Ecclesiastes 8:3
New International Version
Do not be in a hurry to leave the king’s presence. Do not stand up for a bad cause, for he will do whatever he pleases.

New Living Translation
Don’t try to avoid doing your duty, and don’t stand with those who plot evil, for the king can do whatever he wants.

English Standard Version
Be not hasty to go from his presence. Do not take your stand in an evil cause, for he does whatever he pleases.

Berean Study Bible
Do not hasten to leave his presence, and do not persist in a bad cause, for he will do whatever he pleases.

King James Bible
Be not hasty to go out of his sight: stand not in an evil thing; for he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him.

New King James Version
Do not be hasty to go from his presence. Do not take your stand for an evil thing, for he does whatever pleases him.”

New American Standard Bible
Do not be in a hurry to leave him. Do not join in an evil matter, for he will do whatever he pleases.”

NASB 1995
“Do not be in a hurry to leave him. Do not join in an evil matter, for he will do whatever he pleases.”

NASB 1977
“Do not be in a hurry to leave him. Do not join in an evil matter, for he will do whatever he pleases.”

Amplified Bible
Do not be in a hurry to get out of his presence. Do not join in a malevolent matter, for the king will do whatever he pleases.

Christian Standard Bible
Do not be in a hurry; leave his presence, and don’t persist in a bad cause, since he will do whatever he wants.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Do not be in a hurry; leave his presence, and don’t persist in a bad cause, since he will do whatever he wants.

American Standard Version
Be not hasty to go out of his presence; persist not in an evil thing: for he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Go from before him and do not stand in an evil matter, because all that he will desire he will do

Brenton Septuagint Translation
Be not hasty; thou shalt go forth out of his presence: stand not in an evil matter; for he will do whatsoever he shall please,

Contemporary English Version
Don't quickly oppose the king or argue when he has already made up his mind.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Be not hasty to depart from his face, and do not continue in an evil work: for he will do all that pleaseth him:

English Revised Version
Be not hasty to go out of his presence; persist not in an evil thing: for he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him.

Good News Translation
The king can do anything he likes, so depart from his presence; don't stay in such a dangerous place.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Don't be in a hurry to leave the king's service. Don't take part in something evil, because he can do whatever he pleases.

International Standard Version
Don't be in a hurry to leave him, and don't persist in evil, for he does whatever he pleases.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Be not hasty to go out of his presence; stand not in an evil thing; for he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him.

Literal Standard Version
Do not be troubled at his presence, you may go, do not stand in an evil thing, for all that he pleases he does.

NET Bible
Do not rush out of the king's presence in haste--do not delay when the matter is unpleasant, for he can do whatever he pleases.

New Heart English Bible
Do not be hasty to go out of his presence. Do not persist in an evil thing, for he does whatever pleases him,

World English Bible
Don't be hasty to go out of his presence. Don't persist in an evil thing, for he does whatever pleases him,

Young's Literal Translation
Be not troubled at his presence, thou mayest go, stand not in an evil thing, for all that he pleaseth he doth.

Additional Translations ...
Context
Obey the King
2Keep the king’s command, I say, because of your oath before God. 3Do not hasten to leave his presence, and do not persist in a bad cause, for he will do whatever he pleases. 4For the king’s word is supreme, and who can say to him, “What are you doing?”…

Cross References
Genesis 47:9
"My travels have lasted 130 years," Jacob replied. "My years have been few and hard, and they have not matched the years of the travels of my fathers."

Ecclesiastes 10:4
If the ruler's temper flares against you, do not abandon your post, for calmness lays great offenses to rest.


Treasury of Scripture

Be not hasty to go out of his sight: stand not in an evil thing; for he does whatever pleases him.

not hasty

Ecclesiastes 10:4
If the spirit of the ruler rise up against thee, leave not thy place; for yielding pacifieth great offences.

Proverbs 14:29
He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly.

stand

1 Kings 1:50-52
And Adonijah feared because of Solomon, and arose, and went, and caught hold on the horns of the altar…

1 Kings 2:21-24
And she said, Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah thy brother to wife…

Isaiah 48:4
Because I knew that thou art obstinate, and thy neck is an iron sinew, and thy brow brass;

for

Proverbs 16:14,15
The wrath of a king is as messengers of death: but a wise man will pacify it…

Proverbs 30:31
A greyhound; an he goat also; and a king, against whom there is no rising up.

Daniel 4:35
And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?









