1 Hear this, all ye peoples; give ear, all ye inhabitants of the world,
2 Both low and high, rich and poor together.
3 My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be understanding.
4 I will incline mine ear to a parable; I will open my dark saying upon the harp.
5 Wherefore should I fear in the days of evil, when the iniquity of my supplanters compasseth me about,
6 Of them that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches?
7 No man can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him–
8 For too costly is the redemption of their soul, and must be let alone for ever–
9 That he should still live alway, that he should not see the pit.
10 For he seeth that wise men die, the fool and the brutish together perish, and leave their wealth to others.
11 Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever, and their dwelling-places to all generations; they call their lands after their own names.
12 But man abideth not in honour; he is like the beasts that perish.
13 This is the way of them that are foolish, and of those who after them approve their sayings. Selah
14 Like sheep they are appointed for the nether-world; death shall be their shepherd; and the upright shall have dominion over them in the morning; and their form shall be for the nether-world to wear away, that there be no habitation for it.
15 But God will redeem my soul from the power of the nether-world; for He shall receive me. Selah
16 Be not thou afraid when one waxeth rich, when the wealth of his house is increased;
17 For when he dieth he shall carry nothing away; his wealth shall not descend after him.
18 Though while he lived he blessed his soul: 'Men will praise thee, when thou shalt do well to thyself';
19 It shall go to the generation of his fathers; they shall never see the light.
20 Man that is in honour understandeth not; he is like the beasts that perish.