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   The Book of Psalms.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
 
Book I
 
XXXIX
 
The Vanity of Life
 
 
For the Chief Musician, for Jeduthun. 1 A Psalm of David.
 
 
[1]  I SAID, I will take heed to my ways,
That I sin not with my tongue:
I will keep my 2 mouth with a bridle,
While the wicked is before me.
[2]  I was dumb with silence, I held my peace, even 3 from good;
And my sorrow was stirred.
[3]  My heart was hot within me;
While I was musing the fire burned;
Then spake I with my tongue:
[4]  Jehovah, make me to know mine end,
And the measure of my days, what it is;
Let me know how frail I am.
[5]  Behold, thou hast made my days as handbreadths;
And my life-time is as nothing before thee:
Surely every man at 4 his best estate is altogether vanity. 5  [Selah
[6]  Surely every man walketh in 6 a vain show;
Surely they are disquieted in 7 vain:
He heapeth up riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them.
[7]  And now, Lord, what wait I for?
My hope is in thee.
[8]  Deliver me from all my transgressions:
Make me not the reproach of the foolish.
[9]  I was dumb, I opened not my mouth;
Because thou didst it.
[10]  Remove thy stroke away from me:
I am consumed by the blow 8 of thy hand.
[11]  When thou with rebukes dost correct man for iniquity,
Thou makest 9 his beauty to consume away like a moth:
Surely every man is vanity. 10  [Selah
[12]  Hear my prayer, O Jehovah, and give ear unto my cry;
Hold not thy peace at my tears:
For I am a stranger with thee,
A sojourner, as all my fathers were.
[13]  Oh spare 11 me, that I may recover 12 strength,
Before I go hence, and be no more.
 
Note 1. Ps. 62. title; 77. title; 1 Chr. 16. 41; 25. 1. [back]
Note 2. Heb. a bridle (or, muzzle) for my mouth. [back]
Note 3. Or, and had no comfort.Heb. away from good. [back]
Note 4. Heb. standing firm. [back]
Note 5. Heb. a breath. [back]
Note 6. Or, as a shadow. [back]
Note 7. Or, for vanity. [back]
Note 8. Heb. conflict. [back]
Note 9. Or, consumest like a moth his delights. [back]
Note 10. Heb. a breath. [back]
Note 11. Or, look away from me. [back]
Note 12. Heb. brighten up. [back]
 

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