Ecclesiastes 71 A good name is better than precious oil, and the day of death, better 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; inasmuch as that is the end of all men: and let the living lay it to his heart. 3 Better is vexation than laughing; for through 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 joy. 5 It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than that a man should hear the song of fools. 6 For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool. Also this is vanity. 7 For exercising oppression maketh a wise man mad; and bribery corrupteth the heart. 8 Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: better is the patient in spirit than the proud in spirit. 9 Be not rash in thy spirit to be angry; for anger resteth in bosom of fools. 10 Thou must not say, How was it that the former days were better than these? for it is not out of wisdom that thou askest concerning this. 11 Wisdom is better than an inheritance, yea, preferable for those that see the sun; 12 For under the shadow of wisdom a man is equally well as under the shadow of money; but the superior excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to him that possesseth it. 13 Consider then the work of God; for who can make straight what he hath made crooked? 14 On the day of prosperity be happy, but on the day of adversity look on: also this hath God made in equal measure with the other, to the end that man should not find the least to censure him. 15 All things have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is many a righteous man that perisheth in his righteousness, and there is many a wicked man that liveth long in his wickedness.— 16 Be not righteous over much; neither show thyself over wise: why wouldst thou destroy thyself? 17 Be not wicked over much, and be no fool: why wouldst thou die before thy time? 18 It is good that thou shouldst take hold of that, and that also from this thou withdraw not thy hand; for he that feareth God will come forth out of them all. 19 Wisdom giveth more strength to the wise than ten rulers which were in the city. 20 For no man is so righteous upon earth, that he should do always good, and never sin.— 21 Also take no heed unto all the words that are spoken: lest thou hear thy servant cursing thee. 22 For oftentimes also doth thy own heart know 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 Far is what formerly was so, and what was deep remaineth deep: who can find it out? 25 Then I turned myself about together with my heart to know, and to search, and to seek out wisdom, and experience, and to know the wickedness of folly, and the foolishness of madness. 26 And I find as more bitter than death the woman, whose heart is snares and nets, and whose hands are bonds: he that is deemed good before God will escape from her; but the sinner will be caught by her. 27 Behold, this have I found, saith Koheleth, adding one to the other, to find experience, 28 What my soul constantly sought, but I found it not; one man among a thousand did I find; but a woman among all these did I not find. 29 Lo, this only did I find, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought for many sinful devices.
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