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Mizmor 009 - Against the Odds

(א) לַמְנַצֵּחַ עַל־מוּת לַבֵּן מִזְמוֹר לְדָוִד:
(1) For the musician, a mizmor by David on the death of Laben.
NOTE: For a PDF of this mizmor, please click here. This will enable you to print out the entire text of the article. [Rev. 8]
Key Concepts of Mizmor 009 - Against the Odds
This mizmor begins with a song of gratitude to Hashem for having granted the B’nei Yisrael a miraculous victory over a powerful enemy. The victory was not by force of arms but through the clear hand of Hashem as evidenced by David’s personal encounter with the champion of the Plishtim. David draws a lesson from these events, a reminder that despite the apparent strength of our enemies, Hashem will always see to it that justice prevails. He will never abandon us.
Historical Background
The mizmor speaks of a time when the Plishtim mounted a major offensive against the Jewish nation under King Shaul. The two armies faced each other across a valley but the Plishtim were emboldened by a gigantic, heavily armed warrior named Golias. Golias stepped forward into the open space between the two camps and challenged the Jewish forces to send a champion to face him in man-to-man combat. He taunted the Jews, but Shaul could find no one who was not terrified by the thought of facing such a seemingly invincible fighter.
David, who was still a young lad, volunteered for the mission, citing his experience as a shepherd in fending off wild animals that threatened the sheep. Since there was no one else, Shaul accepted his offer. David then went forward and responded to the scathing remarks of Golias by invoking the Name of Hashem.
David was essentially unarmed, but he had bitachon that Hashem would help him, despite the unfair odds. He had previously been anointed by the prophet Shmuel and had experienced the holy spirit (ruach hakodesh) as a result of that encounter. This gave him the sense of Divine mission that he needed to face a ruthless adversary.
He then used his shepherd’s slingshot to aim a stone at the forehead of his adversary. Miraculously, the stone entered a crevice in the giant’s armor and struck him in the forehead, killing him instantly.
David then took the sword of Golias and cut off his head. This sight so unnerved the Plishti army that they fled the field of battle. By the same token the men of Yisrael were so encouraged by these events that they took up arms and pursued the fleeing Plishtim, thereby achieving a great victory.(See I Shmuel 17.)
Navigating Tehillim. This mizmor marks a transition between David’s life as a shepherd and his role as a heroic figure and leader. However, David never forgot his humble beginnings as shepherd to his father’s flocks, as we see in Mizmor 023 (A Shepherd’s Tale).
Exploring the Mizmor
PART 1. A SONG OF GRATITUDE. The mizmor begins with a song of gratitude to Hashem for having granted Yisrael a miraculous victory over the Plishtim.
(א) לַמְנַצֵּחַ עַל־מוּת לַבֵּן מִזְמוֹר לְדָוִד: (ב) אוֹדֶה ה' בְּכָל לִבִּי אֲסַפְּרָה כָּל נִפְלְאוֹתֶיךָ: (ג) אֶשְׂמְחָה וְאֶעֶלְצָה בָךְ אֲזַמְּרָה שִׁמְךָ עֶלְיוֹן: (ד) בְּשׁוּב אוֹיְבַי אָחוֹר יִכָּשְׁלוּ וְיֹאבְדוּ מִפָּנֶיךָ: (ה) כִּי עָשִׂיתָ מִשְׁפָּטִי וְדִינִי יָשַׁבְתָּ לְכִסֵּא שׁוֹפֵט צֶדֶק: (ו) גָּעַרְתָּ גוֹיִם אִבַּדְתָּ רָשָׁע שְׁמָם מָחִיתָ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד:
(1) For the musician, a mizmor by David on the death of Laben. (2) I will thank [You] Hashem with all my heart. I will proclaim all of Your wondrous deeds. (3) I will rejoice and exult in You. I will sing praise to Your Name, Most High. (4) When my enemies retreat, they stumble and perish from Your presence, (5) for You carried out my judgment and my cause. You sat on [Your] throne, O righteous Judge. (6) You rebuked peoples and You doomed the rasha (wicked man). You blotted out their name for all eternity.
