words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.
Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities;
all is vanity.
profit has a man of all his labour which he takes under the sun?
One generation passes away, and another generation comes:
but the earth abides for ever.
The sun also arises, and the sun goes down, and hastes to
his place where he arose.
The wind goes toward the south, and turns about unto the
north; it whirls about continually, and the wind returns again according to his
the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence
the rivers come, thither they return again.
All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it: the
eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
The thing that has been, it is that which shall be; and
that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under
there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it has been already
of old time, which was before us.
There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall
there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come
the Preacher was king over Israel in Jerusalem.
And I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning
all things that are done under heaven: this sore travail has God given to the
sons of man to be exercised therewith.
I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and,
behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit.
That which is crooked cannot be made straight: and that
which is lacking cannot be numbered.
I communed with mine own heart, saying, Lo, I am come to
great estate, and have got more wisdom than all they that have been before me
in Jerusalem: yea, my heart had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.
I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that
this also is vexation of spirit.
For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increases
knowledge increases sorrow.
I said in mine heart, Go to now, I will prove you with delight,
therefore enjoy pleasure: and, behold, this also is vanity.
I said of laughter, It is mad: and of delight, What does
sought in mine heart to give myself unto wine, yet acquainting mine heart with
wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was that good for the
sons of men, which they should do under the heaven all the days of their life.
made me great works; I built me houses; I planted me vineyards:
I made me gardens and orchards, and I planted trees in them
of all kind of fruits:
I made me pools of water, to water therewith the wood that
brings forth trees:
I got me servants and maidens, and had servants born in
my house; also I had great possessions of great and small cattle above all that
were in Jerusalem before me:
I gathered me also silver and gold, and the exclusive treasure
of kings and of the provinces: I got me men singers and women singers, and the
delights of the sons of men, as musical instruments, and that of all sorts.
2:9 So I
was great, and increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem: also
my wisdom remained with me.
And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I
withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labour: and
this was my portion of all my labour.
Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought,
and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation
of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun.
And I turned myself to behold wisdom, and madness, and folly:
for what can the man do that comes after the king? even that which has been already
I saw that wisdom excels folly, as far as light excels darkness.
The wise man's eyes are in his head; but the fool walks
in darkness: and I myself perceived also that one event happens to them all.
said I in my heart, As it happens to the fool, so it happens even to me; and why
was I then more wise? Then I said in my heart, that this also is vanity.
there is no remembrance of the wise more than of the fool for ever; seeing that
which now is in the days to come shall all be forgotten. And how dies the wise
man? as the fool.
Therefore I hated life; because the work that is wrought
under the sun is grievous unto me: for all is vanity and vexation of spirit.
I hated all my labour which I had taken under the sun: because I should leave
it unto the man that shall be after me.
And who knows whether he shall be a wise man or a fool?
yet shall he have rule over all my labour wherein I have laboured, and wherein
I have showed myself wise under the sun. This is also vanity.
Therefore I went about to cause my heart to despair of all
the labour which I took under the sun.
For there is a man whose labour is in wisdom, and in knowledge,
and in equity; yet to a man that has not laboured therein shall he leave it for
his portion. This also is vanity and a great evil.
For what has man of all his labour, and of the vexation
of his heart, wherein he has laboured under the sun?
For all his days are sorrows, and his travail grief; yea,
his heart takes not rest in the night. This is also vanity.
There is nothing better for a man, than that he should eat
and drink, and that he should make his soul enjoy good in his labour. This also
I saw, that it was from the hand of God.
For who can eat, or who else can hasten hereunto, more than
God gives to a man that is good in his sight wisdom, and knowledge, and joy: but
to the sinner he gives travail, to gather and to heap up, that he may give to
him that is good before God. This also is vanity and vexation of spirit.
3:1 To every
thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
3:2 A time
to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which
time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
3:5 A time
to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace,
and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a
time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence,
and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a
time of peace.
profit has he that works in that wherein he labours?
I have seen the travail, which God has given to the sons
of men to be exercised in it.
He has made every thing beautiful in his time: also he has
set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God makes
from the beginning to the end.
I know that there is no good in them, but for a man to rejoice,
and to do good in his life.
And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy
the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.
I know that, whatsoever God does, it shall be for ever:
nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God does it, that men
should fear before him.
