Remember also your Creator in 1the days of your youth, before 2the evil days come and the years draw near of which 3you will say, "I have no pleasure in them";
before 4the sun and the light and the moon and the stars are darkened and the clouds return after the rain,
in the day when the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men are bent, and the grinders cease because they are few, and 5those who look through the windows are dimmed,
and 6the doors on the street are shut--when 7the sound of the grinding is low, and one rises up at the sound of a bird, and all 8the daughters of song are brought low--
they are afraid also of what is high, and 9terrors are in the way; the almond tree blossoms, the grasshopper drags itself along,a and desire fails, because man is going to his 10eternal 11home, and the 12mourners go about the streets--
before the silver cord is snapped, or 13the golden bowl is broken, or the pitcher is 14shattered at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern,
and 15the dust returns to the earth as it was, and 16the spirit returns to God 17who gave it.
818Vanity of vanities, says 19the Preacher; all is vanity.
Besides being wise, 20the Preacher also taught the people knowledge, weighing and studying and arranging 21many proverbs with great care.
1022The Preacher sought to find words of delight, and uprightly he wrote words of truth.
1123The words of the wise are like goads, and like 24nails firmly fixed are the collected sayings; they are 25given by 26one Shepherd.
My son, beware of anything beyond these. Of making 27many books there is no end, and 28much study is a weariness of the flesh.
The end of the matter; all has been heard. 29Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.b14
For 30God will bring every deed into judgment, withc every secret thing, whether good or evil.