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Psalm 3:2 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
2 many are saying of my soul,
there is no salvation for him in God. Selah
 The meaning is uncertain. Some believe that it is a Heb. term used in music or liturgical direction. It is used frequently in the Psalms.
Many are saying of my soul. Or rather, perhaps, of his “life,” for so the word here used—נֶפֶשׁ, nephesh—frequently means (Lev. 17:11; Deut. 12:23; Gen. 9:4; 35:18; 1 Kings 17:21). The object of their persecution, as here stated, was not his soul, as such, in the sense in which we now understand the word, but his life; and they now said that they were secure of that and that all things indicated that God would not now interfere to save him. They were perfectly sure of their prey. Compare 2 Sam. 17:1–4.
There is no salvation for him in God. He is entirely forsaken. He has no power to defend himself and no hope of escaping from us now, and all the indications are that God does not intend to interpose and deliver him. Circumstances in the rebellion of Absalom (2 Sam. 16 seq.), were such as to seem to justify this taunt. David had been driven away from his throne and his capital. God had not protected him when he had his armed men and his friends around him and when he was entrenched in a strong city, and now he was a forsaken fugitive, fleeing almost alone and seeking a place of safety. If God had not defended him on his throne and in his capital, if he had suffered him to be driven away without interposing to save him, much less was there reason to suppose that he would now interpose on his behalf. Hence, they exultingly said that there was no hope for his life, even in that God in whom he had trusted. It is no uncommon thing in this world for good men to be in similar circumstances of trial when they seem to be so utterly forsaken by God as well as men that their foes exultingly say they are entirely abandoned.
Selah. סֶלָה. Much has been written on this word, and still, its meaning does not appear to be wholly determined. It is rendered in the Targum, or Chaldee Paraphrase, לְעַלְמִין, lealmin, forever, or to eternity. In the Latin Vulgate, it is omitted as if it were no part of the text. In the Septuagint, it is rendered Διάψαλμα, supposed to refer to some variation or modulation of the voice in singing. Schleusner, Lex. The word occurs seventy-one times in the Psalms and three times in the book of Habakkuk, 3:3, 9, 13. It is never translated in our version, but in all these places, the original word Selah is retained. It occurs only in poetry and is supposed to have had some reference to the singing or ritual chanting of prayers and responses of the poetry and to be probably a musical term. In general, also, it indicates a pause in the sense, as well as in the musical performance. Gesenius (Lex.) supposes that the most probable meaning of this musical term or note is silence or pause and that its use was, in chanting the words of the psalm, to direct the singer to be silent, to pause a little. At the same time, the instruments played an interlude or harmony. Perhaps this is all that can now be known of the meaning of the word, which is enough to satisfy every reasonable inquiry. It is probable, if this was the use of the term, that it would commonly correspond with the sense of the passage and be inserted where the sense made a pause suitable; and this will doubtless be found usually to be the fact. But anyone acquainted at all with the character of musical notation will perceive at once that we are not to suppose that this would be invariably or necessarily the fact, for the musical pauses by no means always correspond with pauses in the sense. This word, therefore, can furnish very little assistance in determining the meaning of the passages where it is found. Ewald supposes, differing from this view that it rather indicates that in the places where it occurs, the voice is to be raised and that it is synonymous with up, higher, loud, or distinct, from סַל, sal, סָלַל, salal, to ascend. Those who are disposed to inquire further respecting its meaning, and the uses of musical pauses in general, may be referred to Ugolin., ‘Thesau. Antiq. Sacr.,’ tom. Xxii.
By Albert Barnes and Edward D. Andrews
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