Lamentations 3:6

Hebrew Bible

4 ב (Bet) He has made my mortal skin waste away; he has broken my bones. 5 He has besieged and surrounded me with bitter hardship. 6 He has made me reside in deepest darkness like those who died long ago. 7 ג (Gimel) He has walled me in so that I cannot get out; he has weighted me down with heavy prison chains. 8 Also, when I cry out desperately for help, he has shut out my prayer.

Psalm 143:3

Hebrew Bible

1 A psalm of David. O Lord, hear my prayer. Pay attention to my plea for help. Because of your faithfulness and justice, answer me. 2 Do not sit in judgment on your servant, for no one alive is innocent before you. 3 Certainly my enemies chase me. They smash me into the ground. They force me to live in dark regions, like those who have been dead for ages. 4 My strength leaves me; I am absolutely shocked. 5 I recall the old days. I meditate on all you have done; I reflect on your accomplishments.

 Notes and References

"... Cooper (1987:7) astutely observes that “the substantive ʿlm never entirely loses its connections with death and the netherworld.” Though the dead continue to exist in the afterworld and could even be referred to as ʾĕlōhîm, they do not have the type of immortality that would be described as ḥay lĕʿōlām (Genesis 3:22). Perhaps they are best described as the mēt lĕʿōlām, “eternal dead” (compare with Psalm 143:3 and Lamentations 3:6 and ʿam ʿôlām in Ezekiel 26:20 describing those who “descend to the Pit” and “dwell in the netherworld among the primeval ruins”; compare also KTU 1.161.8). They exist, in Qoheleth’s words, in an “eternal home” ..."

Lewis, Theodore J. The Origin and Character of God: Ancient Israelite Religion through the Lens of Divinity (p. 727) Oxford University Press, 2020

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