1: Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart.
2: But as for me, my feet were almost gone. My steps had nearly slipped.
3: For I was envious of the arrogant, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4: For there are no struggles in their death, but their strength is firm.
5: They are free from burdens of men, neither are they plagued like other men.
6: Therefore pride is like a chain around their neck. Violence covers them like a garment.
7: Their eyes bulge with fat. Their minds pass the limits of conceit.
8: They scoff and speak with malice. In arrogance, they threaten oppression.
9: They have set their mouth in the heavens. Their tongue walks through the earth.
10: Therefore their people return to them, and they drink up waters of abundance.
11: They say, "How does God know? Is there knowledge in the Most High?"
12: Behold, these are the wicked. Being always at ease, they increase in riches.
13: Surely in vain I have cleansed my heart, and washed my hands in innocence,
14: For all day long have I been plagued, and punished every morning.
15: If I had said, "I will speak thus"; behold, I would have betrayed the generation of your children.
16: When I tried to understand this, it was too painful for me;
17: Until I entered God's sanctuary, and considered their latter end.
18: Surely you set them in slippery places. You throw them down to destruction.
19: How they are suddenly destroyed! They are completely swept away with terrors.
20: As a dream when one wakes up, so, Lord, when you awake, you will despise their fantasies.
21: For my soul was grieved. I was embittered in my heart.
22: I was so senseless and ignorant. I was a brute beast before you.
23: Nevertheless, I am continually with you. You have held my right hand.
24: You will guide me with your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
25: Whom do I have in heaven? There is no one on earth whom I desire besides you.
26: My flesh and my heart fails, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
27: For, behold, those who are far from you shall perish. You have destroyed all those who are unfaithful to you.
28: But it is good for me to come close to God. I have made the Lord Yahweh my refuge, that I may tell of all your works. Psalm 74 A contemplation by Asaph.