4 Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun:
I saw the tears of the oppressed— and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors— and they have no comforter. 2 And I declared that the dead, who had already died, are happier than the living, who are still alive. 3 But better than both is the one who has never been born, who has not seen the evil that is done under the sun.
4 And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one person’s envy of another. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
5 Fools fold their hands and ruin themselves. 6 Better one handful with tranquillity than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind.
7 Again I saw something meaningless under the sun:
8 There was a man all alone; he had neither son nor brother. There was no end to his toil, yet his eyes were not content with his wealth. “For whom am I toiling,” he asked, “and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?” This too is meaningless— a miserable business!
9 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: 10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. 11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? 12 Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Advancement Is Meaningless
13 Better a poor but wise youth than an old but foolish king who no longer knows how to heed a warning.14 The youth may have come from prison to the kingship, or he may have been born in poverty within his kingdom.15 I saw that all who lived and walked under the sun followed the youth, the king’s successor.16 There was no end to all the people who were before them. But those who came later were not pleased with the successor. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
2 He swore an oath to the Lord, he made a vow to the Mighty One of Jacob: 3 “I will not enter my house or go to my bed, 4 I will allow no sleep to my eyes or slumber to my eyelids, 5 till I find a place for the Lord, a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob.”
6 We heard it in Ephrathah, we came upon it in the fields of Jaar:[a] 7 “Let us go to his dwelling place, let us worship at his footstool, saying, 8 ‘Arise, Lord, and come to your resting place, you and the ark of your might. 9 May your priests be clothed with your righteousness; may your faithful people sing for joy.’”
10 For the sake of your servant David, do not reject your anointed one.
11 The Lord swore an oath to David, a sure oath he will not revoke: “One of your own descendants I will place on your throne. 12 If your sons keep my covenant and the statutes I teach them, then their sons will sit on your throne for ever and ever.”
13 For the Lord has chosen Zion, he has desired it for his dwelling, saying, 14 “This is my resting place for ever and ever; here I will sit enthroned, for I have desired it. 15 I will bless her with abundant provisions; her poor I will satisfy with food. 16 I will clothe her priests with salvation, and her faithful people will ever sing for joy.
17 “Here I will make a horn[b] grow for David and set up a lamp for my anointed one. 18 I will clothe his enemies with shame, but his head will be adorned with a radiant crown.”
Psalm 132:6Or heard of it in Ephrathah, / we found it in the fields of Jearim. (See 1 Chron. 13:5,6) (And no quotation marks around verses 7-9)
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