Ecclesiastes 1New Life Version (NLV)
Life Is of No Worth
1 These are the words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. 2 “It is of no use,” says the Preacher. “It is of no use! All is for nothing.”
3 What does a man get for all his work which he does under the sun? 4 People die and people are born, but the earth stays forever. 5 The sun rises and the sun sets, and travels in a hurry to the place where it rises. 6 The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north. It goes around and around, and returns again on its way. 7 All the rivers flow into the sea, yet the sea is not full. And they return again to the place from which the rivers flow. 8 All things are tiring. Man is not able to tell about them. The eye never has enough to see, and the ear is never filled with what it hears. 9 What has been is what will be. And what has been done is what will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun. 10 Is there anything of which one might say, “See, this is new”? It has already been there since long before us. 11 No one remembers the things that happened before. And no one will remember the things that will happen in the future among those who will come later.
Looking for Wisdom Is like Trying to Catch the Wind
12 I, the Preacher, have been king over Israel in Jerusalem. 13 And I set my mind to look for wisdom to learn about all that has been done under heaven. It is a hard work which God has given to the sons of men to be troubled with. 14 I have seen all the works which have been done under the sun. And see, it is all for nothing. It is like trying to catch the wind. 15 What is not straight cannot be made straight. What is not there cannot be numbered. 16 I said to myself, “I have received more wisdom than all who were over Jerusalem before me. My mind has seen much wisdom and much learning.” 17 And I set my mind to know wisdom and to know what is crazy and foolish. I saw that this also is like trying to catch the wind. 18 Because in much wisdom there is much trouble. And he who gets much learning gets much sorrow.