Bible: Ecclesiastes 6

Not Everyone Enjoys Life

6:1 Here is 1  another misfortune 2  that I have seen on earth, 3 

and it weighs 4  heavily on people: 5 

6:2 God gives a man riches, property, and wealth

so that he lacks nothing that his heart 6  desires, 7 

yet God does not enable 8  him to enjoy 9  the fruit of his labor 10 

instead, someone else 11  enjoys 12  it! 13 

This is fruitless and a grave misfortune. 14 

6:3 Even if a man fathers a hundred children and lives many years

even if he lives a long, long time, 15  but cannot enjoy his prosperity

even if he were to live forever 16 

I would say, “A stillborn child 17  is better off than he is!” 18 

6:4 Though the stillborn child 19  came into the world 20  for no reason 21  and departed into darkness,

though its name is shrouded in darkness, 22 

6:5 though it never saw the light of day 23  nor knew anything, 24 

yet it has more rest 25  than that man –

6:6 if he should live a thousand years twice, yet does not enjoy his prosperity.

For both of them die! 26 

6:7 All of man’s labor is for nothing more than 27  to fill his stomach 28 

yet his appetite 29  is never satisfied!

6:8 So what advantage does a wise man have over a fool? 30 

And what advantage 31  does a pauper gain by knowing how to survive? 32 

6:9 It is better to be content with 33  what the eyes can see 34 

than for one’s heart always to crave more. 35 

This continual longing 36  is futile – like 37  chasing the wind.

The Futile Way Life Works

6:10 Whatever has happened was foreordained, 38 

and what happens to a person 39  was also foreknown.

It is useless for him to argue with God about his fate

because God is more powerful than he is. 40 

6:11 The more one argues with words, the less he accomplishes. 41 

How does that benefit him? 42 

6:12 For no one knows what is best for a person during his life 43 

during the few days of his fleeting life

for 44  they pass away 45  like a shadow.

Nor can anyone tell him what the future will hold for him on earth. 46 

NET Bible Study Environment