1 A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day
of death 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.
3 Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the
countenance the heart is made better.
4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the
heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
5 It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a
man 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.
7 Surely oppression maketh a wise man mad; and a gift
destroyeth the heart.
8 Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof:
and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in
9 Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth
in the bosom of fools.
10 Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were
better than these? for thou dost not inquire wisely
11 Wisdom is good with an inheritance: and by it there is
profit to them that 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.
13 Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight,
which he hath 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
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.
16 Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over
wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself?
17 Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why
shouldest thou die before thy 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.
19 Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty men
which are in the city.
20 For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good,
and sinneth not.
21 Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest
thou hear thy servant curse thee:
22 For oftentimes also thine own heart knoweth that thou
thyself likewise hast cursed others.
23 All this have I proved by wisdom: I said, I will be wise;
but it was far from me.
24 That which is far off, and exceeding deep, who can find
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:
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
27 Behold, this have I found, saith the preacher, counting
one by one, to find out the account:
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
29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man
upright; but they have sought out many inventions.1
References and notes
1. King James Authorized Version
2. Matthew Henry Bible Commentary - http://eword.gospelcom.net/comments/ecclesiastes/mh/ecclesiastes7.htm
Solomon had given many proofs and instances of the vanity of
this world and the things of it; now, in this chapter,
I. He recommends to us some good means proper to be used for
the redress of these grievances and the arming of ourselves
against the mischief we are in danger of from them, that we
may make the best of the bad, as
1. Care of our reputation (v. 1). 2. Seriousness (v. 2-6).
3. Calmness of spirit (v. 7-10).
4. Prudence in the management of all our affairs (v. 11,
5. Submission to the will of God in all events,
accommodating ourselves to every condition (v. 13-15).
6. A conscientious avoiding of all dangerous extremes (v.
7. Mildness and tenderness towards those that have been
injurious to us (v. 19-22).
In short, the best way to save ourselves from the vexation
which the vanity of the world creates us is to keep our
temper and to maintain a strict government of our passions.
II. He laments his own iniquity, as that which was more
vexatious than any of these vanities, that mystery of
iniquity, the having of many wives, by which he was drawn
away from God and his duty (v. 23-29).
The Index to Ecclesiastes is a great starting point for searching the Book of Ecclesiastes. The index page contains Daily Scriptures and easy links to chapters for the Book of Ecclesiastes. The pages may include song previews, background information, commentary, sermons, videos, and details of the Bible author.