Psalm 49

The folly of trusting in riches.

For the Chief Musician. A Psalm of the sons of Korah.

49 Hear this, all ye peoples;
Give ear, all ye inhabitants of the world,
Both low and high,
Rich and poor together.
My mouth shall speak wisdom;
And the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.
I will incline mine ear to a parable:
I will open my dark saying upon the harp.
Wherefore should I fear in the days of evil,
When [a]iniquity at my heels compasseth me about?
They that trust in their wealth,
And boast themselves in the multitude of their riches;
None of them can by any means redeem his brother,
Nor give to God a ransom for him
(For the redemption of their life is costly,
And it faileth for ever),
That he should still live alway,
That he should not see [b]corruption.
10 For [c]he shall see it. Wise men die;
The fool and the brutish alike 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 being in honor abideth not:
He is like the beasts that perish.

13 This [d]their way is [e]their folly:
Yet after them men approve their sayings. Selah
14 They are appointed as a flock for Sheol;
Death shall be their shepherd:
And the upright shall have dominion over them in the morning;
And their [f]beauty shall be for Sheol to consume,
That there be no habitation for it.
15 But God will redeem my soul from the [g]power of Sheol;
For he will receive me. Selah
16 Be not thou afraid when one is made rich,
When the [h]glory of his house is increased:
17 For when he dieth he shall carry nothing away;
His glory shall not descend after him.
18 Though while he lived he blessed his soul
(And men praise thee, when thou doest well to thyself),
19 [i]He shall go to the generation of his fathers;
[j]They shall never see the light.
20 Man that is in honor, and understandeth not,
Is like the beasts that perish.


  1. Psalm 49:5 Or, the iniquity of them that would supplant me compasseth me about, Even of them that trust . . . riches?
  2. Psalm 49:9 Or, the pit
  3. Psalm 49:10 Or, he seeth that wise men etc.
  4. Psalm 49:13 Or, is the way of them that are foolish
  5. Psalm 49:13 Or, their confidence: and after etc.
  6. Psalm 49:14 Or, form
  7. Psalm 49:15 Hebrew hand.
  8. Psalm 49:16 Or, wealth
  9. Psalm 49:19 Hebrew Thou shalt go, or, It shall go.
  10. Psalm 49:19 Or, Who never more see