Ecclesiastes 1 Common English Bible (CEB)
1 The words of the Teacher of the Assembly,[a] David’s son, king in Jerusalem:
2 Perfectly pointless,[b] says the Teacher, perfectly pointless.
Some things are inevitable
3 What do people gain from all the hard work
There’s nothing new under the sun. 10 People may say about something: “Look at this! It’s new!” But it was already around for ages before us. 11 There’s no remembrance of things in the past, nor of things to come in the future. Neither will there be any remembrance among those who come along in the future.
The Teacher’s quest
12 I am the Teacher. I was king over Israel in Jerusalem.
13 I applied my mind to investigate and to explore by wisdom all that happens under heaven. It’s an unhappy obsession that God has given to human beings.
14 When I observed all that happens under the sun, I realized that everything is pointless, a chasing after wind.
15 What’s crooked can’t be straightened;
16 I said to myself, Look here, I have grown much wiser than any who ruled over Jerusalem before me. My mind has absorbed great wisdom and knowledge. 17 But when I set my mind to understand wisdom, and also to understand madness and folly, I realized that this too was just wind chasing.