To the choirmaster: to Jeduthun. A Psalm of David. I 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."
I was dumb and silent, I held my peace to no avail; my distress grew worse,
my heart became hot within me. As I mused, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue:
"LORD, let me know my end, and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is!
Behold, 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]
Surely man goes about as a shadow! Surely for nought are they in turmoil; man heaps up, and knows not who will gather!
"And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in thee.
Deliver me from all my transgressions. Make me not the scorn of the fool!
I am dumb, I do not open my mouth; for it is thou who hast done it.
Remove thy stroke from me; I am spent by the blows of thy hand.
When 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]
"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.
Look away from me, that I may know gladness, before I depart and be no more!"