Psalm 49
For the leader. Of the Korahites. A psalm.
Hear this, you peoples all;
attend, all you who live in the world
people of low degree and high,
the rich and the poor together.
My mouth shall utter wisdom,
the thoughts of a seeing heart.
I incline my ear to a proverb,
on the lyre I will open my riddle.
Why should I be afraid in the days of misfortune,
when circled by wicked and cunning foes,
who put their trust in their wealth,
and boast of their boundless riches?
For assuredly no one can ransom themselves,
or give to God the price of their life,
for the ransom of a life is costly,
no payment is ever enough,
to keep them alive for ever and ever,
so as never to see the pit at all.
10 But see it they will. Even wise people die,
the fool and the brutish perish alike,
and abandon their wealth to others.
11 The grave is their everlasting home,
the place they shall live in for ever and ever,
though after their own names they called whole lands.
12 Despite their wealth,
they perish like dumb animals.
13 This is the fate of the confident fool,
and the end of those who are pleased with their portion.
14 Like sheep they descend to Sheol
with Death for their shepherd;
down they go straight to the grave,
and their form wastes away in their home below.
15 But God will assuredly ransom my life
from the hand of Sheol;
for he will receive me.
16 So be not afraid when someone grows rich,
when the wealth of their house increases.
17 Not a shred of it all can they take when they die,
wealth cannot follow them down.
18 Though they count themselves happy, when they are alive,
and win praise from many for faring so well,
19 they must join their ancestors,
who see the light nevermore.
20 The wealthy are without understanding,
they perish like dumb animals.