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Ecclesiastes - Chapter 3

Ecclesiastes Chapters

1 There is a season for everything, a time for every occupation under heaven:

2 A time for giving birth, a time for dying; a time for planting, a time for uprooting what has been planted.

3 A time for killing, a time for healing; a time for knocking down, a time for building.

4 A time for tears, a time for laughter; a time for mourning, a time for dancing.

5 A time for throwing stones away, a time for gathering them; a time for embracing, a time to refrain from embracing.

6 A time for searching, a time for losing; a time for keeping, a time for discarding.

7 A time for tearing, a time for sewing; a time for keeping silent, a time for speaking.

8 A time for loving, a time for hating; a time for war, a time for peace.

9 What do people gain from the efforts they make?

10 I contemplate the task that God gives humanity to labour at.

11 All that he does is apt for its time; but although he has given us an awareness of the passage of time, we can grasp neither the beginning nor the end of what God does.

12 I know there is no happiness for a human being except in pleasure and enjoyment through life.

13 And when we eat and drink and find happiness in all our achievements, this is a gift from God.

14 I know that whatever God does will be for ever. To this there is nothing to add, from this there is nothing to subtract, and the way God acts inspires dread.

15 What is, has been already, what will be, is already; God seeks out anyone who is persecuted.

16 Again I observe under the sun: crime is where justice should be, the criminal is where the upright should be.

17 And I think to myself: the upright and the criminal will both be judged by God, since there is a time for every thing and every action here.

18 I think to myself: where human beings are concerned, this is so that God can test them and show them that they are animals.

19 For the fate of human and the fate of animal is the same: as the one dies, so the other dies; both have the selfsame breath. Human is in no way better off than animal -- since all is futile.

20 Everything goes to the same place, everything comes from the dust, everything returns to the dust.

21 Who knows if the human spirit mounts upward or if the animal spirit goes downward to the earth?

22 I see there is no contentment for a human being except happiness in achievement; such is the lot of a human beings. No one can tell us what will happen after we are gone.

Ecclesiastes Chapters

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