Or "besides" F26 what has been said; or "as to what remains" F1; or "but what is better", or "more excellent" F2, is to "hear the conclusion of the whole matter", the sum and substance of the whole book in a few words, ( Ecclesiastes 12:13 ) ; to which ( Ecclesiastes 12:9-12 ) ; are a preface; and in which the wise man recommends the reading of this book, and other writings of his, and of other wise men inspired of God; and his own he particularly recommends, from his character as wise and industrious, in this verse; and from the subject matter of them, their nature, use, and excellency, and their efficacy and authority, in the two next; because the preacher was wise;
he was a "preacher", a royal one, an extraordinary preacher, and to be regarded; he urges not his title as a king, but his character as a preacher, to recommend what he had written: every good preacher should be regarded; not such who are ignorant preachers of the law, but faithful ministers of the Gospel, who are sent of God, and have felt and experienced what they deliver to others; and especially who are wise as well as faithful, as Solomon was; he had much wisdom given him at first, ( 1 Kings 3:12 ) ( 4:29-31 ) ; and in which he improved; and though he turned to folly in his old age, he recovered from that, and gained more wisdom through his fall, and to which he here seems to have reference; for "Koheleth", which some render the "gatherer", because he gathered much wisdom, and much people to hear it; others render "gathered", that is, into the flock and fold again, the church of God, from which he had strayed; (See Gill on Ecclesiastes 1:1); and having seen through the follies and vanities of life, and being recovered and restored, was a fitter person to teach and instruct others; see ( Psalms 51:12 Psalms 51:13 ) ( Luke 22:32 ) ; he still taught the people knowledge;
or "again", as the Targum; after his fall and recovery he was communicative of his knowledge; he did not hide his talent in the earth, nor in a napkin; but having freely received he freely gave, and kept back nothing from his people, the people of the house of Israel, as the Targum, that might be profitable to them; he taught them the knowledge of themselves, as fallen men, impure, impotent, and unrighteous; the knowledge of the creatures, and the vanity of them, of riches, honours, and pleasures; and of works of righteousness to save men; the knowledge of Christ the Wisdom of God, the antiquity of his person, his glories, excellencies, and beauties, as in the books of Proverbs and Canticles; the knowledge of God, his fear and worship, mind and will; and the knowledge of a future state, and of the general judgment, as in this book; and in proportion to his own knowledge so he taught: for thus the words with the preceding may be rendered, that "the more that the preacher was wise, the more he taught the people knowledge" F3; he taught according to the abilities he had received, as preachers should; the more he grew in grace and knowledge, the more largely be shared with others; and this he did "daily", as Aben Ezra renders the words, constantly, continually, incessantly, in season and out of season, as faithful Gospel ministers do; yea, he gave good heed;
to what he heard and to what be read, to which the apostle's advice agrees, ( 1 Timothy 4:13 ) ; or he caused others to hear, and give good heed to what is said, as Aben Ezra; he engaged their attention by his enlivening discourses; or, as Kimchi, he weighed things in his own mind, and in the balance of the sanctuary; and thoroughly considered and digested them before he delivered them to others; and sought out;
was very diligent in investigating truth, he searched into the mines of knowledge for it, the sacred writings, as one would for gold and silver, and as he himself directs, ( Proverbs 2:4 Proverbs 2:5 ) ; [and] set in order many proverbs;
three thousand of them, ( 1 Kings 4:32 ) ; particularly those which are in the book of that name, penned by him; he selected the most choice, pithy, and sententious sayings, of his own and others; and these he huddled not up, or threw them together in a disorderly and confused manner; but put them together in proper order and method, under proper heads, as well as in a correct style, that they might be more received, and more easily retained. The Targum is,
``he attended to the voice of the wise men, and searched the books of wisdom; and by a spirit of prophecy from the Lord composed books of wisdom, and very many proverbs of understanding.''