Parallel Verses

New American Standard Bible

What the eyes see is better than what the soul desires This too is futility and a striving after wind.

King James Version

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity and vexation of spirit.

Holman Bible

Better what the eyes see than wandering desire. This too is futile and a pursuit of the wind.

International Standard Version

It is better to focus on what you can see than to meander after your self-interest; this also is pointless and a chasing after wind.

A Conservative Version

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire. This also is vanity and a striving after wind.

American Standard Version

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this also is vanity and a striving after wind.

Amplified

Better is the sight of the eyes [the enjoyment of what is available to one] than the cravings of wandering desire. This is also vanity (emptiness, falsity, and futility) and a striving after the wind and a feeding on it!

Bible in Basic English

What the eyes see is better than the wandering of desire. This is to no purpose and a desire for wind.

Darby Translation

Better is the seeing of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this also is vanity and pursuit of the wind.

Jubilee 2000 Bible

It is better to enjoy the good that is present than the wandering of desire; this is also vanity and vexation of spirit.

Julia Smith Translation

Good the sight of the eyes above the going of the soul. Also this is vanity and striving of spirit

King James 2000

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity and grasping after the wind.

Lexham Expanded Bible

{Better to be content with what your eyes see than for your soul to constantly crave more}. This also [is] vanity and chasing wind!

Modern King James verseion

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire. This is also vanity and vexation of spirit.

Modern Spelling Tyndale-Coverdale

The sight of the eyes is better, then that the soul should so depart away. Howbeit, this is also a vain thing and a disquietness of mind.

NET Bible

It is better to be content with what the eyes can see than for one's heart always to crave more. This continual longing is futile -- like chasing the wind.

New Heart English Bible

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire. This also is vanity and a chasing after wind.

The Emphasized Bible

Better what the eyes behold, than the wandering of desire, - even this, was vanity, and a feeding on wind.

Webster

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity and vexation of spirit.

World English Bible

Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire. This also is vanity and a chasing after wind.

Youngs Literal Translation

Better is the sight of the eyes than the going of the soul. This also is vanity and vexation of spirit.

Interlinear

English(KJV)
Strong's
Root Form
Definition
Usage
is the sight
מראה 
Mar'eh 
Usage: 104

of the eyes
עין 
`ayin 
Usage: 372

הלך 
Halak 
go, walk, come, ...away, ...along,
Usage: 1545

of the desire
נפשׁ 
Nephesh 
Usage: 753

הבל הבל 
hebel 
Usage: 73

and vexation
רעוּת 
R@`uwth 
Usage: 7

References

Hastings

Context Readings

One Must Learn To Be Content With What One Has

8 For what advantage does the wise man have over the fool? What advantage does the poor man have, knowing how to walk before the living? 9 What the eyes see is better than what the soul desires This too is futility and a striving after wind. 10 Whatever exists has already been named, and it is known what man is; for he cannot dispute with him who is stronger than he is.


Cross References

Ecclesiastes 1:14

I have seen all the works which have been done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and striving after wind.

Job 31:7

"If my step has turned from the way, Or my heart followed my eyes, Or if any spot has stuck to my hands,

Proverbs 30:15-16

The leech has two daughters, "Give," "Give." There are three things that will not be satisfied, Four that will not say, "Enough":

Ecclesiastes 1:2

"Vanity of vanities," says the Preacher, "Vanity of vanities! All is vanity."

Ecclesiastes 2:11

Thus I considered all my activities which my hands had done and the labor which I had exerted, and behold all was vanity and striving after wind and there was no profit under the sun.

Ecclesiastes 2:22-24

For what does a man get in all his labor and in his striving with which he labors under the sun?

Ecclesiastes 3:12-13

I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good in one's lifetime;

Ecclesiastes 4:4

I have seen that every labor and every skill which is done is the result of rivalry between a man and his neighbor This too is vanity and striving after wind.

Ecclesiastes 5:18

Here is what I have seen to be good and fitting: to eat, to drink and enjoy oneself in all one's labor in which he toils under the sun during the few years of his life which God has given him; for this is his reward.

Ecclesiastes 6:2

a man to whom God has given riches and wealth and honor so that his soul lacks nothing of all that he desires; yet God has not empowered him to eat from them, for a foreigner enjoys them. This is vanity and a severe affliction.

Ecclesiastes 11:9

Rejoice, young man, during your childhood, and let your heart be pleasant during the days of young manhood. And follow the impulses of your heart and the desires of your eyes Yet know that God will bring you to judgment for all these things.

Jeremiah 2:20

"For long ago I broke your yoke And tore off your bonds; But you said, 'I will not serve!' For on every high hill And under every green tree You have lain down as a harlot.

Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers.

International Standard Version Copyright © 1996-2008 by the ISV Foundation.

New American Standard Bible Copyright ©1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved. For Permission to Quote Information visit http://www.lockman.org

NET Bible copyright © 1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. NetBible

Basic English, produced by Mr C. K. Ogden of the Orthological Institute - public domain