פרקינון׃ יד אפיקינון מחשוכא וטולא דמותא ושלשלותהון ושושלוותהון יתרע׃ טו יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומשתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ 107:9 For he has satisfied the soul of the empty, and filled with good things the soul of the hungry. 107:10 Concerning Zedekiah and the leaders of Israel he prophesied and said, “O Zedekiah and the leaders of Israel, who were exiled to Babylon and dwelt in darkness and the shadow of death, and became prisoners in the pain of iron fetters.” 107:11 For they rebelled against the word of God, and rejected the counsel of the Most High. 107:12 And he broke their heart with toil; they stumbled, and there was none to help. 107:13 And they prayed in the presence of the Lord when it went ill with them; he redeemed them from their distress. 107:14 He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death; and he will break their chains. 107:15 They will give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. (EMC) The Targum translation speaks explicitly of Zedekiah and the leaders of Israel from the book of Jeremiah. The reason they were imprisoned was because “they rebelled against the word of God, and rejected the counsel of the Most High” (Tovia / Psalms 107:11). The Word of God satisfies (107:9-10) and delivers one from misery and death. Note that calamity comes by reason of the Lord humbling our hearts (107:11-12) so that we would seek the Lord God in heaven (107:13-14). These things apply to all peoples. This is why prophecy speaks of the Word, God’s Law (Torah) going into all the world (Isaiah 2) and why the non-Jewish person entering into a covenant with God through faith in the Messiah Yeshua, and then living his life in obedience to the Torah does not presuppose that such a person becomes the root (Israel), but that he or she is grafted into the vine and partakes in the blessing of God. The non-Jewish person is obligated to obey. The definition of obligate is as follows:

ob·li·gate

verb: obligate; 3rd person present: obligates; past tense: obligated; past participle: obligated; gerund or present participle: obligating

ˈäbləˌɡāt/

1. bind or compel (someone), especially legally or morally.

“the medical establishment is obligated to take action in the best interest of the public”

synonyms: oblige, compel, commit, bind, require, constrain, force, impel

“signing the agreement does not obligate you to stay through the end of the program”

2. US commit (assets) as security.

“the money must be obligated within thirty days”

adjective: obligate

ˈäbləɡāt/

1. restricted to a particular function or mode of life.

“an obligate intracellular parasite”

Note that to be obligated is to bind, or compel, commit, or require one to be in obedience to the Torah. What does this mean for us? We can ask the question as an example for Christians being obligated to obey such as, “does salvation require moral behavior?” Speaking to orthodox Judaism in regards to salvation, we speak in terms of the covenant of God, of “being in” or “being outside” of the covenant agreement and what that means (what that involves), “Does remaining in the covenant require moral behavior?” Or asked another way, “can we live immoral lives and remain in the covenant?” Or back to the Christian perspective, “can we live immoral lives and believe we are saved?” These are important questions and are directly related to whether we are obligated to obey God’s Torah and to walk in His ways. The obvious answer should be that we are to recognize sin for what it is, and repent, turning from our sin, and then walk in God’s ways and not in our own ways. If we are not living repentant lives, this will result in stepping outside of the covenant we have with our Father in heaven in Yeshua the Messiah.

The psalmist continues saying, טו יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: טז כִּי-שִׁבַּר דַּלְתוֹת נְחשֶׁת וּבְרִיחֵי בַרְזֶל גִּדֵּעַ: יז אֱוִלִים מִדֶּרֶךְ פִּשְׁעָם וּמֵעֲוֹנֹתֵיהֶם יִתְעַנּוּ: יח כָּל-אֹכֶל תְּתַעֵב נַפְשָׁם וַיַּגִּיעוּ עַד-שַׁעֲרֵי מָוֶת: יט וַיִּזְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם מִמְּצֻקוֹתֵיהֶם יוֹשִׁיעֵם: כ יִשְׁלַח דְּבָרוֹ וְיִרְפָּאֵם וִימַלֵּט מִשְּׁחִיתוֹתָם: 107:15 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:16 For He has shattered gates of bronze And cut bars of iron asunder. 107:17 Fools, because of their rebellious way, And because of their iniquities, were afflicted. 107:18 Their soul abhorred all kinds of food, And they drew near to the gates of death. 107:19 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He saved them out of their distresses. 107:20 He sent His word and healed them, And delivered them from their destructions. (NASB) The Aramaic Targum states, טו יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומשתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ טז ארום תבר דשי נחשא ועברי פרזלא קציץ׃ יז על חזקיה מלך שבטא דבית יהודה אתנבי ואמר חזקיהו מליך דבית יהודה דסריב למיסב אתתא אסתגיף היך שטין דמאורח מרדיהון ומעוייתהון מסתגיפין׃ יח כל מיכלא אוכלא תרחיק נפשהון ומטיין עד מעלני מותא׃ יט וצלו קדם יהוה כד עיק להון ממעיקתהון יפרקינון׃ כ ישדר שדי פתגמי אסותיה ויסי יתהון וישזיב מלחבלותהון׃ 107:15 They will give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. 107:16 For he shattered the doors of bronze, and cut down the bars of iron. 107:17 Concerning Hezekiah, king of the tribe of the house of Judah, he prophesied and said, “Hezekiah, king of the house of Judah, who refused to take a wife, was punished as the fools are punished because of their rebellious way and because of their iniquities.” 107:18 Their soul will reject all food, and they arrive at the portals of death. 107:19 And they prayed in the presence of the Lord when it went ill with them, and he will redeem them from their distresses. 107:20 He will send the words of his healing and will heal them, and deliver [them] from being harmed. (EMC) The people will give thanks because they are able to see how by their sins they were humbled before the Lord, and the faithfulness of the Lord in heaven who lifted (raised) them up, sent His word unto them, and healed them to deliver them from destruction. The rabbis again parallel this to Hezekiah and his refusal to take a wife. Three days before Sennaherib’s army had been destroyed by the hand of God at the gates of Jerusalem, Hezekiah fell seriously ill, and the prophet Isaiah came to tell him that he was going to die. The prophet also told him that the Lord God of Israel was greatly displeased because Hezekiah had not married. The rabbis believed Hezekiah had the gift of prophetic vision and therefore knew that his children would mislead Israel. As a result, he had refused to marry. But Isaiah told him that human beings must not interfere with the Lord’s ways of governing the world. All man is able to do is to live according to God’s commands, and fulfill his duties as the children of the Holy One. Everything else is in the Lord’s hands. The last fifteen years of Hezekiah’s reign were peaceful and happy. The Lord God blessed everything Hezekiah undertook. We are told that he was given an abundance of gold and silver and precious oils and spices which flowed into Judea and increased the wealth of the Jewish nation, to an extent unknown from since King Solomon’s time. The Holy Temple in Jerusalem was the spiritual center of the nation, and the recognition of God and His commands were at the heart of the daily life of Israel.