That which has been is now; and that which is to be has
already been; and God requires that which is past.
And moreover I saw under the sun the place of judgment,
that wickedness was there; and the place of righteousness, that iniquity was there.
said in mine heart, God shall judge the righteous and the wicked: for there is
a time there for every purpose and for every work.
I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of
men, that God might manifest them, and that they might see that they themselves
that which befalls the sons of men befalls beasts; even one thing befalls them:
as the one dies, so dies the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man
has no preeminence above a beast: for all is vanity.
All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn
to dust again.
knows the spirit of man that goes upward, and the spirit of the beast that goes
downward to the earth?
Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better, than
that a man should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion: for who shall
bring him to see what shall be after him?
So I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are
done under the sun: and behold the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had
no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but they had
I praised the dead which are already dead more than the living which are yet alive.
better is he than either of them, which has not yet been, who has not seen the
evil work that is done under the sun.
Again, I considered all travail, and every right work, that
for this a man is envied of his neighbour. This is also vanity and vexation of
fool folds his hands together, and eats his own flesh.
Better is an handful with quietness, than both the hands
full with travail and vexation of spirit.
Then I returned, and I saw vanity under the sun.
is one alone, and there is not a second; yea, he has neither child nor brother:
yet is there no end of all his labour; neither is his eye satisfied with riches;
neither says he, For whom do I labour, and bereave my soul of good? This is also
vanity, yea, it is a sore travail.
Two are better than one; because they have a good reward
for their labour.
For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe
to him that is alone when he falls; for he has not another to help him up.
if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone?
if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not
is a poor and a wise child than an old and foolish king, who will no more be admonished.
out of prison he comes to reign; whereas also he that is born in his kingdom becomes
considered all the living which walk under the sun, with the second child that
shall stand up in his position.
There is no end of all the people, even of all that have
been before them: they also that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this
also is vanity and vexation of spirit.
Keep your foot when you go to the house of God, and be more
ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that
they do evil.
not rash with your mouth, and let not yours heart be hasty to utter any thing
before God: for God is in heaven, and you upon earth: therefore let your words
a dream comes through the multitude of business; and a fool's voice is known by
multitude of words.
When you vow a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for he
has no pleasure in fools: pay that which you have vowed.
Better is it that you should not vow, than that you should
vow and not pay.
not your mouth to cause your flesh to sin; neither say you before the angel, that
it was an error: wherefore should God be angry at your voice, and destroy the
work of yours hands?
For in the multitude of dreams and many words there are
also divers vanities: but fear you God.
If you see the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting
of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is
higher than the highest regards; and there be higher than they.
Moreover the profit of the earth is for all: the king himself
is served by the field.
He that loves silver shall not be satisfied with silver;
nor he that loves abundance with increase: this is also vanity.
When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and
what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their
sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance
of the rich will not suffer him to sleep.
There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely,
riches kept for the owners thereof to their hurt.
But those riches perish by evil travail: and he bring forths
a son, and there is nothing in his hand.
As he came out of his mother's womb, naked shall he return
to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away
in his hand.
this also is a sore evil, that in all points as he came, so shall he go: and what
profit has he that has laboured for the wind?
All his days also he eats in darkness, and he has much sorrow
and wrath with his sickness.
Behold that which I have seen: it is good and comely for
one to eat and to drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labour that he takes
under the sun all the days of his life, which God gives him: for it is his portion.
man also to whom God has given riches and wealth, and has given him power to eat
thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour; this is the gift
he shall not much remember the days of his life; because God answers him in the
joy of his heart.
is an evil which I have seen under the sun, and it is common among men:
6:2 A man
to whom God has given riches, wealth, and honour, so that he wants nothing for
his soul of all that he desires, yet God gives him not power to eat thereof, but
a stranger eats it: this is vanity, and it is an evil disease.
If a man brought forth an hundred children, and live many
years, so that the days of his years be many, and his soul be not filled with
good, and also that he have no burial; I say, that an untimely birth is better
he comes in with vanity, and departs in darkness, and his name shall be covered
he has not seen the sun, nor known any thing: this has more rest than the other.
though he live a thousand years twice told, yet has he seen no good: do not all
go to one place?
the labour of man is for his mouth, and yet the appetite is not filled.
