In this section Qoheleth condemns the competitive spirit (v. 4) while calling for a cooperative one (vv. 9-12). Either prompted by envy (v. 4) or habit (v. 8) the solitary worker may secure wealth, but he has neither friends nor family. His drive for wealth has virtually dehumanized him, robbing him of companionship.
Cooperation, on the other hand, provides for great productivity (v. 9). Further, companionship provides support for the person who physically falls or has a lapse in judgment (v. 10), warmth for a cold winter's night (v. 11), and protection against a thief (v. 12).
The danger of isolation is seen in the old king who enjoys position but is characterized as foolish because he has lost contact with his constituency. The youth, lacking position but possessing ability and energy, will supplant the old king (vv. 13-14). The emphasis here is one of “rags to riches.” But even this youth will go the way of the old king (vv. 15-16). He will lose favor with his constituency as his attractiveness fades. Qoheleth has given another example of chasing after the wind.
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.
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!