Ecclesiastes 7 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
7 A good name is better than fine perfume,
14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity, consider: God has made the one as well as the other, so that man cannot discover anything that will come after him.
15 In my futile life[a] I have seen everything: there is a righteous man who perishes in spite of his righteousness, and there is a wicked man who lives long in spite of his evil. 16 Don’t be excessively righteous, and don’t be overly wise. Why should you destroy yourself? 17 Don’t be excessively wicked, and don’t be foolish. Why should you die before your time? 18 It is good that you grasp the one and do not let the other slip from your hand. For the one who fears God will end up with both of them.
19 Wisdom makes the wise man stronger
21 Don’t pay attention[b] to everything people say, or you may hear your servant cursing you, 22 for you know that many times you yourself have cursed others.
What the Teacher Found
23 I have tested all this by wisdom. I resolved, “I will be wise,” but it was beyond me. 24 What exists is beyond reach and very deep. Who can discover it? 25 I turned my thoughts to know, explore, and seek wisdom and an explanation for things, and to know that wickedness is stupidity and folly is madness. 26 And I find more bitter than death the woman who is a trap, her heart a net, and her hands chains. The one who pleases God will escape her, but the sinner will be captured by her. 27 “Look,” says the Teacher, “I have discovered this by adding one thing to another to find out the explanation, 28 which my soul continually searches for but does not find: among a thousand people I have found one true man, but among all these I have not found a true woman. 29 Only see this: I have discovered that God made people upright, but they pursued many schemes.”