9 For unto all this I applied my heart and my heart considered all this, that the righteous and the wise and their servants were in the hand of God,—neither love nor hatred could any man know, every one was before Him.
2 Every one was like every one else, one destiny had the righteous and the lawless, the good and the pure and the impure, and he that sacrificed and he that did not sacrifice,—as the good man so the sinner, he that took an oath as he who of an oath stood in fear.
3 This was a misfortune in all that was done under the sun, that one destiny had they all,—yea also the heart of the sons of men was full of wickedness, and madness was in their heart while they lived, and after that [they went] unto the dead.
4 For whosoever was united to all the living for him there was hope,—inasmuch as a living dog fared better than a dead lion.
5 For the living knew that they should die,—but the dead knew not anything neither had they any longer a reward, because forgotten was their memory.
6 Both their love and their hatred and their envy already had perished,—and portion had they none any longer unto times age-abiding, in aught that was done under the sun.
7 Go thy way—eat with gladness thy food, and drink with a happy heart thy wine,—when already God is well pleased with thy works.
8 Continually let thy garments be white,—and ointment upon thy head let it not be lacking.
9 Enjoy life with thy wife whom thou lovest all the days of thy life of vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all thy days of vanity,—for that is thy portion in life, and in thy toil wherewith thou art toiling under the sun.
10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do with thy might do,—for there is no work nor calculation nor knowledge nor wisdom, in hades whither thou art going.
11 I again saw under the sun, that not to the swift was the race nor to the strong the battle, nay! nor to the wise food nor yet to the intelligent riches, nor even to the well-informed comeliness,—for time and accident happened to them all.
12 For, indeed man could not know his own time, like fishes which were caught in a cruel net, and like little birds which were caught in a trap,—like them were ensnared the sons of men, by a time of misfortune, when it fell upon them suddenly.
13 Even this had I seen of wisdom under the sun,—and of great import was the same unto me:—
14 A little city, and men therein few,—and there came against it a great king and surrounded it, and built against it large siege-works;
15 but there was found therein a man poor [but] wise, and he delivered the city by his wisdom,—yet no one remembered that poor man.
16 Then said I, Better is wisdom than strength,—although the wisdom of the poor man be despised, and his words not heard.
17 The words of the wise in quietness are heard,—beyond the outcry of one who ruleth over dullards.
18 Better is wisdom than weapons of war,—but one sinner may destroy much good.