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Series Theme: FRAMEWORKS: Ecclesiastes

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FRAMEWORKS: Ecclesiastes 6


(The objective of these ‘Frameworks' is to provide an easy-to-read layout of the text in order then to use these individual verses for meditation. To achieve this we have used a variety of means, notes, headings, verse summaries.)



FRAMEWORKS: Ecclesiastes 6: Acquiring Wealth & uncertainties in life


[Preliminary Comments: This part of the book just continues with a varied selection of reflections mostly about acquisition of wealth [v.1-7] and then on how to be at peace or contented in this uncertain world.]


PART 1: v.1-7: Acquisition & Use of Wealth


v.1-3 Success & Prosperity doesn't necessarily mean you can enjoy it

v.1  I have seen another evil under the sun, and it weighs heavily on mankind: 

v.2   God gives some people wealth, possessions and honour, so that they lack nothing their hearts desire, but God does not grant them the ability to enjoy them, and strangers enjoy them instead. This is meaningless, a grievous evil.

v.3   A man may have a hundred children and live many years; yet no matter how long he lives, if he cannot enjoy his prosperity and does not receive proper burial,


v.3b-6 A stillborn child is better off than such a one not able to enjoy his prosperity

I say that a stillborn child is better off than he. 

v.4  It comes without meaning, it departs in darkness, and in darkness its name is shrouded. 

v.5  Though it never saw the sun or knew anything, it has more rest than does that man— 

v.6  even if he lives a thousand years twice over but fails to enjoy his prosperity. Do not all go to the same place? 


v.7 We work for food but often are never satisfied

v.7   Everyone's toil is for their mouth, yet their appetite is never satisfied. 


PART 2: v.8-12: Reflections on being at peace in uncertain life


v.8 The wise poor is better off than the foolish rich

v.8  What advantage have the wise over fools? What do the poor gain by knowing how to conduct themselves before others? 


v.9 Be at peace with what you see, not what you yearn for

v.9  Better what the eye sees than the roving of the appetite. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind. 


v.10 Learn to be at peace in your station in life

v.10  Whatever exists has already been named, and what humanity is has been known; no one can contend with someone who is stronger. 


v.11 Too many words means the meaning gets lost

v.11  The more the words, the less the meaning, and how does that profit anyone? 


v.12 Life can be uncertain and the future on earth when you are gone, even more so

v.12  For who knows what is good for a person in life, during the few and meaningless days they pass through like a shadow? Who can tell them what will happen under the sun after they are gone?



Continue to Ecclesiastes 7