Ecclesiastes


Chapter 3

There is an appointed time for everything, and a time
for every affair under the heavens.

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant,
and a time to uproot the plant.

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to tear
down, and a time to build.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn,
and a time to dance.

A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them; a
time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces.

A time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep,
and a time to cast away.

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to be
silent, and a time to speak.

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and
a time of peace.

What advantage has the worker from his toil?

I have considered the task which God has appointed for
men to be busied about.

He has made everything appropriate to its time, and
has put the timeless into their hearts, without men's
ever discovering, from beginning to end, the work
which God has done.

I recognized that there is nothing better than to be
glad and to do well during life.

For every man, moreover, to eat and drink and enjoy
the fruit of all his labor is a gift of God.

I recognized that whatever God does will endure
forever; there is no adding to it, or taking from it.
Thus has God done that he may be revered.

What now is has already been; what is to be, already
is; and God restores what would otherwise be
displaced.

And still under the sun in the judgment place I saw
wickedness, and in the seat of justice, iniquity.

And I said to myself, both the just and the wicked God
will judge, since there is a time for every affair and
on every work a judgment.

I said to myself: As for the children of men, it is
God's way of testing them and of showing that they are
in themselves like beasts.

For the lot of man and of beast is one lot; the one
dies as well as the other. Both have the same life-
breath, and man has no advantage over the beast; but
all is vanity.

Both go to the same place; both were made from the
dust, and to the dust they both return.

Who knows if the life-breath of the children of men
goes upward and the life-breath of beasts goes
earthward?

And I saw that there is nothing better for a man than
to rejoice in his work; for this is his lot. Who will
let him see what is to come after him?




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