A Time For Everything
1For everything there is a season and a time for every activity under heaven:
2a time to give birth and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted;
3a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build up;
4a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance;
5a time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing;
6a time to seek and a time to lose, a time to keep and a time to discard;
7a time to tear apart and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak;
8a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
9What gain, then, does the laborer get with his toil?
10I have seen the task that God has given to the children of men to keep them occupied.
Yet Eternity In Their Heart
11He has made everything beautiful in its time. Moreover, He has set eternity in their heart—yet without the possibility that humankind can ever discover the work that God has done from the beginning to the end.
12I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and enjoy themselves in their lifetime.
13Also when anyone eats and drinks, and finds satisfaction in all of his labor, it is the gift of God.
14I know that everything that God does will endure forever. There is no adding to it or taking from it. God has made it so, that they will revere Him.
15Whatever exists, has already been and whatever will be, has already been, but God recalls what has passed.
16I have also seen under the sun: In the place of justice there was wickedness, and in the place of righteousness there was wickedness.
17I said in my heart: “The righteous and the wicked, God will judge. For there is a time for every activity and for every deed.”
Humans Same As Beasts?
18I also said in my heart, “As for the sons of man, God tests them so that they may see that they are but animals.”
19For the destiny of humankind and the destiny of animals are one and the same. As one dies, so dies the other. Both have the same breath—a human has no advantage over an animal—both are fleeting.
20Both go to one place. Both were taken from the dust, and both return to the dust.
21Who knows that the spirit of the sons of man ascends upward and the animal’s spirit descends into the earth?
22So I perceived that nothing is better than for man to enjoy his works, because that is his portion. For who can bring him back to see what will be in the future?