Modern English Version
For the Music Director. A Psalm of the sons of Korah.
1 Hear this, all you people;
give ear, all you inhabitants of the world,
2 both low and high,
rich and poor together.
3 My mouth will speak wisdom,
and the meditation of my heart will be understanding.
4 I will incline my ear to a parable;
I will expound my riddle with a harp.
5 Why should I fear in the days of evil,
when the iniquity of my stalkers surrounds me?
6 Those who trust in their wealth,
and boast in the multitude of their riches,
7 none of them can by any means redeem the other,
nor give to God a ransom for anyone,
8 for the redemption of their souls is costly;
even so people cease to exist forever,
9 making efforts to live eternally,
and not see the pit.
10 For one sees that wise men die,
together the fool and the brute perish,
and leave their wealth to others.
11 Their graves become their perpetual homes,
and their dwelling places to all generations,
though they call their lands after their own names.
12 But a man does not abide in honor;
mankind is like the beasts that come to ruin.
13 This is their way, it is their folly;
yet their posterity approve their sayings. Selah
14 Like sheep they are appointed for Sheol;
Death shall be their shepherd;
the upright shall rule over them in the morning,
and their form shall waste away in Sheol,
far from their dwelling.
15 But God shall redeem my soul from the power of Sheol,
for He shall receive me. Selah
16 Do not fear when one is made rich,
when the glory of his house is increased,
17 for he takes nothing away in death;
his glory does not descend after him.
18 Though while he lives he blesses his soul—
and men will praise you when you do well for yourself—
19 that soul will go to the generation of his fathers;
they will never see light.
20 A man in honor, and yet without understanding,
is like the animals that perish.