I just take can’t take any more Proverbs. Same shit over and over and over and over and over and over and over…for 150 fucking chapters.
Skipping to Ecclesiastes.
I hate to say it, but this part of the Bible is really well written. Written in the first person, and the language is very descriptive. Total 180 from Proverbs.
The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! all is vanity. What is the profit to a man in all his labor which he labors under the sun?
A generation passes away, and a generation comes; but the earth remains forever. The sun also arises, and the sun goes down, and hurries to its place where it arose. The wind goes toward the south, and it turns around to the north; it whirls around continually; and the wind returns on its circuits. All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; to the place from where the rivers come, there they return again. All things are full of labor; man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
Pretty good language here, basic understanding of the water cycle. Not all river go to the sea, however. Many drain into lakes, but that was not know to these desert people.
That which has been is that which shall be; and that which has been done is that which shall be done; and there is nothing new under the sun. Is there a thing of which it may be said, See, this is new? It has already been in days of old, which were before us. There is no memory of former things, and also of after things when he shall be; for neither shall be a remembrance of them with those who will be at the afterwards.
Living in 2017, I have to disagree with the statement there is nothing new under the sun. New things are made or discovered every day.
I the Preacher was king over Israel in Jerusalem. And I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all which is done under the heavens. It is a sad task God has given to the sons of men to be humbled by it. I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit. What is crooked cannot be made straight; and that lacking cannot be numbered. I spoke within my own heart, saying, Lo, I have become great and have gathered more wisdom than all that have been before me in Jerusalem; yea, my heart has seen much of wisdom and knowledge. And I gave my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly; I know that this also is vexation of spirit. For in much wisdom is much grief; and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.
I hate to say it, but this part of the Bible is really well written. Written in the first person, and the language is very descriptive. Total 180 from Proverbs. He is honestly disheartened and realized the pointlessness of it all.
I said in my heart, Come now, I will test you with mirth; therefore consider and behold goodness; this also is vanity. I said of laughter, It is madness; and of mirth, What does it do? I sought in my heart to drag my flesh with wine, yet leading my heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, until I might see where the good for the sons of men might be, what they should do under the heavens all the days of their life. I made my works great; I built houses for myself; I planted vineyards for myself. I made gardens and orchards for myself, And I planted trees in them, of all fruit. I made pools of water for myself, to water the forest shooting forth trees. I bought slaves and slave women, and sons of the house were mine; also livestock, a herd and a great flock were mine, above all that were before me in Jerusalem. I also gathered silver and gold to myself, and the treasure of kings and of the provinces. I got men singers and women singers for myself, and the delights of the sons of men, a wife and very many wives. I was great and increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem; also my wisdom remained with me. And whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them; I did not withhold my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labor, and this was my part of all my labor. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done, and on the labor that I had labored to do; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit; and there is no profit under the sun.
He is listing all of his accomplishments here, but not boasting. Interesting how this ‘book of objective morality’ has slaves and polygamy. He realized, no matter how many things he acquired, it really does not matter, we are all dead in the end.
And I turned to behold wisdom, and madness, and folly; for what can the man do who comes after the king, when they have already done it? Then 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 also knew that one event happens to all of them. Then I said in my heart, As it happens to the fool, so it happens even to me; and why was I then more wise? And I said in my heart that this also is vanity. For there is no memory of the wise more than of the fool forever, since that which is now shall all be forgotten in the days to come. And how does the wise die above the fool!
Really deep, good stuff here. Despite Psalms going on and on about wisdom, the fool and wise die the same and leave nothing in the long run. Damn, I do like this author.