The Psalmist continues saying, כא יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: כב וְיִזְבְּחוּ זִבְחֵי תוֹדָה וִיסַפְּרוּ מַעֲשָֹיו בְּרִנָּה: כג יוֹרְדֵי הַיָּם בָּאֳנִיּוֹת עֹשֵֹי מְלָאכָה בְּמַיִם רַבִּים: כד הֵמָּה רָאוּ מַעֲשֵֹי יְהֹוָה וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו בִּמְצוּלָה: כה וַיֹּאמֶר וַיַּעֲמֵד רוּחַ סְעָרָה וַתְּרוֹמֵם גַּלָּיו: כו יַעֲלוּ שָׁמַיִם יֵרְדוּ תְהוֹמוֹת נַפְשָׁם בְּרָעָה תִתְמוֹגָג: כז יָחוֹגּוּ וְיָנוּעוּ כַּשִּׁכּוֹר וְכָל-חָכְמָתָם תִּתְבַּלָּע: כח וַיִּצְעֲקוּ אֶל-יְהֹוָה בַּצַּר לָהֶם וּמִמְּצוּקֹתֵיהֶם יוֹצִיאֵם: כט יָקֵם סְעָרָה לִדְמָמָה וַיֶּחֱשׁוּ גַּלֵּיהֶם: ל וַיִּשְֹמְחוּ כִי-יִשְׁתֹּקוּ וַיַּנְחֵם אֶל-מְחוֹז חֶפְצָם: לא יוֹדוּ לַיהֹוָה חַסְדּוֹ וְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו לִבְנֵי אָדָם: לב וִירֹמְמוּהוּ בִּקְהַל-עָם וּבְמוֹשַׁב זְקֵנִים יְהַלְלוּהוּ: 107:21 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:22 Let them also offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, And tell of His works with joyful singing. 107:23 Those who go down to the sea in ships, Who do business on great waters; 107:24 They have seen the works of the Lord, And His wonders in the deep. 107:25 For He spoke and raised up a stormy wind, Which lifted up the waves of the sea. 107:26 They rose up to the heavens, they went down to the depths; Their soul melted away in their misery. 107:27 They reeled and staggered like a drunken man, And were at their wits’ end. 107:28 Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, And He brought them out of their distresses. 107:29 He caused the storm to be still, So that the waves of the sea were hushed. 107:30 Then they were glad because they were quiet, So He guided them to their desired haven. 107:31 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! 107:32 Let them extol Him also in the congregation of the people, And praise Him at the seat of the elders. (EMC) The Aramaic Targum states, כא יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומשתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ כב ויכסון נכסי נכסת תודתא וישתכ עון עובדוי בדיצתא׃ כג על מלחיא דיונה בר אמיתי איתנבי ואמר מלחיא נחותי ימא באלפיא עבדי פולחנא במיין סגיעין׃ כד הינון חמון עובדיא דיהוה ופרישותיה במצולתא׃ כה ואמר במימריה ואקים זעפא ועלעולא ואתרוממו גללוי׃ כו סלקין צית שמיא נחתין עמקי תהומיא נפשתהון בבישא בבישותא תתמוגג׃ כז ירתתון ינועון ויטעון היך רוויא דחמר וכל חוכמתהון מסתלעמא׃ כח וצלו קדם יהוה כד עיק להון וממעיקתהון יפיק יתהון׃ כט יקים עלעולא לשתיקותא וישתקון ושתקן גלליהון׃ ל וחדון ארום שתקין ודברינון למחוז רעייתהון רעותהון׃ לא יהודון קדם יהוה מטול חסדיה ומשתען פרישותיה לבני נשא׃ לב ומרוממין יתיה בכנשת עמא בית ישראל ובסנהדרין דחכימיא ישבחון יתיה׃ 107:21 They will give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. 107:22 And they will sacrifice thanksgiving sacrifices, and will tell of his deeds in gladness. 107:23 Concerning the sailors of Jonah son of Amittai, he prophesied and said, “The sailors, those who go down to the sea in ships, those who do work on many waters 107:24 They saw the deeds of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep.” 107:25 And he gave command by his word, and raised up the storm and the gale, and its waves were lifted up high. 107:26 They go up towards heaven, they go down to the depths of the abysses; their souls will melt in misery. 107:27 They will tremble, they will totter like a man drunk with wine; and all their wisdom is destroyed. 107:28 And they prayed in the presence of the Lord when it went ill with them, and he will bring them out of their troubles. 107:29 He will make the wind cease to quietness, and their waves will be silent. 107:30 And they rejoiced, for they are silent; and he led them to the harbor they desired. 107:31 They will give thanks in the presence of the Lord because of his kindness, and tell his wonders to the sons of men. 107:32 And they exalt him in the assembly of the people, the house of Israel; and in the Sanhedrin of the wise they will praise him. (EMC) The psalmist again speaks of the praises of the Lord, calling the misery of the people, where the exile is paralleled to going down to the deep, where the Lord raised up a mighty storm. It is interesting if we consider the time line on the history of Israel, Jonah lived around 790 BCE, whereas the Babylonian exile and Sennaherib was around 705 BCE. The events recorded in the book of Jonah was approximately 85 years prior to this time, and the psalmist calling upon the people going down to the deep, and the Lord commanding by His word to raise up the sea appears to be a parallel to the events of Jonah having gone down to the bottom of the sea in the belly of the fish. Note that the Jonah narrative has the prophet going to an ungodly and pagan people calling unto them to repent to the God of Israel from their wicked ways. This again is another example of the God of Israel holding all men on this earth to His standards of righteousness and justice. The author of the psalm may be contrasting this to the generation just prior to the exile of Israel to Babylon. The Aramaic Targum states explicitly that this is in reference to Jonah in Tehillim / Psalms 107:23. The winds and the sea are paralleled to the distress of the peoples (107:23-27) and it is interesting the parallel to the work of the Moshiach according to Tehillim / Psalms 107:28 Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, And He brought them out of their distresses. 107:29 He caused the storm to be still, So that the waves of the sea were hushed. 107:30 Then they were glad because they were quiet, So He guided them to their desired haven. (NASB) Note how Yeshua demonstrated these abilities, in the physical world, to deliver us from distress and to calm the sea, but also in the spiritual sense, to bring peace to our hearts and to calm our lives and make peace with one another. The image we are being given of the Lord God of Israel is of His mercy and His faithfulness to the covenant to bring His people back. The Lord is very merciful each day and is looking for a humble heart that desires to draw near to Him! It is because of these things, we give thanks unto the Lord God in heaven and in the way in which He shows us His mercy each day, just as the psalmist states, לב וִירֹמְמוּהוּ בִּקְהַל-עָם וּבְמוֹשַׁב זְקֵנִים יְהַלְלוּהוּ: לג יָשֵֹם נְהָרוֹת לְמִדְבָּר וּמֹצָאֵי מַיִם לְצִמָּאוֹן: לד אֶרֶץ פְּרִי לִמְלֵחָה מֵרָעַת ישְׁבֵי בָהּ: לה יָשֵֹם מִדְבָּר לַאֲגַם-מַיִם וְאֶרֶץ צִיָּה לְמֹצָאֵי מָיִם: לו וַיּוֹשֶׁב שָׁם רְעֵבִים וַיְכוֹנְנוּ עִיר מוֹשָׁב: לז וַיִּזְרָעוּ שָֹדוֹת וַיִּטְּעוּ כְרָמִים וַיַּעֲשֹוּ פְּרִי תְבוּאָה: לח וַיְבָרֲכֵם וַיִּרְבּוּ מְאֹד וּבְהֶמְתָּם לֹא יַמְעִיט: 107:32 Let them extol Him also in the congregation of the people, And praise Him at the seat of the elders. 107:33 He changes rivers into a wilderness And springs of water into a thirsty ground; 107:34 A fruitful land into a salt waste, Because of the wickedness of those who dwell in it. 107:35 He changes a wilderness into a pool of water And a dry land into springs of water; 107:36 And there He makes the hungry to dwell, So that they may establish an inhabited city, 107:37 And sow fields and plant vineyards, And gather a fruitful harvest. 107:38 Also He blesses them and they multiply greatly, And He does not let their cattle decrease. (NASB) Note that with God’s mercy comes His blessings in our lives for those who would obey His Word. The ungodly, those who disobey his commands, the wicked, we are told their ways turn “A fruitful land into a salt waste” (107:34) and the reason is because of the wickedness of those who dwell in the land. The righteous on the other hand the descriptions given in the Psalm are those of newness of life and even of resurrection in the sense that life comes from a deserted and dry (dead) land. The Lord says that He will cause springs of water to flow and the hungry will dwell in the land, plant fields and vineyards and the Lord will cause the land to produce much fruit and great prosperity will come to the people who walk in God’s ways! The Aramaic Targum states, לב ומרוממין יתיה בכנשת עמא בית ישראל ובסנהדרין דחכימיא ישבחון יתיה׃ לג על דרא דיואל בר פתואל אתנבי ואמר כד מרדו בית ישראל ביומי דיואל נבייא אייתי בצורתא בעלמא שווי נהרוותא היך מדברא ומפקנות מיא היך צהותא׃ לד ארעא דישראל דעבדא פירי צדא היך סדום דאתהפיכת מן בישות יתבין בה׃ לה כד תבו לאוריתא שוי מדברא היך אריתא דמיא וארע ציהייא צדיא למפקנות מיא׃ לו ואשרי תמן כפינים ואתקינו קרתא מייתבא׃ לז וזרעו חקלין ונציבו ונסיבו כרמיא ועבדו פרי אבא׃ לח ובריכינון ויסגון וסגו לחדא ובעיריהון לא יזעיר׃ 107:32 And they exalt him in the assembly of the people, the house of Israel; and in the Sanhedrin of the wise they will praise him. 107:33 Concerning the generation of Joel son of Pethuel he prophesied and said: “When the house of Israel rebelled in the days of Joel the prophet, he brought a drought into the world; he made the rivers like the desert, and the sources of water like thirst.” 107:34. The land of Israel that produces fruit became a waste like Sodom, which was overthrown because of the evil of its inhabitants. 107:35 When they returned to the Torah, he made the desert like a channel of water, and the parched land [became] sources of water. 107:36 And he made the hungry dwell there, and they set up an inhabited city. 107:37 And they sowed fields and planted vineyards, and they yielded fruit of produce. 107:38 And he blessed them and they multiplied greatly, and their livestock will not diminish. (EMC) The rabbis parallel these things to Joel the son of Pethuel, speaking of a prophetic message in which the Lord brought upon the land due to the peoples sins. The people were unrepentant, they did not seek to walk in God’s ways, they desired to walk in their own ways and as a result the land became a desert waste, like Sodom. Note that in both the MT and the Targum translations, the Scriptures say “And he made the hungry dwell there,” suggesting the Lord placed a hungry people in the land. Note this sounds similar to what is written in Parashat Pinchas, Devarim / Deuteronomy 28:48 therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the LORD will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in the lack of all things; and He will put an iron yoke on your neck until He has destroyed you. (NASB) From this Torah context, it sounds as if the Lord is describing the hunger, thirst, and nakedness as in personal possessions and sustenance. The Description in the Psalm states however that these people the Lord planted will plant fields and the land will produce fruit and sources of water will appear to water the land. This sounds like a description of righteous people. These people who are hungry sound to be in need for and desire the presence of the Lord and His Holy Words. The people are starving for the Lord’s word and His presence, similar to what Amos says in Amos 8:11 “Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord GOD, “When I will send a famine on the land, Not a famine for bread or a thirst for water, But rather for hearing the words of the LORD. (NASB) Do you thirst and hunger for the presence of God in your life? Do you hunger and thirst for His words?

