289. Circling Nets

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2 Samuel 22:66The sorrows of hell compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me; (2 Samuel 22:6). The sorrows of hell compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me.
The margin has “cords,” instead of sorrows, which is a better rendering, because more consistent with the figure employed in the text. The allusion is to an ancient mode of hunting, still in use. A certain tract of land, where wild beasts are known to be, is surrounded by a circle of nets, which is gradually contracted as the animals are driven in, until they are all brought to one common center, when escape is impossible. Similar reference is made in Psalm 18:5; 116:35The sorrows of hell compassed me about: the snares of death prevented me. (Psalm 18:5)
3The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow. (Psalm 116:3)
; Isaiah 51:2020Thy sons have fainted, they lie at the head of all the streets, as a wild bull in a net: they are full of the fury of the Lord, the rebuke of thy God. (Isaiah 51:20). Representations of this mode of hunting are found on the Egyptian and Assyrian monuments.