PART 2. REBUKE TO THE PLISHTIM. The singer now addresses Yisrael’s enemies and symbolically rebukes them for the suffering they have caused. He tells them that their cause is hopeless, for Hashem will always come to the aid of the downtrodden.
(ז) הָאוֹיֵב תַּמּוּ חֳרָבוֹת לָנֶצַח וְעָרִים נָתַשְׁתָּ אָבַד זִכְרָם הֵמָּה: (ח) וַה' לְעוֹלָם יֵשֵׁב כּוֹנֵן לַמִּשְׁפָּט כִּסְאוֹ: (ט) וְהוּא יִשְׁפֹּט תֵּבֵל בְּצֶדֶק יָדִין לְאֻמִּים בְּמֵישָׁרִים: (י) וִיהִי ה' מִשְׂגָּב לַדָּךְ מִשְׂגָּב לְעִתּוֹת בַּצָּרָה:
(7) [You,] the enemy, [are] finished, [like the] permanent ruins and the cities You uprooted, their every remembrance perished. (8) Hashem is enthroned forever. He has established His throne for justice. (9) And He judges the world with righteousness. He judges the nations in fairness. (10) Hashem will be a tower of strength for the downtrodden, a tower of strength in times of distress.
PART 3. LET YISRAEL ACKNOWLEDGE HASHEM. At this point the singer speaks again to Hashem, expressing his confidence that the Jewish people will surely be inspired by the great victory. He immediately turns to the people and calls upon them to join him in singing the praises of Hashem.
(יא) וְיִבְטְחוּ בְךָ יוֹדְעֵי שְׁמֶךָ כִּי לֹא עָזַבְתָּ דֹרְשֶׁיךָ ה': (יב) זַמְּרוּ לַה' יֹשֵׁב צִיּוֹן הַגִּידוּ בָעַמִּים עֲלִילוֹתָיו: (יג) כִּי דֹרֵשׁ דָּמִים אוֹתָם זָכָר לֹא שָׁכַח צַעֲקַת עֲנָוִים:
(11) Hashem, those who know Your Name will trust in You for You do not forsake those who seek You.
(12) [O Yisrael!] sing in praise to Hashem, He dwells in Tzion. Proclaim His deeds among nations. (13) For He Who avenges the blood of the many peoples that were victimized by oppressors has remembered them.
PART 4. TEFILLAH FOR THE FUTURE. David then offers a tefillah to Hashem, asking Him to continue supporting the nation in the future challenges and difficulties which he knows will come. He follows the prayer by visualizing the song of gratitude that such events will call forth (part 5).
(יד) חָנְנֵנִי ה' רְאֵה עָנְיִי מִשֹּׂנְאָי מְרוֹמְמִי מִשַּׁעֲרֵי מָוֶת: (טו) לְמַעַן אֲסַפְּרָה כָּל תְּהִלָּתֶיךָ בְּשַׁעֲרֵי בַת צִיּוֹן אָגִילָה בִּישׁוּעָתֶךָ:
(14) Hashem, Have mercy on me. See my anxiety because of my foes, You Who have raised me from the gates of death, (15) so that I can proclaim all of Your praises at the gates of the daughter of Tzion. I will then rejoice in Your salvation.
PART 5. A FUTURE SONG OF GRATITUDE. In his anticipated song of gratitude, David describes how Hashem has arranged for the wicked to bring about their own destruction. And with that destruction, those who have been victimized will be released from oppression.
(טז) טָבְעוּ גוֹיִם בְּשַׁחַת עָשׂוּ בְּרֶשֶׁת זוּ טָמָנוּ נִלְכְּדָה רַגְלָם: (יז) נוֹדַע ה' מִשְׁפָּט עָשָׂה בְּפֹעַל כַּפָּיו נוֹקֵשׁ רָשָׁע הִגָּיוֹן סֶלָה: (יח) יָשׁוּבוּ רְשָׁעִים לִשְׁאוֹלָה כָּל גּוֹיִם שְׁכֵחֵי אֱלֹקִים: (יט) כִּי לֹא לָנֶצַח יִשָּׁכַח אֶבְיוֹן תִּקְוַת עֲנִיִּים תֹּאבַד לָעַד:
(16) The peoples have become mired in the pit which they made. Their foot is caught in the very trap which they hid. (17) Hashem has become known. He executed judgment. The rasha was caught by his very own handiwork, [which is] always worth reflecting upon. (18) Let all the resha’im return to the grave — all the peoples that forget G-d. (19) For the needy will not be forgotten forever nor will the hope of the downtodden poor forever vanish.
