Ecclesiastes 7:18

18 It is good to grasp the one and not let go of the other. Whoever fears God will avoid all extremes.[a]

Images for Ecclesiastes 7:18

Ecclesiastes 7:18 in Other Translations

KJV
18 It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all.
ESV
18 It is good that you should take hold of this, and from that withhold not your hand, for the one who fears God shall come out from both of them.
NLT
18 Pay attention to these instructions, for anyone who fears God will avoid both extremes.
MSG
18 It's best to stay in touch with both sides of an issue. A person who fears God deals responsibly with all of reality, not just a piece of it.
CSB
18 It is good that you grasp the one and do not let the other slip from your hand. For the one who fears God will end up with both of them.

Ecclesiastes 7:18 Meaning and Commentary

Ecclesiastes 7:18

[It is] good that thou shouldest take hold of this
This advice, as the Arabic version, in the several branches of it; neither to be over much righteous or wicked, and over much wise or foolish; to avoid the one and the other, to keep clear of extremes, and pursue the path that is safest; such advice as this it is right to lay hold on, embrace, and hold fast; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand;
from what follows concerning the fear of God; or "this [and] this" may be rendered "this [and] that" F3, and the sense be, lay hold on this, that is, the last part of the advice, not to be over much wicked or foolish, which is often the cause of an immature death; and do not slacken or be remiss in regarding that other and first part of it, not to be over much righteous or wise; for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all;
or escape them all; the phrase is become Rabbinical, that, is, he shall be free or exempt from them all; from over much righteousness and over much wisdom, and over much wickedness or over much folly; the fear of God, which is the beginning of wisdom, is the best preservative from, and antidote against, these things; for a man that fears God is humble, and renounces his own righteousness, and distrusts his own wisdom; he fears to commit sin, and shuns folly.


FOOTNOTES:

F3 So Broughton, Rambachius, and others.

Ecclesiastes 7:18 In-Context

16 Do not be overrighteous, neither be overwise— why destroy yourself?
17 Do not be overwicked, and do not be a fool— why die before your time?
18 It is good to grasp the one and not let go of the other. Whoever fears God will avoid all extremes.
19 Wisdom makes one wise person more powerful than ten rulers in a city.
20 Indeed, there is no one on earth who is righteous, no one who does what is right and never sins.

Cross References 1

  • 1. S Ecclesiastes 3:14

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Or "will follow them both"
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