A psalm of Asaph.
1God is truly good to Israel.
He is good to those who have pure hearts.
2But my feet had almost slipped.
I had almost tripped and fallen.
3I saw that proud and sinful people were doing well.
And I began to long for what they had.
4They don't have any troubles.
Their bodies are healthy and strong.
5They don't have the problems others have.
They don't suffer as other people do.
6Their pride is like a necklace.
They put on meanness as if it were their clothes.
7Many sins come out of their hard and stubborn hearts.
There is no limit to their proud and evil thoughts.
8They laugh at others and speak words of hatred.
They are proud. They warn others about the harm they can do to them.
9They brag as if they owned heaven itself.
They talk as if they controlled the earth.
10So people listen to them.
They lap up their words like water.
11They say, "How can God know what we're doing?
Does the Most High God really know that much?"
12Here is what sinful people are like.
They don't have a care in the world.
They keep getting richer and richer.
13It seems as if I have kept my heart pure without any reason.
It didn't do me any good to wash my hands
to show that I wasn't guilty of doing anything wrong.
14Day after day I've been in pain.
God has punished me every morning.
15What if I had said, "I will speak as evil people do"?
Then I wouldn't have been faithful to God's children.
16I tried to understand it all.
But it was more than I could handle.
17It troubled me until I entered God's temple.
Then I understood what will happen to bad people in the end.
18God, I'm sure you will make them slip and fall.
You will throw them down and destroy them.
19It will happen very suddenly.
A terrible death will take them away completely.
20A dream goes away when a person wakes up.
Lord, it will be like that when you rise up.
It will be as if those people were only a dream.
21At one time my heart was sad
and my spirit was bitter.
22I didn't have any sense. I didn't know anything.
I acted like a wild animal toward you.
23But I am always with you.
You hold me by my right hand.
24You give me wise advice to guide me.
And when I die, you will take me away
into the glory of heaven.
25I don't have anyone in heaven but you.
I don't want anything on earth besides you.
26My body and my heart may grow weak.
God, you give strength to my heart.
You are everything I will ever need.
27Those who don't want anything to do with you will die.
You destroy all those who aren't faithful to you.
28But I am close to you. And that's good.
Lord and King, I have made you my place of safety.
I will talk about everything you have done.