Ecclesiastes 7-11New King James Version (NKJV)
The Value of Practical Wisdom
7 A good name is better than precious ointment,
And the day of death than the day of one’s birth;
5 It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise
8 The end of a thing is better than its beginning;
11 Wisdom is good with an inheritance,
13 Consider the work of God;
15 I have seen everything in my days of vanity:
There is a just man who perishes in his righteousness,
19 Wisdom strengthens the wise
20 For there is not a just man on earth who does good
21 Also do not take to heart everything people say,
23 All this I have proved by wisdom.
27 Here is what I have found,” says the Preacher,
8 Who is like a wise man?
Obey Authorities for God’s Sake
2 I say, “Keep the king’s commandment for the sake of your oath to God. 3 Do not be hasty to go from his presence. Do not take your stand for an evil thing, for he does whatever pleases him.”
4 Where the word of a king is, there is power;
9 All this I have seen, and applied my heart to every work that is done under the sun: There is a time in which one man rules over another to his own hurt.
Death Comes to All
10 Then I saw the wicked buried, who had come and gone from the place of holiness, and they were forgotten[a] in the city where they had so done. This also is vanity. 11 Because the sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil. 12 Though a sinner does evil a hundred times, and his days are prolonged, yet I surely know that it will be well with those who fear God, who fear before Him. 13 But it will not be well with the wicked; nor will he prolong his days, which are as a shadow, because he does not fear before God.
14 There is a vanity which occurs on earth, that there are just men to whom it happens according to the work of the wicked; again, there are wicked men to whom it happens according to the work of the righteous. I said that this also is vanity.
15 So I commended enjoyment, because a man has nothing better under the sun than to eat, drink, and be merry; for this will remain with him in his labor all the days of his life which God gives him under the sun.
16 When I applied my heart to know wisdom and to see the business that is done on earth, even though one sees no sleep day or night, 17 then I saw all the work of God, that a man cannot find out the work that is done under the sun. For though a man labors to discover it, yet he will not find it; moreover, though a wise man attempts to know it, he will not be able to find it.
9 For I considered all this in my heart, so that I could declare it all: that the righteous and the wise and their works are in the hand of God. People know neither love nor hatred by anything they see before them. 2 All things come alike to all:
One event happens to the righteous and the wicked;
3 This is an evil in all that is done under the sun: that one thing happens to all. Truly the hearts of the sons of men are full of evil; madness is in their hearts while they live, and after that they go to the dead. 4 But for him who is joined to all the living there is hope, for a living dog is better than a dead lion.
5 For the living know that they will die;
7 Go, eat your bread with joy,
9 Live joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of your vain life which He has given you under the sun, all your days of vanity; for that is your portion in life, and in the labor which you perform under the sun.
10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going.
11 I returned and saw under the sun that—
The race is not to the swift,
Wisdom Superior to Folly
13 This wisdom I have also seen under the sun, and it seemed great to me: 14 There was a little city with few men in it; and a great king came against it, besieged it, and built great snares[c] around it. 15 Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city. Yet no one remembered that same poor man.
16 Then I said:
“Wisdom is better than strength.
10 Dead flies putrefy[d] the perfumer’s ointment,
5 There is an evil I have seen under the sun,
8 He who digs a pit will fall into it,
11 A serpent may bite when it is not charmed;
16 Woe to you, O land, when your king is a child,
20 Do not curse the king, even in your thought;
The Value of Diligence
11 Cast your bread upon the waters,
3 If the clouds are full of rain,
5 As you do not know what is the way of the wind,[e]
7 Truly the light is sweet,
Seek God in Early Life
9 Rejoice, O young man, in your youth,
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