Scripture quotations are from the Lexham English Bible. Copyright 2012 Logos Bible Software. Lexham is a registered trademark of Logos Bible Software.
Dead flies cause a bad smell and ruin the ointment of the perfumer.
So also a little folly outweighs wisdom and honor.
The heart of the wise inclines to his right,
but the heart of the fool inclines to his left.
Even when the fool walks along the road, he lacks sense;
he tells everyone that he is a fool.
If the anger of the ruler rises against you,
do not leave your post,
for calmness can undo great offenses.
There is an evil I have seen under the sun—
it is an error that proceeds from a ruler!
The fool is set in many high places,
but the rich sit in lowly places.
I have even seen slaves riding on horses
and princes walking like slaves on the earth!
Whoever digs a pit will fall into it.
Whoever breaks through a wall, a snake will bite him.
Whoever quarries stones will be wounded by them.
Whoever splits logs will be endangered by them.
If the ax is blunt but one does not sharpen its edge,
he must exert more effort,
but the advantage of wisdom is it brings success.
If the snake bites before the charming,
the snake charmer will not succeed.
The wise man wins favor by the words of his mouth,
but the fool is devoured by his own lips.
He begins by saying what is foolish
and ends by uttering what is wicked delusion.
The fool talks too much,
for no one knows what will be.
Who can tell anyone what will happen in the future?
The fool is so worn out by a hard day’s work
he cannot even find his way home at night.
Woe to you, O land, when your king is a youth
and your princes feast in the morning.
Blessed are you, O land, when your king is a son of nobility
and your princes feast at the proper time—
to gain strength and not to get drunk.
Through sloth the roof sinks in,
and through idleness of hands the house leaks.
Feasts are held for celebration,
wine cheers the living,
and money answers everything.
Do not curse the king even in your thoughts,
and do not curse the rich even in your own bedroom,
for a bird of the sky may carry your voice;
a winged messenger may repeat your words.
Send out your bread on the water,
for in many days you will find it.
Divide your share in seven or in eight,
for you do not know what disaster will happen on the earth.
When the clouds are full,
they empty rain on the earth.
Whether a tree falls to the south or whether it falls to the north,
the place where the tree falls—there it will be.
Whoever watches the wind will not sow;
whoever watches the clouds will not reap.
Just as you do not know how the path of the wind goes,
nor how the bones of a fetus form in a mother’s womb,
so you do not know the work of God who makes everything.
Sow your seed in the morning,
and do not let your hands rest in the evening,
for you do not know what will prosper—
whether this or that, or whether both of them alike will succeed.
The light is sweet,
and it is pleasant for the eyes to see the sun.
For if a man lives many years,
let him rejoice in all of them!
Let him remember that the days of the darkness will be many—
all that is coming is vanity!
Rejoice, O young man, in your youth,
and let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth!
Follow the ways of your heart and the sight of your eyes—
but know that God will bring you into judgment for all these things.
Banish anxiety from your heart,
and put away pain from your body,
for youth and vigor are vanity.
Remember your Creator in the days of your youth—
before the days of trouble come
and the years draw near when you will say,
"I find no pleasure in them!"
Before the sun, the light, the moon, and the stars darken
and the clouds return after the rain.
When the guards of the house tremble,
and the men of strength are bent;
the grinders cease because they are few,
and those looking through the windows see dimly.
When the doors on the street are shut,
when the sound of the grinding mill is low;
one rises up to the sound of the bird,
and all the daughters of song are brought low.
They are afraid of heights,
and terrors are on the road.
The almond tree blossoms,
and the grasshopper draws itself along, and desire fails
because man goes to his eternal home,
and the mourners go about in the streets.
Before the silver cord is snapped
and the golden bowl is broken;
and the jar at the foundation is broken,
and the wheel at the cistern is broken.
And the dust returns to the earth as it was,
and the breath returns to God who gave it.
"Vanity of vanity!" says the Teacher.
"Everything is vanity!"
The Teacher was full of wisdom, and he taught the people with knowledge. He carefully considered many proverbs and carefully arranged them. The Teacher sought to find delightful words, and he wrote what is upright—truthful words.
The words of the wise are like cattle goads; the collections of the sages are like pricks inflicted by one shepherd. My son, be careful about anything beyond these things. For the writing of books is endless, and too much study is wearisome.
Now that all has been heard, here is the final conclusion:
Fear God and obey his commandments,
for this is the whole duty of man.
For God will bring every deed into judgment,
including every secret thing, whether good or evil.
2 Timothy 4
I solemnly charge you before God and Christ Jesus, who is going to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom, preach the word, be ready in season and out of season, reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all patience and instruction. For there will be a time when they will not put up with sound teaching, but in accordance with their own desires, they will accumulate for themselves teachers, because they have an insatiable curiosity, and they will turn away from the hearing of the truth, but will turn to myths. But you, be self-controlled in all things, bear hardship patiently, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is imminent. I have fought the good fight, I have completed the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, the crown of righteousness is reserved for me, that the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me, but also to all who have loved his appearing.
Make haste to come to me quickly. For Demas deserted me, because he loved the present age, and went to Thessalonica. Crescens went to Galatia; Titus went to Dalmatia. Luke alone is with me. Take along Mark and bring him with you, because he is useful to me for ministry. But I have sent Tychicus to Ephesus. When you come, bring the cloak that I left behind in Troas with Carpus, and the scrolls, especially the parchments. Alexander the metalworker did me much harm; may the Lord pay back to him according to his deeds, against whom you also be on guard, because he vehemently opposed our words. At my first defense, no one came to my aid, but they all deserted me; may it not be counted against them. But the Lord helped me and strengthened me, so that through me the proclamation might be fulfilled and all the Gentiles might hear, and he rescued me from the lion’s mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed, and will save me for his heavenly kingdom, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Greet Prisca and Aquila and the household of Onesiphorus. Erastus remained in Corinth, but Trophimus I left behind in Miletus because he was sick. Make haste to come before winter. Eubulus and Pudens and Linus and Claudia and all the brothers greet you. The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.