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Psalm 124

Thanksgiving for Israel’s Deliverance

A Song of Ascents. Of David.


If it had not been the Lord who was on our side

—let Israel now say—


if it had not been the Lord who was on our side,

when our enemies attacked us,


then they would have swallowed us up alive,

when their anger was kindled against us;


then the flood would have swept us away,

the torrent would have gone over us;


then over us would have gone

the raging waters.



Blessed be the Lord,

who has not given us

as prey to their teeth.


We have escaped like a bird

from the snare of the fowlers;

the snare is broken,

and we have escaped.



Our help is in the name of the Lord,

who made heaven and earth.

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Ps 124:1-8. The writer, for the Church, praises God for past, and expresses trust for future, deliverance from foes.

1, 2. on our side—for us (Ps 56:9).

now—or, "oh! let Israel"

2. rose … against, &c.—(Ps 3:1; 56:11).

3. Then—that is, the time of our danger.

quick—literally, "living" (Nu 16:32, 33), description of ferocity.

4, 5. (Compare Ps 18:4, 16).

5. The epithet proud added to waters denotes insolent enemies.

6, 7. The figure is changed to that of a rapacious wild beast (Ps 3:7), and then of a fowler (Ps 91:3), and complete escape is denoted by breaking the net.

8. (Compare Ps 121:2).

name—in the usual sense (Ps 5:11; 20:1). He thus places over against the great danger the omnipotent God, and drowns, as it were in an anthem, the wickedness of the whole world and of hell, just as a great fire consumes a little drop of water [Luther].