1 Who is really a wise man, and who knoweth the interpretation of a thing? The wisdom of a man, lighteth up his countenance, but, by defiance of countenance, one is disfigured.
1 Who is as the wise man? and who knoweth the interpretation of a thing? a man's wisdom maketh his face to shine, and the boldness of his face shall be changed.
1 Who is really wise? Who knows how to interpret this saying: "A person's wisdom improves his appearance, softening a harsh countenance."
2 I said , The bidding of the king, observe thou, even out of regard to the oath of God.
2 I counsel thee to keep the king's commandment, and that in regard of the oath of God.
2 I advise doing what the king says, especially regarding an oath to God.
3 Not rashly from his presence, shouldst thou go: do not take thy stand in a vexatious thing, - for, whatsoever he pleaseth, he will do.
3 Be not hasty to go out of his sight: stand not in an evil thing; for he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him.
3 Don't be in a hurry to leave him, and don't persist in evil, for he does whatever he pleases.
4 Where the word of a king is, there is power, - who then may say to him, What wouldst thou do?
4 Where the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What doest thou?
4 Since a king's command is powerful, who is able to challenge him, asking, "What are you doing?"
5 He that observeth the commandment, will not notice a vexatious thing, - and, of time and manner, will the heart of the wise take note.
5 Whoso keepeth the commandment shall feel no evil thing: and a wise man's heart discerneth both time and judgment.
5 Whoever obeys his commands will not experience harm, and the wise in heart will discern both the appropriate time and response.
6 For, to every pursuit, there is a time and a manner, - when, the vexation of man, is great concerning it.
6 Because to every purpose there is time and judgment, therefore the misery of man is great upon him.
6 Indeed, there is an appropriate time and a response for every circumstance, since human misery weighs heavily upon him.
7 For there is no one who knoweth what shall be, for, when it shall be, who will tell him?
7 For he knoweth not that which shall be: for who can tell him when it shall be?
7 For he has absolutely no knowledge what will happen, since who can declare to him when it will come about?
8 No man, hath power over the spirit, to retain the spirit, and, none, hath power over the day of death, and there is no furlough in war, - neither shall lawlessness deliver them who are given thereto.
8 There is no man that hath power over the spirit to retain the spirit; neither hath he power in the day of death: and there is no discharge in that war; neither shall wickedness deliver those that are given to it.
8 No one has authority over the wind(b) to restrain it,(H) and there is no authority over the day of death;(I) there is no furlough in battle, and wickedness will not allow those who practice it to escape.
8 Just as no human being has control over the wind to restrain it, so also no human being has control over the day of his death. Just as no one is discharged during war, so wickedness will not release those who practice it.
9 All this, had I seen, and tried to apply my heart to every work which was done under the sun, - at such time as one man had power over another man, to his hurt.
9 All this have I seen, and applied my heart unto every work that is done under the sun: there is a time wherein one man ruleth over another to his own hurt.
9 All this I have seen, applying my mind to all the work that is done under the sun, at a time when one man has authority over another to his harm.
9 I observed all this, and carefully considered everything that is undertaken on earth, especially the time when someone dominates another to his detriment.
10 And, thereupon, I considered the lawless when buried, when they had entered, their graves , that, from the place of the Holy One, they used to go and boast in the city that they had so done, - even this, was vanity.
10 And so I saw the wicked buried, who had come and gone from the place of the holy, and they were forgotten in the city where they had so done: this is also vanity.
10 So I watched the wicked being entombed. They used to come in and out of the Holy Place, but now they are forgotten in the city, where they used to work. This, too, is pointless.
11 Because sentence against a wicked work is not executed speedily - on this account, the heart of the sons of men is fully set within them, to commit wickedness.
11 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.