The Psalm concludes saying, לט וַיִּמְעֲטוּ וַיָּשֹׁחוּ מֵעֹצֶר רָעָה וְיָגוֹן: מ שֹׁפֵךְ בּוּז עַל-נְדִיבִים וַיַּתְעֵם בְּתֹהוּ לֹא-דָרֶךְ: מא וַיְשַֹגֵּב אֶבְיוֹן מֵעוֹנִי וַיָּשֶֹם כַּצֹּאן מִשְׁפָּחוֹת: מב יִרְאוּ יְשָׁרִים וְיִשְֹמָחוּ וְכָל-עַוְלָה קָפְצָה פִּיהָ: מג מִי-חָכָם וְיִשְׁמָר-אֵלֶּה וְיִתְבּוֹנְנוּ חַסְדֵי יְהֹוָה: 107:39 When they are diminished and bowed down Through oppression, misery and sorrow, 107:40 He pours contempt upon princes And makes them wander in a pathless waste. 107:41 But He sets the needy securely on high away from affliction, And makes his families like a flock. 107:42 The upright see it and are glad; But all unrighteousness shuts its mouth. 107:43 Who is wise? Let him give heed to these things, And consider the lovingkindnesses of the Lord. (NASB) The psalmist contrasts the wicked to the righteous, the wicked oppress their fellow man, and the Lord causes them to wander on a wandering path not knowing who they are or where they are going. Their evil ways lead to greater and greater levels of wickedness. The righteous on the other hand, the Lord will set securely on high and He prospers them, and we are able to recognize the Lord’s hand in our lives, of His mercy (חסד). The Lord God in heaven is literally giving us reasons to praise His holy Name! How awesome is that? The Aramaic Targum states, לט וכד חבו אזערו ואתמסכנו מן אניק בישתא ודבונא׃ מ שדי בסרנותא על רברבניא ואטעיאונון ואתעינון בלמא דלא אורחא׃ מא וכד תבו לאוריתא שגיב חשוכא ממסכינותא ושוי היך עני גניסיא׃ מב יחמון תריציא ויחדון וכל ועל מרי שקרא שוורת פומה ואתחסמת׃ מג מן חכימא וינטור אילין ויתבוננון ויתביינון חסדייא דיהוה׃ 107:39 And when they sinned, they diminished and became poor because of the affliction of misery and pain. 107:40 He pours contempt on the leaders, and made them wander in a void without a path. 107:41 But when they returned to the Torah, he exalted the needy from poverty, and made [them] like the flocks of the well-born families. 107:42 The upright will see and rejoice, but every liar’s mouth is closed and sealed. 107:43 Would that the wise man keep these things, and discern the kindnesses of the Lord! (EMC) The Targum describes sin as leading to being poor, afflictions, misery, and pain. Sin causes one to wander aimlessly, and not be contented. Walking in His righteous ways, living one’s life according to the commandments, or at least being willing and seeking to live one’s life for the Lord will lead us back to the Lord. The Targum states this by saying “when they returned to the Torah, he exalted the needy from poverty, and made [them] like the flocks of the well-born families.” (107:41) This is what Paul meant when he said Philippians 1:21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. (NASB) or as he said in Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. (NASB) Those who have true faith, live by that faith which leads to a desire for obedience in our lives, to not sin, and to seek the Lord in heaven for help to overcome sin. This is also why the rabbis say that our limbs will bear testimony against us. If we have faith, then we will live by that faith. If we are not living our lives for the Lord, then our actions will bear testimony against us! It is within these things, seeing how the Lord is working in our lives that we give Him praise! Let’s Pray!

Rabbinic Commentary

The Rabbinic Commentary (Midrash) on Tehillim / Psalms 107 has 5 parts. Reading through the Midrash we will be looking at Part 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Let’s begin by outlining Midrash Tehillim Chapter 107, Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.

Outline of Midrash Tehillim / Psalms, Chapter 107, Part 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

Part 1

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “Oh give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever. So let the redeemed of the Lord say whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary (Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-2).”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Elsewhere this is what Scripture says, For My own sake, for My own sake, will I do it (Isaiah 48:11).
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis speak of the Lord delivering His people from the land of the adversary for His name’s sake.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal), the rabbis continue saying that if the Lord has redeemed you in this world, He will do so also in the world to come.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “This, Isaiah made explicit in saying, And the ransomed of the Lord will return and come with singing unto Zion (Isaiah 35:10). He did not say, the ransomed of Elijah, or the ransomed of the king Messiah, but the ransomed of the Lord. Even so, the Psalm speaks of The redeemed of the Lord.

Part 2

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “Another explanation of So let the redeemed of the Lord say, and Gathered them out of the lands, They wandered in the wilderness (Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-2, 4).”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Are these words praise of God?
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis discuss what it means for the Lord to gather his people.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal), the rabbis expand upon the mashal saying the Lord will always draw His people back.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “Though they wander from the path of righteousness, I will redeem them as I did in the wilderness, for it is said, O Israel, that in future ages will be saved by the Lord (Isaiah 45:17); and Scripture says also, The Lord will save the tents of Judah as of old (Zechariah 12:7). Hence it is said, The wandered in the wilderness.”

