Ecclesiastes 8Expanded Bible (EXB)
Obey the King
8 ·No one [L Who…?] is like the wise person
2 ·Obey [Keep; or I obey/keep] the king’s command, because ·you made a promise [of your oath] to God. 3 ·Don’t be too quick to leave the king [or You should leave his presence]. Don’t ·support something that is wrong [persist in an evil matter], because the king does whatever he ·pleases [wants]. 4 What the king says is ·law [supreme]; no one ·tells him what to do [L says to him, “What are you doing?].
5 Whoever obeys the king’s command ·will be safe [experiences no harm/evil].
Justice, Rewards, and Punishment
9 I saw all of this as I ·considered [L gave my heart to] all that is done here ·on earth [L under the sun; 1:3]. Sometimes people harm those they control. 10 I saw ·the funerals of evil people [L the wicked buried and departed] who used to go in and out of the holy place [C the Temple]. They were ·honored [praised] in the same towns where they had done evil. This is useless [1:2], too [C it is not fair that the wicked thrive in life and are praised after they die].
11 When ·evil people are not punished [L the sentence for an evil deed is not carried out] right away, ·it makes others want to do evil, too [L the human heart is filled with evildoing]. 12 Though a sinner might do a hundred evil things and ·might live a long time [L their days are lengthened], I know it will be better for those who ·honor God [L fear God because they fear him]. 13 I also know it will not go well for evil people, because they do not ·honor [fear] God. Like a shadow, ·they will not last [L their days will not be lengthened]. 14 Sometimes something useless [1:2] happens on earth. ·Bad things happen to good people [L There are righteous people who are treated as if they did wicked deeds], and ·good things happen to bad people [L wicked people who are treated as if they did righteous deeds]. I say that this is also useless [1:2]. 15 So I ·decided it was more important to enjoy life [commended/praised pleasure]. ·The best that people can do [L There is nothing better] ·here on earth [L under the sun; 1:3] ·is [or than] to eat, drink, and ·enjoy life [have pleasure], because these joys will help them do the ·hard work [toil] God gives them ·here on earth [L under the sun; 2:24–26; 3:12–14, 22; 5:18–20; 9:7–10; C the little pleasures are distractions from the meaningless world].
We Cannot Understand All God Does
16 I ·tried to understand [L gave my heart to know] all that happens on earth. ·I saw how busy people are, working day and night and hardly ever sleeping [L No one sleeps day or night]. 17 I also saw all that God has done. Nobody can ·understand [comprehend; L find] what God does ·here on earth [L under the sun; 1:3]. No matter how hard people try to ·understand [L find] it, they cannot. Even if wise people say they understand, they cannot; no one can really ·understand [L find] it.
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.
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.
It looks like you’re already subscribed to Bible Gateway Plus! To manage your subscription, visit your Bible Gateway account settings.
Now that you've created a Bible Gateway account, upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus, the ultimate online Bible reading & study experience!
Bible Gateway Plus equips you to answer the toughest questions about faith, God, and the Bible. There's no software to install; it's all integrated seamlessly into your Bible Gateway experience. Try it free for 30 days!
Three easy steps to start your free trial subscription to Bible Gateway Plus.