1I have seen something else wrong here on earth that causes serious problems for people. 2God gives great wealth, riches, and honor to some people; they have everything they want. But God does not let them enjoy such things; a stranger enjoys them instead. This is useless and very wrong. 3A man might have a hundred children and live a long time, but what good is it if he can’t enjoy the good God gives him or have a proper burial? I say a baby born dead is better off than he is. 4A baby born dead is useless. It returns to darkness without even a name. 5That baby never saw the sun and never knew anything, but it finds more rest than that man. 6Even if he lives two thousand years, he doesn’t enjoy the good God gives him. Everyone is going to the same place.
7People work just to feed themselves,
but they never seem to get enough to eat.
8In this way a wise person
is no better off than a fool.
Then, too, it does a poor person little good
to know how to get along in life.
9It is better to see what you have
than to want more.
Wanting more is useless—
like chasing the wind.
Who Can Understand God’s Plan?
10Whatever happens was planned long ago.
Everyone knows what people are like.
No one can argue with God,
who is stronger than anyone.
11The more you say,
the more useless it is.
What good does it do?
12People have only a few useless days of life on the earth; their short life passes like a shadow. Who knows what is best for them while they live? Who can tell them what the future will bring?