Ecclesiastes 1 NLT/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

New Living Translation (NLT) New International Version (NIV)
1 These are the words of the Teacher, King David's son, who ruled in Jerusalem. 1 The words of the Teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem:
2 "Everything is meaningless," says the Teacher, "utterly meaningless!" 2 "Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. "Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless."
3 What do people get for all their hard work? 3 What does man gain from all his labor at which he toils under the sun?
4 Generations come and go, but nothing really changes. 4 Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever.
5 The sun rises and sets and hurries around to rise again. 5 The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises.
6 The wind blows south and north, here and there, twisting back and forth, getting nowhere. 6 The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course.
7 The rivers run into the sea, but the sea is never full. Then the water returns again to the rivers and flows again to the sea. 7 All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. To the place the streams come from, there they return again.
8 Everything is so weary and tiresome! No matter how much we see, we are never satisfied. No matter how much we hear, we are not content. 8 All things are wearisome, more than one can say. The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing.
9 History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new. 9 What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.
10 What can you point to that is new? How do you know it didn't already exist long ago? 10 Is there anything of which one can say, "Look! This is something new"? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time.
11 We don't remember what happened in those former times. And in future generations, no one will remember what we are doing now. 11 There is no remembrance of men of old, and even those who are yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow.
12 I, the Teacher, was king of Israel, and I lived in Jerusalem. 12 I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem.
13 I devoted myself to search for understanding and to explore by wisdom everything being done in the world. I soon discovered that God has dealt a tragic existence to the human race. 13 I devoted myself to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under heaven. What a heavy burden God has laid on men!
14 Everything under the sun is meaningless, like chasing the wind. 14 I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
15 What is wrong cannot be righted. What is missing cannot be recovered. 15 What is twisted cannot be straightened; what is lacking cannot be counted.
16 I said to myself, "Look, I am wiser than any of the kings who ruled in Jerusalem before me. I have greater wisdom and knowledge than any of them." 16 I thought to myself, "Look, I have grown and increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge."
17 So I worked hard to distinguish wisdom from foolishness. But now I realize that even this was like chasing the wind. 17 Then I applied myself to the understanding of wisdom, and also of madness and folly, but I learned that this, too, is a chasing after the wind.
18 For the greater my wisdom, the greater my grief. To increase knowledge only increases sorrow. 18 For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief.