1 A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one's birth.
1 A good name exceeds the value of fine perfume, and the day of someone's death exceeds the value of the day of his birth.
1 A good name is better than precious perfume, and the day of death better than the day of one's birth.
2 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.
2 It's better to attend a funeral than to attend a banquet, for everyone dies eventually, and the living will take this to heart.
2 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 heart.
3 Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.
3 Sorrow is better than laughter, because the heart is made better through trouble.
3 Sorrow is better than laughter, for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better and gains gladness.
4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
4 The heart of the wise is in a house of mourning,but the heart of fools is in a house of pleasure.
4 For the wise person thinks carefully when in mourning, but fools focus their thoughts on pleasure.
4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth and sensual joy.
5 It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools.
5 It is better to listen to a wise person's rebuke than to listen to the praise of fools.
5 It is better for a man to hear the rebuke of the wise than to hear the song of fools.
6 For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool: this also is vanity.
6 For as thorns burn to heat a pot, so also is the laughter of the fool even this is pointless.
6 For like the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool. This also is vanity (emptiness, falsity, and futility)!
7 Surely oppression maketh a wise man mad; and a gift destroyeth the heart.
7 Unjust gain makes the wise foolish, and a bribe corrupts the heart.
7 Surely oppression and extortion make a wise man foolish, and a bribe destroys the understanding and judgment.
8 Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
8 The conclusion of something is better than its beginning, and a patient attitude is more valuable than a proud one.
8 Better is the end of a thing than the beginning of it, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
9 Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.
9 Never be in a hurry to become internally angry, since anger settles down in the lap of fools.
9 Do not be quick in spirit to be angry or vexed, for anger and vexation lodge in the bosom of fools.
10 Do not say, “Why is it that the former days were better than these?”For it is not from wisdom that you ask about this.
10 Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were better than these? for thou dost not inquire wisely concerning this.
10 Never ask "Why does the past seem so much better than now?" because this question does not come from wisdom.
10 Do not say, Why were the old days better than these? For it is not wise or because of wisdom that you ask this.
11 Wisdom is good with an inheritance: and by it there is profit to them that see the sun.
11 Wisdom is as good as an inheritanceand an advantage to those who see the sun,
11 Wise use of possessions is good; it brings benefit to the living.
11 Wisdom is as good as an inheritance, yes, more excellent it is for those [the living] who see the sun.
12 For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it.
12 Indeed, wisdom gives protection, just like money does, but it's better to know that wisdom gives life, to those who have mastered it.
12 For wisdom is a defense even as money is a defense, but the excellency of knowledge is that wisdom shields and preserves the life of him who has it.
13 Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight, which he hath made crooked?
13 Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent?
13 Consider the work of God: who can make straight what He has made crooked?
14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him.
14 When times are good, be joyful; when times are bad, consider this: God made the one as well as the other, so people won't seek anything outside of his best.
14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider that God has made the one side by side with the other, so that man may not find out anything that shall be after him.
15 All things have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is a just man that perisheth in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man that prolongeth his life in his wickedness.
15 I have seen it all during my pointless life: both a righteous person who dies while he is righteous, and a wicked person who lives to an old age, while remaining wicked.
15 I have seen everything in the days of my vanity (my emptiness, falsity, vainglory, and futility): there is a righteous man who perishes in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man who prolongs his life in [spite of] his evildoing.
16 Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself?
16 Do not be overly righteous, nor be overly wise. Why be self-destructive?
16 Be not [morbidly exacting and externally] righteous overmuch, neither strive to make yourself [pretentiously appear] overwise -- "why should you [get puffed up and] destroy yourself [with presumptuous self-sufficiency]?
17 Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time?
17 Do not excel at wickedness, nor be a fool. Why die before your time?
17 [Although all have sinned] be not wicked overmuch or willfully, neither be foolish -- "why should you die before your time?
18 It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all.
18 It is good that you grasp the one and do not let the other slip from your hand. For the one who fears God will end up with both of them.
18 It is good for you to grab hold of this and not let go, because whoever fears God will escape all of these extremes.
18 It is good that you should take hold of this and from that withdraw not your hand; for he who [reverently] fears and worships God will come forth from them all.
19 Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty men which are in the city.
19 Wisdom given as strength to a wise person is better than having ten powerful men in the city.
19 [True] wisdom is a strength to the wise man more than ten rulers or valiant generals who are in the city.
20 For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.
20 For there is not a single righteous man on earth who practices good and does not sin.
20 Surely there is not a righteous man upon earth who does good and never sins.
21 Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest thou hear thy servant curse thee:
21 Don't listen to everything that is spoken you may hear your servant cursing you,
21 Do not give heed to everything that is said, lest you hear your servant cursing you -- "
22 For oftentimes also thine own heart knoweth that thou thyself likewise hast cursed others.
22 for you know that many times you yourself have cursed others.
22 since you also know how often you have cursed others.
22 For often your own heart knows that you have likewise cursed others.
23 All this have I proved by wisdom: I said, I will be wise; but it was far from me.
23 I have tested all this by wisdom. I resolved, “I will be wise,” but it was beyond me.
23 I used my wisdom to test all of this. I said, "I want to be wise," but it was beyond me.
23 All this have I tried and proved by wisdom. I said, I will be wise [independently of God] -- "but it was far from me.
24 That which is far off, and exceeding deep, who can find it out?
24 Whatever it is, it's far off and most profound. Who can attain it?
24 That which is is far off, and that which is deep is very deep -- "who can find it out [true wisdom independent of the fear of God]?
25 I applied mine 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:
25 I committed myself to understand, to learn, to search for wisdom and explanations, and to understand both the evil that is foolishness and the stupidity that is delusion.
25 I turned about [penitent] and my heart was set to know and to search out and to seek [true] wisdom and the reason of things, and to know that wickedness is folly and that foolishness is madness [and what had led me into such wickedness and madness].
26 And I discovered more (AK)bitter than death the woman whose heart is (AL)snares and nets, whose hands are chains. (AM)One who is pleasing to God will escape from her, but (AN)the sinner will be captured by her.
26 And I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart is snares and nets, and her hands as bands: whoso pleaseth God shall escape from her; but the sinner shall be taken by her.
26 I discovered for myself a bitterness that surpasses that of death: the woman whose heart is full of snares and nets, whose hands are chains of bondage. Whoever pleases God will escape from her, but the transgressor will be trapped by her.
26 And I found that [of all sinful follies none has been so ruinous in seducing one away from God as idolatrous women] more bitter than death is the woman whose heart is snares and nets and whose hands are bands. Whoever pleases God shall escape from her, but the sinner shall be taken by her.
27 “Behold, I have discovered this,” says the Preacher, “adding one thing to another to find an explanation,
27 Behold, this have I found, saith the preacher, counting one by one, to find out the account:
27 “Look,” says the Teacher, “I have discovered this by adding one thing to another to find out the explanation,
27 "Look at this," says the Teacher. "Linking one thing to another, I reached this conclusion:
27 Behold, this I have found, says the Preacher, while weighing one thing after another to find out the right estimate [and the reason] -- "
28 Which yet my soul seeketh, but I find not: one man among a thousand have I found; but a woman among all those have I not found.
28 Among the things I seek but have not found: one man among a thousand I did find, but I have not found one woman to be wise among all these.
28 Which I am still seeking but have not found -- "one upright man among a thousand have I found, but an upright woman among all those [one thousand in my harem] have I not found.
29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.
29 I have discovered only this: God made human beings for righteousness, but they seek many alternatives."
29 Behold, this is the only [reason for it that] I have found: God made man upright, but they [men and women] have sought out many devices [for evil].
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