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Ecclesiastes 7:1-29

Wisdom and goodness upheld


“1 A good name [is] better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one’s birth. 2 [It is] better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that [is] the end of all men; and the living will lay [it] to his heart. 3 Sorrow [is] better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better. 4 The heart of the wise [is] in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools [is] in the house of mirth. 5 [It is] better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools. 6 For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so [is] the laughter of the fool: this also [is] vanity.”

“7 Surely oppression maketh a wise man mad; and a gift destroyeth the heart. 8 Better [is] the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: [and] the patient in spirit [is] better than the proud in spirit. 9 Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools. 10 Say not thou, What is [the cause] that the former days were better than these? for thou dost not enquire wisely concerning this.”

“11 Wisdom [is] good with an inheritance: and [by it there is] profit to them that see the sun. 12 For wisdom [is] a defence, [and] money [is] a defence: but the excellency of knowledge [is, that] wisdom giveth life to them that have it. 13 Consider the work of God: for who can make [that] straight, which he hath made crooked? 14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him. 15 All [things] have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is a just [man] that perisheth in his righteousness, and there is a wicked [man] that prolongeth [his life] in his wickedness. 16 Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself? 17 Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time? 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. 19 Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty [men] which are in the city. 20 For [there is] not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not. 21 Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest thou hear thy servant curse thee: 22 For oftentimes also thine own heart knoweth that thou thyself likewise hast cursed others.”

“23 All this have I proved by wisdom: I said, I will be wise; but it [was] far from me. 24 That which is far off, and exceeding deep, who can find it out? 25 I applied mine heart to know, and to search, and to seek out wisdom, and the reason [of things], and to know the wickedness of folly, even of foolishness [and] madness: 26 And I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart [is] snares and nets, [and] her hands [as] bands: whoso pleaseth God shall escape from her; but the sinner shall be taken by her. 27 Behold, this have I found, saith the preacher, [counting] one by one, to find out the account: 28 Which yet my soul seeketh, but I find not: one man among a thousand have I found; but a woman among all those have I not found. 29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.” (Ecclesiastes 7:1-29 AV)










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