Ecclesiastes 10 NRS/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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1 Dead flies make the perfumer's ointment give off a foul odor; so a little folly outweighs wisdom and honor. 1 As dead flies give perfume a bad smell, so a little folly outweighs wisdom and honor.
2 The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of a fool to the left. 2 The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left.
3 Even when fools walk on the road, they lack sense, and show to everyone that they are fools. 3 Even as he walks along the road, the fool lacks sense and shows everyone how stupid he is.
4 If the anger of the ruler rises against you, do not leave your post, for calmness will undo great offenses. 4 If a ruler's anger rises against you, do not leave your post; calmness can lay great errors to rest.
5 There is an evil that I have seen under the sun, as great an error as if it proceeded from the ruler: 5 There is an evil I have seen under the sun, the sort of error that arises from a ruler:
6 folly is set in many high places, and the rich sit in a low place. 6 Fools are put in many high positions, while the rich occupy the low ones.
7 I have seen slaves on horseback, and princes walking on foot like slaves. 7 I have seen slaves on horseback, while princes go on foot like slaves.
8 Whoever digs a pit will fall into it; and whoever breaks through a wall will be bitten by a snake. 8 Whoever digs a pit may fall into it; whoever breaks through a wall may be bitten by a snake.
9 Whoever quarries stones will be hurt by them; and whoever splits logs will be endangered by them. 9 Whoever quarries stones may be injured by them; whoever splits logs may be endangered by them.
10 If the iron is blunt, and one does not whet the edge, then more strength must be exerted; but wisdom helps one to succeed. 10 If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed but skill will bring success.
11 If the snake bites before it is charmed, there is no advantage in a charmer. 11 If a snake bites before it is charmed, there is no profit for the charmer.
12 Words spoken by the wise bring them favor, but the lips of fools consume them. 12 Words from a wise man's mouth are gracious, but a fool is consumed by his own lips.
13 The words of their mouths begin in foolishness, and their talk ends in wicked madness; 13 At the beginning his words are folly; at the end they are wicked madness--
14 yet fools talk on and on. No one knows what is to happen, and who can tell anyone what the future holds? 14 and the fool multiplies words. No one knows what is coming-- who can tell him what will happen after him?
15 The toil of fools wears them out, for they do not even know the way to town. 15 A fool's work wearies him; he does not know the way to town.
16 Alas for you, O land, when your king is a servant, and your princes feast in the morning! 16 Woe to you, O land whose king was a servant and whose princes feast in the morning.
17 Happy are you, O land, when your king is a nobleman, and your princes feast at the proper time— for strength, and not for drunkenness! 17 Blessed are you, O land whose king is of noble birth and whose princes eat at a proper time-- for strength and not for drunkenness.
18 Through sloth the roof sinks in, and through indolence the house leaks. 18 If a man is lazy, the rafters sag; if his hands are idle, the house leaks.
19 Feasts are made for laughter; wine gladdens life, and money meets every need. 19 A feast is made for laughter, and wine makes life merry, but money is the answer for everything.
20 Do not curse the king, even in your thoughts, or curse the rich, even in your bedroom; for a bird of the air may carry your voice, or some winged creature tell the matter. 20 Do not revile the king even in your thoughts, or curse the rich in your bedroom, because a bird of the air may carry your words, and a bird on the wing may report what you say.