New International Reader's Version

Ecclesiastes 6

1I’ve seen another evil thing on this earth. And it’s a heavy load on human beings. God gives some people wealth, possessions and honor. They have everything their hearts desire. But God doesn’t let them enjoy those things. Instead, strangers enjoy them. This doesn’t have any meaning. It’s a very evil thing.

A man might have a hundred children. He might live a long time. But suppose he can’t enjoy his wealth. And suppose he isn’t buried in the proper way. Then it doesn’t matter how long he lives. I’m telling you that a baby that is born dead is better off than that man is. That kind of birth doesn’t have any meaning. The baby dies in darkness and leaves this world. And in darkness it is forgotten. It didn’t even see the sun. It didn’t know anything at all. But it has more rest than that man does. And that’s true even if he lives for 2,000 years but doesn’t get to enjoy his wealth. All people die and go to the grave, don’t they?

People eat up everything they work to get.
    But they are never satisfied.
What advantage do wise people have
    over those who are foolish?
What do poor people gain
    by knowing how to act toward others?
Being satisfied with what you have
    is better than always wanting more.
That doesn’t have any meaning either.
    It’s like chasing the wind.

10 God has already planned what now exists.
    He has already decided what a human being is.
No one can argue with someone
    who is stronger.
11 The more words people use,
    the less meaning there is.
    And that doesn’t help anyone.

12 Who knows what’s good for a person? They live for only a few meaningless days. They pass through life like a shadow. Who can tell them what will happen on earth after they are gone?