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The LXX could be construed to support either 'eternity' or 'the world' but not 'ignorance'. The relevant bit: καί γε σὺν τὸν αἰῶνα ἔδωκεν ἐν καρδίᾳ αὐτῶν (LXX, Rahlfs) indeed, he granted eternity in their heart (NETS) he has also set the whole world in their heart (Brenton) Both make sense as renditions of: גַּ֤ם אֶת־הָעֹלָם֙ נָתַ֣ן בְּלִבָּ֔ם ...


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1. Question Restatement Does Eccl. 1:15 suggest that ALL cannot be made straight, including the nature of men? Or is this phrase limited only to "The Works of Man"? Eccl 1:13, NASB - And I set my mind to seek and explore by wisdom concerning all that has been done under heaven. It is a grievous task which God has given to the sons of men to be ...


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There are two exegetical questions to consider in the phrase "nothing new under the sun": What is the scope of "under the sun"? This has been addressed elsewhere, and is likely to mean something like "in all creation". What is the contextual meaning of "nothing new"? Aside from context, at one extreme this could mean something like a 'Groundhog Day' ...


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The Masoretic Text appears to imply (Eccl 1:1) that the author is the son of David, the King of Jerusalem. Based in the wider genre of the Ketuvim (or Writings), the reader would then infer the son of David to be Solomon, the author. In this regard, Jewish tradition reflects the same. For example, the Targum Qohelet makes explicit mention that Solomon was ...


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The following commentary from the Jewish Publication Society provides one suggested response to this very difficult question. Fox, Michael V. (2004). Ecclesiastes. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 52-53.


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The Idea in Brief There are three Jewish sources which relate that this particular passage in Ecclesiastes is not about misery resulting from wisdom: that is, the Babylonian Talmud, the commentary of Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki ("Rashi"), who is also found in the Talmud, and finally Targum Qohelet each relate that the context of Ecclesiastes is not about misery ...


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In Ecclesiastes 2:26, the Preacher (son of David) says that God gave to those he considered good, the gifts of wisdom and knowledge. In this passage, at verses 1:17-18, the author talks about how he set out to know wisdom, madness and folly. He learnt that this also is vexation of spirit "For in much wisdom is much vexation, and he who increases knowledge ...


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The Book of Ecclesiates, known in Tanach as Kohellet and attributed to King Solomon, was controversial even before it was canonized by the rabbis. Many verses troubled them because they contradicted fundamental concepts in the Torah. In the end, the rabbis decided that the every less-than-holy statement in Kohellet was ultimately undone by Kohellets ...


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Ecclesiastes is notoriously difficult to map. Many outlines have been proposed, none gaining consensus. Many commentators abandon the search for coherence altogether and conclude that the book is “a string of unrelated meditations” (Eaton), that "in general no progression of thought from one section to another is discernible" (Whybray).1 The book’s ...


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The Idea in Brief The comments of Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki ("Rashi"), Jewish aggadic midrash (Qohelet Rabbah), the Targum Qohelet (Aramaic translation of the Hebrew Bible), and the structure of the Masoretic Text provide the picture of how Jewish scholars over the millennia had viewed the current passage at hand. That is, Solomon immersed himself in the ...


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In the first instance Kohelet is looking at all the oppression taking place upon the earth and noting that evil people are dominating others and there is no one who will rescue them. In a time of oppression and genocide the ones who died are indeed released from the evil and in that sense are better off. Those who are not yet born are not subject to those ...


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Well, this is a famous crux, and there have been a number of solutions, some more plausible than others. Michael Fox thinks that הָעֹלָם is a scribal error for עָמֵל (toil) which occurs two verses earlier. Here it would be not the usual toil but the mental toil (amal b'libam) of understanding one's place in the world. There's also a fairly common ...


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R. N. Whybray says in 'The social world of the wisdom writers', published in The World of Ancient Israel (edited by R. E. Clements), page 242, that Ecclesiastes is one of the latest, if nor the latest, of the books of the Old Testament, as indicated above all by the language in which it is written, which, though unique in various ways, has close affinities ...



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