Psalm 90:3
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
You turn people back to dust, saying, "Return to dust, you mortals."

New Living Translation
You turn people back to dust, saying, "Return to dust, you mortals!"

English Standard Version
You return man to dust and say, “Return, O children of man!”

New American Standard Bible
You turn man back into dust And say, "Return, O children of men."

King James Bible
Thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
You return mankind to the dust, saying, "Return, descendants of Adam."

International Standard Version
You return people to dust merely by saying, "Return, you mortals!"

NET Bible
You make mankind return to the dust, and say, "Return, O people!"

New Heart English Bible
You turn man to destruction, saying, "Return, you children of men."

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Because you have turned man unto humility and you have said, “Return children of men.”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
You turn mortals back into dust and say, "Return, descendants of Adam."

JPS Tanakh 1917
Thou turnest man to contrition; And sayest: 'Return, ye children of men.'

New American Standard 1977
Thou dost turn man back into dust,
            And dost say, “Return, O children of men.”

Jubilee Bible 2000
Thou dost turn unto man until he is broken and thou saith, Become converted, ye sons of Adam.

King James 2000 Bible
You turn man to destruction; and say, Return, you children of men.

American King James Version
You turn man to destruction; and say, Return, you children of men.

American Standard Version
Thou turnest man to destruction, And sayest, Return, ye children of men.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Turn not man away to be brought low: and thou hast said: Be converted, O ye sons of men.

Darby Bible Translation
Thou makest [mortal] man to return to dust, and sayest, Return, children of men.

English Revised Version
Thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men.

Webster's Bible Translation
Thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men.

World English Bible
You turn man to destruction, saying, "Return, you children of men."

Young's Literal Translation
Thou turnest man unto a bruised thing, And sayest, Turn back, ye sons of men.
Study Bible
Lord, You have Been Our Dwelling Place
2Before the mountains were born Or You gave birth to the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God. 3You turn man back into dust And say, "Return, O children of men." 4For a thousand years in Your sight Are like yesterday when it passes by, Or as a watch in the night.…
Cross References
Genesis 3:19
By the sweat of your face You will eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return."

Numbers 26:65
For the LORD had said of them, "They shall surely die in the wilderness." And not a man was left of them, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.

Job 34:14
"If He should determine to do so, If He should gather to Himself His spirit and His breath,

Job 34:15
All flesh would perish together, And man would return to dust.

Psalm 104:29
You hide Your face, they are dismayed; You take away their spirit, they expire And return to their dust.
Treasury of Scripture

You turn man to destruction; and say, Return, you children of men.


Psalm 104:29 You hide your face, they are troubled: you take away their breath, …

Psalm 146:4 His breath goes forth, he returns to his earth; in that very day …

Genesis 3:19 In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread, till you return to …

Genesis 6:6,7 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it …

Numbers 14:35 I the LORD have said, I will surely do it to all this evil congregation, …

Job 12:10 In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.

Job 34:14,15 If he set his heart on man, if he gather to himself his spirit and his breath…

Ecclesiastes 12:7 Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit …

return ye children of men. Rather, Return ye children of Adam; to that dust out of which ye were originally formed

(3) Thou turnest . . .--Probably we must render, Thou turnest man to dust; and sayest, Turn, sons of Adam--i.e., one generation dies and another succeeds (see Psalm 104:29-30), the continuance of the race being regarded as distinctly due to Divine power as the Creation, to which there is probably allusion.

The LXX. suggest as the true reading, "Turn not man to dust, but say rather," &c.

Verse 3. - Thou turnest man to destruction; or, "to dust" (comp. Genesis 3:19). And sayest, Return, ye children of men; i.e. "return once more, and replenish the earth." There may be an allusion to the destruction of mankind by the Deluge, and the repeopling of the earth by the descendants of Noah, as Dr. Kay supposes; or the meaning may be that God is continually bringing one generation of men to an end. and then setting up another, having the same control over human life that he has over inanimate nature (ver. 2). Thou turnest man to destruction,.... Or to death, as the Targum, which is the destruction of man; not an annihilation of body or soul, but a dissolution of the union between them; the words may be rendered, "thou turnest man until he is broken" (b); and crumbled into dust; thou turnest him about in the world, and through a course of afflictions and diseases, and at last by old age, and however by death, returns him to his original, from whence he came, the dust of the earth, which he becomes again, Genesis 3:19 the grave may be meant by destruction:

and sayest, return, ye children of men, or "Adam"; from whom they all sprung, and in whom they all sinned, and so became subject to death; to these he says, when by diseases he threatens them with a dissolution, return by repentance, and live; and sometimes, when they are brought to the brink of the grave, he returns them from sickness to health, delivers them from the pit, and enlightens them with the light of the living, as he did Hezekiah: or this may refer to the resurrection of the dead, which will be by Christ, and by his voice calling the dead to return to life, to rise and come to judgment; though some understand this as descriptive of death, when by the divine order and command man returns to his original dust; thus the frailty of man is opposed to the eternity of God. Gussetius understands all this of God's bringing men to repentance, contrition, and conversion; and takes the sense to be,

"thou turnest till he becomes contrite, and sayest, be ye converted, ye sons of Adam;''

which he thinks (c) best agrees with the mind of the Apostle Peter, who quotes the following passage, 2 Peter 3:8. Some, as Arama observes, connect this with the following verse; though men live 1000 years, yet they are but as yesterday in the sight of God.

(b) "convertes hominem usque ad contritionem", Montanus; "donec conteratur", Musculus, Tigurine verion; "donee sit contritus", Vatablus; "ut sit contritus", Junius & Tremellius. (c) Ebr. Comment. p. 158. 3. to destruction—literally, "even to dust" (Ge 3:19), which is partly quoted in the last clause.90:1-6 It is supposed that this psalm refers to the sentence passed on Israel in the wilderness, Nu 14. The favour and protection of God are the only sure rest and comfort of the soul in this evil world. Christ Jesus is the refuge and dwelling-place to which we may repair. We are dying creatures, all our comforts in the world are dying comforts, but God is an ever-living God, and believers find him so. When God, by sickness, or other afflictions, turns men to destruction, he thereby calls men to return unto him to repent of their sins, and live a new life. A thousand years are nothing to God's eternity: between a minute and a million of years there is some proportion; between time and eternity there is none. All the events of a thousand years, whether past or to come, are more present to the Eternal Mind, than what was done in the last hour is to us. And in the resurrection, the body and soul shall both return and be united again. Time passes unobserved by us, as with men asleep; and when it is past, it is as nothing. It is a short and quickly-passing life, as the waters of a flood. Man does but flourish as the grass, which, when the winter of old age comes, will wither; but he may be mown down by disease or disaster.
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