PART 6. A RENEWED PLEA FOR YESHUAH. David concludes the mizmor with a special tefillah for Hashem to take immediate action and not tolerate the arrogance of evil men like Golias in the future.
(כ) קוּמָה ה', אַל יָעֹז אֱנוֹשׁ, יִשָּׁפְטוּ גוֹיִם עַל פָּנֶיךָ: (כא) שִׁיתָה ה' מוֹרָה לָהֶם, יֵדְעוּ גוֹיִם אֱנוֹשׁ הֵמָּה סֶּלָה:
(20) Arise, Hashem. Let not mortal man be presumptous. Let the peoples be judged in Your presence. (21) Hashem, put [Your] fear upon them. Let the peoples know that they are mortal men.Selah.
Learning the Mizmor
PART 1: SONG OF GRATITUDE.
(א) לַמְנַצֵּחַ עַל־מוּת לַבֵּן 
מִזְמוֹר לְדָוִד:
A song for the musician  לַמְנַצֵּחַ , who will perform it. It is a mizmor composed by David — מִזְמוֹר לְדָוִד  on the death  עַל־מוּת  of Golias, the Plishti, who is here called Laben  לַבֵּן . The name Laben, recalls the term אִישׁ הַבֵּנַיִם , a champion who goes out between the camps (I Shmuel 17:23).
(ב) אוֹדֶה ה' בְּכָל לִבִּי
I will thank Hashem with all my heart  אוֹדֶה ה' בְּכָל לִבִּי  because the death of Golias was not only a great victory for the B’nei Yisrael but a crucial event in my own life. My gratitude is with all my heart and not dependent on Your doing more kindnesses for me in the future.
אֲסַפְּרָה כָּל נִפְלְאוֹתֶיךָ:
I will not only feel gratitude privately, I will proclaim  אֲסַפְּרָה  to everyone all of Your wondrous deeds — כָּל נִפְלְאוֹתֶיךָ .  Having experienced a great deliverance, I am reminded of all the other occasions when You saved me. I am also moved to appreciate the many small miracles that happen on a daily basis and which people take for granted.
(ג) אֶשְׂמְחָה וְאֶעֶלְצָה בָךְ
I will rejoice and exult in You — אֶשְׂמְחָה וְאֶעֶלְצָה בָךְ  and not in my paltry weapons, my pebbles and slingshot. When I faced Golias, I was an inexperienced youth and he was a mighty warrior, but already then I felt a joyful surge of trust in You and a sense of exultation.
אֲזַמְּרָה שִׁמְךָ עֶלְיוֹן:
I will sing praise to Your Name  אֲזַמְּרָה שִׁמְךָ , Most High — עֶלְיוֹן . Your Name is above all praises which may be said about You. And so my song to You is above and beyond the gratitude I feel for what I personally received. I sing in joy that Your great Name has been made known to all through what has happened to me.
(ד) בְּשׁוּב אוֹיְבַי אָחוֹר 
יִכָּשְׁלוּ וְיֹאבְדוּ מִפָּנֶיךָ:
My joy is redoubled when my enemies retreat — בְּשׁוּב אוֹיְבַי אָחוֹר  and when they stumble and perish from Your presence — יִכָּשְׁלוּ וְיֹאבְדוּ מִפָּנֶיךָ . This is what happened when the mighty Plishti army panicked after seeing their champion beaten. I did not even have to fight them. It was Your hand that defeated them.
(ה) כִּי עָשִׂיתָ מִשְׁפָּטִי וְדִינִי
For You carried out my judgment and my cause — כִּי עָשִׂיתָ מִשְׁפָּטִי וְדִינִי  when You defeated Golias. It was surely a great miracle when the pebble I shot at him found its mark through a small chink in his armor. So my victory was Your doing.
