1 For all this I have taken to heart even to declare all this, that just ones, and the wise, and their works, are in the hand of the [true] God: no man knows either love or hatred. (All lies before them [i.e. the just ones and the lawless in the future.)
O4 C1 2,3. The dead. D1 4,5-. The living. C2 -5,6. The dead. D2 7-10-. The living. C3 -10. The dead.
2 Just as before all others: there is one event (i.e. death) to the righteous, and to a lawless one; to the good and to the clean, and to the unclean; to him that sacrifices, and to him that sacrifices not: as is the good, so is the sinner; and he that swear, as he that fears an oath. (There is one thing all of us in the flesh must do besides pay taxes)
3 This is a calamity (i.e. the greatest or worse calamity of all) among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event to all: yes, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that to the dead. (We are all going to die a flesh death or undergo a change into our spiritual bodies at the seventh trump.)
4 For who is expected? To all the living there is confidence: for a living dog (considered the most unclean and despicable creature [1 Sam. 17;43; 24:14. 2 Sam. 9:8; 16;9. 2 Kings 8:13. Matt. 7:6; 15:26. Rev. 22:15]. Hence Gentiles so called) he (i.e. even he) is better than a dead lion. (Regarded as the noblest of animals [Gen. 49:10. Job 10:16. Isa. 38:13. Lam. 3:10. Hos. 13:7. Rev. 5:5]. If your soul possesses your body rather than your body possessing your soul, there is hope. As far as flesh alone is concerned, a lowly living dog is better than a "king of the jungle" lion that is dead.)
5 For the living know that they shall die:
but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more any advantage [to them]; for the faculty of remembering them ceases to exist. (As in Ps. 77:9, where it is parallel with "clean gone for ever" and "evermore", and in the next verse, where it stands parallel with "perished" and "for ever". When the flesh body dies, only a pile of minerals remain. I believe the death of a flesh body and the death of a spiritual body are the same word in God's vocabulary. Do you remember the second death we discussed? Why would He say, "fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul". The death of one is the same as the other. After the death, there is nothing left. It's gone... erased. There is a "blotted out" under the sun, or on earth, and there is a "blotted out" in heaven. Those that are blotted out in the flesh will have a chance for spiritual eternity in the millennium. It is a much more serious thing to be spiritually blotted out in heaven.)
6 Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished (like the knowledge and memory of v.5); neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.
7 Go your way, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart; for God now accepts your works.
8 Let your garments be always white; and let your head lack no perfume.
9 Live joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of the life of your vanity, which he has given you under the sun, all the days of your vanity: for that is your portion in this life, and in your toil which you toil under the sun.
10 Whatsoever your hand finds to do, do it while you are able, and have time to do it;
for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor true wisdom, in the grave (Sheol), where you go.
P4 E1 r1 9:11,12-. Wisdom. Unequally requited,&c. s1 9:-12. Man snared by ignorance. E2 r2 9:13-15. Wisdom. Better than strength. s2 9:-15. Man benefits by wisdom of poor. E3 r3 9:16-. Wisdom. Better than strength. s3 9:-16. Man despises by wisdom of poor. E4 r4 9:17-18-. Wisdom. Better than strength. s4 9:-18. Man's folly destroys what is good. E5 r5 10:1. Wisdom. Better than reputation. s5 10;2. Man's heart betrays his folly. E6 r6 10:3-. Wisdom of the fool fails him. s6 10:-3. Man's folly declares itself. E7 r7 10:4,5. Wisdom. Better than power. s7 10:6,7. Man's folly often in high places. E8 r8 10:8-10-. Wisdom. Better than labor. s8 10:-10. Man's wisdom saves labor. E9 r9 10:11,12-. Wisdom's words are gracious. s9 10:-12-15. Man's words destroy himself.
11 I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and occurrence (i.e. time of misfortune) befalls them all.
12 For man also knows not his time:
as the fishes that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare; so are the sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falls suddenly upon them.
13 This wisdom have I seen also under the sun, and it seemed great to me:
14 There was a little city, and few men within it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it:
15 Now [some one] was found in it a unfortunate but wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city;
yet no man remembered that same poor man.
16 Then said I, 'Wisdom is better than strength:
nevertheless the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.' (In vv.14-16 note the following illustrations: poor [2 Cor. 8:9. Phil. 2:6-8]; wise [1 Cor. 1:24]; delivered [1 Cor. 1:18,25]; none remembered [Isa. 53:3]; despised [1 Cor. 1:28]; words herd in quiet [Job 6:24. Ezek. 1:24,25. Luke 10:29].)
17 The words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry of him that rules among fools. (= fat, and then dense, or stupid, which comes of it, showing itself in impiety.)
18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war:
but one sinner destroys much good.