Part 3

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “A different exposition reads the verse literally, The redeemed of the Lord whom He has redeemed, will say.”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, One would expect Scripture to have said, The redeemed of the Lord, whom He will redeem, will say.”
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis discuss the meaning of the text on the way it is written.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal), saying that the word of the Lord is synonymous to the deed and that each person of faith can attest to that.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “The Holy One blessed be He, declares, When I say a thing, behold it is done. Therefore, when Scripture says, The redeemed of the Lord, etc. it is because He has already redeemed them.

Part 4

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “Another explanation of So let the redeemed of the Lord say, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary, and gathered them out of the lands (TEhillim / Psalms 107:2-3).”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Even as a bird is held fast in the hand of the hunter who, if he wishes, slays it, or if he wishes, lets it live, so Israel was held fast in the hand of the Egyptians…
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis parallel the hunter to the Egyptians.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal) on a discussion on what it meant for Israel to be in bondage in Egypt, and for the Lord to have delivered them and set them free..
  • The Concluding phrase says, “Now you are scattered in all the lands, but even as in the past I gathered you together, so in the time to come I will gather you, for it is said, It will come to pass in that day, that the Lord will set His hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people, And He will assemble the dispersed of Israel, and gather together the scattered of Judah from the four corners of the earth (Israel 11:11-12). Hence, it is said, and gathered them out of the lands.”

Part 5

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “They wandered in the wilderness (Tehillim / Psalms 107:4). ”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Yonder, in Babylon, we were taught, Four kinds of men are under particular obligation to give thanks to the Lord (i) they who wander in the wilderness, They wandered in the wilderness in a desert way, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:4,8).
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis open by defining the types of men who are able to give praise unto the Lord.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal) by explaining what they mean by only certain kinds of men are able to give praise.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “Rabbi Judah said, And all four are under obligation to give thanks in an assembly of ten men, as is said, Let them exalr Him also in the assembly of the people (Tehillim / Pslams 107:32). At least two of the ten should be scholars< for the verse goes on to say< and praise him in the sent of the elders.”

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 1 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “Oh give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever. So let the redeemed of the Lord say whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary (Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-2).” The homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Elsewhere this is what Scripture says, For My own sake, for My own sake, will I do it (Isaiah 48:11). ” The entire midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קז סימן א

א הודו לה׳ כי טוב כי לעולם חסדו יאמרו גאולי ה׳ אשר גאלם מיד צר. זהו שאמר הכתוב למעני למעני אעשה (ישעיה מח יא), למעני אעשה אינו אומר, אלא למעני למעני, אמר הקב״ה איני עושה אלא בשביל שמי שלא יתחלל, ולמה כתיב שתי פעמים למעני למעני, אמר הקב״ה בזמן שהייתם במצרים גאלתי אתכם בשביל שמי, גם באדום אעשה בשביל שמי, שנאמר ויושיעם למען שמו (תהלים קו ח), וכשם שגאלתי אתכם בעולם הזה, כך אני גואל אתכם לעולם הבא לכך נאמר למעני למעני שתי פעמים, ולמה, וכבודי לאחר לא אתן (ישעיה שם שם מ״ח י״א), אמר ר׳ הונא הכהן בר אבין הוא שמשה הוכיח את ישראל בסוף ארבעים שנה, וידעת היום כי [וגו׳] לא בצדקתך וביושר לבבך אתה בא לרשת וגו׳ (דברים ט ג ה), (כי) לא בצדקתך וביושר לבבך אתה בא לרשת את ארצם כי ברשעת הגוים הרי ג׳, אמר להם הקב״ה לא עשיתי בשביל אברהם יצחק ויעקב, ובשביל מה, בשביל שמי הגדול, אמר דוד הואיל ובשביל שמו הגדול הוא עושה, הודו לה׳ כי טוב, אמר ר׳ ברכיה בשם ר׳ חלבו בשם ר׳ שמואל מי אמר יאמרו גאולי ה׳, הוי אומר ישראל, וכן ישעיה מפרש ופדויי ה׳ ישובון (ישעיה לה י), ולא פדויי אליהו, ולא פדויי מלך המשיח, אלא פדויי ה׳, לכך נאמר גאולי ה׳.

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 1

1. Oh give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever. So let the redeemed of the Lord say whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary (Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-2). Elsewhere this is what Scripture says, For My own sake, for My own sake, will I do it (Isaiah 48:11). Scripture does not say, For My own sake will I do it. The Holy One blessed be He, said, I will do it for no reason other than that My name should not be profaned. But why is For my own sake said twice? Because the Holy One blessed be He said, Even as when you were in Egypt, I will save you for the sake of My name, as is said, Nevertheless, He saved them for His name’s sake (Tehillim / Psalms 106:8). And even as I redeemed you in this world, so I will redeem you in the world to come. Therefore, For My own sake is said twice, by which God meant, My glory will I not give to another (Isaiah 48:11). Rabbi Huna the Priest son of Abin said that at the end of the forty years Moshe admonished Israel, Know therefore this day, that the Lord your God is He that goes over before you, Not for your righteousness, or for the uprightness of your heart, does your righteousness, or for the uprightness of your heart, do you go in to possess their land; nor for the wickedness of these nations, Moshe meant that not for these three reasons did God permit Israel to possess the land. The Holy One blessed be He, said further, Nor have I done this for the sake of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. For whose sake then? For My great name’s sake, David said, Seeing what God does for His great name’s sake, O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever. Rabbi Berechiah said in the name of Rabbi Helbo who taught in the name of Rabbi Samuel, Who are meant for the redeemed in Let the redeemed of the Lord say (Tehillim / Psalms 107:2)? The people of Israel. This, Isaiah made explicit in saying, And the ransomed of the Lord will return and come with singing unto Zion (Isaiah 35:10). He did not say, the ransomed of Elijah, or the ransomed of the king Messiah, but the ransomed of the Lord. Even so, the Psalm speaks of The redeemed of the Lord.

