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Home > Study Desk
Passage Display[Printer-friendly Verses]   
 Ecclesiastes 9
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The New American Standard Bible
   Book of EcclesiastesClick Verse Reference for Study Notes
    9:1-18 - Study Chapter  - Click for Chapter Audio

Men Are in the Hand of God

1 For I have taken all this to my heart and explain it F121 that righteous men, wise men, and their deeds are in R215 the hand of God. Man R216 does not know whether it will be love R217 or hatred; anything awaits F122 him.

2 It R218 is the same for all. There is one R219 fate for the righteous and for the wicked; for the good, for the clean and for the unclean; for the man who offers a sacrifice and for the one who does not sacrifice. As the good man is, so is the sinner; as the swearer is, so is the one who is F123 afraid to swear. 3 This is an evil in all that is done under the sun, that there is one R220 fate for all men. Furthermore, the R221 hearts of the sons of men are full of evil and insanity R222 is in their hearts throughout their lives. Afterwards they go to the dead. 4 For whoever is joined with all the living, there is hope; surely a live dog is better than a dead lion. 5 For the living know they will die; but the dead do R223 not know anything, nor have they any longer a reward, for their memory R224 is forgotten. 6 Indeed their love, their hate and their zeal have already perished, and they will no longer have a share R225 in all that is done under the sun.

7 Go then, eat R226 your bread in happiness and drink your wine with a cheerful heart; for God has already approved your works. 8 Let your clothes R227 be white all the time, and let not oil R228 be lacking on your head. 9 Enjoy life with the woman whom you love all the days of your fleeting R229 F124 life which He has given to you under the sun; F125 for this is your reward R230 in life and in your toil in which you have labored under the sun.

Whatever Your Hand Finds to Do

10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do R231 it with all your might; for there is no activity R232 or planning or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol R233 where you are going.

11 I again saw under the sun that the race R234 is not to the swift and the battle R235 is not to the warriors, and neither is bread to the wise nor wealth R236 to the discerning nor favor to men of ability; for time and chance R237 overtake them all. 12 Moreover, man does not know R238 his time: like fish caught in a treacherous net and birds R239 trapped in a snare, so the sons of men are ensnared R240 at an evil time when it suddenly R241 falls on them.

13 Also this I came to see as wisdom under the sun, and it F126 impressed me. 14 There was R242 a small city with few men in it and a great king came to it, surrounded it and constructed large siegeworks against it. 15 But there was found in it a poor R243 wise man and he delivered F127 the city by R244 his wisdom. Yet no R245 one remembered that poor man. 16 So I said, "Wisdom R246 is better than strength." But the wisdom of the poor man is despised and his words are not heeded. 17 The words R247 of the wise heard in quietness are better than the shouting of a ruler among fools. 18 Wisdom R248 is better than weapons of war, but one R249 sinner destroys much good.

F121: Lit all this
F122: Lit is before them
F123: Lit fears an oath
F124: Lit life of vanity
F125: Hebrew adds all the days of your vanity
F126: Lit great it was to me
F127: Or might have delivered

R215: Deuteronomy 33:3; Job 1:12:10; Psalms 119:109
R216: Ecclesiastes 10:14
R217: Ecclesiastes 9:6
R218: Job 1:9:22; Ecclesiastes 9:11
R219: Ecclesiastes 2:14; 3:19; 6:6; 7:2
R220: Ecclesiastes 9:2; Jeremiah 17:10
R221: Ecclesiastes 8:11
R222: Ecclesiastes 1:17
R223: Job 1:14:21
R224: Psalms 88:12; Ecclesiastes 1:11; 2:16; 8:10; Isaiah 26:14
R225: Ecclesiastes 2:10; 3:22
R226: Ecclesiastes 2:24; 8:15
R227: Revelation 3:4
R228: Psalms 23:5
R229: Ecclesiastes 6:12; 7:15
R230: Ecclesiastes 2:10
R231: Ecclesiastes 11:6; Romans 12:11; Colossians 3:23
R232: Ecclesiastes 9:5
R233: Genesis 37:35; Job 1:21:13; Isaiah 38:10
R234: Amos 2:14,15
R235: 2 Chronicles 20:15; Psalms 76:5; Zechariah 4:6
R236: Deuteronomy 8:17,18
R237: 1 Samuel 6:9
R238: Ecclesiastes 8:7
R239: Proverbs 7:23
R240: Proverbs 29:6; Isaiah 24:18; Hosea 9:8
R241: Luke 21:34,35
R242: 2 Samuel 20:16-22
R243: Ecclesiastes 4:13
R244: 2 Samuel 20:22
R245: Ecclesiastes 2:16; 8:10
R246: Proverbs 21:22; Ecclesiastes 7:12,19
R247: Ecclesiastes 7:5; 10:12
R248: Ecclesiastes 9:16
R249: Joshua 7:1-26; 2 Kings 21:2-17


Copyright Statement: The New American Standard Bible
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995; Audio Recording Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, (P) 1989 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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