19 or 30?
Terrien's Chiasm or Mine?

Saturday, May 10, 2008



Enough is enough, I feel I have spent too much time moaning and groaning over my Logos paper. I have done what I can and I must let it rest. Just a few more footnotes to complete and I shall let it be. So there!

I am running short of time for my other 2 (and 1 more if I decide to do it) papers, one of which would require an exegesis of a psalm. The choices are between 19, 30 and 42. I have done one with Psalm 42 before, under a different module. Now, I cannot submit the same assignment even if the lecturer were different; what more in this case the lecturer is the one and only Reb.

Therefore, it will be a choice then between the other two. Psalm 19 is interesting, with it being a Wisdom or Torah Psalm. But Psalm 30 is a chiastic one; though the chiasm that I just worked out a moment ago does not coincide with Terrien's.

That itself count as a challenge.

Terrien's chiasm of Psalm 30 goes like this, with his own translation:

Strophe I
I exalt thee, O Lord, for thou didst lift me up,
And thou hast nor allowed my foes to rejoice over me!

   O Lord, thou art my God!
   I cried unto thee, and thou didst heal me!

      O Lord, thou hast brought up my soul from the grave
      Thou hast kept me, alive, from descending to the Pit!

         Sing to the Lord, ye his beloved ones;
         Celebrate him in praise, remembering his holiness!

            For his wrath last a moment, his favour a lifetime;
            The evening has tears, the morning cries for joy!

         As for me, I said in my days of ease,
         Never shall I vacillate and stumble.

      O Lord in thy grace thou hast caused me
       to stand on solid heights;
      But when thou didst hide thy face, I was in trouble.

   I cried to thee, O Lord! And my Sovereign
   I implored for grace

What gain for thee in my blood spilling,
 or my going down to the Pit?
Would dust praise thee or declare thy truth?

Strophe II
Hear O Lord, and have mercy on me!
O Lord be thou my helper!

   Thou didst turn for me mourning into a dance,
   Untied my sackcloth and girded me with joy;

So that my heart might sing for thee and not be mute;
O Lord, my God! I shall praise thee forever!


And mine went like this:

I will extol You, O LORD,
for You have lifted me up,

   And have not let my enemies rejoice over me.

      O LORD my God, I cried to You for help,
       and You healed me.

         O LORD, You have brought up my soul from Sheol;

            You have kept me alive,
            that I would not go down to the pit.

               Sing praise to the LORD, you His godly ones,
               And give thanks to His holy name.

                  For His anger is but for a moment,
                  His favor is for a lifetime;

                     Weeping may last for the night,
                     But a shout of joy comes in the morning.
                     Now as for me, I said in my prosperity,
                     "I will never be moved."

                  O LORD, by Your favor You have
                   made my mountain to stand strong;
                  You hid Your face, I was dismayed.

               To You, O LORD, I called,
               And to the Lord I made supplication:

            "What profit is there in my blood,
            if I go down to the pit?

         Will the dust praise You?
         Will it declare Your faithfulness?

      "Hear, O LORD, and be gracious to me;
       O LORD, be my helper."
      You have turned for me my mourning into dancing;

   You have loosed my sackcloth and girded me with gladness,

That my soul may sing praise to You and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever.

Well, at least Terrien's one kept to a standard length in each section whereas mine is quite uneven.

pearlie
Photo © 2007 Julia Freeman-Woolpert

Samuel Terrien, The Psalms, Strophic Structure and Theological Commentary, (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003): 280.

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