1Man, born of woman, is of few days, and full of trouble. 2He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down; and he fleeth as a shadow, and continueth not. 3Yet dost thou open thine eyes upon such a one, and bringest me into judgment with thee? 4Who can bring a clean man out of the unclean? Not one! 5If his days are determined, if the number of his months is with thee, and thou hast appointed his bounds which he must not pass, 6Look away from him; and let him rest, till he accomplish, as a hireling, his day.
7For there is hope for a tree: if it be cut down, it will sprout again, and its tender branch will not cease; 8Though its root grow old in the earth, and its stock die in the ground, 9Yet through the scent of water it will bud, and put forth boughs like a young plant. 10But a man dieth, and is prostrate; yea, man expireth, and where is he? 11The waters recede from the lake, and the river wasteth and drieth up: 12So man lieth down, and riseth not again; till the heavens be no more, they do not awake, nor are raised out of their sleep. 13Oh that thou wouldest hide me in Sheol, that thou wouldest keep me secret until thine anger be past, that thou wouldest appoint me a set time, and remember me, — 14(If a man die, shall he live again?) all the days of my time of toil would I wait, till my change should come: 15Thou wouldest call, and I would answer thee; thou wouldest have a desire after the work of thy hands.
16For now thou numberest my steps: dost thou not watch over my sin? 17My transgression is sealed up in a bag, and thou heapest up mine iniquity. 18And indeed a mountain falling cometh to nought, and the rock is removed out of its place; 19The waters wear the stones, the floods thereof wash away the dust of the earth; and thou destroyest the hope of man. 20Thou prevailest for ever against him, and he passeth away; thou changest his countenance, and dismissest him. 21His sons come to honour, and he knoweth it not; and they are brought low, and he perceiveth it not. 22But his flesh hath pain for himself alone, and his soul mourneth for himself.