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Prayer for Wisdom and Forgiveness

To the Chief Musician. To Jeduthun. A Psalm of David.

39 I said, “I will guard my ways,
Lest I sin with my (A)tongue;
I will restrain my mouth with a muzzle,
While the wicked are before me.”
(B)I was mute with silence,
I held my peace even from good;
And my sorrow was stirred up.
My heart was hot within me;
While I was [a]musing, the fire burned.
Then I spoke with my tongue:

Lord, (C)make me to know my end,
And what is the measure of my days,
That I may know how frail I am.
Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths,
And my age is as nothing before You;
Certainly every man at his best state is but (D)vapor. Selah
Surely every man walks about like a shadow;
Surely they [b]busy themselves in vain;
He heaps up riches,
And does not know who will gather them.

“And now, Lord, what do I wait for?
My (E)hope is in You.
Deliver me from all my transgressions;
Do not make me (F)the reproach of the foolish.
(G)I was mute, I did not open my mouth,
Because it was (H)You who did it.
10 (I)Remove Your plague from me;
I am consumed by the blow of Your hand.
11 When with rebukes You correct man for iniquity,
You make his beauty (J)melt away like a moth;
Surely every man is vapor. Selah

12 “Hear my prayer, O Lord,
And give ear to my cry;
Do not be silent at my tears;
For I am a stranger with You,
A sojourner, (K)as all my fathers were.
13 (L)Remove Your gaze from me, that I may regain strength,
Before I go away and (M)am no more.”

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 39:3 meditating
  2. Psalm 39:6 make an uproar for nothing

Psalm 39[a]

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

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

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

“Surely everyone goes around(N) like a mere phantom;(O)
    in vain they rush about,(P) heaping up wealth(Q)
    without knowing whose it will finally be.(R)

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

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

Footnotes

  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.

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