Ecclesiastes 7:1-29 NIV

Ecclesiastes 7:1-29 NIV [1] A good name is better than fine perfume, and the day of death better than the day of birth. [2] It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of everyone; the living should take this to heart. [3] Frustration is better than laughter, because a sad face is good for the heart. [4] The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, but the heart of fools is in the house of pleasure. [5] It is better to heed the rebuke of a wise person than to listen to the song of fools. [6] Like the crackling of thorns under the pot, so is the laughter of fools. This too is meaningless. [7] Extortion turns a wise person into a fool, and a bribe corrupts the heart. [8] The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride. [9] Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools. [10] Do not say, "Why were the old days better than these?" For it is not wise to ask such questions. [11] Wisdom, like an inheritance, is a good thing and benefits those who see the sun. [12] Wisdom is a shelter as money is a shelter, but the advantage of knowledge is this: Wisdom preserves those who have it. [13] Consider what God has done: Who can straighten what he has made crooked? [14] When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider this: God has made the one as well as the other. Therefore, no one can discover anything about their future. [15] In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these: the righteous perishing in their righteousness, and the wicked living long in their wickedness. [16] Do not be overrighteous, neither be overwise-why destroy yourself? [17] Do not be overwicked, and do not be a fool-why die before your time? [18] It is good to grasp the one and not let go of the other. Whoever fears God will avoid all extremes. [19] Wisdom makes one wise person more powerful than ten rulers in a city. [20] Indeed, there is no one on earth who is righteous, no one who does what is right and never sins. [21] Do not pay attention to every word people say, or you may hear your servant cursing you- [22] for you know in your heart that many times you yourself have cursed others. [23] All this I tested by wisdom and I said, "I am determined to be wise"- but this was beyond me. [24] Whatever exists is far off and most profound-who can discover it? [25] So I turned my mind to understand, to investigate and to search out wisdom and the scheme of things and to understand the stupidity of wickedness and the madness of folly. [26] I find more bitter than death the woman who is a snare, whose heart is a trap and whose hands are chains. The man who pleases God will escape her, but the sinner she will ensnare. [27] "Look," says the Teacher, "this is what I have discovered: "Adding one thing to another to discover the scheme of things- [28] while I was still searching but not finding-I found one upright man among a thousand, but not one upright woman among them all. [29] This only have I found: God created mankind upright, but they have gone in search of many schemes."

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