6:8 For what
has the wise more than the fool? what has the poor, that knows to walk before
is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity
and vexation of spirit.
That which has been is named already, and it is known that
it is man: neither may he contend with him that is mightier than he.
Seeing there be many things that increase vanity, what is
man the better?
who knows what is good for man in this life, all the days of his vain life which
he spends as a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the
good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day
of one's birth.
is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting:
for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.
is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made
heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the
house of delight.
is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools.
as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool: this also
oppression makes a wise man mad; and a gift destroys the heart.
Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof:
and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
Be not hasty in your spirit to be angry: for anger rests
in the bosom of fools.
Say not you, What is the cause that the former days were
better than these? for you do not enquire wisely concerning this.
Wisdom is good with an inheritance: and by it there is profit
to them that see the sun.
For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the
excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom gives life to them that have it.
the work of God: for who can make that straight, which he has made crooked?
7:14 In the
day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also has
set the one opposite to the other, to the end that man should find nothing after
things have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is a just man that perishes
in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man that prolongs his life in his
not righteous over much; neither make yourself over wise: why should you destroy
not over much wicked, neither be you foolish: why should you die before your time?
is good that you should take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not yours
hand: for he that fears God shall come out of them all.
Wisdom strengthens the wise more than ten mighty men which
are in the city.
there is not a just man upon earth, that does good, and sins not.
Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest you
hear your servant curse you:
For oftentimes also yours own heart knows that you yourself
likewise have cursed others.
All this have I proved by wisdom: I said, I will be wise;
but it was far from me.
That which is far off, and exceeding deep, who can find
applied mine heart to know, and to search, and to seek out wisdom, and the reason
of things, and to know the wickedness of folly, even of foolishness and madness:
I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart is snares and nets, and her
hands as bands: whoso pleases God shall escape from her; but the sinner shall
be taken by her.
this have I found, says the preacher, counting one by one, to find out the account:
yet my soul seeks, but I find not: one man among a thousand have I found; but
a woman among all those have I not found.
Lo, this only have I found, that God has made man upright;
but they have sought out many inventions.
Who is as the wise man? and who knows the interpretation
of a thing? a man's wisdom makes his face to shine, and the boldness of his face
shall be changed.
counsel you to keep the king's commandment, and that in regard of the oath of
not hasty to go out of his sight: stand not in an evil thing; for he does whatsoever
the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What do you?
keeps the commandment shall feel no evil thing: and a wise man's heart discerns
both time and judgment.
Because to every purpose there is time and judgment, therefore
the misery of man is great upon him.
For he knows not that which shall be: for who can tell him
when it shall be?
is no man that has power over the spirit to retain the spirit; neither has he
power in the day of death: and there is no discharge in that war; neither shall
wickedness deliver those that are given to it.
All this have I seen, and applied my heart unto every work
that is done under the sun: there is a time wherein one man rules over another
to his own hurt.
so I saw the wicked buried, who had come and gone from the place of the holy,
and they were forgotten in the city where they had so done: this is also vanity.
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.
Though a sinner do evil an hundred times, and his days be
prolonged, yet surely I know that it shall be well with them that fear God, which
fear before him:
it shall not be well with the wicked, neither shall he prolong his days, which
are as a shadow; because he fears not before God.
There is a vanity which is done upon the earth; that there
be just men, unto whom it happens according to the work of the wicked; again,
there be wicked men, to whom it happens according to the work of the righteous:
I said that this also is vanity.
Then I commended delight, because a man has no better thing
under the sun, than to eat, and to drink, and to be merry: for that shall abide
with him of his labour the days of his life, which God gives him under the sun.
I applied mine heart to know wisdom, and to see the business that is done upon
the earth: (for also there is that neither day nor night sees sleep with his eyes:)
I beheld all the work of God, that a man cannot find out the work that is done
under the sun: because though a man labour to seek it out, yet he shall not find
it; yea farther; though a wise man think to know it, yet shall he not be able
to find it.
all this I considered in my heart even to declare all this, that the righteous,
and the wise, and their works, are in the hand of God: no man knows either love
or hatred by all that is before them.
All things come alike to all: there is one event to the
righteous, and to the wicked; to the good and to the clean, and to the unclean;
to him that sacrifices, and to him that sacrifices not: as is the good, so is
the sinner; and he that swears, as he that fears an oath.
