Ecclesiastes 2 NAS/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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1 I said to myself, "Come now, I will test you with pleasure. So enjoy yourself." And behold, it too was futility. 1 I thought in my heart, "Come now, I will test you with pleasure to find out what is good." But that also proved to be meaningless.
2 I said of laughter, "It is madness," and of pleasure, "What does it accomplish?" 2 "Laughter," I said, "is foolish. And what does pleasure accomplish?"
3 I explored with my mind how to stimulate my body with wine while my mind was guiding me wisely, and how to take hold of folly, until I could see what good there is for the sons of men to do under heaven the few years of their lives. 3 I tried cheering myself with wine, and embracing folly--my mind still guiding me with wisdom. I wanted to see what was worthwhile for men to do under heaven during the few days of their lives.
4 I enlarged my works: I built houses for myself, I planted vineyards for myself; 4 I undertook great projects: I built houses for myself and planted vineyards.
5 I made gardens and parks for myself and I planted in them all kinds of fruit trees; 5 I made gardens and parks and planted all kinds of fruit trees in them.
6 I made ponds of water for myself from which to irrigate a forest of growing trees. 6 I made reservoirs to water groves of flourishing trees.
7 I bought male and female slaves and I had homeborn slaves. Also I possessed flocks and herds larger than all who preceded me in Jerusalem. 7 I bought male and female slaves and had other slaves who were born in my house. I also owned more herds and flocks than anyone in Jerusalem before me.
8 Also, I collected for myself silver and gold and the treasure of kings and provinces. I provided for myself male and female singers and the pleasures of men -many concubines. 8 I amassed silver and gold for myself, and the treasure of kings and provinces. I acquired men and women singers, and a harem as well--the delights of the heart of man.
9 Then I became great and increased more than all who preceded me in Jerusalem. My wisdom also stood by me. 9 I became greater by far than anyone in Jerusalem before me. In all this my wisdom stayed with me.
10 All that my eyes desired I did not refuse them. I did not withhold my heart from any pleasure, for my heart was pleased because of all my labor and this was my reward for all my labor. 10 I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my work, and this was the reward for all my labor.
11 Thus I considered all my activities which my hands had done and the labor which I had exerted, and behold all was vanity and striving after wind and there was no profit under the sun. 11 Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun.
12 So I turned to consider wisdom, madness and folly; for what will the man do who will come after the king except what has already been done? 12 Then I turned my thoughts to consider wisdom, and also madness and folly. What more can the king's successor do than what has already been done?
13 And I saw that wisdom excels folly as light excels darkness. 13 I saw that wisdom is better than folly, just as light is better than darkness.
14 The wise man's eyes are in his head, but the fool walks in darkness. And yet I know that one fate befalls them both. 14 The wise man has eyes in his head, while the fool walks in the darkness; but I came to realize that the same fate overtakes them both.
15 Then I said to myself, "As is the fate of the fool, it will also befall me. Why then have I been extremely wise?" So I said to myself, "This too is vanity." 15 Then I thought in my heart, "The fate of the fool will overtake me also. What then do I gain by being wise?" I said in my heart, "This too is meaningless."
16 For there is no lasting remembrance of the wise man as with the fool, inasmuch as in the coming days all will be forgotten. And how the wise man and the fool alike die! 16 For the wise man, like the fool, will not be long remembered; in days to come both will be forgotten. Like the fool, the wise man too must die!
17 So I hated life, for the work which had been done under the sun was grievous to me; because everything is futility and striving after wind. 17 So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
18 Thus I hated all the fruit of my labor for which I had labored under the sun, for I must leave it to the man who will come after me. 18 I hated all the things I had toiled for under the sun, because I must leave them to the one who comes after me.
19 And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool? Yet he will have control over all the fruit of my labor for which I have labored by acting wisely under the sun. This too is vanity. 19 And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool? Yet he will have control over all the work into which I have poured my effort and skill under the sun. This too is meaningless.
20 Therefore I completely despaired of all the fruit of my labor for which I had labored under the sun. 20 So my heart began to despair over all my toilsome labor under the sun.
21 When there is a man who has labored with wisdom, knowledge and skill, then he gives his legacy to one who has not labored with them. This too is vanity and a great evil. 21 For a man may do his work with wisdom, knowledge and skill, and then he must leave all he owns to someone who has not worked for it. This too is meaningless and a great misfortune.
22 For what does a man get in all his labor and in his striving with which he labors under the sun? 22 What does a man get for all the toil and anxious striving with which he labors under the sun?
23 Because all his days his task is painful and grievous; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is vanity. 23 All his days his work is pain and grief; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is meaningless.
24 There is nothing better for a man than to eat and drink and tell himself that his labor is good. This also I have seen that it is from the hand of God. 24 A man can do nothing better than to eat and drink and find satisfaction in his work. This too, I see, is from the hand of God,
25 For who can eat and who can have enjoyment without Him? 25 for without him, who can eat or find enjoyment?
26 For to a person who is good in His sight He has given wisdom and knowledge and joy, while to the sinner He has given the task of gathering and collecting so that he may give to one who is good in God's sight. This too is vanity and striving after wind. 26 To the man who pleases him, God gives wisdom, knowledge and happiness, but to the sinner he gives the task of gathering and storing up wealth to hand it over to the one who pleases God. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.