The Folly of Trusting in Riches

491 Give attention to this, all you peoples; let your ears be open, all you who are living in the world. 2 High and low together, the poor, and those who have wealth. 3 From my mouth will come words of wisdom; and in the thoughts of my heart will be knowledge. 4 I will put my teaching into a story; I will make my dark sayings clear with music. 5 What cause have I for fear in the days of evil, when the evil-doing of those who are working for my downfall is round about me?

6 Even of those whose faith is in their wealth, and whose hearts are lifted up because of their stores. 7 Truly, no man may get back his soul for a price, or give to God the payment for himself; 8 (Because it takes a great price to keep his soul from death, and man is not able to give it.) 9 So that he might have eternal life, and never see the underworld. 10 For he sees that wise men come to their end, and foolish persons of low behaviour come to destruction together, letting their wealth go to others. 11 The place of the dead is their house for ever, and their resting-place through all generations; those who come after them give their names to their lands. 12 But man, like the animals, does not go on for ever; he comes to an end like the beasts. 13 This is the way of the foolish; their silver is for those who come after them, and their children get the pleasure of their gold. (Selah.) 14 Death will give them their food like sheep; the underworld is their fate and they will go down into it; their flesh is food for worms; their form is wasted away; the underworld is their resting-place for ever.

15 But God will get back my soul; for he will take me from the power of death. (Selah.) 16 Have no fear when wealth comes to a man, and the glory of his house is increased; 17 For at his death, he will take nothing away; his glory will not go down after him. 18 Though he might have pride in his soul in his life-time, and men will give you praise if you do well for yourself, 19 He will go to the generation of his fathers; he will not see the light again. 20 Man, like the animals, does not go on for ever; he comes to an end like the beasts.

God Is the Judge

501 The God of gods, even the Lord, has sent out his voice, and the earth is full of fear; from the coming up of the sun to its going down. 2 From Zion, most beautiful of places, God has sent out his light. 3 Our God will come, and will not keep quiet; with fire burning before him, and storm-winds round him. 4 His voice will go out to the heavens and to the earth, for the judging of his people: 5 Let my saints come together to me; those who have made an agreement with me by offerings. 6 And let the heavens make clear his righteousness; for God himself is the judge. (Selah.)

7 Give ear, O my people, to my words; O Israel, I will be a witness against you; I am God, even your God. 8 I will not take up a cause against you because of your offerings, or because of your burned offerings, which are ever before me. 9 I will take no ox out of your house, or he-goats from your flocks; 10 For every beast of the woodland is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills. 11 I see all the birds of the mountains, and the beasts of the field are mine. 12 If I had need of food, I would not give you word of it; for the earth is mine and all its wealth. 13 Am I to take the flesh of the ox for my food, or the blood of goats for my drink? 14 Make an offering of praise to God; keep the agreements which you have made with the Most High; 15 Let your voice come up to me in the day of trouble; I will be your saviour, so that you may give glory to me.

16 But to the sinner, God says, What are you doing, talking of my laws, or taking the words of my agreement in your mouth? 17 Seeing that you have no desire for my teaching, turning your back on my words. 18 When you saw a thief, you were in agreement with him, and you were joined with those who took other men's wives. 19 You have given your mouth to evil, your tongue to words of deceit. 20 You say evil of your brother; you make false statements against your mother's son. 21 These things have you done, and I said nothing; it seemed to you that I was such a one as yourself; but I will make a protest against you, and put them in order before your eyes. 22 Now keep this in mind, you who have no memory of God, for fear that you may be crushed under my hand, with no one to give you help: 23 Whoever makes an offering of praise gives glory to me; and to him who is upright in his ways I will make clear the salvation of God.


11 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, an Apostle by the selection of God, given authority as a preacher of the good news, 2 Of which God had given word before by his prophets in the holy Writings, 3 About his Son who, in the flesh, came from the family of David, 4 But was marked out as Son of God in power by the Holy Spirit through the coming to life again of the dead; Jesus Christ our Lord, 5 Through whom grace has been given to us, sending us out to make disciples to the faith among all nations, for his name: 6 Among whom you in the same way have been marked out to be disciples of Jesus Christ: 7 To all those who are in Rome, loved by God, marked out as saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul's Desire to Visit Rome

8 First of all, I give praise to my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because news of your faith has gone into all the world. 9 For God is my witness, whose servant I am in spirit in the good news of his Son, that you are at all times in my memory and in my prayers, 10 And that I am ever making prayers that God will give me a good journey to you. 11 For I have a strong desire to see you, and to give you some grace of the spirit, so that you may be made strong; 12 That is to say, that all of us may be comforted together by the faith which is in you and in me. 13 You may be certain, my brothers, that it has frequently been in my mind to come to you (but till now I was kept from it), so that I might have some fruit from you in the same way as I have had it from the other nations. 14 I have a debt to Greeks and to the nations outside; to the wise and to those who have no learning. 15 For which reason I have the desire, as far as I am able, to give the knowledge of the good news to you who are in Rome.

The Power of the Gospel

16 For I have no feeling of shame about the good news, because it is the power of God giving salvation to everyone who has faith, to the Jew first, and then to the Greek. 17 For in it there is the revelation of the righteousness of God from faith to faith: as it is said in the holy Writings, The man who does righteousness will be living by his faith.

The Guilt of Mankind

18 For there is a revelation of the wrath of God from heaven against all the wrongdoing and evil thoughts of men who keep down what is true by wrongdoing;

19 Because the knowledge of God may be seen in them, God having made it clear to them. 20 For from the first making of the world, those things of God which the eye is unable to see, that is, his eternal power and existence, are fully made clear, he having given the knowledge of them through the things which he has made, so that men have no reason for wrongdoing: 21 Because, having the knowledge of God, they did not give glory to God as God, and did not give praise, but their minds were full of foolish things, and their hearts, being without sense, were made dark. 22 Seeming to be wise, they were in fact foolish, 23 And by them the glory of the eternal God was changed and made into the image of man who is not eternal, and of birds and beasts and things which go on the earth. 24 For this reason God gave them up to the evil desires of their hearts, working shame in their bodies with one another: 25 Because by them the true word of God was changed into that which is false, and they gave worship and honour to the thing which is made, and not to him who made it, to whom be blessing for ever. So be it. 26 For this reason God gave them up to evil passions, and their women were changing the natural use into one which is unnatural: 27 And in the same way the men gave up the natural use of the woman and were burning in their desire for one another, men doing shame with men, and getting in their bodies the right reward of their evil-doing. 28 And because they had not the mind to keep God in their knowledge, God gave them up to an evil mind, to do those things which are not right; 29 Being full of all wrongdoing, evil, desire for the goods of others, hate, envy, putting to death, fighting, deceit, cruel ways, evil talk, and false statements about others; 30 Hated by God, full of pride, without respect, full of loud talk, given to evil inventions, not honouring father or mother, 31 Without knowledge, not true to their undertakings, unkind, having no mercy: 32 Who, though they have knowledge of the law of God, that the fate of those who do these things is death, not only go on doing these things themselves, but give approval to those who do them.