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Psalms 74:5

    Psalms 74:5 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    A man was famous according as he had lifted up axes upon the thick trees.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    A man was famous according as he had lifted up axes on the thick trees.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    They seemed as men that lifted up Axes upon a thicket of trees.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    They are cutting down, like a man whose blade is lifted up against the thick trees.

    Webster's Revision

    They seemed as men that lifted up Axes upon a thicket of trees.

    World English Bible

    They behaved like men wielding axes, cutting through a thicket of trees.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    They seemed as men that lifted up axes upon a thicket of trees.

    Barnes' Notes on Psalms 74:5

    A man was famous - literally, "He is known;" or, shall be known. That is, he was or shall be celebrated.

    According as he had lifted up axes - literally, "As one raising on high axes;" that is, as one lifts up his axe high in the air in order to strike an effectual stroke.

    Upon the thick trees - The clumps of trees; the trees standing thick together. That is, As he showed skill and ability in cutting these down, and laying them low. His celebrity was founded on the rapidity with which the strokes of the axe fell on the trees, and his success in laying low the pride of the forest. According to our common translation the meaning is, that "formerly" a man derived his fame from his skill and success in wielding his axe so as to lay the forest low, but that "now" his fame was to be derived from another source, namely, the skill and power with which he cut down the elaborately-carved work of the sanctuary, despoiled the columns of their ornaments, and demolished the columns themselves. But another interpretation may be given to this, as has been suggested by Prof. Alexander. It is, that "the ruthless enemy is known or recognized as dealing with the sanctuary no more tenderly than a woodman with the forest which he fells." The former, however, is the more natural, as well as the more common interpretation. Luther renders it, "One sees the axe glitter on high, as one cuts wood in the forest." The Vulgate, and the Septuagint, "The signs pointing to the entrance above that they did not know." What idea was attached to this rendering, it is impossible to determine.

    Wesley's Notes on Psalms 74:5

    74:5 Famous - The temple was so noble a structure, that it was a great honour to any man to be employed in the meanest part of the work, though it were but in cutting down the trees of Lebanon.