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1I said, “I will guard my ways,

that I may not sin with my tongue;

I will bridle my mouth,

so long as the wicked are in my presence.”

2I was dumb and silent,

I held my peace to no avail;

my distress grew worse,

3my heart became hot within me.

As I mused, the fire burned;

then I spoke with my tongue:

4Lord, let me know my end,

and what is the measure of my days;

let me know how fleeting my life is!

5Behold, thou hast made my days a few handbreadths,

and my lifetime is as nothing in thy sight.

Surely every man stands as a mere breath!   Selah

6Surely man goes about as a shadow!

Surely for nought are they in turmoil;

man heaps up, and knows not who will gather!

7“And now, Lord, for what do I wait?

My hope is in thee.

8Deliver me from all my transgressions.

Make me not the scorn of the fool!

9I am dumb, I do not open my mouth;

for it is thou who hast done it.

10Remove thy stroke from me;

I am spent by the blows of thy hand.

11When thou dost chasten man

with rebukes for sin,

thou dost consume like a moth what is dear to him;

surely every man is a mere breath!   Selah

12“Hear my prayer, O Lord,

and give ear to my cry;

hold not thy peace at my tears!

For I am thy passing guest,

a sojourner, like all my fathers.

13Look away from me, that I may know gladness,

before I depart and be no more!”

Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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