Psalm 129:1
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
“Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth”— let Israel now say—

King James Bible
A Song of degrees. Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth, may Israel now say:

American Standard Version
Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth up, Let Israel now say,

Douay-Rheims Bible
Often have they fought against me from my youth, let Israel now say.

English Revised Version
A Song of Ascents. Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth up, let Israel now say;

Webster's Bible Translation
A Song of degrees. Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth, may Israel now say:

Psalm 129:1 Parallel
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The כּי in Psalm 128:2 signifies neither "for" (Aquila, κόπον τῶν ταρσῶν σου ὅτι φάγεσαι), nor "when" (Symmachus, κόπον χειρῶν σου ἐωθίων); it is the directly affirmative כּי, which is sometimes thus placed after other words in a clause (Psalm 118:10-12, Genesis 18:20; Genesis 41:32). The proof in favour of this asseverating כּי is the very usual כּי עתּה in the apodoses of hypothetical protases, or even כּי־אז in Job 11:15, or also only כּי in Isaiah 7:9, 1 Samuel 14:39; "surely then;" the transition from the confirmative to the affirmative signification is evident from Psalm 128:4 of the Psalm before us. To support one's self by one's own labour is a duty which even a Paul did not wish to avoid (Acts 20:34), and so it is a great good fortune (טוב לך as in Psalm 119:71) to eat the produce of the labour of one's own hands (lxx , τοὺς καρποὺς τῶν πόνων, or according to an original reading, τοὺς πὸνους τῶν καρπῶν);

(Note: The fact that the τῶν καρπῶν of the lxx here, as in Proverbs 31:20, is intended to refer to the hands is noted by Theodoret and also by Didymus (in Rosenmuller): καρποὺς φησὶνῦν ὡς ἀπὸ μέρους τὰς χεῖρας (i.e., per synecdochen partis pro toto), τουτέστι τῶν πρακτικῶν σου δυνάμεων φάγεσαι τοὺς πόνους.)

For he who can make himself useful to others and still is also independent of them, he eats the bread of blessing which God gives, which is sweeter than the bread of charity which men give. In close connection with this is the prosperity of a house that is at peace and contented within itself, of an amiable and tranquil and hopeful (rich in hope) family life. "Thy wife (אשׁתּך, found only here, for אשׁתּך) is as a fruit-producing vine." פּריּה for פּרה, from פּרה equals פּרי, with the Jod of the root retained, like בוכיּה, Lamentations 1:16. The figure of the vine is admirably suited to the wife, who is a shoot or sprig of the husband, and stands in need of the man's support as the vine needs a stick or the wall of a house (pergula). בּירכּתי ביתך does not belong to the figure, as Kimchi is of opinion, who thinks of a vine starting out of the room and climbing up in the open air outside. What is meant is the angle, corner, or nook (ירכּתי, in relation to things and artificial, equivalent to the natural ירכי), i.e., the background, the privacy of the house, where the housewife, who is not to be seen much out of doors, leads a quiet life, entirely devoted to the happiness of her husband and her family. The children springing from such a nobel vine, planted around the family table, are like olive shoots or cuttings; cf. in Euripides, Medea, 1098: τέκνων ἐν οἴκοις γλυκερὸν βλάστημα, and Herc. Fur. 839: καλλίπαις στέφανος. thus fresh as young layered small olive-trees and thus promising are they.

Psalm 129:1 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge


3470. B.C.

534. A song of degrees. This Psalm was most probably composed in consequence of the opposition of the Samaritans.

Ezra 4:1 Now when the adversaries of Judah and Benjamin heard that the children of the captivity built the temple to the LORD God of Israel;

Psalm 120:1 In my distress I cried to the LORD, and he heard me.

Psalm 121:1 I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from where comes my help.

Psalm 122:1 I was glad when they said to me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.

Psalm 123:1 To you lift I up my eyes, O you that dwell in the heavens.

Psalm 124:1 If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, now may Israel say;

Psalm 125:1 They that trust in the LORD shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but stays for ever.

Psalm 126:1 When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.

Psalm 127:1 Except the LORD build the house, they labor in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman wakes but in vain.

Psalm 128:1 Blessed is every one that fears the LORD; that walks in his ways.

many. or, much
have they

Exodus 1:12-14,22 But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel...

Exodus 5:7-19 You shall no more give the people straw to make brick, as heretofore: let them go and gather straw for themselves...

Judges 2:15 Wherever they went out, the hand of the LORD was against them for evil, as the LORD had said, and as the LORD had sworn to them...

Judges 10:8-12 And that year they vexed and oppressed the children of Israel: eighteen years...

1 Samuel 13:19 Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel: for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

Lamentations 1:3 Judah is gone into captivity because of affliction, and because of great servitude: she dwells among the heathen, she finds no rest...


Jeremiah 2:2 Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus said the LORD; I remember you, the kindness of your youth, the love of your espousals...

Ezekiel 23:3 And they committed prostitutions in Egypt; they committed prostitutions in their youth: there were their breasts pressed...

Hosea 2:15 And I will give her her vineyards from there, and the valley of Achor for a door of hope: and she shall sing there...

Hosea 11:1 When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt.


Psalm 124:1 If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, now may Israel say;

Cross References
Exodus 1:11
Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with heavy burdens. They built for Pharaoh store cities, Pithom and Raamses.

Judges 3:8
Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia. And the people of Israel served Cushan-rishathaim eight years.

Psalm 88:15
Afflicted and close to death from my youth up, I suffer your terrors; I am helpless.

Psalm 124:1
If it had not been the LORD who was on our side-- let Israel now say--

Isaiah 47:12
Stand fast in your enchantments and your many sorceries, with which you have labored from your youth; perhaps you may be able to succeed; perhaps you may inspire terror.

Jeremiah 2:2
"Go and proclaim in the hearing of Jerusalem, Thus says the LORD, "I remember the devotion of your youth, your love as a bride, how you followed me in the wilderness, in a land not sown.

Jeremiah 22:21
I spoke to you in your prosperity, but you said, 'I will not listen.' This has been your way from your youth, that you have not obeyed my voice.

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