4. My soul is among lions;1 and I lie even among them that are set on fire,2 even the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword. 5. Exalt thyself, O God: above the heavens: let thy glory be above all the earth. 6. They have prepared a net for my steps; my soul is bowed down: they have digged a pit before me, into the midst whereof they are fallen themselves.
To him we find David appealing in the words that follow,
1 "Mudge translates literally, 'I lie with my soul amidst lionesses.'" -- Arch. Secker. This agrees with the opinion of Bochart, who thinks that the animals here intended are lionesses, properly when giving suck to their young, a time when they are peculiarly fierce and dangerous. "Nor need we wonder," he observes, "that the lioness is reckoned among the fiercest lions; for the lioness equals, or even exceeds, the lion in strength and fierceness;" and this he proves from the testimonies of ancient writers.
2 Fry reads, "I lay down among children of men, who are flaming fire, or breathing flames." Ainsworth reads, "I lie among inflamers;" "meaning," says he, "fiery, fierce, and raging persons, that flamed with wrath and envy, and inflamed others. Of such David did complain to Saul, 1 Samuel. 24:40." French and Skinner read, "men of fiery spirit; and observe, that the Hebrew is flaming sons of men, i.e., violent men urging on my destruction." Mant observes, that it may either be "persons set on fire, that is, with rage and malice; or, perhaps, setters on fire, kindlers of mischief, incendiaries."