Ecclesiastes 6International Standard Version (ISV)
Enjoyment of Life as a Gift from God
6 There exists another misfortune that I have observed on earth, and it is a heavy burden upon human beings: 2 a man to whom God gives wealth, riches, and honor, so that he lacks none of his heart’s desires—but God does not give him the capability to enjoy them. Instead, a stranger consumes them. This is pointless and a grievous affliction.
3 A man might father a hundred children,[a] and live for many years, so that the length of his life[b] is long—but if his life does not overflow with goodness, and he doesn’t receive a proper[c] burial, I maintain that stillborn children[d] are better off than he is, 4 because stillborn children[e] arrive in pointlessness, leave in darkness, and their names are covered in darkness. 5 Furthermore, though they never saw the sun nor learned anything,[f] they are more content than the other. 6 Even if he lives a thousand years twice over without experiencing the best—aren’t all of them going to the same place?
7 Every person works for his own self-interests,[g] but his desires remain unsatisfied. 8 For what advantage has the wise person over the fool? What advantage does the poor man have in knowing how to face life?[h] 9 It is better to focus on what you can see than to meander after your self-interest; this also is pointless and a chasing after wind.
10 Whatever exists has been named already;[i] people know what it means[j] to be human— and a person cannot defeat one who is more powerful than he. 11 Because many words lead to pointlessness, how do people benefit from this?
12 Who knows what is best for people in this life, every day of their pointless lives that they pass through[k] like a shadow? Who informs people on earth what will come along after them?
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
Want to get the most out of Bible Gateway? Find out why Bible Gateway Plus is the ultimate toolkit for anyone seeking to grow closer to the Word. For less than the cost of a latte, Plus membership gives you access to a complete digital Bible study library and reduced banner ads. Try it free for 30 days!