Therefore I hated life; because the work that is done under the sun is sad to me; for all is vanity and vexation of spirit. Yes, I hated all my labor which I had done under the sun; that I must leave it to the man who shall be after me. And who knows whether he shall be wise or a fool? Yet he shall have rule over all my labor in which I have labored, and acted wisely under the sun. This is also vanity. And I turned to cause my heart to despair over all the labor which I did under the sun. When there is a man whose labor is in wisdom, and in knowledge, and with success; yet to a man who has not labored in it, he shall leave it for his share. This also is vanity and a great evil. For what has man from all his labor, and from the troubling of his heart, in which he has labored under the sun? For all his days are sorrows, and his labor sadness; yea, his heart does not take rest in the night. This is also vanity. Is it not good that he should eat and drink and make his soul see good in his labor? This I also saw, that it was from the hand of God. For who can eat, or who can enjoy, apart from me? For God gives wisdom, and knowledge, and joy to a man who is good in His sight. But to the sinner He gives labor, to gather and to heap up, that he may give to him who is good before God. This also is vanity and vexation of spirit.
Lamenting he has no control over what happens to all of his hard work when he is gone.
To every thing there is a season, and a time for every purpose under the heavens: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pull up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to throw 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 throw away; a time to tear, 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. What profit does he have who works in that in which he labors? I have seen the task which God has given to the sons of men to be humbled by it.
Sounds like a song lyric, well, it is. Turn Turn Turn. Still the best writing so far.
He has made everything beautiful in His time; also He has set eternity 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 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 labor, it is the gift of God. I know that whatever God does, it shall be forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it; and God does it so that they 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.
You hear that you prudes? Enjoy life, it is a gift. I agree with this, except the God part. I have to say, it reads a little deistic here, not a really personal god. This God is eternal, and we will never see the full picture.
And again I saw under the sun the place of judgment, that wickedness was there; and the place of righteousness, that wickedness was there. I said in my 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 my heart concerning the matter of sons of men, that God might reveal them, and that they might see that they themselves are beasts. For that which happens to the sons of men also happens to beasts even one thing happens to them. As this one dies, so that one dies; yea, they all have one breath; so that a man has no advantage over a beast; for all is vanity. All go to one place; all are of the dust, and all return to dust again. Who knows the spirit of man that goes upward, and the spirit of the beast that goes downward? Therefore I have seen that there is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion; for who can bring him to see what shall be after him?
The author knows that man and beast are no different. We all live and die. Man should rejoice in what he does, since he will not see what comes after.
So I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are done under the sun. And behold the tears of the oppressed ones, and hey had no comforter! And on the side of those who oppressed them there was power, but they had no comforter. And I commended the dead who already have died, more than the living who are living now. Yea, better than both is he who has not yet been, who has not seen the evil work that is done under the sun.
Can’t add to this one. Read it for what it is.
Again, I considered all labor, and every right work, that for this a man is envied by his neighbor. This is also vanity and vexation of spirit. The fool folds his hands together, and eats his own flesh. Better is a hand filled with rest than two fists with travail and vexation of spirit.
Better to do something that bitch about it. Cool.
And I returned and saw vanity under the sun. There is one alone, and there is not a second; yea, he has neither son nor brother; yet there is no end to all his labor; and his eyes are not satisfied with riches; and he says, For whom do I labor and take good from my soul? This is also vanity. Yes, it is an evil business. Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow; but woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he does not have another to help him. Again, if two lie together, then they have warmth; but how can one be warm alone? And if one overthrows him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
2 is better than one, work together for the greater good.
A poor and a wise child is better than an old and foolish king, who will not be warned any more. For out of prison he comes to reign; although in his kingdom he was born poor. I saw all the living who walk under the sun, with the second child who shall stand up in his place. There is no end of all the people, of all who have been before them; they also who come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.
I am a little confused how you can have a wise child? I think this is an allusion to something at the time, but I am lost right now.
Guard your steps when you go to the house of God, and be more ready to hear than to give the sacrifice of fools. For they do not know that they are doing evil. Do not be rash with your mouth, and do not let your heart be hasty to say a word before God. For God is in Heaven, and you are on earth; therefore let your words be few. For a dream comes through the multitude of business; and a fool’s voice by the multitude of words.
