Obey the king's command, I say, because you took an oath before God.
References for Ecclesiastes 8:2
Do not be in a hurry to leave the king's presence.1 Do not stand up for a bad cause, for he will do whatever he pleases.
References for Ecclesiastes 8:3
Since a king's word is supreme, who can say to him, "What are you doing?2"
References for Ecclesiastes 8:4
Whoever obeys his command will come to no harm, and the wise heart will know the proper time and procedure.
For there is a proper time and procedure for every matter,3 though a man's misery weighs heavily upon him.
References for Ecclesiastes 8:6
Since no man knows the future, who can tell him what is to come?
No man has power over the wind to contain it; so no one has power over the day of his death. As no one is discharged in time of war, so wickedness will not release those who practice it.
References for Ecclesiastes 8:8
All this I saw, as I applied my mind to everything done under the sun. There is a time when a man lords it over others to his own hurt.
References for Ecclesiastes 8:9
Then too, I saw the wicked buried4--those who used to come and go from the holy place and receive praise in the city where they did this. This too is meaningless.
References for Ecclesiastes 8:10
When the sentence for a crime is not quickly carried out, the hearts of the people are filled with schemes to do wrong.
Although a wicked man commits a hundred crimes and still lives a long time, I know that it will go better5 with God-fearing men,6 who are reverent before God.7
References for Ecclesiastes 8:12
Yet because the wicked do not fear God,8 it will not go well with them, and their days9 will not lengthen like a shadow.
References for Ecclesiastes 8:13
There is something else meaningless that occurs on earth: righteous men who get what the wicked deserve, and wicked men who get what the righteous deserve.10 This too, I say, is meaningless.11
References for Ecclesiastes 8:14