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Ecclesiastes 12 Modern English Version (MEV)

12 Remember your Creator
    in the days of your youth,
before the difficult days come
    and the years arrive when you say,
    “I have no pleasure in them”:
before the sun, light,
    moon, and stars are darkened,
    and the clouds leave after the rain;
in the day when those watching the house tremble,
    and the strong men are bent over;
when the grinders cease because they are few,
    and those looking through the windows have dimmed eyes;
and the doors on the street are shut,
    and the sound of grinding is low;
and one rises up at the sound of a bird,
    and all the daughters of song are brought low;
when they are afraid of heights,
    even the terrors along the road;
the almond tree blossoms,
    the grasshopper drags itself along
    and desire fails,
because man goes to his eternal home,
    and the mourners go about the streets.

Remember your Creator before the cord of silver is snapped,
    or the bowl of gold smashed,
or the jar by the spring broken
    or the wheel at the cistern crushed.
The dust returns to the earth where it was,
    and the spirit returns to God who gave it.

It is all vanity, says the Preacher;
    all is vanity.

Epilogue

And in addition to being wise, the Preacher still taught the people knowledge, and he considered, sought out, and arranged many proverbs. 10 And the Preacher sought to discover words of delight, and to write in uprightness words of truth.

11 The words of the wise are like goads, and the collected sayings are like firmly embedded nails, given by one shepherd. 12 My son, beware of anything beyond these.

Of making many books there is no end, and much study is a weariness to the flesh.

13 Now all has been heard.
    Let us hear the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep His commandments,
    for this is the whole duty of man.
14 For God will bring every deed into judgment,
    including every secret thing,
    whether good or evil.

Modern English Version (MEV)

The Holy Bible, Modern English Version. Copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Published and distributed by Charisma House.

Ecclesiastes 12 New International Version (NIV)

12 Remember your Creator
    in the days of your youth,
before the days of trouble come
    and the years approach when you will say,
    “I find no pleasure in them”—
before the sun and the light
    and the moon and the stars grow dark,
    and the clouds return after the rain;
when the keepers of the house tremble,
    and the strong men stoop,
when the grinders cease because they are few,
    and those looking through the windows grow dim;
when the doors to the street are closed
    and the sound of grinding fades;
when people rise up at the sound of birds,
    but all their songs grow faint;
when people are afraid of heights
    and of dangers in the streets;
when the almond tree blossoms
    and the grasshopper drags itself along
    and desire no longer is stirred.
Then people go to their eternal home
    and mourners go about the streets.

Remember him—before the silver cord is severed,
    and the golden bowl is broken;
before the pitcher is shattered at the spring,
    and the wheel broken at the well,
and the dust returns to the ground it came from,
    and the spirit returns to God who gave it.

“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher.[a]
    “Everything is meaningless!

The Conclusion of the Matter

Not only was the Teacher wise, but he also imparted knowledge to the people. He pondered and searched out and set in order many proverbs. 10 The Teacher searched to find just the right words, and what he wrote was upright and true.

11 The words of the wise are like goads, their collected sayings like firmly embedded nails—given by one shepherd.[b] 12 Be warned, my son, of anything in addition to them.

Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body.

13 Now all has been heard;
    here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments,
    for this is the duty of all mankind.
14 For God will bring every deed into judgment,
    including every hidden thing,
    whether it is good or evil.

Footnotes:

  1. Ecclesiastes 12:8 Or the leader of the assembly; also in verses 9 and 10
  2. Ecclesiastes 12:11 Or Shepherd
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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