The rabbis speak of the Lord redeeming His people from the hand of the adversary, and then support this with Scripture (Isaiah 48:11) that the Lord will redeem His people for no other reason than for His name sake, so that His name will not be profaned. (Isaiah 48:11 יא לְמַעֲנִי לְמַעֲנִי אֶעֱשֶֹה כִּי אֵיךְ יֵחָל וּכְבוֹדִי לְאַחֵר לֹא-אֶתֵּן: For My own sake, for My own sake, I will act; For how can My name be profaned? And My glory I will not give to another. NASB) There is a duality in the sense of redemption, a present day reality and a future expectation. The rabbis ask why is “for my own sake” (לְמַעֲנִי) repeated twice, and the reason given is related to the Lord’s deliverance from Egypt. The Egyptian enslavement was multifaceted in the sense that there was physical bondage by an enemy, and there was also a spiritual bondage that had taken place and the people needed deliverance from this as well. The parallel to Egypt and the Lord’s redemption is further explained as the Lord’s redemption in this world, and in the world to come. The rabbis say, “even as I redeemed you in this world, so I will redeem you in the world to come. Therefore, For My own sake is said twice, by which God meant, My glory will I not give to another (Isaiah 48:11).” Note that redemption is required for this world, from our enemies. The rabbis say that redemption is also needed for the Olam Haba (world to come). This may be related to what Yeshua the Messiah has done on our behalf laying down his life for ours. This may also be related to Parashat Vayishlach, Jacob calls upon the merit of his fathers Abraham and Isaac to protect himself from destruction by the hand of Esau. (Bereshit / Genesis 32:10-11) This is a concept which frequently occurs in the Rabbinic literature on the merits of others, which provides us with some insight into the meaning of redemption for the world to come. According to the Apostolic Writings, we are told to rely upon the merits of the Messiah (Christ, 1 Corinthians 15:22). In contrast to the rabbinic view that the Patriarchs had a great amount of merit for future generations; the Patriarchs in Genesis are generally not portrayed as righteous, i.e. Jacob is portrayed as a deceiver. The power of these Patriarchal narratives however lies within the fact that despite their shortcomings, the Lord God chose Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The rabbinic concept of merits has influenced our understanding of salvation as being found within the covenant of God which causes us to rely upon others due to our own short comings. Note though that reliance upon the covenant is not mentioned here in Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 1 in the sense that begin in the covenant does not necessitate having to worry about the world to come, it is a done deal. On the contrary, the question of “falling away” is of central importance, as it is related to remaining in the covenant of God. The rabbinic concept of relying upon the merits of others may be explained according to the words of the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim 1:5) which states, “it is good to say the passage about the Akeida.” He explains that the function of repeating a passage of Scripture is “to mention and remind heaven of the merits of the patriarchs.” He further states that this “also inspires us to subdue our base nature, to make it subservient to the Holy One blessed be He, so that we offer our entire being to Him, as Yitzchak did.” The concept here is that Isaac (Yitzchak) offered himself upon the altar (see Bereshit / Genesis 22, Isaac was believed to be old enough to resist his father) which is the source text for the belief in the merit of the Akeida. The Holy One swore an oath to Abraham, as it is written in Bereshit / Genesis 22:16-17, 22:16 and said, ‘By Myself I have sworn, declares the Lord, because you have done this thing and have not withheld your son, your only son, 22:17 indeed I will greatly bless you, and I will greatly multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies. (NASB) The idea here is related to the matter of the giving of one’s life to sanctify the Name of the Lord. Throughout history, rabbinic halachah has stated regarding selfless behavior, when the people of Israel went to their deaths willingly and happily in order to sanctify the Name of God, there was merit for the kingdom of heaven in the Olam Haba (world to come). This seems to fall in contradiction to the midrash which states, “even as I redeemed you in this world, so I will redeem you in the world to come.” These merits of righteousness are also what the Apostle Peter speaks of in his epistles, living and serving the Lord in the midst of persecution for the name of God, the name of the Messiah (Yeshua), and for righteousness sake. The rabbis speak of a Mishnaic principle or servants who work without reward (i.e. who work for their keep) are preferable to those who serve for a reward. (see the Mishnah Pirkei Avot 1:3) This is the principle that was illustrated in the prodigal Son narrative (Luke 15:19), compare the older son to the younger son and the events when the younger son returns. Coupled with this idea of relying upon the merit of others is whether earning merit is something that is a viable option as a part of our faith? This is illustrated in the laborer being worthy of his wages, as opposed to being given something without laying claim to having done this thing by himself. Our worthiness of merit being given on our behalf by another is based upon our faith in the one who did this for us and faith in the Lord God our Father in heaven. Relying upon the merits of others leads to the conclusion that it is possible to earn a reward as a result of someone else’s actions. This is related to the Lord redeeming His people in the sense of sending a redeemer for His people. The Lord sent Moshe to redeem His people from physical and spiritual slavery. In a similar manner, the Lord sent Yeshua the Messiah to redeem us from both physical and spiritual slavery as well. The Scriptures provide us with examples of relying upon the merit of others and not upon our own merits. In the case of Jacob, he had faith in the Lord God Almighty, relying wholly upon the merits of Him who is mighty to save. Do you rely upon Him who is mighty to save?

The rabbis discuss this topic of the merits and the unworthiness of our own merits according to Radak on Bereshit / Genesis 32:10 Part 1, Radak on Bereshit / Genesis 32:11 Part 1, Rashi on Bereshit 32:11 Part 1-3, Sforno on Bereshit / Genesis 32:11 Part 1, and Rashbam on Bereshit / Genesis 32:11 Part 2. Jacob had faith in the Lord God Almighty, relying wholly upon the merits of Him who is mighty to save. Just as the prophet Habakkuk stated in Habakkuk 2:4 But the righteous will live by his faith. (NASB, הִנֵּה עֻפְּלָה לֹא־יָשְׁרָה נַפְשֹׁו בֹּו וְצַדִּיק בֶּאֱמוּנָתֹו יִחְיֶֽה׃) The law of God is the absolute standard of perfection. Anyone who has tried to keep the Torah realizes the absolute necessity of relying upon the merit of others. This is the spirit of the law that Paul speaks of in relation to our faith in the Messiah and our Father in heaven. Our inability to keep the Torah should not deter us from striving to keep the Torah all of our lives and seeking the help of God to do so. This is why trusting in the merit of the Messiah is so important and this why all men, both Jew and Gentile must trust in the Merits of Yeshua in order to be saved! The redemption that is being spoken of as the midrash states, “even as I redeemed you in this world, so I will redeem you in the world to come,” speaks of the need for a redeemer, and the Lord sent His Messiah to do just that.

The midrash continues stating the very same thing, that it is not for our own righteousness the redemption of the Lord had been given by God.

Rabbi Huna the Priest son of Abin said that at the end of the forty years Moshe admonished Israel, Know therefore this day, that the Lord your God is He that goes over before you, Not for your righteousness, or for the uprightness of your heart, does your righteousness, or for the uprightness of your heart, do you go in to possess their land; nor for the wickedness of these nations, Moshe meant that not for these three reasons did God permit Israel to possess the land. The Holy One blessed be He, said further, Nor have I done this for the sake of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. For whose sake then? For My great name’s sake, David said, Seeing what God does for His great name’s sake, O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever. (Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 1)

Note that this redemption is on behalf and for the sake of the Name of God, for His glory! Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 1 concludes saying, “This, Isaiah made explicit in saying, And the ransomed of the Lord will return and come with singing unto Zion (Isaiah 35:10). He did not say, the ransomed of Elijah, or the ransomed of the king Messiah, but the ransomed of the Lord. Even so, the Psalm speaks of The redeemed of the Lord.” Interesting the midrash speaks of the ransom of the king Messiah, and of the ransom of the Lord. The perspective taken is that all things are in God’s hands. He is the one who brought His Messiah, and in essence, He is also the one who brought the ransom for His people. In all things ultimately the Lord is glorified, and this is the meaning of the midrash on the redemption of His people.

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 2 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “Another explanation of So let the redeemed of the Lord say, and Gathered them out of the lands, They wandered in the wilderness (Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-2, 4).” The homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Are these words praise of God?” The rabbis parallel the in-gathering of the people out of the lands of the nations to Israel to the wandering in the wilderness, asking if these are words of praise? The entire Midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קז סימן ב

ב דבר אחר יאמרו גאולי ה׳ ומארצות קבצם תעו במדבר. וזה קילוס הוא, אלא אמר הקב״ה אע״פ שתעו במדבר הרי קיבצם תעו במדבר אתמהא, אמר ר׳ יהודה בר שלום מהו אומר שתי פעמים שתי פסוקים למעלה, הושיענו (אלהי ישענו) [ה׳ אלהינו] וקבצנו (תהלים קו מז), ברוך ה׳ אלהי ישראל (שם שם תהלים ק״ו מח), אמר הקב״ה אף על פי שטעו אני גואלם, כמו שעשיתי במדבר, שנאמר ישראל נושע בה׳ תשועת עולמים (ישעיה מה יז), ואומר והושע ה׳ את אהלי יהודה (זכריה יב ז), הוי תעו במדבר.

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 2

2. Another explanation of So let the redeemed of the Lord say, and Gathered them out of the lands, They wandered in the wilderness (Tehillim / Psalms 107:1-2, 4). Are these words praise of God? Yes, said David, For though they wandered in the wilderness, God gathered them. But does wandered mean that they were lost in the wilderness? Rabbi Judah son of Shallum explained, In repeating the two verses from the previous Psalm, Save us, O Lord, our God, and gather us (Tehillim / Psalms 106:47), and Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel (Tehillim / Psalms 106:48) Scripture implies that the Holy One blessed be He, said, Though they wander from the path of righteousness, I will redeem them as I did in the wilderness, for it is said, O Israel, that in future ages will be saved by the Lord (Isaiah 45:17); and Scripture says also, The Lord will save the tents of Judah as of old (Zechariah 12:7). Hence it is said, They wandered in the wilderness.

