1 For all this I took to heart, even to explore all this: that the righteous, and the wise, and their works, are in the hand of God; whether it is love or hatred, man does not know it; all is before them.
2 All things come alike to all: there is one event to the righteous and to the wicked; to the good and to the clean and to the unclean; to him who sacrifices and to him who does not sacrifice; as is the good, so is the sinner; [and] he who swears, as he who fears an oath.
3 This is an evil in all that is done under the sun, that there is one event to all: yes also, the heart of the sons of man is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that [they go] to the dead.
4 For to him who is joined with all the living there is hope; for a living dog is better than a dead lion.
5 For the living know that they will die: but the dead don't know anything, neither have they a reward anymore; for the memory of them is forgotten.
6 Their love as well, as their hatred and their envy, has perished long ago; neither have they anymore a portion forever in anything that is done under the sun.
7 Go your way, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart; for God has already accepted your works.
8 Let your garments always be white; and don't let your head lack oil.
9 Live joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of your life of vanity, which he has given you under the sun, all your days of vanity: for that is your portion in life, and in your labor in which you labor under the sun.
10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do [it] with your might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in Sheol, where you go.
11 I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happens to them all.
12 For man also doesn't know his time: as the fish that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare, even so are the sons of man snared in an evil time, when it falls suddenly on them.
13 I have also seen wisdom under the sun on this wise, and it seemed great to me:
14 There was a little city, and few men inside it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it.
15 Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet man did not remember that same poor man.
16 Then I said, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.
17 The words of the wise heard in quiet are better than the cry of him who rules among fools.
18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war; but one sinner destroys much good.