1 For the music director, a psalm by the Korahites. Listen to this, all you nations! Pay attention, all you inhabitants of the world! 2 Pay attention, all you people, both rich and poor! 3 I will declare a wise saying; I will share my profound thoughts. 4 I will learn a song that imparts wisdom; I will then sing my insightful song to the accompaniment of a harp.
5 Why should I be afraid in times of trouble, when the sinful deeds of deceptive men threaten to overwhelm me? 6 They trust in their wealth and boast in their great riches. 7 Certainly a man cannot rescue his brother; he cannot pay God an adequate ransom price 8 (the ransom price for a human life is too high, and people go to their final destiny), 9 so that he might continue to live forever and not experience death.
10 Surely one sees that even wise people die; fools and spiritually insensitive people all pass away and leave their wealth to others. 11 Their grave becomes their permanent residence, their eternal dwelling place. They name their lands after themselves, 12 but, despite their wealth, people do not last, they are like animals that perish.
13 This is the destiny of fools, and of those who approve of their philosophy. (Selah) 14 They will travel to Sheol like sheep, with death as their shepherd. The godly will rule over them when the day of vindication dawns; Sheol will consume their bodies and they will no longer live in impressive houses. 15 But God will rescue my life from the power of Sheol; certainly he will pull me to safety. (Selah)
16 Do not be afraid when a man becomes rich and his wealth multiplies! 17 For he will take nothing with him when he dies; his wealth will not follow him down into the grave. 18 He pronounces this blessing on himself while he is alive: "May men praise you, for you have done well!" 19 But he will join his ancestors; they will never again see the light of day. 20 Wealthy people do not understand; they are like animals that perish.