Parallel Verses

King James Version

For who knoweth what is good for man in this life, all the days of his vain life which he spendeth as a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?

New American Standard Bible

For who knows what is good for a man during his lifetime, during the few years of his futile life? He will spend them like a shadow. For who can tell a man what will be after him under the sun?

Holman Bible

For who knows what is good for man in life, in the few days of his futile life that he spends like a shadow? Who can tell man what will happen after him under the sun?

A Conservative Version

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?

American Standard Version

For who knoweth what is good for man in his life, all the days of his vain life which he spendeth as a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?

Amplified

For who [ limited to human wisdom] knows what is good for man in his life, all the days of his vain life which he spends as a shadow [going through the motions but accomplishing nothing]? For who can tell a man what will happen [to his work, his treasure, his plans] under the sun after he is gone?

Bible in Basic English

Who is able to say what is good for man in life all the days of his foolish life which he goes through like a shade? who will say what is to be after him under the sun?

Darby Translation

For who knoweth what is good for man in life, all the days of his vain life which he spendeth as a shadow? for who can tell man what shall be after him under the sun?

Jubilee 2000 Bible

For who knows what is good for man in this life, all the days of the life of his vanity which he causes to be as a shadow? for who shall teach the man what shall be after him under the sun?

Julia Smith Translation

For who shall know what is for man in life, the number of the days of the life of his vanity, and he will make them as a shadow? for who shall announce to man what shall be after him under the sun?

King James 2000

For who knows what is good for man in this life, all the days of his vain life which he spends like a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?

Lexham Expanded Bible

For who knows what [is] good for a man in his life during the few days of his fleeting life, which are fleeting as a shadow? For who can tell anyone what will happen {in the future} under the sun?

Modern King James verseion

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?

Modern Spelling Tyndale-Coverdale

For who knoweth what is good for man living, in the days of his vain life, which is but a shadow? Or, who will tell a man what shall happen after him under the Sun?

NET Bible

For no one knows what is best for a person during his life -- during the few days of his fleeting life -- for they pass away like a shadow. Nor can anyone tell him what the future will hold for him on earth.

New Heart English Bible

For who knows what is good for man in life, all the days of his vain life which he spends like a shadow? For who can tell a man what will be after him under the sun?

The Emphasized Bible

For who knoweth what is good for a man throughout his life, for the number of the days of his life of vanity, seeing he will make them, like a shadow, - for who can tell a man, what shall be after him, under the sun?

Webster

For who knoweth what is good for man in this life, all the days of his vain life which he spendeth as a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?

World English Bible

For who knows what is good for man in life, all the days of his vain life which he spends like a shadow? For who can tell a man what will be after him under the sun?

Youngs Literal Translation

For who knoweth what is good for a man in life, the number of the days of the life of his vanity, and he maketh them as a shadow? for who declareth to man what is after him under the sun?

Interlinear

English(KJV)
Strong's
Root Form
Definition
Usage
אדם 
'adam 
Usage: 541

in this life
חי 
Chay 
Usage: 502

all
מספּר 
Micpar 
Usage: 132

the days
יום 
Yowm 
Usage: 2293

of his vain
הבל הבל 
hebel 
Usage: 73

חי 
Chay 
Usage: 502

as a shadow
צל 
Tsel 
Usage: 49

נגד 
Nagad 
Usage: 370

a man
אדם 
'adam 
Usage: 541

אחר 
'achar 
Usage: 488

References

Hastings

Context Readings

The Future Is Inscrutable To Humans

11 Seeing there be many things that increase vanity, what is man the better? 12 For who knoweth what is good for man in this life, all the days of his vain life which he spendeth as a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?


Cross References

Job 14:2

He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not.

Ecclesiastes 3:22

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?

Ecclesiastes 8:13

But it shall not be well with the wicked, neither shall he prolong his days, which are as a shadow; because he feareth not before God.

James 4:14

Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.

1 Chronicles 29:15

For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers: our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding.

Job 8:9

(For we are but of yesterday, and know nothing, because our days upon earth are a shadow:)

Job 14:21

His sons come to honour, and he knoweth it not; and they are brought low, but he perceiveth it not of them.

Psalm 4:6

There be many that say, Who will shew us any good? LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us.

Psalm 16:5

The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot.

Psalm 17:15

As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with thy likeness.

Psalm 39:5-6

Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah.

Psalm 47:4

He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob whom he loved. Selah.

Psalm 89:47

Remember how short my time is: wherefore hast thou made all men in vain?

Psalm 90:10-12

The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.

Psalm 102:11

My days are like a shadow that declineth; and I am withered like grass.

Psalm 109:23

I am gone like the shadow when it declineth: I am tossed up and down as the locust.

Psalm 144:4

Man is like to vanity: his days are as a shadow that passeth away.

Ecclesiastes 2:3

I 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.

Ecclesiastes 8:7

For he knoweth not that which shall be: for who can tell him when it shall be?

Ecclesiastes 9:6

Also 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.

Ecclesiastes 12:13

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.

Lamentations 3:24-27

The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.

Micah 6:8

He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

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