Better to be quiet and think about your words than babble on showing you are an idiot. Good advice, even now.
When you vow a vow to God, do not wait to pay it. For He has no pleasure in fools. Pay that which you have vowed. it is better that you should not vow, than that you should vow and not pay. Do not allow your mouth to cause your flesh to sin; do not say before the angel that it was an error. Why should God be angry at your voice and destroy the work of your hands? For in the multitude of dreams, both words and vanities abound; but fear God. If you see the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, do not marvel at the matter. For He who is higher than the highest watches; and there are some higher than they.
Do what you say and say what your do.
And the advantage of a land, it is for all; even a king has a field being tilled. He who loves silver shall not be satisfied with silver, nor he who loves plenty does not gain. This is also vanity. When the good thing increases, those who eat it increase; then what profit is it to its owners, except to see it with their eyes? The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, whether he eats little or much; but the abundance of the rich will not allow him to sleep. There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for their owners to their hurt. But those riches perish by evil use. And he brings forth a son, and nothing is in his hand. As he came forth from his mother’s womb naked, he shall return to go as he came. And from his labor he may not carry anything that may go in his hand. And this also is a sore evil, that in all, as he came, so shall he go; and what profit does he have who has labored for the wind? Also all his days he eats in darkness, and he has much sorrow and wrath with his sickness.
Those who labor sleep well. I am surpised by the insight that the rich are kept up at night with worry. I guess people don’t change. Reinforment of the concept that you can’t take it with you.
Behold that which I have seen. it is good and right for one to eat and to drink, and to see good in all his labor that he labors under the sun all the days of his life, which God gives him; for it is his portion. Also every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, and has given him power to eat of it and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labor this is the gift of God. For he shall not much remember the days of his life, because God answers him in the joy of his heart.
Enjoy this life, for you will not remember these days when you are gone. Implied annihilation.
There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, and it is great among men: a man to whom God has given riches, wealth, and honor, so that he lacks nothing for his soul of all that he desires, yet God does not give him power to eat of it, but a stranger eats it. This is vanity, and it is an evil disease. If a man fathers a hundred, and lives many years, so that the days of his years are many, and his soul is not filled with good, and also is for him no burial; I say, a miscarriage is better than he. For he comes in with vanity and goes out in darkness, and his name shall be covered with darkness. Also he has not seen the sun, nor known anything. This one has more rest than the other. Yea, though he live twice a thousand years, yet he has seen no good. Do not all go to one place?
Really an anti wealth vibe here. No matter how hard you try, you will never be satisifed. Vanity appears to be the worst sin. Better to be not born than live in vanity. Not sure if I agree with this one.
All the labor of man is for his mouth, and yet the appetite is not filled. For what has the wise more than the fool? What gain has the poor who knows how to walk before the living? Better 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 he is man. And he is not able to contend with Him who is mightier than he.
For there are many things that increase vanity, and what is man the better? For who knows what is good for man in 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 sun?
Not sure on this one. No matter how much we toil and eat, we are never satisfied.
A good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death than the day of one’s birth. It 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. Sorrow is better than laughter; for by the sadness of the face the heart is made better. The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of laughter. It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise than for a man to hear the song of fools. For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool; this also is vanity.
This is one depressed dude, sorrow is better than laughter. Better to be torn down by a wise man than have some fun. Lighten up buddy.
Surely oppression makes a wise man mad; and a bribe destroys the heart. Better is the end of a thing than the beginning of it; the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. Do not be hasty in your spirit to be angry; for anger rests in the bosom of fools. Do not say, Why was it that the former days were better than these? For you do not ask wisely in regard to this.
