Questions tagged [ecclesiastes]

The book of Ecclesiastes (Hebrew: Kohelet, Qoheleth), attributed to Solomon. Not to be confused with the apocryphal book of Ecclesiasticus (also known as the Wisdom of Jesus ben Sirach).

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Is the translation 'the earth abideth for ever' accurate (Ecclesiastes 1:4)?

Ecclesiastes 1:4 : One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever. [KJV] A generation is going, and a generation is coming, and the earth to the age is ...
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Meaningless vs eternity in Ecclesiastes, are they opposites?

Ecclesiastes 1:2 "Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. "Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless." Ecclesiastes 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He ...
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How narratology used in biblical hermeneutics

I am doing research on methodology in the hermeneutics of Ecclesiastes. Is narratology is a good method? Garbo.
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Ecclesiastes 12:9-11, could we discern some aspects of the personality of Jesus from these verses?

Ecclesiastes 12:9-11, (DRB): 9And whereas Ecclesiastes was very wise, he taught the people, and declared the things that he had done: and seeking out, he set forth many parables. 10He sought ...
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Who is the second child in Ecclesiastes 4:15?

YLT - 4:13 Better is a poor and wise youth than an old and foolish king, who hath not known to be warned any more. YLT - 4:14 For from a house of prisoners he hath come out to reign, for even in his ...
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What does “vanity” mean in “the creature was made subject to vanity” in Romans 8:20?

I suggest: "Vanity" describes either Adam's sin [ the first recorded sin] or God's reaction to that sin, the curse of Gen 3. The A.V. always translates "mataiotei" as "vanity". It comes in three ...
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Is John 3:8 an allusion to Ecclesiastes 11:5?

In John 3:8 Jesus is talking to the Pharisee and senior Jewish figure Nicodemus. "The wind bloweth where it listesth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and ...
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Is the ESV reading of Ecclesiastes 11:5 faithful to the Hebrew?

The ESV is unlike the other translations in that it seems see "way of the spirit" as a fetal development matter which the author is using as how inscrutable are God's ways. In other translations "way ...
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Can we assume scripture/history will repeat itself due to Ecclesiastes 1:9?

I'm intrigued by this verse in Ecclesiastes: 9 What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:9 NIV However, in ...
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Why do the King James and some other versions translate וְשַׁ֣בְתִּֽי as “And I returned”? (Ecclesiastes 4:1)

King James and some other versions translated וְשַׁ֣בְתִּֽי as "And I returned" whereas many other versions translated it differently. I further observed all the oppression that goes on ...
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Did Solomon write Ecclesiastes?

In addition to Proverbs there are other canonical texts that non-scholars tend to attribute to Solomon of more dubious origin. What evidence is there that Ecclesiastes alleges to have been written by ...
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What is the significance of the structure of Ecclesiastes 3:2-8?

Ecclesiastes 3:2-8 lists 28 events grouped in contrasting pairs which are connected by the phrase עֵ֥ת...וְעֵ֣ת. Each couplet is made up of one event which can considered as positive and another which ...
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Why “A time to be born” (Ecclesiastes 3:2)

Why is the Hebrew עת ללדת translation as "A time to be born" generally accepted as the correct translation? It clearly means "A time to give birth" and I have seen that translation in a number of ...
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In Ecclessiastes 6:12 why is Solomon unsure about where man goes after death?

For example, Solomon keeps saying things like: 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 ...
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Ecclesiastes 12.6: What is the 'silver cord'?

Ecclesiastes is not a book I've read very much. I know the broad outline of the book, and its concluding thesis ('Fear God and keep his commandments'), but not much of the specifics. I came to ...
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Ecclesiastes 3:11 - “…so that nobody can understand it”

In the New International Version, Ecclesiastes 3:11 reads: He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from ...
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Sleeping in the grave until Christ's second coming?

Deuteronomy 31:16 (KJV) 16 And the Lord said unto Moses, Behold, thou shalt sleep with thy fathers; and this people will rise up, and go a whoring after the gods of the strangers of the land, ...
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Why does Ecclesiastes ask the reader to annoint our head with oil and wear white clothing?