This is an evil among all things that are done under the
sun, that there is one event unto all: yea, also the heart of the sons of men
is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that
they go to the dead.
In order to him that is joined to all the living there is
hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion.
For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know
not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is
their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they
any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.
Go your way, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine
with a merry heart; for God now accepts your works.
Let your garments be always white; and let your head lack
joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of the life of your vanity,
which he has given you under the sun, all the days of your vanity: for that is
your portion in this life, and in your labour which you take under the sun.
your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work, nor device,
nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, where you go.
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not
to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor
yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and
chance happens to them all.
For man also knows not his time: as the fishes that are
taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare; so are the
sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falls suddenly upon them.
wisdom have I seen also under the sun, and it seemed great unto me:
There was a little city, and few men within it; and there
came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against
there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city;
yet no man remembered that same poor man.
Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless
the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.
The words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry
of him that rules among fools.
Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroys
flies cause the ointment of the apothecary to send forth a stinking savour: so
does a little folly him that is in reputation for wisdom and honour.
A wise man's heart is at his right hand; but a fool's heart
at his left.
also, when he that is a fool walks by the way, his wisdom fails him, and he says
to every one that he is a fool.
If the spirit of the ruler rise up against you, leave not
your place; for yielding pacifies great offences.
There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, as an
error which proceeds from the ruler:
Folly is set in great dignity, and the rich sit in low place.
have seen servants upon horses, and princes walking as servants upon the earth.
that digs a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaks an hedge, a serpent shall
removes stones shall be hurt therewith; and he that cleaves wood shall be endangered
the iron be blunt, and he do not sharpen the edge, then must he put to more strength:
but wisdom is profitable to direct.
Surely the serpent will bite without enchantment; and a
babbler is no better.
The words of a wise man's mouth are gracious; but the lips
of a fool will swallow up himself.
The beginning of the words of his mouth is foolishness:
and the end of his talk is mischievous madness.
A fool also is full of words: a man cannot tell what shall
be; and what shall be after him, who can tell him?
The labour of the foolish wearies every one of them, because
he knows not how to go to the city.
Woe to you, O land, when your king is a child, and your
princes eat in the morning!
Blessed are you, O land, when your king is the son of nobles,
and your princes eat in due season, for strength, and not for drunkenness!
much slothfulness the building decays; and through idleness of the hands the house
feast is made for laughter, and wine makes merry: but money answers all things.
not the king, no not in your thought; and curse not the rich in your bedchamber:
for a bird of the air shall carry the voice, and that which has wings shall tell
your bread upon the waters: for you shall find it after many days.
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for you know
not what evil shall be upon the earth.
If the clouds be full of rain, they empty themselves upon
the earth: and if the tree fall toward the south, or toward the north, in the
place where the tree falls, there it shall be.
He that observes the wind shall not sow; and he that regards
the clouds shall not reap.
As you know not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the
bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child: even so you know not the
works of God who makes all.
In the morning sow your seed, and in the evening withhold
not yours hand: for you know not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or
whether they both shall be alike good.
Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for
the eyes to behold the sun:
But if a man live many years, and rejoice in them all; yet
let him remember the days of darkness; for they shall be many. All that comes
O young man, in your youth; and let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth,
and walk in the ways of yours heart, and in the sight of yours eyes: but know
you, that for all these things God will bring you into judgment.
Therefore remove sorrow from your heart, and put away evil
from your flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity.
Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, while
the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when you shall say, I have no
pleasure in them;
While the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars,
be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain:
In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble,
and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are
few, and those that look out of the windows be darkened,
And the doors shall be shut in the streets, when the sound
of the grinding is low, and he shall rise up at the voice of the bird, and all
the daughters of music shall be brought low;
Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and
fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper
shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goes to his eternal home,
and the mourners go about the streets:
Before even the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl
be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the
shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto
God who gave it.
of vanities, says the preacher; all is vanity.
And moreover, because the preacher was wise, he still taught
the people knowledge; yea, he gave good heed, and sought out, and set in order
preacher sought to find out acceptable words: and that which was written was upright,
even words of truth.
The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened
by the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd.
And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making
many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.
us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments:
for this is the whole duty of man.
For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every
secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.