Ecclesiastes 7
International Standard VersionEnglish Standard Version
1A good name exceeds the value of fine perfume, and the day of someone's death exceeds the value of the day of his birth.1A good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death than the day of birth.
2It's better to attend a funeral than to attend a banquet, for everyone dies eventually, and the living will take this to heart.2It is better to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting, for this is the end of all mankind, and the living will lay it to heart.
3Sorrow is better than laughter, because the heart is made better through trouble.3Sorrow is better than laughter, for by sadness of face the heart is made glad.
4For the wise person thinks carefully when in mourning, but fools focus their thoughts on pleasure.4The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
5It is better to listen to a wise person's rebuke than to listen to the praise of fools.5It is better for a man to hear the rebuke of the wise than to hear the song of fools.
6For as thorns burn to heat a pot, so also is the laughter of the fool— even this is pointless.6For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fools; this also is vanity.
7Unjust gain makes the wise foolish, and a bribe corrupts the heart.7Surely oppression drives the wise into madness, and a bribe corrupts the heart.
8The conclusion of something is better than its beginning, and a patient attitude is more valuable than a proud one. 8Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
9Never be in a hurry to become internally angry, since anger settles down in the lap of fools.9Be not quick in your spirit to become angry, for anger lodges in the heart of fools.
10Never ask "Why does the past seem so much better than now?" because this question does not come from wisdom.10Say not, “Why were the former days better than these?” For it is not from wisdom that you ask this.
11Wise use of possessions is good; it brings benefit to the living. 11Wisdom is good with an inheritance, an advantage to those who see the sun.
12Indeed, wisdom gives protection, just like money does, but it's better to know that wisdom gives life, to those who have mastered it.12For the protection of wisdom is like the protection of money, and the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the life of him who has it.
13Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent?13Consider the work of God: who can make straight what he has made crooked?
14When times are good, be joyful; when times are bad, consider this: God made the one as well as the other, so people won't seek anything outside of his best.14In the day of prosperity be joyful, and in the day of adversity consider: God has made the one as well as the other, so that man may not find out anything that will be after him.
15I have seen it all during my pointless life: both a righteous person who dies while he is righteous, and a wicked person who lives to an old age, while remaining wicked. 15In my vain life I have seen everything. There is a righteous man who perishes in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man who prolongs his life in his evildoing.
16Do not be overly righteous, nor be overly wise. Why be self-destructive?16Be not overly righteous, and do not make yourself too wise. Why should you destroy yourself?
17Do not excel at wickedness, nor be a fool. Why die before your time?17Be not overly wicked, neither be a fool. Why should you die before your time?
18It is good for you to grab hold of this and not let go, because whoever fears God will escape all of these extremes. 18It is good that you should take hold of this, and from that withhold not your hand, for the one who fears God shall come out from both of them.
19Wisdom given as strength to a wise person is better than having ten powerful men in the city.19Wisdom gives strength to the wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.
20For there is not a single righteous man on earth who practices good and does not sin.20Surely there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins.
21Don't listen to everything that is spoken— you may hear your servant cursing you,21Do not take to heart all the things that people say, lest you hear your servant cursing you.
22since you also know how often you have cursed others.22Your heart knows that many times you yourself have cursed others.
23I used my wisdom to test all of this. I said, "I want to be wise," but it was beyond me.23All this I have tested by wisdom. I said, “I will be wise,” but it was far from me.
24Whatever it is, it's far off and most profound. Who can attain it?24That which has been is far off, and deep, very deep; who can find it out?
25I committed myself to understand, to learn, to search for wisdom and explanations, and to understand both the evil that is foolishness and the stupidity that is delusion.25I turned my heart to know and to search out and to seek wisdom and the scheme of things, and to know the wickedness of folly and the foolishness that is madness.
26I discovered for myself a bitterness that surpasses that of death: the woman whose heart is full of snares and nets, whose hands are chains of bondage. Whoever pleases God will escape from her, but the transgressor will be trapped by her.26And I find something more bitter than death: the woman whose heart is snares and nets, and whose hands are fetters. He who pleases God escapes her, but the sinner is taken by her.
27"Look at this," says the Teacher. "Linking one thing to another, I reached this conclusion:27Behold, this is what I found, says the Preacher, while adding one thing to another to find the scheme of things—
28Among the things I seek but have not found: one man among a thousand I did find, but I have not found one woman to be wise among all these.28which my soul has sought repeatedly, but I have not found. One man among a thousand I found, but a woman among all these I have not found.
29I have discovered only this: God made human beings for righteousness, but they seek many alternatives."29See, this alone I found, that God made man upright, but they have sought out many schemes.
The Holy Bible: International Standard Version® Release 2.1 Copyright © 1996-2012 The ISV Foundation
ESV Text Edition: 2016. The ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®) copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. The ESV® text has been reproduced in cooperation with and by permission of Good News Publishers. Unauthorized reproduction of this publication is prohibited. All rights reserved.
Ecclesiastes 6
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