יָשַׁבְתָּ לְכִסֵּא שׁוֹפֵט צֶדֶק:
But before carrying out the verdict, You sat on Your throne — יָשַׁבְתָּ לְכִסֵּא  of judgment, O righteous Judge — שׁוֹפֵט צֶדֶק . You determined that I was worthy of a miracle being done for me and You found him guilty of blaspheming against Your armies.
(ו) גָּעַרְתָּ גוֹיִם אִבַּדְתָּ רָשָׁע
You rebuked peoples  גָּעַרְתָּ גוֹיִם  the Plishtim and their allies. As far as Golias is concerned, You doomed that rasha (wicked man)  אִבַּדְתָּ רָשָׁע .
שְׁמָם מָחִיתָ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד:
If there was any glory associated with their name You blotted it out — שְׁמָם מָחִיתָ  for all eternity — לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד .
PART 2. REBUKE TO THE PLISHTIM.
(ז) הָאוֹיֵב תַּמּוּ חֳרָבוֹת לָנֶצַח
וְעָרִים נָתַשְׁתָּ אָבַד זִכְרָם הֵמָּה:
You the enemy are finished — הָאוֹיֵב תַּמּוּ ; your name will be permanently erased like the permanent ruins — חֳרָבוֹת לָנֶצַח  that you brought about in your unrelenting attacks and like the cities you uprooted  וְעָרִים נָתַשְׁתָּ  so thoroughly that their every remembrance has perished — אָבַד זִכְרָם הֵמָּה .
(ח) וַה' לְעוֹלָם יֵשֵׁב
You Plishtim thought your crimes would be forgotten like the desolate ruins you created, but you were destined to face judgment because Hashem is enthroned forever — וַה' לְעוֹלָם יֵשֵׁב . The past and the future are always before Him and He continues to protect those who do His will.
כּוֹנֵן לַמִּשְׁפָּט כִּסְאוֹ:
He will never turn His back on the world no matter how much evil there is. He has established His throne for methodical justice — כּוֹנֵן לַמִּשְׁפָּט כִּסְאוֹ , and continues to judge the people of the world.
(ט) וְהוּא יִשְׁפֹּט תֵּבֵל בְּצֶדֶק
And just as He judges my case with righteousness so does He judge  וְהוּא יִשְׁפֹּט  the entire inhabited world — תֵּבֵל  with righteousness — בְּצֶדֶק , based on the rule of law. There will always be accountability and oppressors will not escape punishment.
יָדִין לְאֻמִּים בְּמֵישָׁרִים:
He judges the nations in fairness — יָדִין לְאֻמִּים בְּמֵישָׁרִים , taking into consideration all of the factors involved in every dispute, and even going beyond the letter of the law when fairness requires it. When one nation succeeds over another, it is all in accordance with His judgment.
(י) וִיהִי ה' מִשְׂגָּב לַדָּךְ
מִשְׂגָּב לְעִתּוֹת בַּצָּרָה:
When He judges the world, Hashem will be a tower of strength  וִיהִי ה' מִשְׂגָּב for downtrodden peoples — לַדָּךְ  like Yisrael which suffered so much from you Plishtim. He will especially be a tower of strength in times of distress — מִשְׂגָּב לְעִתּוֹת בַּצָּרָה  such as during the recent wars that you Plishtim have waged, almost overwhelming us.
PART 3. LET YISRAEL ACKNOWLEDGE HASHEM.
(יא) וְיִבְטְחוּ בְךָ יוֹדְעֵי שְׁמֶךָ 
כִּי לֹא עָזַבְתָּ דֹרְשֶׁיךָ ה':
Hashem, those who know Your Name — יוֹדְעֵי שְׁמֶךָ  and love You see Your hand guiding the world. They will trust in You  וְיִבְטְחוּ בְךָ  to come to their aid, for in their momentous victory over the Plishtim they have seen that You do not forsake those who seek You, Hashem — כִּי לֹא עָזַבְתָּ דֹרְשֶׁיךָ ה' .