Always be clothed in white and always annoint your head with oil - Ecclesiastes 9:8 What is the significance of these in the time of King Solomon?
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How do we explain the doctrinal incompatibility between Ecc 9:5 and Rev 6:9,10? [duplicate]

Ecc 9:5 "the dead know nothing; they have no further reward" Rev 6:9,10 When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God ...
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Is there a contradiction between Ecclesiastes 9:5 & Luke 16:19-31?

Ecclesiastes 9:5 (KJV) 5 For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. Luke 16:19-31 (KJV) ...
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Eternal oblivion or Afterlife [closed]

The Christian Bible is based on the concept of hell and heaven yet it contradicts itself by revealing eternal oblivion instead of afterlife: Ecclesiastes 9:5-10 5: For the living know that they will ...
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What does everything being vanity mean in Ecclesiastes 1?

Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity. — Ecclesiasites 1:2, KJV 2000 What is its literal meaning, in context?
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Does the author in Ecclesiastes 4:3 consider all people in the world better-off-dead, or just some?

The author of Ecclesiastes seems to think that in the given context of his view that people are better off unborn or dead. Is he identifying certain types of people or is his context including ...
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What did God put into the human heart according to the Hebrew text of Ecclesiastes 3:11?

The Masoretic Text of Ecclesiastes [= Qohelet/Kohelet] 3:11bα reads this way: גַּ֤ם אֶת־הָעֹלָם֙ נָתַ֣ן בְּלִבָּ֔ם gam ʾet-hāʿōlām nātan bəlibbāmᵃ Also he has put העלם in their heart ᵃ ...
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What did God put into the heart of man according to the LXX in Ecclesiastes 3:11?

I can tell that from the Hebrew various English translations understand something different has been put into the heart of man. What I am interested in then is does the LXX support one of the English ...
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What point is the author driving home by listing so many opposing activities that seem to have their own seasons? (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8)

I am not interested so much in what each verse means but what they all mean in common. In other words after Solomon has declared the vanity of all activities, the seemingly few benefits wisdom brings ...
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Under what context are we to understand 'eating, drinking and enjoying work' as the 'best' a person can do? (Ecclesiastes 2:24)

Usually when most people consider what is the best a person can do it involves sacrificing oneself in love to God or man however within some certain context it seems the best one can do is something ...
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What does the author of Ecclesiastes Chapter 2 mean that 'his heart was still guided with wisdom' as he went about doing foolish things?

The author of Ecclesiastes (I assume is Solomon) seems to be trying to find out what makes mankind happy and he conducts an unusual and determined experiment in Chapter 2, that of seeking wine, women ...
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Is the 'knowledge that increases sorrow' any kind of knowledge or directed to a focus of some subject in Ecclesiastes 1:17?

In Ecclesiastes 1:16-18 the author (personally I assume King Solomon), says: I said in my heart, “I have acquired great wisdom, surpassing all who were over Jerusalem before me, and my heart has ...
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What are the crooked things that can't be made straight? (Ecclesiastes 1:15)

After stating that there is nothing really new in this meaningless existence in this world, the teacher says: What is crooked cannot be made straight, and what is lacking cannot be counted. (...
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How is there 'nothing new' in this life? (Ecclesiastes 1:10)

How would the author of Ecclesiastes originally reconciled his statement that 'there is nothing new' with technological advancements at his time or even the new teaching he was providing? What has ...
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Does the book of Ecclesiastes portray Qohelet as the author?

My understanding is that the ‘traditional’ view holds Solomon to be the author of the book who frames his own monologue by referring to himself in the third person in the prologue (1:1–11) and ...
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Do linguistic features of Ecclesiastes rule out Solomon as the author?

Franz Delitzsch is famously quoted as saying: If the book of Koheleth were of old Solomonic origin, then there is no history of the Hebrew Language. His argument seems to be that the Hebrew is ...
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In Ecclesiastes 7:28 why are there no upright women?

