(A psalm for the people of Korah and for the music leader.)
Don't depend on wealth
1Everyone on this earth,
now listen to what I say!
2Listen, no matter who you are,
rich or poor.
3I speak words of wisdom,
and my thoughts make sense.
4I have in mind a mystery
that I will explain
while playing my harp.
5Why should I be afraid
in times of trouble,
when I am surrounded
by vicious enemies?
6They trust in their riches
and boast about
all their wealth.
7You cannot buy back your life
or pay off God!
8It costs far too much
to buy back your life.
You can never pay God enough
9to stay alive for ever
and safe from death.
10We see that wise people die,
and so do stupid fools.
Then their money is left
for someone else.
11The grave#49.11 The grave: Some ancient translations; Hebrew “Their inward thoughts”. will be their home
for ever and ever,
although they once had land
of their own.
12Our human glory disappears,
and, like animals, we die.
13Here is what happens to fools
and to those who trust
the words of fools:
14They are like sheep
with death as their shepherd,
leading them to the grave.#49.14 as their … grave: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
In the morning God's people
will walk all over them,
as their bodies lie rotting
in their home, the grave.
15But God will rescue me
from the power of death.
16Don't let it bother you
when others get rich
and live in luxury.
17Soon they will die
and all their wealth
will be left behind.
18We humans are praised
when we do well,
and all of us are glad
to be alive.
19But we will each go down
to our ancestors,
never again to see
the light of day.
20Our human glory disappears,
and, like animals, we die.