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Introduction

\\INTRODUCTION TO ECCLESIASTES 4\\

In this chapter the wise man reassumes the consideration of the case of
the abuse of power, to show that there is no happiness in this world,
in grandeur and authority enjoyed; since, as he had observed before, on
the one hand, the oppressor shall be judged and condemned at the great
day of account; so, on the other hand, the oppressed have their lives
made so uncomfortable, that the dead are preferred unto them, and
unborn persons to them both, \\#Ec 4:1-3\\; Another vanity he observes,
that whereas men expect to be happy by their diligence and industry,
this brings upon them the envy of others, \\#Ec 4:4\\; hence some, on the
other hand, place their happiness in sloth and ease, which is another
vanity, \\#Ec 4:5,6\\; and others again in covetousness; who are described
by their unsocial life, toilsome labour, unsatisfied desires, and
withholding good things from themselves, \\#Ec 4:7,8\\; upon which some
things are said, to show the benefits of a social life, \\#Ec 4:9-12\\. And
the chapter is concluded with exposing the vanity of the highest
instance of worldly power and grandeur, royal dignity, through the
folly of a king; the effects of which are mentioned, \\#Ec 4:13,14\\; and
through the fickleness of the people, who are soon weary of a prince on
the throne, and court his successor, \\#Ec 4:15,16\\.