The parallel the rabbis make in the midrash in regard to the in-gathering from the nations is to having been lost in the wilderness. What does it mean to be lost in the wilderness? Isaiah 45:17 states, “Though they wander from the path of righteousness, I will redeem them as I did in the wilderness, for it is said, O Israel, that in future ages will be saved by the Lord.” The prophet Zechariah states in Zechariah 12:7 ‘The Lord also will save the tents of Judah first, so that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem will not be magnified above Judah. (NASB) According to the prophet Isaiah and Zechariah, the wandering in the wilderness is synonymous to wandering from the path of righteousness. This is paralleled to being dispersed in the nations. Note how this is consistent with the Torah on Parashat Pinchas, the people were wandering and intermingling with the neighboring nations and joined themselves with Baal-Peor. They were even bringing women into the camp of God, performing great wickedness in the eyes of God. The apostle Paul wrote, “These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the fulfillment of the ages has come” (1 Corinthians10:11). And the according to the Apostolic Writings we read, “Who were they who heard and rebelled? Were they not all those Moses led out of Egypt? … And to whom did God swear that they would never enter his rest if not to those who disobeyed? So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.” (Hebrews 3:16, 3:18-19, NIV) The idea is obedience to the command brings rest to the soul when coupled with faith. The author of Hebrews continues saying, “Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith. Now we who have believed enter that rest.” (Hebrews 4:1-3, NIV) And, “Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.” (Hebrews 4:11, NIV) Note in the midrash, the rabbis believe “Scripture implies that the Holy One blessed be He, said, Though they wander from the path of righteousness, I will redeem them as I did in the wilderness, for it is said, O Israel, that in future ages will be saved by the Lord. (Isaiah 45:17)” Note how the Lord maintains his faithfulness to us and He seeks that we turn from our evil ways. The Lord offers us the opportunity for Teshuvah, this path is always upon to his throne. The children of Israel “turned back” when the road ahead looked difficult. The path ahead always looks difficult, and the people failed to obey God’s instructions and trust in his promises because of what they perceived to be true. Is there something in your life that you know God wants you to do, but you have not proceeded because of fear, or lack of faith. The Lord calls for us to humble ourselves before Him, to seek His ways of righteousness, justice, and truth, and to seek His help, and to “make every effort to enter that rest” that the Lord has promised. That is to trust in Him!

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 3 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “A different exposition reads the verse literally, The redeemed of the Lord whom He has redeemed, will say.” The homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “One would expect Scripture to have said, The redeemed of the Lord, whom He will redeem, will say.” The rabbis begin by looking at the way the sentences are written in the Scriptures. The entire Midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קז סימן ג

ג דבר אחר [יאמרו גאולי ה׳]. אשר גאלנו היה לו לומר, או אמרו גאולי ה׳ אשר גאלם, אמר ר׳ יהודה בר שלום יפה הוא אמר, למה שמאמרו של הקב״ה מעשה הוא, וממי את למד מאברהם, מה כתיב ביום ההוא כרת ה׳ את אברם ברית לאמר [לזרעך נתתי וגו׳] (בראשית טו יח), אתן אינו אומר, אלא נתתי, וכי בנים היו לו לאברהם כבר, והלא עד עכשיו לא הוליד, אלא מאמרו של הקב״ה הוא מעשה, אמר הקב״ה אמרתי דבר הרי מעשה נעשה אף כאן אומר גאולי ה׳ שכבר גאלם.

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 3

3. A different exposition reads the verse literally, The redeemed of the Lord whom He has redeemed, will say. One would expect Scripture to have said, The redeemed of the Lord, whom He will redeem, will say. One would expect Scripture to have said, The redeemed of the Lord, whom He has redeemed said. Rabbi Judah son of Shallum explained, Scripture puts it exactly. For the word of the Holy One blessed be He, is identical with the deed. And from whose live can one prove this? From Abraham’s. What is said of Abraham? In that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Into your seed have I given this land (Bereshit / Genesis 15:18). Scripture does not say, will give, but that I have given. But did Abraham already have sons? At that time he had not yet begotten a son. However, the word of the Holy One blessed be He, is identical with the deed. The Holy One blessed be He, declares, When I say a thing, behold it is done. Therefore, when Scripture says, The redeemed of the Lord, etc. it is because He has already redeemed them.

This is an interesting point the rabbis draw out saying, “A different exposition reads the verse literally, The redeemed of the Lord whom He has redeemed, will say. One would expect Scripture to have said, The redeemed of the Lord, whom He will redeem, will say,” based upon the Scripture from Tehillim / Psalms 107:2, ב יֹאמְרוּ גְּאוּלֵי יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר גְּאָלָם מִיַּד-צָר: 107:2 Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary. (NASB) The reason this is interesting is because the Scriptures suggest something the Lord has already performed, however His redemption is a future expectation leading to the phrase that “He will redeem.” It seems that redemption is a composition of two realities, a present day immediate thing to be grasped, that is coupled to a future expectation of redemption that is a part of our faith in the Lord! Rabbi Judah son of Shallum explained the reason for the way the MT is written is “the word of the Holy One blessed be He, is identical with the deed.” The conclusion is that when we read His word, and when we recite His word taking hold of the truths that are taught in the Scriptures, the word of God is identical to the deed He has performed and therefore we have what is written in His word and can expect with confidence the Lord will perform what He has promised! The rabbis parallel Abraham and the promises of God as a proof text in regard to his having sons and daughters. Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 3 concludes saying, “At that time he had not yet begotten a son. However, the word of the Holy One blessed be He, is identical with the deed. The Holy One blessed be He, declares, When I say a thing, behold it is done. Therefore, when Scripture says, The redeemed of the Lord, etc. it is because He has already redeemed them.” The conclusion the rabbis teach us is we can rely upon God’s word and trust that He will do what He has promised!

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 4 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “Another explanation of So let the redeemed of the Lord say, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary, and gathered them out of the lands (Tehillim / Psalms 107:2-3).” The homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Even as a bird is held fast in the hand of the hunter who, if he wishes, slays it, or if he wishes, lets it live, so Israel was held fast in the hand of the Egyptians…”

The entire midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קז סימן ד

ד דבר אחר יאמרו גאולי ה׳ אשר גאלם מיד צר ומארצות קבצם. כשם שהציפור הזה נתון ביד הצייד, אם מבקש המיתו, ואם מבקש חייהו, כך ישראל היו ביד מצרים משוקעים, שנאמר וארד להצילו מיד מצרים (שמות ג ח), וכן הוא אומר ויושע ה׳ ביום ההוא את ישראל מי מצרים (שם שמות יד ל), אמר ר׳ אבא בר כהנא בשם רבותינו כעובר שהוא נתון במעי הבהמה, וכשם שהרועה נותן ידו ושומטה ממעיה, כך עשה הקב״ה לישראל ממצרים להוציאם, שנאמר לבוא לקחת לו גוי מקרב גוי (דברים ד לד), אמר ר׳ אייבו בשם ר׳ יוסי בן זימרא כשם שהזהבי הזה פושט את ידו ונוטל הזהב מן הכור, כך הקב״ה הוציא את ישראל מיד מצרים, שנאמר ויוציא אתכם מכור הברזל ממצרים (שם שם דברים ד׳ כ), ]אמר הקב״ה לישראל כשהייתם במצרים הייתם מפוזרים[ וכנסתי אתכם לשעה קלה לרעמסס, ועכשיו אתם מפוזרים בכל הארצות וכשם שקבצתי אתכם לשעבר כך אני אקבץ אתכם לעתיד לבוא, שנאמר יוסיף ה׳ שנית ידו לקנות את שאר עמו ]וגו׳ ואסף נדחי ישראל ונפוצות יהודה יקבץ מארבע כנפות הארץ[ (ישעיה יא יא יב) לכך נאמר ומארצות קבצם.