(3) I believe the rendering of our version to be correct, though some have taken it, "Be not hasty: go out of his eight." The best commentary on this verse is Ecclesiastes 10:4, which gives the meaning, "When censured by the king, do not abandon the hope of retaining his favour, nor obstinately persist in what he condemns." I do not find adequate proof of the assertion of some commentators, that "go out of his sight" can mean "withdraw allegiance from him," and so that the "evil thing" means a rebellious conspiracy. The advice, "Be not hasty" to rebel, instead of "do not rebel," is inconsistent with the context.

Verse 3. - Further advice concerning political behavior. Be not hasty to go out of his (the king's) sight. Do not, from some hasty impulse, or induced by harsh treatment, cast off your allegiance to your liege lord. We have the phrase, "go away," in the sense of quitting of service or desertion of a duty, in Genesis 4:16; Hosea 11:2. So St. Peter urges servants to be subject unto their masters, "not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward" (1 Peter 2:18). Solomon might have given this advice to the Israelites who were ready to follow Jeroboam's lead; though they could have remained loyal to Rehoboam only from high religious motives. But it is better to bear even a heavy yoke than to rebel. The Septuagint has, "Be not hasty; thou shalt go from his presence" - which seems to mean, "Be not impatient, and all will be well." But the authorized rendering is correct (comp. Ecclesiastes 10:4). We may quote Mendelssohn's comment cited by Chance on Job 34:16, "This is a great rule in politics, that the people must have no power to pronounce judgment upon the conduct of a king, whether it be good or bad; for the king judges the people, and not the reverse; and if it were not for this rule, the country would never be quiet, and without rebels against the king and his law." Stand not in an evil thing; Vulgate, Neque permaneas in opere malo, "Persist not in an evil affair." But the verb here implies rather the engaging in a matter than continuing an undertaking already begun. The "affair" is conspiracy, insurrection; and Koheleth warns against entering upon and taking part in any such attempt. This seems to be the correct explanation of the clause; but it is, perhaps intentionally, ambiguous, and is capable of other interpretations. Thus Ginsburg, "Do not stand up (in a passion) because of an evil word." Others, "Obey not a sinful command," or "Hesitate not at an evil thing," i.e. if the king orders it. Wordsworth, referring to Psalm 1:1. renders, "Stand not in the way of sinners," which seems to be unsuitable to the context. The Septuagint gives, "Stand not in an evil word" (λόγῳ, perhaps "matter"). The reason for the injunction follows. For he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him. The irresponsible power of a despotic monarch is here signified, though the terms are applicable (as some, indeed, take them as alone appertaining) to God himself (but see Proverbs 20:2). The Septuagint combines with this clause the commencement of the following verse, "For he will do whatsover he pleases, even as a king using authority (ἐξουσιάζων)." Some manuscripts add λαλεῖ, "he speaks."

Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
Do not
אַל־ (’al-)
Adverb
Strong's 408: Not

hasten
תִּבָּהֵ֤ל (tib·bā·hêl)
Verb - Nifal - Imperfect - second person masculine singular
Strong's 926: To tremble inwardly, be, alarmed, agitated, to hasten anxiously

to leave
תֵּלֵ֔ךְ (tê·lêḵ)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - second person masculine singular
Strong's 1980: To go, come, walk

his presence,
מִפָּנָיו֙ (mip·pā·nāw)
Preposition-m | Noun - common plural construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 6440: The face

and do not
אַֽל־ (’al-)
Adverb
Strong's 408: Not

persist
תַּעֲמֹ֖ד (ta·‘ă·mōḏ)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - second person masculine singular
Strong's 5975: To stand, in various relations

in a bad
רָ֑ע (rā‘)
Adjective - masculine singular
Strong's 7451: Bad, evil

cause,
בְּדָבָ֣ר (bə·ḏā·ḇār)
Preposition-b | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 1697: A word, a matter, thing, a cause

for
כִּ֛י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's 3588: A relative conjunction

he will do
יַעֲשֶֽׂה׃ (ya·‘ă·śeh)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 6213: To do, make

whatever
כָּל־ (kāl-)
Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's 3605: The whole, all, any, every

he wants.
יַחְפֹּ֖ץ (yaḥ·pōṣ)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 2654: To incline to, to bend, to be pleased with, desire


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OT Poetry: Ecclesiastes 8:3 Don't be hasty to go out (Ecclesiast. Ec Ecc Eccles.)
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