Ecclesiastes 9

VIN(i) 1 I considered all this in my heart and declared that the righteous and their works are in the hand of God. No man knows if love or hatred awaits him in the future. 2 The same fate comes to everyone: to the righteous and to the wicked, to the good and to the wicked, to the clean and to the unclean, to those who sacrifice and to those who do not sacrifice. As with the good man, so also to the sinner; as with those who swear an oath, so also those who fear oaths. 3 There is a tragedy that infects everything that happens on earth: a common event happens to everyone. In fact, the hearts of human beings are full of evil. Madness remains in their hearts while they live, and afterwards they join the dead. 4 Whoever is joined to all the living has hope. A living dog is better than a dead lion. 5 For the living know that they will die, but the dead do not know anything. They no longer have a reward, and even the memory of them is forgotten. 6 Furthermore, their love, their hate, and their envy have been long lost. Never again will they have a part in what happens on earth. 7 Go, eat your bread with mirth, and drink your wine with a joyful heart; for now God has favorably accepted your works. 8 Always be clothed in white garments, and never let your head lack oil! 9 See life with a wife whom you love all the days of your vain life, Which He gives to you under the sun--all your vain days, For this is your portion in life And in your toil that you are toiling under the sun." 10 Whatever your hand finds to do—do it with all your might; for in Sheol—where you are going—no one works, plans, knows, or thinks about anything. 11 I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to the intelligent, nor yet favour to men of knowledge; but time and chance happeneth to them all. 12 For man does not know his time. Just as fish are caught in a cruel net and like birds who are seized in a snare, so also humans are ensnared at a cruel time when it falls suddenly upon them. 13 I also observed this example of wisdom on earth, and it seemed important to me: 14 There was a small city with only a few mortals in it, And a great king came against it and surrounded it, And he built great siege works against it." 15 but there was found therein, a man, poor [but] wise, and, he, delivered the city by his wisdom,—yet, no one, remembered that poor man. 16 And I said, Wisdom is better than strength; but the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard. 17 The softly spoken words of the wise are to be heard rather than the shouts of a ruler of fools. 18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war; but one sinner destroys much good.