Psalm 62

Growing up, Psalm 62 was my favorite. We, as a family, trotted out the 23rd on every occasion, much like we will break into “Amazing Grace” at any moment–a wedding, a funeral, Dairy Queen, whathaveyou. And I like the 23rd just fine. It has, of course, a certain poetry to it.

But I liked the 62nd because it seemed to me so honest, so human: “For God alone my soul waits in silence. Something something. The Lord is my rock and my salvation. He is my fortress. I shall not be greatly moved.” I mean, yeah, sure, I’m going to move a little bit. Okay, maybe a lot. But I will not be greatly moved. To me, that said a lot about faith. Hell yes, when face with scary shit or even just when faced head-on with the divine, you are going to be moved. Hell, even Mary was sore afraid. You are probably going to shit your pants and head for the hills.

To say that you shall not be greatly moved? I don’t know. Even now, that just strikes me right in the heart. I will be afraid, but I’m only going to step back like three paces. Okay, maybe four.

I was thinking of that verse tonight as I worked on the sexy zombie story. And, even though I used to know that whole Psalm by heart, I still wanted to look it up and make sure my character was remembering it right.

And you know what? In newer versions, the Psalmist isn’t moved at all. The New International Reader’s version says, “He alone is my rock. He is the One who saves me.  He is like a fort to me. I will always be secure.” The NIV says, “Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.” The New Living Translation? “He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken.”

And this guy? Who appears to be suffering from some terrible hair affliction?

He also is not shaken.

Bah humbug. Way to take all of the interesting humanity out of the song and turn it into, instead, just a paean to how God’s love gives you superpowers.

Feh.

Get off my lawn, you young “not shaken” whippersnappers.

3 thoughts on “Psalm 62

  1. btw: In Jewish Hebrew translations, that “moved” verb is often translated as “falter” or “stumble….” Although, when you’ve heard “We Shall Not Be Moved” or “I Shall Not Be Moved”, the songs enough times…

  2. the Jerusalem Bible version says “Ishall never fall” which does not exclude the possibility of stumbling yet maintains the certainty of God.

  3. A funny thing: I was raised on KJV and NKJV (I think I was in high school before I got an NIV also).

    But I didn’t remember the modifier.
    And I remember having felt moved, and thinking my faith was lacking for it. I wonder if it is the song that makes the brain forget? Or something else.

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