Wisdom is good with an inheritance; but it is gain to those who see the sun. For wisdom is a defense, and money is a defense; but the excellency of knowledge is that wisdom gives life to those who have it. Consider the work of God; for who can make straight what He has made crooked? In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity take note that God also has set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him. All things I have seen in the days of my vanity; there is a just one who perishes in his righteousness, and there is a wicked one who prolongs life in his wickedness. Do not be righteous overmuch, neither make yourself overwise; why destroy yourself? Do not be very wicked, and do not be a fool; why should you die before your time? It is good that you should take hold of this; yea, also from this do not withdraw your hand; for he who fears God shall come forth from all of them. Wisdom makes the wise stronger than ten mighty ones who are in the city. For there is not a just man on earth who does good and does not sin. Also do not listen to all words that are spoken; lest you hear your servant curse you. For also your own heart knows that you yourself have also cursed others many times.
All this I have proved by wisdom; I said, I will be wise; but it was far from me. That which is far off and exceedingly deep, who can find it out? I set my 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; and I find more bitter than death the woman whose heart is snares and nets, and her hands like bands. Whoever pleases God shall escape from her, but the sinner shall be taken by her. Behold, this I have found, says the Preacher, counting one by one, to find out the sum, which my soul still sought, but I find not: one man among a thousand I have found, but a woman among all those I have not found. Lo, this only I have found, that God has made man upright, but they have sought out many inventions.
Who is as the wise? And who knows the meaning of a thing? A man’s wisdom makes his face to shine, and the boldness of his face shall be changed. I say, keep the king’s word, and that because of the oath of God. Do not be hasty to leave his presence. Do not take a stand in an evil thing, for he does whatever pleases him. Because the word of a king is that which has power; and who may say to him, What are you doing? Whoever keeps the command shall feel no evil thing; and a wise man’s heart knows both time and judgment.
Because to every purpose there is time and judgment, therefore the misery of man is great on him. For he does not know what shall be; for who can tell him when it shall be? There is no man who has power over the spirit to keep the spirit; nor power in the day of death; and there is no discharge in that war; nor shall wickedness deliver its owners.
All this I have seen, and I gave my heart to every work that is done under the sun. there is a time in which one man rules over another to his own hurt. And so I saw the wicked buried, and they came and went from the holy place. And they were forgotten in the city, these things that they had done. This is also vanity. Because 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 does evil a hundred times, and his days be made longer, yet surely I know that it shall be well with those who fear God, who fear before Him. But it shall not be well with the wicked, nor shall he make his days longer like a shadow; because he does not fear before God.
There is a vanity which is done on the earth: There are just ones to whom it happens according to the work of the wicked; again, there are wicked ones to whom it happens according to the work of the righteous. I said that this also is vanity. Then I praised gladness, because a man has no better thing under the sun than to eat and to drink and to be glad; for that shall go with him of his labor for the days of his life which God gives him under the sun. When I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to see the business that is done on the earth; for neither day nor night do men see sleep with their eyes. Then I looked at all the work of God, that a man cannot find out the work that is done under the sun; because though a man labors to seek it out, yet he shall not find it. Yea, further, though a wise one speaks of knowing, yet he shall not be able to find it.
For all this I took to heart, even to make all this clear, 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 happens 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 who sacrifices, and to him who does not sacrifice. As is the good, so is the sinner. He who swears is as he who fears an oath. This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event to 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.
For whoever is chosen, to all those 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 do not know anything, nor do they have any more a reward; for their memory is forgotten. Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; nor do they any longer have a part forever in all that is done under the sun. Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart; for God now is pleased with your works. Let your garments be always white; and let your head lack no ointment. Look on life 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 share in this life, and in your labor which you labor under the sun. Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might; for there is no work, nor plan, 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, nor yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happens to them all. For man also does not know 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 on them.
This wisdom I have seen also under the sun, and it seemed great to me. There was a little city, and few men in it; and a great king came against it and besieged it, and built huge bulwarks against it. And a poor wise man was found in it, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that poor man. And I said, Wisdom is better than strength; but the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard. The words of the wise are heard in quiet more than the cry of him who rules among fools. Wisdom is better than weapons of war; but one sinner destroys much good.