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 4

4. Another explanation of So let the redeemed of the Lord say, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary, and gathered them out of the lands (Tehillim / Psalms 107:2-3). Even as a bird is held fast in the hand of the hunter who, if he wishes, slays it, or if he wishes, lets it live, so Israel was held fast in the hand of the Egyptians, as Scripture notes in saying, I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians (Shemot / Exodus 3:8); and also Thus the Lord saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians (Shemot / Exodus 14:30). Rabbi Abba son of Kahana taught in the name of our Masters, Israel was like a youngling held fast in the womb of its dam. And as the herdsman must insert his hand to draw the youngling out, as the Holy One blessed be He, had to do for Israel in order to bring it forth out of Egypt, as it is said, Or has God assayed to go and take Him a nation from the belly of another nation? (Devarim / Deuteronomy 4:34). Rabbi Aibu taught in the name of Rabbi Jose son of Zimra, As a gold smith reaches in with his hand and takes the gold out of the furnace, so the Holy One blessed be He, took Israel out of Egypt, as it is said, But you have the Lord taken and brought forth out of the iron furnace, out of Egypt. (Shemot / Exodus 4:20). The Holy One blessed be He, said to Israel, When you were in Egypt you were scattered, but within a brief hour I gathered you together in Rameses. Now you are scattered in all the lands, but even as in the past I gathered you together, so in the time to come I will gather you, for it is said, It will come to pass in that day, that the Lord will set His hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people, And He will assemble the dispersed of Israel, and gather together the scattered of Judah from the four corners of the earth (Israel 11:11-12). Hence, it is said, and gathered them out of the lands.

Based upon the Midrash, the rabbis said the Lord Himself came down from heaven to deliver His people from the hand of the Egyptians, out of slavery, and into freedom. The idea here is that redemption is synonymous to the Lord God of Israel moving from His position in heaven, to do something for His people, to set us free from bondage. When Moshe went before Pharaoh with the message saying, “let my people go,” he told Pharaoh that the Lord God of Israel was making a distinction (pedut) between Israel and the other nations. Shemot / Exodus 8:23, כג דֶּרֶךְ שְׁלֹשֶׁת יָמִים נֵלֵךְ בַּמִּדְבָּר וְזָבַחְנוּ לַיהוָֹה אֱלֹהֵינוּ כַּאֲשֶׁר יֹאמַר אֵלֵינוּ: 8:23 ‘I will put a division between My people and your people. Tomorrow this sign will occur.’’‘ (NASB) Note the distinction that was made during the first Pesach that occurred in the land of Egypt, this first Passover expressed a “redemption price” in the death of the first born of Egypt, of both man and beast (Shemot / Exodus 4:23, 12:29, Isaiah 43:3). As a result, the Exodus was to be commemorated by and through the consecration of the first born of Israel where all the first born of Israel were called to be priests in the sense of being responsible for offering sacrifices on behalf of their families (see Shemot / Exodus 13:2 and 12:12).

Shemot / Exodus 13:2

13:2 ‘Sanctify to Me every firstborn, the first offspring of every womb among the sons of Israel, both of man and beast; it belongs to Me.’ (NASB, ב קַדֶּשׁ-לִי כָל-בְּכוֹר פֶּטֶר כָּל-רֶחֶם בִּבְנֵי יִשְֹרָאֵל בָּאָדָם וּבַבְּהֵמָה לִי הוּא:)

Shemot / Exodus 13:12

13:12 you shall devote to the Lord the first offspring of every womb, and the first offspring of every beast that you own; the males belong to the Lord. (NASB, יב וְהַעֲבַרְתָּ כָל-פֶּטֶר-רֶחֶם לַיהוָֹה וְכָל-פֶּטֶר | שֶׁגֶר בְּהֵמָה אֲשֶׁר יִהְיֶה לְךָ הַזְּכָרִים לַיהוָֹה:)

Note the devotion of the first offspring to the Lord of every womb is a reminder of the mercy of the Lord to save His people and of His redemption. Note also the significance of Yeshua the Messiah being the first born son of Mary and Joseph, of the tribe of Judah. Within this context, Yeshua has a right to both the priestly and kingly positions. Yeshua’s parents brought him to the Temple in Jerusalem to fulfill the requirements of Pidyon Ha-ben (Luke 2:22-40). Yeshua brought to the Temple, a sacrifice was made on His behalf in order to redeem him before God according to the Torah. Based upon the story of redemption, there are two aspects of redemption, the lesser redemption is in reference to what occurs for the first born child at the Temple. The greater redemption (Pedut Olam, Everlasting Redemption) where the Lord God sent a ransom for His people in the sense of a redemption that is everlasting leading on into the Olam Haba. This redemption is the one that was performed by Yeshua Himself, the sacrifice of Yeshua upon the cross for our sins and to set us free from the bondage of sin.

The Midrash continues saying the following:

Rabbi Aibu taught in the name of Rabbi Jose son of Zimra, As a gold smith reaches in with his hand and takes the gold out of the furnace, so the Holy One blessed be He, took Israel out of Egypt, as it is said, But you have the Lord taken and brought forth out of the iron furnace, out of Egypt. (Shemot / Exodus 4:20). The Holy One blessed be He, said to Israel, When you were in Egypt you were scattered, but within a brief hour I gathered you together in Rameses. (Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 4)

Note how the Midrash states that the people who were in bondage in Egypt were also scattered. This provides us with a picture of a sort of wandering about as a result of sin and bondage. The people, though they were in Goshen, the Lord had taken them out of the iron furnace of Egypt, to set them free. He gathered them at Rameses, suggests that the Lord begins gathering His people yet while they are in their bondage, to draw them to Himself, and then to deliver with a mighty deliverance. Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 4 concludes saying, “Now you are scattered in all the lands, but even as in the past I gathered you together, so in the time to come I will gather you, for it is said, It will come to pass in that day, that the Lord will set His hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people, And He will assemble the dispersed of Israel, and gather together the scattered of Judah from the four corners of the earth (Israel 11:11-12). Hence, it is said, and gathered them out of the lands.” The in-gathering of the people is indicative of the Lord delivering His people from both the bondage of the body, and the bondage of the spirit to sin and idolatry. The nations coupled with the dispersion of Israel are synonymous to these things, being in bondage to others, not having freedom, and bondage to sin, and false practices. The Lord desires to call us back from the lie and bring us into His truth and righteousness. While we study the redemption of God in Exodus, we are given a future expectation of the redemption the Lord has provided through His Son Yeshua the Messiah!

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 5 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “They wandered in the wilderness (Tehillim / Psalms 107:4).” The homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Yonder, in Babylon, we were taught, Four kinds of men are under particular obligation to give thanks to the Lord (i) they who wander in the wilderness, They wandered in the wilderness in a desert way, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:4,8).” The entire midrash sates the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קז סימן ה

ה תעו במדבר. תמן תנינן ארבעה צריכין להודות, ואלו הן הולכי מדברות, מן הדא דכתיב תעו במדבר בישימון דרך וגו׳ יודו לה׳ חסדו, אף כאן דור המדבר דוגמא לכל הדורות. ומי שהיה בבית האסורין ויצא, מן הדא דכתיב יושבי חשך וצלמות [אסירי עני וברזל וגו׳], כי שיבר דלתות נחושת וגו׳ יודו לה׳ חסדו. ומי שחלה ונתרפא, מן הדא אוילים מדרך פשעם [וגו׳] ישלח דברו וירפאם, יודו לה׳ חסדו וגו׳ ויזבחו זבחי תודה, שזובחים יצר הרע לפני יצר הטוב. יורדי הים, מן הדא יורדי הים באניות [וגו׳] המה ראו מעשי ה׳ וגו׳ יודו לה׳ חסדו. אמר ר׳ יהודה וצריכים להתוודות בעשרה בצבור, שנאמר וירוממוהו בקהל עם, וצריכין להיות מהן שני תלמידי חכמים, שנאמר ובמושב זקנים יהללוהו.

Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 5

5. They wandered in the wilderness (Tehillim / Psalms 107:4). Yonder, in Babylon, we were taught, Four kinds of men are under particular obligation to give thanks to the Lord (i) they who wander in the wilderness, They wandered in the wilderness in a desert way, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:4,8). In this verse, the generation that wandered in the wilderness is an example to all the generations. (ii) He who was in a prison and is now free, Such as sat in the darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and iron, He has broken the gates of brass, and cut the bars of iron in sunder, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:10, 16, 21). (iii) He who was sorely ill is healed, Crazed because of the way their transgression, and afflicted because of their iniquities. He sent His word and healed them, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy, and Let them offer the sacrifices of thanksgiving (Tehillim / Psalms 107:17, 20-21), that is, let them make their inclination to evil a sacrificial offering to their inclination to good. (iv) They who go down to the sea, They that go down to the sea in ships, they saw the works of the Lord, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:23-24, 31). Rabbi Judah said, And all four are under obligation to give thanks in an assembly of ten men, as is said, Let them exalt Him also in the assembly of the people (Tehillim / Pslams 107:32). At least two of the ten should be scholars for the verse goes on to say and praise him in the sent of the elders

The rabbis say that the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness in a desert way. The Talmud Berackhot 54b describes this in the following way:

Talmud Berackhot 54b

Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy, and for His wonderful works to the children of men” (Ps. cvii. 23-31). הולכי מדברות מנלן דכתיב “They who journey in the desert” — whence have we this ? For it is written, תעו במדבר בישימון דרך עיר מושב לא מצאו ויצעקו אל ה’ וידריכם בדרך ישרה יודו לה’ חסדו “They wandered in the wilderness in a desert way ; they found no city of habitation…Then they cried unto the Lord… and He led them by a straight way… Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy” (ibid. vv. 4-8). מי שחלה ונתרפא דכתיב “The invalid who recovers” — whence have we this? For it is written, אוילים מדרך פשעם ומעונותיהם יתענו כל אוכל תתעב נפשם וגו’ ויזעקו אל ה’ בצר להם וגו’ ישלח דברו וירפאם וגו’ יודו לה’ חסדו “Crazed because of the way of their transgression, and afflicted because of their iniquities, their soul abhorred all manner of food… They cried unto the Lord in their trouble… He sent His word and healed them…Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy” (Ps. cvii. 17—21). מי שהיה חבוש בבית האסורין מנלן “The prisoner who has been set free” — whence have we this? דכתיב For it is written, יושבי חשך וצלמות וגו’ כי המרו אמרי אל וגו’ ואומר “Such as sat in darkness and in the shadow of death… because they rebelled against the words of God. ויכנע בעמל לבם וגו’ ואומר Therefore He humbled their heart with travail. ויזעקו אל ה’ בצר להם ואומר They cried unto the Lord in their trouble. יוציאם מחשך וצלמות וגו’ ואומר He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death. יודו לה’ חסדו Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy” (ibid. vv. 10-15).

The Talmud opens with giving thanks before God for what He has done to display his power before all peoples in His deliverance of Israel from Egypt. The way in which the Lord led them, this desert way, provides us with a description of a form of restricted walking. To live in a “desert” way draws in the context of the wantedness of the desert, a dry place where vew things grow. The idea here in the Talmud is that this desert way the Lord had lead the people in is said to be a “straight way” and so they are to give the Lord thanks for His mercy. This desert way is designed to humble the heart, to take away the pride of life, which the Lord then brnigs us out of darkness and the shadow of death into His light (righteousness) and truth, and we give Him the glory and the praise!

The midrash is divided into four sections to demonstrate the people’s obligation to give thanks unto the Lord:

  1. They who wander in the wilderness, They wandered in the wilderness in a desert way, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:4,8). In this verse, the generation that wandered in the wilderness is an example to all the generations.
  2. He who was in a prison and is now free, Such as sat in the darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and iron, He has broken the gates of brass, and cut the bars of iron in sunder, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:10, 16, 21).
  3. He who was sorely ill is healed, Crazed because of the way their transgression, and afflicted because of their iniquities. He sent His word and healed them, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy, and Let them offer the sacrifices of thanksgiving (Tehillim / Psalms 107:17, 20-21), that is, let them make their inclination to evil a sacrificial offering to their inclination to good.
  4. They who go down to the sea, They that go down to the sea in ships, they saw the works of the Lord, Let them give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy (Tehillim / Psalms 107:23-24, 31).

The rabbis say the four reasons for the people’s obligation to give thanks is related to the Lord showing this generation and all generations His mercy by not putting us instantly to death, for our having been put in prison and are not set free, and for the Lord’s healing power, His having healed us from illness that was due to our affliction. The concept is that the Yetzer Hara is to be made a sacrifice unto the Yetzer Hatov. Another reason to give praise is for the Lord working His power over the sea. Midrash Tehillim 107, Part 5 concludes saying, “Rabbi Judah said, And all four are under obligation to give thanks in an assembly of ten men, as is said, Let them exalt Him also in the assembly of the people (Tehillim / Pslams 107:32). At least two of the ten should be scholars for the verse goes on to say and praise him in the sent of the elders.” The rabbis speak of the requirement of a minyan (minimum of 10 men) to give thanks. The biblical source for the requirement of ten men to complete a minyan is from Bamidbar / Numbers 14:27. Moshe sent ten spies to scout the land of Canaan. Ten of them returned and issued a report concluding that the people in the land were too strong to overcome (conquer). The Lord God of Israel was extremely disappointed with their lack of faith in His abilities. He turns to Moses and Aaron, telling them: “How long will this evil ‘assembly’ provoke to complain against Me?” The concept is based upon this response from the ten that this “assembly” is comprised of ten men. Now, in Vayikra / Leviticus 22:32 the Lord God says, “I shall be sanctified amidst the children of Israel.” The rabbis use a method of biblical exegesis known as “gezerah shavah,” wherein two verses with identical terminology are compared to each other. This verse is matched up to another verse (Bamidbar / Numbers 16:21) whic states “Separate yourselves from amidst this assembly.” The gezerah shavah teaches us that an “assembly” must be present in order for the Lord God to be sanctified, where the example given are the ten men returning from Canaan. The ten are required for sanctifiation of God’s name, and represent all the people of Israel. Note the signifiance of the ten, the minyan of men not sanctifying the name unanimously. The result was a national fall into wandering in the wilderness. This is paralleled to a people who are lost, who do not know what they are doing, who sink in their sins, and wander due to their inability to discern the differences betwwen righteousness and wickedness. Examples of such sanctification are the recitation of the kaddish, the kedushah and the barchu in the public reading of the Torah. The conclusion is that we are a group of people, not individuals who worship and serve God alone. The Lord calls us to be a community for the purpose of supporting one another in prayer, financially, for mutual encouragement, and to praise His holy Name! Let’s Pray!

Tehillim 107-Part1-and-2

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Duane D. Miller received his Ph.D., M.S., and B.S. Degree in Chemical Engineering from The University of Akron Ohio. He is currently a Chemical Engineering Researcher. Duane’s research expertise has focused upon functional materials development for the control, conversion, and release of process gases in Energy production technologies. His R&D interests include computational chemistry, developing novel technologies for converting biomass to fuels and studying their fundamental interactions during the chemical conversion process. His past experience includes sorbent development for pre- and post-combustion CO2 and SO2 capture, selective absorption of H2S from methane streams, O2 capture for oxy-fuel combustion, photocatalytic reduction of alcohols, NOx reduction catalysis, the development of oxygen carriers to combust fossil fuels (CH4 and coal) for the chemical looping combustion processes, and the extraction of rare earth elements using patent pending sorbents. His research expertise has focused on operando-characterization using Infrared, Raman, and UV-Vis spectroscopy to observe the nature of the catalytic active sites and reaction intermediates under realistic reaction conditions, allowing direct correlation of molecular/electronic structures with catalyst performance during Gas-Solid / Liquid-Solid Adsorption and Photocatalytic Processes with real time online analysis of reaction products using ICP-MS and mass spectrometry. His current work involves a multi-disciplinary approach to developing, understanding, and improving the catalytic gasification of coal and methane, high temperature chemical looping combustion, and the catalytic decomposition and gasification of biomass and coal using novel microwave reactor.​ He has been studying the Hebrew Scriptures and the Torah for 20+ years and sharing what he has learned. The studies developed for MATSATI.COM are freely to be used by everyone, to God be the Glory!