Psalm 39
Contemporary English Version

(A psalm by David for Jeduthun, the music leader.)

A Prayer for Forgiveness

1I told myself, “I'll be careful

not to sin by what I say,

and I'll muzzle my mouth

when evil people are near.”

2I kept completely silent,

but it did no good,+

and I hurt even worse.

3I felt a fire burning inside,

and the more I thought,

the more it burned,

until at last I said:

4“Please, Lord,

show me my future.

Will I soon be gone?

5You made my life short,

so brief that the time

means nothing to you.

“Human life is but a breath,

6and it disappears

like a shadow.

Our struggles are senseless;

we store up more and more,

without ever knowing

who will get it all.

7“What am I waiting for?

I depend on you, Lord!

8Save me from my sins.

Don't let fools sneer at me.

9You treated me like this,

and I kept silent,

not saying a word.

10“Won't you stop punishing me?

You have worn me down.

11You punish us severely

because of our sins.

Like a moth, you destroy

what we treasure most.

We are as frail as a breath.

12“Listen, Lord, to my prayer!

My eyes are flooded with tears,

as I pray to you.

I am merely a stranger

visiting in your home

as my ancestors did.

13Stop being angry with me

and let me smile again

before I am dead and gone.”


39.2 but … good: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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Psalm 38
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