(יב) זַמְּרוּ לַה' יֹשֵׁב צִיּוֹן 
הַגִּידוּ בָעַמִּים עֲלִילוֹתָיו:
O Yisrael! Sing in praise to Hashem  זַמְּרוּ לַה' , Whose Shechinah dwells in Tzion — יֹשֵׁב צִיּוֹן . Although Yerushalayim is currently still occupied by the Yevusi, we are confident that it will be His permanent abode and that He will build His Bais Hamikdash there. But in the meantime, wherever you go, proclaim His deeds among nations — הַגִּידוּ בָעַמִּים עֲלִילוֹתָיו .
Tzion is here used as another name for Yerushalayim, the locale of the Beis HaMikdash.
(יג) כִּי דֹרֵשׁ דָּמִים אוֹתָם זָכָר
For He Who avenges the blood — כִּי דֹרֵשׁ דָּמִים  of the many peoples that were victimized by oppressors has remembered them — אוֹתָם זָכָר  when He punished the oppressors.
לֹא שָׁכַח צַעֲקַת עֲנָוִים:
But as for you Yisrael, even when the time was not yet right to punish your oppressors, He never forgot the cry of the humble poor — לֹא שָׁכַח צַעֲקַת עניים עֲנָוִים , who suffered from the aggressions of the Plishtim. The sufferings of Yisrael were always on His mind.
PART 4. TEFILLAH FOR THE FUTURE.
(יד) חָנְנֵנִי ה' 
רְאֵה עָנְיִי מִשֹּׂנְאָי 
מְרוֹמְמִי מִשַּׁעֲרֵי מָוֶת:
Everyone was sure I would fall at the hands of Golias and yet You saved me. Hashem, have mercy on me again in the future — חָנְנֵנִי ה' . Just as You saw what I was up against when I had to face Golias from a position of profound weakness, see my anxiety  רְאֵה עָנְיִי  when I face challenges from all my other foes — מִשֹּׂנְאָי , You Who have raised me from the gates of death — מְרוֹמְמִי מִשַּׁעֲרֵי מָוֶת .
(טו) לְמַעַן אֲסַפְּרָה כָּל תְּהִלָּתֶיךָ
Help me not for my own sake, but so that When I am saved from my enemies I can proclaim all of Your praises — לְמַעַן אֲסַפְּרָה כָּל תְּהִלָּתֶיךָ , not only for saving me from the Plishtim, but for all past and future rescues, which I may not even be aware of.
בְּשַׁעֲרֵי בַת צִיּוֹן 
אָגִילָה בִּישׁוּעָתֶךָ:
It is only fitting that just as You continue to save me from the gates of death, the proper place to fully express my gratitude will be at the gates — בְּשַׁעֲרֵי  of the daughter of Tzion — בַת צִיּוֹן , at the entrance to the holy city where You will have established Your dwelling. I will then be able to rejoice — אָגִילָה  with a renewed sense of gladness in Your salvation — בִּישׁוּעָתֶךָ , knowing that I am at the place which You have called holy.
PART 5. A FUTURE SONG OF GRATITUDE.
(טז) טָבְעוּ גוֹיִם בְּשַׁחַת עָשׂוּ 
בְּרֶשֶׁת זוּ טָמָנוּ
נִלְכְּדָה רַגְלָם:
I will then say: “The peoples who attack me have become mired  טָבְעוּ גוֹיִם in the very pit which they made — בְּשַׁחַת עָשׂוּ  to trap me. In the very trap which they hid — בְּרֶשֶׁת זוּ טָמָנוּ  nearby to catch their prey and make sure there is no escape from the pit, their own foot is caught — נִלְכְּדָה רַגְלָם .”
(יז) נוֹדַע ה'
Through these events the active involvement of Hashem has become known — נוֹדַע ה'  because without His dramatic intervention, Yisrael could not have defeated such a superior force.
