|Ecclesiastes 2 |
1 I said in my heart, "Come now, I will test you with merriment, therefore enjoy pleasure;" and, behold, this also is vanity.
2 I said of laughter, "It is madness;" and of pleasure, "What does it accomplish?"
3 I sought to lighten my heart with wine, while seeking wisdom with my heart and to identify foolishness until I might see what it was that was good for the sons of men to do under the heaven all the days of their life.
4 I set to do great works: I built myself houses; I planted myself vineyards:
5 I made myself gardens and orchards, and I planted all kinds of fruit trees in them.
6 I made myself pools of water to water the forest and bring forth trees.
7 I got servants and maidens, and had servants born in my house; also I had great possessions of herds and flocks of cattle that were more than anyone before me in Jerusalem.
8 I also collected silver and gold,1 and the peculiar treasure of kings and of the provinces. I got myself men singers and women singers, and the delights of the sons of men, as musical instruments, and that of all sorts.
9 So I was great, and increased more than anyone had been before me in Jerusalem; but my wisdom remained with me.
10 And whatever my eyes desired, I did not withhold; I did not withhold from my heart any joy for my heart rejoiced in all my labor, and this was my portion of all my labor.
11 Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the creation of all that had labored on; and, behold, all was vanity and futility, and there was no profit under the sun.
12 And I turned myself to behold wisdom, madness, and foolishness; for what can a man do who comes after a king, except what has been already done.
13 Then I saw that wisdom excelled foolishness, as far as light excelled darkness.
14 The wise man can see where he is going, but the fool walks in darkness; and I also understood that the same event happens to them all. [The wise has his spiritual eye opened to see and walk by the light of God, but the unwise continues to walk in darkness, which is sin.]
15 Then said I in my heart, "As it happens to the fool, so it happens even to me; and then why was I more wise? Then I said in my heart that this also is vanity.
16 For there is no remembrance of the wise man more than of the fool forever; seeing what now is, in the days to come, shall all be forgotten. And how does the wise man die? Just as the fool.
17 Therefore I hated life because all the work under the sun is grievous to me because all is vanity and futility.
18 Yes, I hated all my labor which I had taken under the sun because I would leave it to the man who shall be after me.
19 And who knows whether he shall be a wise man or a fool? Yet he shall have rule over all my labor in which I have labored, and in which I have showed myself wise under the sun. This is also vanity.
20 Therefore I went about to cause my heart to despair of all the labor that I have made under the sun.
21 For there is a man whose labor is in wisdom, and in knowledge, and in equity; yet he shall leave it to a man who has not labored in it for his portion. This also is vanity and a great evil.
22 For what has man of all his labor, and of the troubles of his heart, in which he has labored under the sun?
23 For all his days are sorrows, and his travail grief; yes, his heart does not take rest in the night. This is also vanity.
24 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 labor. This also I saw, that it was from the hand of God.
25 For who can eat, or who else can hasten to here, more than I?
26 To a man who is good in God's sight, He gives him wisdom, knowledge, and joy; but to the sinner he gives travail, to gather and to heap up, that he may give it to him who is good before God. This also is vanity and futility.
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1 Solomon got himself maidens, with servants born in his house; he collected much silver and gold. Note! He forgot the law of God: Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart does not turn away; neither shall he greatly multiply gold and silver for himself. Deu 17:17. For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods, and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father. 1 Kings 11:4. Solomon not only married many wives, but he married foreign women, another violation of the commands of God. Deu 7:3-4. Disobeying the laws of God, Solomon then wonders why he is not happy.
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