Ecclesiastes 3:11-22 NIV

11 He has made everything beautiful in its time.1 He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom2 what God has done from beginning to end.3

References for Ecclesiastes 3:11

12 I know that there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live.
13 That everyone may eat and drink,4 and find satisfaction5 in all his toil--this is the gift of God.6

References for Ecclesiastes 3:13

14 I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that men will revere him.7

References for Ecclesiastes 3:14

15 Whatever is has already been,8 and what will be has been before;9 and God will call the past to account.a

References for Ecclesiastes 3:15

    • a 3:15 - Or "God calls back the past"
      16 And I saw something else under the sun: In the place of judgment--wickedness was there, in the place of justice--wickedness was there.
      17 I thought in my heart, "God will bring to judgment10 both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time for every deed."11

      References for Ecclesiastes 3:17

      18 I also thought, "As for men, God tests them so that they may see that they are like the animals.12

      References for Ecclesiastes 3:18

      19 Man's fate13 is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breathb; man has no advantage over the animal. Everything is meaningless.

      References for Ecclesiastes 3:19

        • b 3:19 - Or "spirit"
          20 All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.14

          References for Ecclesiastes 3:20

          21 Who knows if the spirit of man rises upward15 and if the spirit of the animalc goes down into the earth?"

          References for Ecclesiastes 3:21

            • c 3:21 - Or "Who knows the spirit of man, which rises upward, or the spirit of the animal, which"
              22 So I saw that there is nothing better for a man than to enjoy his work,16 because that is his lot.17 For who can bring him to see what will happen after him?

              References for Ecclesiastes 3:22