מִשְׁפָּט עָשָׂה 
בְּפֹעַל כַּפָּיו נוֹקֵשׁ רָשָׁע 
הִגָּיוֹן סֶלָה:
He executed judgment — מִשְׁפָּט עָשָׂה  against the Plishtim and thereby showed that the resha’im cannot escape retribution for their evil deeds. In fact, Golias the rasha was caught by his very own handiwork — בְּפֹעַל כַּפָּיו נוֹקֵשׁ רָשָׁע  when I grabbed his sword and used it to kill him. The circumstances of this yeshuah will always be a thought-provoking subject for reflection — הִגָּיוֹן סֶלָה .
(יח) יָשׁוּבוּ רְשָׁעִים לִשְׁאוֹלָה
כָּל גּוֹיִם שְׁכֵחֵי אֱלֹקִים:
Just as these enemies of Yisrael have perished, let all the resha’im return — יָשׁוּבוּ רְשָׁעִים  to their grave — לִשְׁאוֹלָה , to the dust from which they were created. Who are these resha’imAll the peoples that forget G-d — כָּל גּוֹיִם שְׁכֵחֵי אֱלֹקִים  and do evil on a regular basis.
(יט) כִּי לֹא לָנֶצַח יִשָּׁכַח אֶבְיוֹן
תִּקְוַת עֲנִיִּים תֹּאבַד לָעַד:
For even when the Jewish people are poverty-stricken and exhausted by the depredations of their enemies, that state of affairs will soon come an end; the needy will not be forgotten forever — כִּי לֹא לָנֶצַח יִשָּׁכַח אֶבְיוֹן  nor will the hope of the downtodden poor forever vanish — תִּקְוַת עֲנִיִּים תֹּאבַד לָעַד .
PART 6. A RENEWED PLEA FOR YESHUAH.
(כ) קוּמָה ה'
Arise, Hashem — קוּמָה ה' , call an end now to the blasphemous challenges of arrogant men like Golias who act as though there can be no restraints on their strength.
אַל יָעֹז אֱנוֹשׁ
יִשָּׁפְטוּ גוֹיִם עַל פָּנֶיךָ:
Let not mortal man presume — אַל יָעֹז אֱנוֹשׁ  to act as though he is divine! But let the peoples who follow such men be judged openly in Your presence — יִשָּׁפְטוּ גוֹיִם עַל פָּנֶיךָ  so that they cannot explain away their downfall as being natural events .
(כא) שִׁיתָה ה' מוֹרָה לָהֶם
יֵדְעוּ גוֹיִם אֱנוֹשׁ הֵמָּה סֶּלָה:
Put Your fear over them, Hashem — שִׁיתָה ה' מוֹרָה לָהֶם  so that all the peoples know — יֵדְעוּ גוֹיִם  they and their champions are and will always be nothing but mortal men — אֱנוֹשׁ הֵמָּה סֶּלָה . They have no possibility of standing up against You.
Living the Mizmor
Listed below are some of the lessons that you can draw from this mizmor, as well as some of the thoughts you might have in mind when you say the words of the mizmor as a tefillah asking for your needs, or expressing your gratitude and devotion to Hashem.
Lessons for Life - Your Attitude.
[9:3] NO INTERMEDIARY. – אֶשְׂמְחָה וְאֶעֶלְצָה בָךְ – “I will rejoice and exult in You.” Strengthen your relationship with Hashem by realizing that it was He who helped you and not any apparent intermediary.
[9:11] NAME OF HASHEM. – וְיִבְטְחוּ בְךָ יוֹדְעֵי שְׁמֶךָ – “Those who know Your Name will trust in You.” Through His Name you are assured of His continuity throughout eternity, which means He is able to keep His promise. See also, Mizmor 005.
Tefillos for Life - Your Gratitude .
[9:2] SO MANY THINGS. – אֲסַפְּרָה כָּל נִפְלְאוֹתֶיךָ – “I will proclaim all of Your wondrous deeds.” Have in mind all the other occasions when you were helped and all the daily miracles you experience.
[9:2] UNCONDITIONAL GRATITUDE. – אוֹדֶה ה' בְּכָל לִבִּי – “I will thank [You] Hashem with all my heart.” Your gratitude for Hashem’s mercy should not be dependent on His doing more kindnesses in the future.
[9:5] MY CAUSE. – עָשִׂיתָ מִשְׁפָּטִי וְדִינִי – “You carried out my judgment and my cause.” I did not even have to fight my enemy for You took up my cause.
