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The Folly of Trust in Riches

To the leader. Of the Korahites. A Psalm.

1Hear this, all you peoples;

give ear, all inhabitants of the world,

2both low and high,

rich and poor together.

3My mouth shall speak wisdom;

the meditation of my heart shall be understanding.

4I will incline my ear to a proverb;

I will solve my riddle to the music of the harp.

5Why should I fear in times of trouble,

when the iniquity of my persecutors surrounds me,

6those who trust in their wealth

and boast of the abundance of their riches?

7Truly, no ransom avails for one’s life,

there is no price one can give to God for it.

8For the ransom of life is costly,

and can never suffice,

9that one should live on forever

and never see the grave.

10When we look at the wise, they die;

fool and dolt perish together

and leave their wealth to others.

11Their graves are their homes forever,

their dwelling places to all generations,

though they named lands their own.

12Mortals cannot abide in their pomp;

they are like the animals that perish.

13Such is the fate of the foolhardy,

the end of those who are pleased with their lot.   Selah

14Like sheep they are appointed for Sheol;

Death shall be their shepherd;

straight to the grave they descend,

and their form shall waste away;

Sheol shall be their home.

15But God will ransom my soul from the power of Sheol,

for he will receive me.   Selah

16Do not be afraid when some become rich,

when the wealth of their houses increases.

17For when they die they will carry nothing away;

their wealth will not go down after them.

18Though in their lifetime they count themselves happy

—for you are praised when you do well for yourself—

19they will go to the company of their ancestors,

who will never again see the light.

20Mortals cannot abide in their pomp;

they are like the animals that perish.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
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