1 Listen to me, all you peoples,
all who in the whole world dwell.
2 Low and high, both rich and needy,
hear the message I will tell.
3 I will speak with understanding;
wisdom from the heart I'll preach.
4 I will listen to a proverb;
secrets with the harps I'll teach.
5 Why should I fear days of evil,
when the wicked hem me in -
6 Those who boast of their possessions?
by their trust in wealth they sin.
7 There is no one who is able
to redeem a soul from death;
None can pay to God the ransom
to prolong another's breath.
8 To redeem a life is costly-
none sufficient price can pay
9 So that one should live immortal,
free for ever from decay.
10 For we all can see life ending;
wise and foolish, all will die.
They must leave their wealth to others;
none can death's demand defy.
11 So for endless generations
in their tombs they will remain,
Though they owned, while they were living,
lands to which they gave their name.
12 Man despite his wealth is mortal;
like the beasts , he fades away.
13 Thus the self-assured will perish,
though renowned for what they say.
14 Death will feed upon their bodies;
just like sheep they meet their fate.
In the grave their forms will perish,
far from where they lived in state.
But the upright ones will rule them,
once the morning light has shone.
15 From the grave God will redeem me;
he will take me for his own.
16 Do not quake before a rich man,
though his fortune grows immense,
and his outward state increases-
17 for he will take nothing hence.
He will soon descend with nothing
of the splendour he possessed,
18 Though in life he prospered greatly
and they told him he was blessed.
19 He will go to join his fathers -
never see the light of day.
20 Though with wealth and no discernment
are like beasts that pass away.
lyrics from 'Sing Psalms'. Copyright Free Church of Scotland.