Who is like the sage? Who knows how to interpret things? A man's wisdom reaches the king's favor and makes his face shine, but the hardness changes his countenance.
This is my advice: obey the king's orders because you have sworn an oath before God.
Do not rush to leave the king's presence, nor stand up for a wrong cause, for the king does what he pleases.
For the king's word is sovereign, and no one can ask him, "What are you doing?"
Whoever obeys his orders will not suffer any harm, because the wise heart will know the time and the right way to act.
For there is a right time and also a right way to act for each situation. A man's suffering, however, weighs heavily on him, since no one knows the future. Who can tell you what will happen tomorrow?
No one has the power to contain his own spirit; neither does it have power over the day of his death, and to escape the effects of war; not even wickedness frees those who practice it.
All of this I saw when I started to reflect on everything that is done under the sun. There are times when a man dominates over others to his own disgrace.
On those occasions, I saw wicked people being buried and people coming and going from the place where they were buried. However, those who had done good were forgotten in the city. This is also vanity and does not make sense.
When crimes are not soon punished, man's heart is filled with plans to do evil.
Although the sinner does evil a hundred times, and the days go on, yet I know with certainty that it happens well to those who fear God, to those who fear before Him.
For the wicked, however, nothing will go well, because they do not fear God, and their days, like shadows, will be few.
There is one more pointless thing on earth: the righteous who receive what the wicked deserve, and the wicked who receive what the righteous deserve. This too, I think, is vanity, it makes no sense.
That is why I recommend enjoying life, because under the sun there is nothing better for man than to eat, drink and rejoice. Let these be your companions in your hard work during all the days of life that God gives you under the sun!
When I turned my mind to know the wisdom and observe the activities of man on earth, of those whose eyes see neither sleep nor day or night, then I realized everything that God has done. No one is able to understand what is done under the sun.
No matter how much he tries to discover the meaning of things, man will not find it.
The sage may even claim that he understands, but in reality he cannot find it.
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Ecclesiastes 8, wisdom, wise man, fearing god, foolish man