28which my soul has sought repeatedly, but I have not found. One man among a thousand I found, but a woman among all these I have not found. ESV My question drawn from Ecclesiastes 7:28 is a simple ...
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How did Ecclesiastes come to be associated with Sukkot?

The five scrolls are noted for their liturgical use, being traditionally read on various holidays. Some of the connections seem rather straight forward (e.g. Esther on Purim or Lamentations on the ...
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Did the Preacher apply his heart or his mind to the task?

Ecclesiates 1:13 I applied my mind to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under the heavens. What a heavy burden God has laid on mankind! [NIV] Ecclesiates 1:13 And I gave my heart to seek ...
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What is the gender of the verb “to say” in Ecclesiastes 7:27?

In Ecclesiastes 7:27, there is a brief phrase, "says Qohelet" (ʾāmĕrâ qōhelet). In the rest of the book, it seems like masculine verbs are used with Qohelet, despite Qohelet itself having a feminine ...
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What is Paul referring to in 2 Timothy 4:2?

What does Paul mean when he says "be ready whether it is convenient or not" or "Be ready in season and out of season" according to the translation in 2 Timothy 4:2? 2 Timothy 4:2 (NET) Preach the ...
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Does the word “return” means we were there before?

Somebody told me an interpretation of this verse and I feel it's not correct. Ecclesiastes 12:7 (NIV) 7 and the dust returns to the ground it came from,      and the spirit returns to God who gave it....
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How should 'evil' be understood in Ecclesiastes 2:18-26?

In Ecclesiastes 2:18-26 the author talks about how toil and possessions in and of themselves is 'habel', a vapour/vanity. (18-19). He says this because death will take him and all that he has could be ...
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Is there an English translation of Graetz's “Kohelet”?

Heinrich Graetz wrote a commentary to Ecclesiastes in German in 1871 (viewable here) which is quoted relatively widely among modern scholars. I would like to read it (especially the Introduction) in ...
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Does Solomon say that trades, where lifting and carrying are involved, are a punishment for sin?

Ecclesiastes 2:24-25 There is no one who has tried to enjoy life more than I have. And this is what I learned: The best thing people can do is eat, drink, and enjoy the work they must do. I ...
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In Ecclesiastes 4:12 what is the meaning of the “three strands not quickly broken”?

My small group was looking at this verse in Ecclesiastes 4:12: Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. I was curious the meaning ...
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Ecclesiastes 11:1-2 Puzzlement

Verse 1: שלח לחמך על פני המים כי ברב הימים תמצאנו Send/set your bread upon the surface of the waters for in many days you shall discover it. Verse 2: תן חלק ל שבע וגם ל שמונה כי לא תדע מה יהיה רעה ...
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Should קהלת actually translate to “Preacher”

Ecclesiastes starts with - words of קהלת son of David. In Hebrew it does not say - the words of the קהלת. Nor - words of the קהלת. But simply - words of קהלת. How do we know that קהלת translates to "...
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What is the meaning of the reference to 'stones' in Ecclesiastes 3?

Ecclesiastes starts with a series of contrasts, most of which are easy to understand. However one reference is less obvious (at least to me) - the 'stones' in verse 5a: 1 For everything there is a ...
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Is Ecclesiastes a book of negative wisdom?

When I was younger, I thought that because Ecclesiastes was so dour, it was a sort of negative wisdom—something like, "This is how crazy you get when you don't follow God." However, this ...
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Is the author of Ecclesiastes referring to Archimedes?

The following passage is Ecclesiastes 9:14 A small city, and few people in it, and a great king comes there, and encircled it and built upon it great fortifications. And he found in it, a poor wise ...
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What does “Under the Sun” mean in Ecclesiastes?

I noticed that the Teacher uses the phrase "under the sun" more than 20 times in Ecclesiastes. I have always understood this to simply mean "on earth" as The Theological Wordbook ...
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Life after death in Ecclesiastes

How did the author of Ecclesiastes understand life after death and man's relationship to eternity? What passages in the book address or allude to this topic? Inspired by a reading of Ecclesiastes 3:...