Bible: Ecclesiastes 1:12-18

Futility of Secular Accomplishment

1:12 I, the Teacher, have been king over Israel in Jerusalem. 1 

1:13 I decided 2  to carefully 3  and thoroughly examine 4 

all that has been accomplished on earth. 5 

I concluded: 6  God has given people 7  a burdensome task 8 

that keeps them 9  occupied. 10 

1:14 I reflected on everything that is accomplished by man 11  on earth, 12 

and I concluded: Everything 13  he has accomplished 14  is futile 15 like chasing the wind! 16 

1:15 What is bent 17  cannot be straightened, 18 

and what is missing 19  cannot be supplied. 20 

Futility of Secular Wisdom

1:16 I thought to myself, 21 

“I have become much wiser 22  than any of my predecessors who ruled 23  over Jerusalem; 24 

I 25  have acquired much wisdom and knowledge.” 26 

1:17 So I decided 27  to discern the benefit of 28  wisdom and knowledge over 29  foolish behavior and ideas; 30 

however, I concluded 31  that even 32  this endeavor 33  is like 34  trying to chase the wind! 35 

1:18 For with great wisdom comes 36  great frustration;

whoever increases his 37  knowledge merely 38  increases his 39  heartache.

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