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Psalm 39 Good News Translation (GNT)

The Confession of a Sufferer[a]

39 I said, “I will be careful about what I do
    and will not let my tongue make me sin;
I will not say anything
    while evil people are near.”
I kept quiet, not saying a word,
    not even about anything good!
But my suffering only grew worse,
    and I was overcome with anxiety.
The more I thought, the more troubled I became;
    I could not keep from asking:
Lord, how long will I live?
    When will I die?
    Tell me how soon my life will end.”

How short you have made my life!
    In your sight my lifetime seems nothing.
Indeed every living being is no more than a puff of wind,
    no more than a shadow.
All we do is for nothing;
    we gather wealth, but don't know who will get it.

What, then, can I hope for, Lord?
    I put my hope in you.
Save me from all my sins,
    and don't let fools make fun of me.
I will keep quiet, I will not say a word,
    for you are the one who made me suffer like this.
10 Don't punish me any more!
    I am about to die from your blows.
11 You punish our sins by your rebukes,
    and like a moth you destroy what we love.
Indeed we are no more than a puff of wind!

12 Hear my prayer, Lord,
    and listen to my cry;
    come to my aid when I weep.
Like all my ancestors
    I am only your guest for a little while.
13 Leave me alone so that I may have some happiness
    before I go away and am no more.


  1. Psalm 39:1 HEBREW TITLE: A psalm by David.
Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Psalm 39 New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 39[a]

For the director of music. For Jeduthun. A psalm of David.

I said, “I will watch my ways
    and keep my tongue from sin;
I will put a muzzle on my mouth
    while in the presence of the wicked.”
So I remained utterly silent,
    not even saying anything good.
But my anguish increased;
    my heart grew hot within me.
While I meditated, the fire burned;
    then I spoke with my tongue:

“Show me, Lord, my life’s end
    and the number of my days;
    let me know how fleeting my life is.
You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
    the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath,
    even those who seem secure.[b]

“Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom;
    in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth
    without knowing whose it will finally be.

“But now, Lord, what do I look for?
    My hope is in you.
Save me from all my transgressions;
    do not make me the scorn of fools.
I was silent; I would not open my mouth,
    for you are the one who has done this.
10 Remove your scourge from me;
    I am overcome by the blow of your hand.
11 When you rebuke and discipline anyone for their sin,
    you consume their wealth like a moth
    surely everyone is but a breath.

12 “Hear my prayer, Lord,
    listen to my cry for help;
    do not be deaf to my weeping.
I dwell with you as a foreigner,
    a stranger, as all my ancestors were.
13 Look away from me, that I may enjoy life again
    before I depart and am no more.”


  1. Psalm 39:1 In Hebrew texts 39:1-13 is numbered 39:2-14.
  2. Psalm 39:5 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here and at the end of verse 11.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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