1 Who is as the wise man? and who knoweth the interpretation of a thing? A man's wisdom maketh his face to shine, and the boldness of his face is changed.
2 I counsel thee : keep the king's command, and that in regard of the oath of God.
3 Be not hasty to go out of his presence; stand not in an evil thing; for he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him.
4 Forasmuch as the king's word hath power; and who may say unto him: 'What doest thou?'
5 Whoso keepeth the commandment shall know no evil thing; and a wise man's heart discerneth time and judgment.
6 For to every matter there is a time and judgment; for the evil of man is great upon him.
7 For he knoweth not that which shall be; for even when it cometh to pass, who shall declare it unto him?
8 There is no man that hath power over the wind to retain the wind; neither hath he power over the day of death; and there is no discharge in war; neither shall wickedness deliver him that is given to it.
9 All this have I seen, even applied my heart thereto, whatever the work that is done under the sun; what time one man had power over another to his hurt.
10 And so I saw the wicked buried, and they entered into their rest; but they that had done right went away from the holy place, and were forgotten in the city; this also is vanity.
11 Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil;
12 because a sinner doeth evil a hundred times, and prolongeth his days--though yet I know that it shall be well with them that fear God, that fear before Him;
13 but it shall not be well with the wicked, neither shall he prolong his days, which are as a shadow, because he feareth not before God.
14 There is a vanity which is done upon the earth: that there are righteous men, unto whom it happeneth according to the work of the wicked; again, there are wicked men, to whom it happeneth according to the work of the righteous--I said that this also is vanity.
15 So I commended mirth, that a man hath no better thing under the sun, than to eat, and to drink, and to be merry, and that this should accompany him in his labour all the days of his life which God hath given him under the sun.
16 When I applied my heart to know wisdom, and to see the business that is done upon the earth--for neither day nor night do men see sleep with their eyes--
17 then I beheld all the work of God, that man cannot find out the work that is done under the sun; because though a man labour to seek it out, yet he shall not find it; yea further, though a wise man think to know it, yet shall he not be able to find it.