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Psalm 39 Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (RSVCE)

Prayer for Wisdom and Forgiveness

To the choirmaster: to Jeduthun. A Psalm of David.

39 I said, “I will guard my ways,
that I may not sin with my tongue;
I will bridle[a] 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.
10 Remove thy stroke from me;
    I am spent by the blows[b] of thy hand.
11 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

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.
13 Look away from me, that I may know gladness,
    before I depart and be no more!”

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 39:1 Heb muzzle
  2. Psalm 39:10 Heb hostility
Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (RSVCE)

The Revised Standard Version of the Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright © 1965, 1966 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Psalm 39 New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 39[a]

For the director of music. For Jeduthun. A psalm of David.

I said, “I will watch my ways
    and keep my tongue from sin;
I will put a muzzle on my mouth
    while in the presence of the wicked.”
So I remained utterly silent,
    not even saying anything good.
But my anguish increased;
    my heart grew hot within me.
While I meditated, the fire burned;
    then I spoke with my tongue:

“Show me, Lord, my life’s end
    and the number of my days;
    let me know how fleeting my life is.
You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
    the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath,
    even those who seem secure.[b]

“Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom;
    in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth
    without knowing whose it will finally be.

“But now, Lord, what do I look for?
    My hope is in you.
Save me from all my transgressions;
    do not make me the scorn of fools.
I was silent; I would not open my mouth,
    for you are the one who has done this.
10 Remove your scourge from me;
    I am overcome by the blow of your hand.
11 When you rebuke and discipline anyone for their sin,
    you consume their wealth like a moth
    surely everyone is but a breath.

12 “Hear my prayer, Lord,
    listen to my cry for help;
    do not be deaf to my weeping.
I dwell with you as a foreigner,
    a stranger, as all my ancestors were.
13 Look away from me, that I may enjoy life again
    before I depart and am no more.”

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 39:1 In Hebrew texts 39:1-13 is numbered 39:2-14.
  2. Psalm 39:5 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here and at the end of verse 11.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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