Ecclesiastes 6:7

7 Everyone’s toil is for their mouth, yet their appetite is never satisfied.

Read Ecclesiastes 6:7 Using Other Translations

All the labour of man is for his mouth, and yet the appetite is not filled.
All the toil of man is for his mouth, yet his appetite is not satisfied.
All people spend their lives scratching for food, but they never seem to have enough.

What does Ecclesiastes 6:7 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Ecclesiastes 6:7

All the labour of man [is] for his mouth
For the food of his mouth, as the Targum; for the sustenance of his body, for food and clothing, part being put for the whole: all that a man labours for is to get this; and if he does not enjoy it, his labour is in vain; meats are for the belly, which are taken in by the mouth, and for these a man labours; and if he does not eat them, when he has got them, he labours to no purpose; and yet the appetite is not filled;
even the bodily or sensual appetite; no, not even by those who eat the fruit of their labour; for though their hunger is allayed for the present, and the appetite is satisfied for a while, yet it returns again, and requires more food, and so continually: or, "the soul is not filled", or "satisfied" F3; it is the body only that is filled or satisfied with such things, at best; the mind of man grasps after greater things, and can find no contentment or satisfaction in earthly or sensual enjoyments. This seems to be a new argument, proving the vanity of riches, from the narrow use of them; which only reaches to the body, not to the soul.


FOOTNOTES:

F3 (almt al vpnh) "anima non implebitur", Pagninus, Montanus; "anima non expletur", Mercerus, Gejerus; "non impletur", Cocceius, so Broughton; "non satiatur", Drusius.
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