The Message

Ecclesiastes 11

1Be generous: Invest in acts of charity.
Charity yields high returns.

Don’t hoard your goods; spread them around.
Be a blessing to others. This could be your last night.

3-4 When the clouds are full of water, it rains.
When the wind blows down a tree, it lies where it falls.
Don’t sit there watching the wind. Do your own work.
Don’t stare at the clouds. Get on with your life.

Just as you’ll never understand
    the mystery of life forming in a pregnant woman,
So you’ll never understand
    the mystery at work in all that God does.

Go to work in the morning
    and stick to it until evening without watching the clock.
You never know from moment to moment
    how your work will turn out in the end.

Before the Years Take Their Toll

7-8 Oh, how sweet the light of day,
And how wonderful to live in the sunshine!
Even if you live a long time, don’t take a single day for granted.
Take delight in each light-filled hour,
Remembering that there will also be many dark days
And that most of what comes your way is smoke.

You who are young, make the most of your youth.
Relish your youthful vigor.
Follow the impulses of your heart.
If something looks good to you, pursue it.
But know also that not just anything goes;
You have to answer to God for every last bit of it.

10 Live footloose and fancy-free—
You won’t be young forever.
Youth lasts about as long as smoke.

Chinese Contemporary Bible (Traditional)

傳道書 11

1當慷慨施捨[a]
因為日後必有收穫。
當把你的資財分給多人,
因為你不知道日後會有什麼災難臨到世上。
雲中滿了水,就會下雨。
樹不論倒向南或倒向北,
倒在哪裡就躺在哪裡。
你若等待完美的天氣,
必無法撒種,無法收割。

正如你不知道風的路線,不知道骨骼在母胎中如何形成,你也無法瞭解創造萬物之上帝的作為。 你要早晚不停地撒種,因為你不知道什麼時候撒的種子會發芽生長,或許所撒的都會帶來收穫。 光真美好,能夠看見陽光真好! 人一生不論活多久,都要活得快樂,但不要忘記死後有許多黑暗的日子。將來的一切都是虛空。 年輕人啊,在年輕時要快樂,要在青春歲月裡使自己的心歡暢。心裡想做什麼就去做,眼睛想看什麼就去看。然而,要切記:上帝必照你所行的一切審判你。 10 所以,你要拋開心中的煩惱和肉體的痛苦,因為青春年華轉瞬即逝。

Footnotes

  1. 11·1 當慷慨施捨」或譯「當把你的資財投入海外貿易」。