Ecclesiastes - Chapter 5




The King James Version Basic English Version (BBE)

1 Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.

1 Put your feet down with care when you go to the house of God, for it is better to give ear than to make the burned offerings of the foolish, whose knowledge is only of doing evil.

2 Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.

2 Be not unwise with your mouth, and let not your heart be quick to say anything before God, because God is in heaven and you are on the earth--so let not the number of your words be great.

3 For a dream cometh through the multitude of business; and a fool's voice is known by multitude of words.

3 As a dream comes from much business, so the voice of a foolish man comes with words in great number.

4 When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed.

4 When you take an oath before God, put it quickly into effect, because he has no pleasure in the foolish; keep the oath you have taken.

5 Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay.

5 It is better not to take an oath than to take an oath and not keep it.

6 Suffer not thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin; neither say thou before the angel, that it was an error: wherefore should God be angry at thy voice, and destroy the work of thine hands?

6 Let not your mouth make your flesh do evil. And say not before the angel, It was an error. So that God may not be angry with your words and put an end to the work of your hands.

7 For in the multitude of dreams and many words there are also divers vanities: but fear thou God.

7 Because much talk comes from dreams and things of no purpose. But let the fear of God be in you.

8 If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they.

8 If you see the poor under a cruel yoke, and law and right being violently overturned in a country, be not surprised, because one authority is keeping watch on another and there are higher than they.

9 Moreover the profit of the earth is for all: the king himself is served by the field.

9 It is good generally for a country where the land is worked to have a king.

10 He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity.

10 He who has a love for silver never has enough silver, or he who has love for wealth, enough profit. This again is to no purpose.

11 When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes?

11 When goods are increased, the number of those who take of them is increased; and what profit has the owner but to see them?

12 The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep.

12 The sleep of a working man is sweet, if he has little food or much; but to him who is full, sleep will not come.

13 There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for the owners thereof to their hurt.

13 There is a great evil which I have seen under the sun--wealth kept by the owner to be his downfall.

14 But those riches perish by evil travail: and he begetteth a son, and there is nothing in his hand.

14 And I saw the destruction of his wealth by an evil chance; and when he became the father of a son he had nothing in his hand.

15 As he came forth of his mother's womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand.

15 As he came from his mother at birth, so does he go again; he gets from his work no reward which he may take away in his hand.

16 And this also is a sore evil, that in all points as he came, so shall he go: and what profit hath he that hath laboured for the wind?

16 And this again is a great evil, that in all points as he came so will he go; and what profit has he in working for the wind?

17 All his days also he eateth in darkness, and he hath much sorrow and wrath with his sickness.

17 All his days are in the dark, and he has much sorrow, pain, disease, and trouble.

18 Behold that which I have seen: it is good and comely for one to eat and to drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labour that he taketh under the sun all the days of his life, which God giveth him: for it is his portion.

18 This is what I have seen: it is good and fair for a man to take meat and drink and to have joy in all his work under the sun, all the days of his life which God has given him; that is his reward.

19 Every man also to whom God hath given riches and wealth, and hath given him power to eat thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour; this is the gift of God.

19 Every man to whom God has given money and wealth and the power to have pleasure in it and to do his part and have joy in his work: this is given by God.

20 For he shall not much remember the days of his life; because God answereth him in the joy of his heart.

20 He will not give much thought to the days of his life; because God lets him be taken up with the joy of his heart.




Rights in the Authorized Version are vested in the Crown. Published in the United Kingdom by permission of the Crown"s patentee, Cambridge University Press.

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