Obey Rulers

Who is like the wise person and who knows the meaning of a matter? A person’s wisdom (A)illuminates his face and makes his (B)stern face [a]brighten up.

I say, “Keep the [b]command of the king because of the (C)oath [c]before God. Do not be in a hurry [d](D)to leave him. Do not join in an evil matter, for he will do whatever he pleases.” Since the word of the king is authoritative, (E)who will say to him, “What are you doing?”

One who (F)keeps a royal command (G)experiences no [e]trouble, for a wise heart knows the proper time and procedure. For (H)there is a proper time and procedure for every delight, though a person’s trouble is heavy upon him. If no one (I)knows what will happen, who can tell him when it will happen? (J)No one has authority over the wind to restrain the wind, nor authority over the day of death; and there is no military discharge in the time of war, and (K)evil will not save [f]those who practice it. All this I have seen, and have applied my [g]mind to every deed that has been done under the sun at a time when one person has exercised (L)authority over another person to his detriment.

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Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 8:1 Or change
  2. Ecclesiastes 8:2 Lit mouth
  3. Ecclesiastes 8:2 Lit of
  4. Ecclesiastes 8:3 Lit to go out from his presence
  5. Ecclesiastes 8:5 Lit evil thing
  6. Ecclesiastes 8:8 Lit its possessors
  7. Ecclesiastes 8:9 Lit heart