As dead flies cause the perfumer’s ointment to stink and ferment; so a little folly is more rare than wisdom and than honor. A man’s heart is at his right hand; but a fool’s heart at his left. Yes also, in the way a fool walks, his heart fails; and he says to all that he is a fool.
If the spirit of the ruler rises up against you, do not leave your place; for yielding quiets great sinners. There is an evil I have seen under the sun, sins which comes from the ruler’s face; foolishness is set in great dignity, and the rich sit in low place. I have seen servants on horses and princes walking as servants on the earth. He who digs a pit shall fall into it; and whoever breaks a hedge, a snake shall bite him. Whoever removes stones shall be hurt with them. He who splits wood shall be endangered by it. If the iron is blunt, and he does not whet the edge, then he must put more strength to it. But wisdom is profitable to direct. Surely the snake will bite without enchantment; and a babbler is no better.
The words of a wise mouth are gracious; but the lips of a fool will swallow him. The beginning of the words of his mouth is foolishness; and the end of his talk is wicked madness. A fool also makes many words; a man knows not what they shall be; and what shall be after him, who can tell him? The labor of fools wearies him, because he does not know how to go to the city.
Woe to you, O land, when your king is a child and your leaders eat in the morning. Blessed are you, O land, when your king is the son of nobles, and your leaders eat in due time, for strength, and not for drunkenness! By slothfulness the building decays; and through lowering of the hands the house leaks. Bread is made for laughter, and wine makes merry; but silver answers all things. Do not curse a king, no, not in your thought; and do not curse the rich in your bedroom; for a bird of the air shall carry the voice, and that which has wings shall tell the matter.
Cast your bread on the waters; for you shall find it after many days. Give a share to seven, and also to eight; for you know not what evil shall be on the earth. If the clouds are full of rain, they empty on the earth; and if the tree falls toward the south, or toward the north, in the place where the tree falls, there it shall be. He who watches the wind shall not sow; and he who pays attention to the clouds shall not reap. As you do not know what is the way of the spirit, as how the bones grow in the pregnant woman’s womb; even so you do not know the works of God who makes all. In the morning sow your seed, and in the evening do not withhold your hand; for you do not know what shall be blessed, either this or that, or whether they both shall be fruitful in the same way.
Also the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun; but if a man lives many years, and rejoices in them all; yet let him remember the days of darkness, for they shall be many. All that comes is vanity. Rejoice, in your youth, young man; and let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth, and walk in the ways of your heart, and in the sight of your eyes; but know that for all these things God will bring you into judgment. Therefore remove vexation from your heart, and put away evil from your flesh; for childhood and prime of life are vanity.
Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, while the evil days do not come, nor the years draw near, when you shall say, I have no pleasure in them. So long as the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars, are darkened, or the clouds return after rain, in the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men, are bowed, and the grinders cease because there are few, and those who look out of the windows are darkened, and the doors shall be shut in the streets, when the sound of the grinding is low, and you shall rise up at the voice of a bird, and all the daughters of music are silenced; also they are afraid of the high place, and terrors along the way, and the almond tree shall blossom, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail; because man goes to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets; or ever the silver cord is not loosed, or the golden bowl is broken, or the pitcher is broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern; then the dust shall return to the earth as it was, and the spirit shall return to God who gave it.
Vanity of vanities, says the preacher; all is vanity. And more than that, the preacher was wise; he still taught the people knowledge. Yes, he listened, and looked, and set in order many proverbs. The preacher sought to find out pleasing words; and words of truth written by the upright. The words of the wise are like goads; yes, their collected words are like nails driven home; they are given from one Shepherd. And further, by these, my son, be warned: The making of many books has no end, and much study is a weariness of the flesh.
Let 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 is good, or whether evil.