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Ecclesiastes 6:4-12 NLT/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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New Living Translation (NLT) New International Version (NIV)
4 I realize that his birth would have been meaningless and ended in darkness. He wouldn't even have had a name, 4 It comes without meaning, it departs in darkness, and in darkness its name is shrouded.
5 and he would never have seen the sun or known of its existence. Yet he would have had more peace than he has in growing up to be an unhappy man. 5 Though it never saw the sun or knew anything, it has more rest than does that man--
6 He might live a thousand years twice over but not find contentment. And since he must die like everyone else -- well, what's the use? 6 even if he lives a thousand years twice over but fails to enjoy his prosperity. Do not all go to the same place?
7 All people spend their lives scratching for food, but they never seem to have enough. 7 All man's efforts are for his mouth, yet his appetite is never satisfied.
8 Considering this, do wise people really have any advantage over fools? Do poor people gain anything by being wise and knowing how to act in front of others? 8 What advantage has a wise man over a fool? What does a poor man gain by knowing how to conduct himself before others?
9 Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don't have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless; it is like chasing the wind. 9 Better what the eye sees than the roving of the appetite. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
10 Everything has already been decided. It was known long ago what each person would be. So there's no use arguing with God about your destiny. 10 Whatever exists has already been named, and what man is has been known; no man can contend with one who is stronger than he.
11 The more words you speak, the less they mean. So why overdo it? 11 The more the words, the less the meaning, and how does that profit anyone?
12 In the few days of our empty lives, who knows how our days can best be spent? And who can tell what will happen in the future after we are gone? 12 For who knows what is good for a man in life, during the few and meaningless days he passes through like a shadow? Who can tell him what will happen under the sun after he is gone?