Ecclesiastes/Qohelet - 4


1Then again, I contemplate al the oppression that is committed under the sun. Take for instance thetears of the oppressed. No one to comfort them! The power their oppressors wield. No one to comfort them! 2So, rather than the living who stil have lives to live, I congratulate the dead who have already metdeath; 3happier than both of these are those who are yet unborn and have not seen the evil things that are doneunder the sun. 4I see that al effort and all achievement spring from mutual jealousy. This too is futility and chasing afterthe wind. 5The fool folds his arms and eats his own flesh away. 6Better one hand full of repose than two hands ful of achievements to chase after the wind. 7And something else futile I observe under the sun: 8a person is quite alone -- no child, no brother; and yet there is no end to his efforts, his eyes can neverhave their fil of riches. For whom, then, do I work so hard and grudge myself pleasure? This too is futile, a sorry business. 9Better two than one alone, since thus their work is real y rewarding. 10If one should fal , the other helps him up; but what of the person with no one to help him up when hefal s? 11Again: if two sleep together they keep warm, but how can anyone keep warm alone? 12Where one alone would be overcome, two wil put up resistance; and a threefold cord is not quicklybroken. 13Better a youngster poor and wise than a monarch old and sil y who wil no longer take advice- 14even though stepping from prison to the throne, even though born a beggar in that kingdom. 15I observe that al who live and move under the sun support the young newcomer who takes over. 16He takes his place at the head of innumerable subjects; but his successors wil not think the morekindly of him for that. This too is futile and chasing after the wind. 17Watch your step when you go to the House of God: drawing near to listen is better than the offering ofa sacrifice by fools, though they do not know that they are doing wrong.
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