Ecclesiastes 6:7

7 We work to feed our appetites; Meanwhile our souls go hungry.

Ecclesiastes 6:7 Meaning and Commentary

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.


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

Ecclesiastes 6:7 In-Context

5 It sees nothing and knows nothing, but is better off by far than anyone living.
6 Even if someone lived a thousand years - make it two thousand! - but didn't enjoy anything, what's the point? Doesn't everyone end up in the same place?
7 We work to feed our appetites; Meanwhile our souls go hungry.
8 So what advantage has a sage over a fool, or over some poor wretch who barely gets by?
9 Just grab whatever you can while you can; don't assume something better might turn up by and by. All it amounts to anyway is smoke. And spitting into the wind.