Psalm 39

The Fleeting Nature of Life

For the choir director, for Jeduthun. A psalm of David.

I said, “I will guard my ways
so that I may not sin with my tongue;
I will guard my mouth with a muzzle
as long as the wicked are in my presence.”(A)
I was speechless and quiet;
I kept silent, even from speaking good,
and my pain intensified.(B)
My heart grew hot within me;
as I mused, a fire burned.(C)
I spoke with my tongue:
Lord, make me aware of my end
and the number of my days
so that I will know how short-lived I am.(D)
In fact, you have made my days just inches long,
and my life span is as nothing to you.
Yes, every human being stands as only a vapor.(E)Selah
Yes, a person goes about like a mere shadow.
Indeed, they rush around in vain,
gathering possessions
without knowing who will get them.(F)

“Now, Lord, what do I wait for?
My hope is in you.(G)
Rescue me from all my transgressions;
do not make me the taunt of fools.(H)
I am speechless; I do not open my mouth
because of what you have done.(I)
10 Remove your torment from me.
Because of the force of your hand I am finished.(J)
11 You discipline a person with punishment for iniquity,
consuming like a moth what is precious to him;(K)
yes, every human being is only a vapor.(L)Selah

12 “Hear my prayer, Lord,
and listen to my cry for help;
do not be silent at my tears.(M)
For I am here with you as an alien,
a temporary resident like all my ancestors.(N)
13 Turn your angry gaze from me
so that I may be cheered up
before I die and am gone.”(O)

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