Bible: Ecclesiastes 9:1-12

Everyone Will Die

9:1 So I reflected on all this, 1  attempting to clear 2  it all up.

I concluded that 3  the righteous and the wise, as well as their works, are in the hand of God;

whether a person will be loved or hated 4 

no one knows what lies ahead. 5 

9:2 Everyone shares the same fate 6 

the righteous and the wicked,

the good and the bad, 7 

the ceremonially clean and unclean,

those who offer sacrifices and those who do not.

What happens to the good person, also happens to the sinner; 8 

what happens to those who make vows, also happens to those who are afraid to make vows.

9:3 This is the unfortunate fact 9  about everything that happens on earth: 10 

the same fate awaits 11  everyone.

In addition to this, the hearts of all people 12  are full of evil,

and there is folly in their hearts during their lives – then they die. 13 

Better to Be Poor but Alive than Rich but Dead

9:4 But whoever is among 14  the living 15  has hope;

a live dog is better than a dead lion.

9:5 For the living know that they will die, but the dead do not know anything;

they have no further reward – and even the memory of them disappears. 16 

9:6 What they loved, 17  as well as what they hated 18  and envied, 19  perished long ago,

and they no longer have a part in anything that happens on earth. 20 

Life is Brief, so Cherish its Joys

9:7 Go, eat your food 21  with joy,

and drink your wine with a happy heart,

because God has already approved your works.

9:8 Let your clothes always be white,

and do not spare precious ointment on your head.

9:9 Enjoy 22  life with your beloved wife 23  during all the days of your fleeting 24  life

that God 25  has given you on earth 26  during all your fleeting days; 27 

for that is your reward in life and in your burdensome work 28  on earth. 29 

9:10 Whatever you find to do with your hands, 30 

do it with all your might,

because there is neither work nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom in the grave, 31 

the place where you will eventually go. 32 

Wisdom Cannot Protect against Seemingly Chance Events

9:11 Again, 33  I observed this on the earth: 34 

the race is not always 35  won by the swiftest,

the battle is not always won by the strongest;

prosperity 36  does not always belong to those who are the wisest,

wealth does not always belong to those who are the most discerning,

nor does success 37  always come to those with the most knowledge

for time and chance may overcome 38  them all.

9:12 Surely, no one 39  knows his appointed time! 40 

Like fish that are caught in a deadly 41  net, and like birds that are caught in a snare

just like them, all people 42  are ensnared 43  at an unfortunate 44  time that falls upon them suddenly.

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