Psalm 49:4
New International Version
I will turn my ear to a proverb; with the harp I will expound my riddle:

New Living Translation
I listen carefully to many proverbs and solve riddles with inspiration from a harp.

English Standard Version
I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will solve my riddle to the music of the lyre.

Berean Study Bible
I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will express my riddle with the harp:

New American Standard Bible
I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will express my riddle on the harp.

King James Bible
I will incline mine ear to a parable: I will open my dark saying upon the harp.

Christian Standard Bible
I turn my ear to a proverb; I explain my riddle with a lyre.

Contemporary English Version
I have in mind a mystery that I will explain while playing my harp.

Good News Translation
I will turn my attention to proverbs and explain their meaning as I play the harp.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I turn my ear to a proverb; I explain my riddle with a lyre.

International Standard Version
I will focus my attention on a proverb; I will use the harp to expound my riddle.

NET Bible
I will learn a song that imparts wisdom; I will then sing my insightful song to the accompaniment of a harp.

New Heart English Bible
I will incline my ear to a proverb. I will open my riddle on the harp.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
I shall turn my ears to parables and I shall speak my riddles with the harp.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I will turn my attention to a proverb. I will explain my riddle with the [music of] a lyre.

JPS Tanakh 1917
I will incline mine ear to a parable; I will open my dark saying upon the harp.

New American Standard 1977
I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will express my riddle on the harp.

Jubilee Bible 2000
I will incline mine ear to a parable; I will declare my enigma upon the harp.

King James 2000 Bible
I will incline my ear to a proverb: I will disclose my riddles upon the harp.

American King James Version
I will incline my ear to a parable: I will open my dark saying on the harp.

American Standard Version
I will incline mine ear to a parable: I will open my dark saying upon the harp.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
I will incline mine ear to a parable: I will open my riddle on the harp.

Douay-Rheims Bible
I will incline my ear to a parable; I will open my proposition on the psaltery.

Darby Bible Translation
I will incline mine ear to a parable, I will open my riddle upon the harp.

English Revised Version
I will incline mine ear to a parable: I will open my dark saying upon the harp.

Webster's Bible Translation
I will incline my ear to a parable: I will open my dark saying upon the harp.

World English Bible
I will incline my ear to a proverb. I will open my riddle on the harp.

Young's Literal Translation
I incline to a simile mine ear, I open with a harp my riddle:
Study Bible
The Evanescence of Wealth
3My mouth will impart wisdom, and the meditation of my heart will bring understanding. 4I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will express my riddle with the harp: 5Why should I fear in times of trouble, when wicked usurpers surround me?…
Cross References
Numbers 12:8
I speak with him face to face, clearly and not in riddles; he sees the form of the LORD. Why then were you unafraid to speak against My servant Moses?"

1 Kings 10:1
Now when the queen of Sheba heard about the fame of Solomon concerning the name of the LORD, she came to test him with difficult questions.

2 Kings 3:15
But now, bring me a harpist." And while the harpist played, the hand of the LORD came upon Elisha

Psalm 43:4
Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my greatest joy. I will praise You with the harp, O God, my God.

Psalm 78:2
I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things hidden from of old,

Proverbs 1:6
to understand the proverbs and parables, the sayings and riddles of the wise.

Treasury of Scripture

I will incline my ear to a parable: I will open my dark saying on the harp.

incline

Psalm 78:2
I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old:

Matthew 13:35
That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world.

parable

Numbers 23:7
And he took up his parable, and said, Balak the king of Moab hath brought me from Aram, out of the mountains of the east, saying, Come, curse me Jacob, and come, defy Israel.

Ezekiel 20:49
Then said I, Ah Lord GOD! they say of me, Doth he not speak parables?

Matthew 13:11-15
He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given…

dark

Proverbs 1:6
To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.

Daniel 8:23
And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.

Luke 12:3
Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.







Lexicon
I will incline
אַטֶּ֣ה (’aṭ·ṭeh)
Verb - Hifil - Imperfect - first person common singular
Strong's Hebrew 5186: To stretch out, spread out, extend, incline, bend

my ear
אָזְנִ֑י (’ā·zə·nî)
Noun - feminine singular construct | first person common singular
Strong's Hebrew 241: Broadness, the ear

to a proverb;
לְמָשָׁ֣ל (lə·mā·šāl)
Preposition-l | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 4912: A pithy maxim, a simile

I will express
אֶפְתַּ֥ח (’ep̄·taḥ)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - first person common singular
Strong's Hebrew 6605: To open wide, to loosen, begin, plough, carve

my riddle
חִידָתִֽי׃ (ḥî·ḏā·ṯî)
Noun - feminine singular construct | first person common singular
Strong's Hebrew 2420: A riddle, an enigmatic, perplexing saying or question

with the harp:
בְּ֝כִנּ֗וֹר (bə·ḵin·nō·wr)
Preposition-b | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3658: A harp
(4) I will incline mine ear.--The psalmist first listens, that he may himself catch the inspiration which is to reach others through his song. It was an obvious metaphor in a nation to whom God's voice was audible, as it was to Wordsworth, for whom nature had an audible voice:

"The stars of midnight shall be dear

To her; and she shall lend her ear

In many a secret place,

Where rivulets dance their wayward round,

And beauty, born of murmuring sound,

Shall pass into her face."

Parable.--Heb. m?shal, root idea, similitude. It is the term used of Balaam's prophecies, and of the eloquent speeches of Job. Hence here proverb-song (Ewald), since the psalmist intends his composition for musical accompaniment.

Dark saying.--Either from a root meaning to tie, and so "a knotty point;" or to sharpen, and so a sharp, incisive saying. The LXX. and Vulgate have "problem," "proposition."

To open the riddle is not to solve it, but to propound it, as we say to "open a discourse." (Comp. St. Paul's phrase, "opening and alleging.") The full phrase is probably found in Proverbs 31:26, "She openeth her mouth with wisdom.'"

Verse 4. - I will incline mine ear to a parable. The psalmist is "like a minstrel who has to play a piece of music put into his hands. The strain is none of his own devising; and as he proceeds, each note awakes in him a mysterious echo, which he would fain catch and retain in memory" (Kay). A "parable" in the Old Testament means any enigmatical or dark saying, into which much metaphor or imagery is introduced, so that it is only φωνᾶν συνετοῖσι. I will open my dark saying upon the harp; i.e. with a harp accompaniment. Music was a help to inspired persons in the delivery of messages which they were commissioned to deliver (see 1 Samuel 10:5; 2 Kings 3:15). 49:1-5 We seldom meet with a more solemn introduction: there is no truth of greater importance. Let all hear this with application to ourselves. The poor are in danger from undue desire toward the wealth of the world, as rich people from undue delight in it. The psalmist begins with applying it to himself, and that is the right method in which to treat of Divine things. Before he sets down the folly of carnal security, he lays down, from his own experience, the benefit and comfort of a holy, gracious security, which they enjoy who trust in God, and not in their worldly wealth. In the day of judgment, the iniquity of our heels, or of our steps, our past sins, will compass us. In those days, worldly, wicked people will be afraid; but wherefore should a man fear death who has God with him?
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