Everything is meaningless
1The words of the Teacher,1:1 Or the leader of the assembly; also in verses 2 and 12 son of David, king of Jerusalem:
says the Teacher.
Everything is meaningless.’
3What do people gain from all their labours
at which they toil under the sun?
4Generations come and generations go,
but the earth remains for ever.
5The sun rises and the sun sets,
and hurries back to where it rises.
6The wind blows to the south
and turns to the north;
round and round it goes,
ever returning on its course.
7All streams flow into the sea,
yet the sea is never full.
To the place the streams come from,
there they return again.
8All things are wearisome,
more than one can say.
The eye never has enough of seeing,
nor the ear its fill of hearing.
9What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun.
10Is there anything of which one can say,
‘Look! This is something new’?
It was here already, long ago;
it was here before our time.
11No-one remembers the former generations,
and even those yet to come
will not be remembered
by those who follow them.
Wisdom is meaningless
12I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem. 13I applied my mind to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under the heavens. What a heavy burden God has laid on mankind! 14I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
15What is crooked cannot be straightened;
what is lacking cannot be counted.
16I said to myself, ‘Look, I have increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge.’ 17Then I applied myself to the understanding of wisdom, and also of madness and folly, but I learned that this, too, is a chasing after the wind.
18For with much wisdom comes much sorrow;
the more knowledge, the more grief.
12我傳道者曾在耶路撒冷做以色列的王。 13我專心用智慧去研究、探索天下各樣的事，發現上帝給世人的是極重的苦工。 14我觀察一切日光之下所做的事，看啊，都是虛空，好像捕風。 15彎曲的不能變直，缺少的無法補足1·15 「補足」希伯來文是「數算」。。 16我心裡想：「我獲得極大的智慧，遠超過以前統治耶路撒冷的人。我擁有豐富的智慧和知識。」 17我又專心察明智慧和知識、狂妄和愚昧，卻發現這也是捕風。 18因為智慧越高，愁煩越多；知識越多，痛苦越深。