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NET Bible Psalm 27:13 Where would I be if I did not believe I would experience the Lord’s favor in the land of the living?

  • "in this life"?
  • in Zion?
  • in the "afterlife"?

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Compare Psalm 27:13 with Isaiah 38:11 (NET)

I thought, 'I will no longer see the LORD in the land of the living, I will no longer look on humankind with the inhabitants of the world'

for which the MT is

אָמַרְתִּי לֹא-אֶרְאֶה יָהּ יָהּ בְּאֶרֶץ הַחַיִּים לֹא-אַבִּיט אָדָם עוֹד עִם-יוֹשְׁבֵי חָדֶל

The MT Hebrew for "land of the living" is almost identical; בְּאֶרֶץ הַחַיִּים in Isaiah to the בְּאֶרֶץ חַיִּים in Psalms, only an additional "ה" ("the") in Isaiah.

From the parallel phrase in the second clause of Isaiah 38:11, יוֹשְׁבֵי חָדֶל, an idiomatic expression whose literal translation is "the inhabitants of cessation", meaning the the mortal inhabitants [of this world], we can see that the בְּאֶרֶץ חַיִּים of Psalm 27:13 is a figurative expression meaning "in this life".

Compare also Ezekiel 26:2 (NET)

then I will bring you down to bygone people, to be with those who descend to the pit. I will make you live in the lower parts of the earth, among the primeval ruins, with those who descend to the pit, so that you will not be inhabited or stand in the land of the living

and Ezekiel 32:23-27 (NET)

Their graves are located in the remote slopes of the pit. Her assembly is around her grave, all of them struck down by the sword, those who spread terror in the land of the living. Elam is there with all her hordes around her grave; all of them struck down by the sword. They went down uncircumcised to the lower parts of the earth, those who spread terror in the land of the living. Now they will bear their shame with those who descend to the pit...

and Ezekiel 32:32 (NET)

Indeed, I terrified him in the land of the living, yet he will lie in the midst of the uncircumcised with those killed by the sword, Pharaoh and all his hordes, declares the sovereign LORD.

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