7 It is better to have ·respect [a good reputation/L name] than ·good [fine] ·perfume [oil]. The day of death is better than the day of birth. 2 It is better to go to a ·funeral [L house of mourning] than to a ·party [L drinking house]. ·We all must die [L It is everyone’s end], and everyone living should ·think about this [L take it to heart]. 3 ·Sorrow [or Anger] is better than laughter, and ·sadness has a good influence on you [in a troubled face the heart is made well]. 4 ·A wise person thinks about death [The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning], but ·a fool thinks only about having a good time [L the heart of fools is in a house of pleasure]. 5 It is better to ·be criticized by a [hear the rebuke of a] wise person than to ·be praised by a fool [L hear the song of fools]. 6 The laughter of fools is like the crackling of thorns ·in a cooking fire [L under the pot]. Both are useless [1:2].
7 Even wise people are fools if they let ·money change their thinking [L a bribe distort their understanding].
8 It is better to ·finish [end] something than to ·start [begin] it. It is better to be patient than to be proud. 9 Don’t ·become angry quickly [L be quick to anger in your spirit], because ·getting angry is foolish [L anger resides in the bosom of fools].
10 Don’t ·ask [L say], “Why ·was life better in the ‘good old days’ [L were the former days better than these]?” It is not ·wise [L from wisdom] to ask ·such questions [L this].
11 Wisdom is better when it comes with ·money [L an inheritance]. ·They both help those who are alive [L It is an advantage to those who see the sun]. 12 ·Wisdom is like money: they both help [L The protection/shade of wisdom is in/or like the protection/shade of money]. But wisdom is better, because it can ·save [give life to] whoever has it.
13 Look at ·what God has done [L the work/deeds of God]: ·No one [L Who can…?] straighten what he has bent [1:15]. 14 When life is good, enjoy it. But when life is hard, remember: God gives good times and hard times, and no one knows what tomorrow will bring.
It Is Impossible to Be Truly Good
15 In my useless [1:2] ·life [L days] I have seen both of these: I have seen ·good [righteous] people die ·in spite of their goodness [L in their righteousness] and ·evil [wicked] people live a long time in spite of their evil. 16 Don’t be ·too [overly] ·right [righteous; good], and don’t ·be too [or pretend to be] wise. Why ·destroy [ruin] yourself? 17 Don’t be ·too [overly] wicked, and don’t be foolish. Why die ·before [L when it is not] your time? 18 It is good to grab the one and not ·let go of [L relax your hand from] the other; those who ·respect [or are afraid of; 5:7; 7:18; 8:12, 13] God will hold them both.
19 Wisdom makes a person stronger than ten ·leaders [officials; rulers] in a city [9:13–16; Prov. 24:5–6].
21 Don’t ·listen [L give your heart] to everything people say, or you might hear your servant insulting you. 22 ·You know [L Your heart knows] that many times you have insulted others.
23 I ·used wisdom to test [L tested with/or by wisdom] all these things. I said, “I ·want to [or will] be wise,” but it was ·too hard for [L far from] me. 24 ·I cannot understand why things are as they are [L That which is, is far off]. It is ·too hard for anyone to understand [L deep, deep, who can find it?]. 25 ·I studied and tried very hard to find wisdom, to find some meaning for everything [L I and my heart turned to understand and to explore and to seek wisdom and the sum of things]. I learned that it is foolish to be evil, and it is crazy to act like a fool.
26 I found that ·some women [or women] are ·worse [L more bitter] than death and are ·as dangerous as traps [L a trap/snare]. Their ·love is like [L heart is] a net, and their ·arms hold men like [L hands are] chains. A man who pleases God will ·be saved from [escape] them, but ·a sinner [or someone who offends him] will be caught by them.
27 The ·Teacher [or Preacher; L Assembler; 1:1] says, “This is what I ·learned [L found]: ·I added all these things together to find some meaning for everything [L One to one to find the sum/scheme of things]. 28 While I was searching and not finding, I found one man among a thousand. But I did not find a woman among all these [C that is a good woman]. 29 One thing I have ·learned [L found]: God made people ·good [virtuous; upright], but they have ·found all kinds of ways to be bad [L sought out many devices].”
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.
Upgrade to remove banner ads and unlock new features!
For the best Bible Gateway experience, consider an upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus. For less than the cost of a latte each month, you'll get reduced banner ads and a huge digital Bible study library. Try it free for 30 days!