Tehillos for Life - Public Acclaim .
[9:2] SHARE YOUR KNOWLEDGE. – אֲסַפְּרָה כָּל נִפְלְאוֹתֶיךָ – “I will proclaim all of Your wondrous deeds.” Share your experiences and your knowledge of Him with others.
[9:12] – הַגִּידוּ בָעַמִּים עֲלִילוֹתָיו – “Proclaim His deeds among nations.”
[9:3] SING IN PRAISE. אֲזַמְּרָה שִׁמְךָ עֶלְיוֹן – “I will sing praise to Your Name, Most High.” Inspire others through song.
[9:12] – זַמְּרוּ לַה' – “Sing in praise to Hashem.
Tehillos for Life - Contemplation of Hashem .
[9:4] POWER IN WAR. – בְּשׁוּב אוֹיְבַי אָחוֹר יִכָּשְׁלוּ וְיֹאבְדוּ מִפָּנֶיךָ – “When my enemies retreat, they stumble and perish from Your presence.” Hashem instills fear in the hearts of the enemy.
[9:5] RIGHTEOUS JUDGE. – יָשַׁבְתָּ לְכִסֵּא שׁוֹפֵט צֶדֶק – “You sat on [Your] throne, O righteous Judge.” You determine if the righteous person is worthy of a miracle being done on his behalf. But all men are judged based on the rule of law.
[9:9] – וְהוּא יִשְׁפֹּט תֵּבֵל בְּצֶדֶק יָדִין לְאֻמִּים בְּמֵישָׁרִים – “He judges the world with righteousness. He judges the nations in fairness.”
[9:6] VENGEFUL JUDGE. – גָּעַרְתָּ גוֹיִם אִבַּדְתָּ רָשָׁע – “You rebuked peoples and You doomed the rasha.” You execute strict judgment agains the wicked.
[9:8] ETERNAL JUDGE. – ה' לְעוֹלָם יֵשֵׁב כּוֹנֵן לַמִּשְׁפָּט כִּסְאוֹ – “Hashem is enthroned forever. He has established His throne for justice.” The past and future are always before Him.
[9:10] DEFENDER OF THE WEAK. – וִיהִי ה' מִשְׂגָּב לַדָּךְ – “Hashem will be a tower of strength for the downtrodden.” He defends Yisrael and if Yisrael is victimized by evil people, He comes to their aid and avenges them.
[9:13] – כִּי דֹרֵשׁ דָּמִים אוֹתָם זָכָר לֹא שָׁכַח צַעֲקַת עֲנָוִים – “For He Who avenges the blood of the many peoples that were victimized by oppressors has remembered them.”
[9:11] FAITHFUL TO HIS PEOPLE. – לֹא עָזַבְתָּ דֹרְשֶׁיךָ – “You do not forsake those who seek You.” Those who turn to Hashem in tefillah are assured of His response.
Sources
The primary sources used in the interpretation of the pesukim of this mizmor are listed below.
א - רד"ק, מאירי
ב - רש"י, אבן עזרא, רד"ק, מלבי"ם
ג - רד"ק, מהר"י יעב"ץ, מצודות, מלבי"ם
ד - רד"ק, מצודות, נר לרגלי
ה - רד"ק, נר לרגלי
ו - רד"ק, מלבי"ם
ז - אבן עזרא, רד"ק
ח - אבן עזרא, רד"ק, מלבי"ם
ט - רד"ק, מצודות, מלבי"ם
י - רש"י, רד"ק
יא - מצודות, מלבי"ם
יב - רש"י, רד"ק, מצודות
יג - רש"י, רד"ק, מלבי"ם, נר לרגלי
יד - רש"י, רד"ק, מצודות, מלבי"ם
טו - רד"ק, מהר"י יעב"ץ, מלבי"ם
טז - רש"י, רד"ק, מצודות, מלבי"ם
יז - רש"י, רד"ק, מצודות
יח - רד"ק, נר לרגלי
יט - רש"י, רד"ק
כ - רש"י, רד"ק, מלבי"ם
כא - רש"י, רד"ק