1They have only a few days to live.
Their lives are full of trouble.
2They grow like flowers, and then they dry up.
They are like shadows that quickly disappear.
3"God, why do you keep looking at someone like me?
Are you planning to take me to court?
4Who can bring what is pure from something that isn't pure?
5You decide how long anyone will live.
You have established the number of his months.
You have set a limit to the number of his days.
6So look away from him. Leave him alone.
Let him put in his time like a hired worker.
7"At least there is hope for a tree.
If it's cut down, it will begin to grow again.
New branches will appear on it.
8Its roots may grow old in the ground.
Its stump may die in the soil.
9But when it smells water, it will begin to grow.
It will send out new growth like a plant.
10No man is like that. When he dies, he is buried in a grave.
He takes his last breath. Then he is gone.
11Water disappears from lakes.
Riverbeds become empty and dry.
12In the same way, a man lies down and never gets up.
He won't wake up or rise from his sleep
until the heavens are gone.
13"I wish you would hide me in a grave!
I wish you would cover me up until your anger passes by!
I wish you would set the time for me to spend in the grave
and then bring me back up!
14If a man dies, will he live again?
All the days of my hard work
I will wait for the time when you give me new life.
15You will call out to me, and I will answer you.
Your hands created me. So you will long for me.
16Then you will count every step I take.
But you won't keep track of my sin.
17The wrong things I've done will be sealed up in a bag.
You will wipe out my sins by forgiving them.
18"A mountain wears away and crumbles.
A rock is moved from its place.
19Water wears stones away.
Storms wash soil away.
In the same way, you destroy our hope.
20You overpower us completely, and then we're gone.
You change the way we look and send us to our graves.
21If our children are honored, we don't even know it.
If they are dishonored, we don't even see it.
22All we feel is the pain of our own bodies.
We are full of sadness only for ourselves."