11 Whenever a sentence for a crime is not carried out swiftly, the human mind becomes determined to commit evil.
12 Though a sinner be committing wickedness a hundred times, and continuing long in his own way, yet I surely know that it shall be well to them who revere God, who stand in awe before him;
12 Though a sinner do evil an hundred times, and his days be prolonged, yet surely I know that it shall be well with them that fear God, which fear before him:
12 Even though a sinner does what is wrong a hundred times and still survives, nevertheless I also know that things will go well for those who fear God, who fear in his presence.
13 but, well, shall it not be to the lawless man, neither shall he lengthen out his days like a shadow, - because he standeth not in awe before God.
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.
13 But things will not go well for the wicked person: he will not lengthen his life like a shadow, since he has no fear before God.
14 Here was a vain thing which was done upon the earth - that there were righteous men unto whom it happened according to the work of the lawless, and there were lawless men, unto whom it happened according to the work of the righteous, - I said, that, even this, was vanity.
14 There is futility which is done on the earth, that is, there are (T)righteous men to whom it (j)happens according to the deeds of the wicked. On the other hand, there are (U)evil men to whom it (k)happens according to the deeds of the righteous. I say that this too is futility.
14 There is a vanity which is done upon the earth; that there be just men, unto whom it happeneth according to the work of the wicked; again, there be wicked men, to whom it happeneth according to the work of the righteous: I said that this also is vanity.
14 There is a futility that is done on the earth: there are righteous people who get what the actions of the wicked deserve,(P) and there are wicked people who get what the actions of the righteous deserve.(Q) I say that this too is futile.
14 Here is a pointless thing that happens on earth: A righteous man receives what happens to the wicked, and a wicked man receives what happens to the righteous. I concluded that this, too, is pointless.
15 Then extolled I, gladness, in that there was nothing better for a man, under the sun, than to eat and to drink, and to be glad, - since, that, should tarry with him in his toil, for the days of his life which God had given him under the sun.
15 So I commended pleasure, for there is nothing good for (V)a man under the sun except to eat and to drink and to be merry, and this will stand by him in his (l)toils throughout the days of his life which God has given him under the sun.
15 Then I commended mirth, because a man hath no better thing under the sun, than to eat, and to drink, and to be merry: for that shall abide with him of his labour the days of his life, which God giveth him under the sun.
15 So I commended enjoyment because there is nothing better for man under the sun than to eat, drink, and enjoy himself,(R) for this will accompany him in his labor during the days of his life that God gives him under the sun.
15 So then I recommended enjoyment of life, because it is better on earth for a man to eat, drink, and be happy, since this will stay with him throughout his struggle all the days of his life, which God grants him on earth.
16 When I gave my heart, to know wisdom, and to consider the business that was done upon the earth, then surely, by day and by night, there was one who suffered not his eyes, to sleep.
16 When I applied mine heart to know wisdom, and to see the business that is done upon the earth: (for also there is that neither day nor night seeth sleep with his eyes:)
16 When I dedicated myself to experience wisdom and to observe what is undertaken on earth even going without sleep day and night
17 Then I considered all the work of God, that man could not find out the work that was done under the sun, inasmuch as man toileth in seeking and yet cannot find, - yea, even though the wise man should say he knoweth, yet can he not find it out.
17 and I saw every work of God, I concluded that (Y)man cannot discover the work which has been done under the sun. Even though man should seek laboriously, he will not discover; and (Z)though the wise man should say, “I know,” he cannot discover.
17 Then I beheld all the work of God, that a man cannot find out the work that is done under the sun: because though a man labour to seek it out, yet he shall not find it; yea further; though a wise man think to know it, yet shall he not be able to find it.
17 I observed all the work of God and concluded that man is unable to discover the work that is done under the sun. Even though a man labors hard to explore it, he cannot find it;(T) even if the wise man claims to know it, he is unable to discover it.
17 I saw all of it as the activity of God. Frankly, a human being cannot understand what happens on earth, because however hard a man works to discover it, he will not find out. Despite what he thinks he knows, he will not be able to figure it out.
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