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Bible Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Ecclesiastes 7

 

 

Introduction
1Remedies against vanity are, a good name;
2mortification;
7patience;
11wisdom.
23The difficulty of wisdom.

Verse 1
A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one's birth.
name
Proverbs 15:30; 22:1; Isaiah 56:5; Luke 10:20; Hebrews 11:2,39
precious
10:1; Psalms 133:2; Proverbs 27:9; Song of Solomon 1:3; 4:10; John 13:2
the day
4:2; Job 3:17; Isaiah 57:1,2; 2 Corinthians 5:1,8; Philippians 1:21-23; Revelation 14:13

Verse 2
It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.
better
Genesis 48:1-22; 49:2-33; 50:15-17; Job 1:4,5; Isaiah 5:11,12; 22:12-14; Amos 6:3-6; Matthew 5:4; 14:6-12; 1 Peter 4:3,4
that
Numbers 23:10; Deuteronomy 32:29; Romans 6:21,22; Philippians 3:19; Hebrews 9:27
living
Deuteronomy 32:46; Isaiah 47:7; Haggai 1:5; *marg:; Malachi 2:2

Verse 3
Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.
Sorrow
or, Anger. is better.
Psalms 119:67,71; 126:5,6; Jeremiah 31:8,9,15-20; 50:4,5; Daniel 9:3-19; Daniel 10:2,3,19; Zechariah 12:10-14; Luke 6:21,25; John 16:20-22; 2 Corinthians 7:9-11; James 4:8-10
by
Romans 5:3,4; 2 Corinthians 4:17; Hebrews 12:10,11; James 1:2-4

Verse 4
The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
heart
Nehemiah 2:2-5; Isaiah 53:3,4; Matthew 8:14-16; Mark 5:38-43; Luke 7:12,13; John 11:31-35
the heart
1 Samuel 25:36; 30:16; 2 Samuel 13:28; 1 Kings 20:16; Isaiah 21:4; Jeremiah 51:39,57; Daniel 5:1-4,30; Hosea 7:5; Nahum 1:10; Mark 6:21-29

Verse 5
It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools.
better
Psalms 141:5; Proverbs 9:8; 13:13; 15:31,32; 17:10; 27:6; Revelation 3:19
the song
Psalms 69:12

Verse 6
For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool: this also is vanity.
as
2:2; Psalms 58:9; 118:12; Isaiah 65:13-15; Amos 8:10; Luke 6:25; 16:25; 2 Peter 2:13-17; Jude 1:12,13
crackling
Heb. sound. the laughter.
Proverbs 29:9

Verse 7
Surely oppression maketh a wise man mad; and a gift destroyeth the heart.
oppression
Deuteronomy 28:33,34,65
a gift
Exodus 23:8; Deuteronomy 16:19; 1 Samuel 8:3; 12:3; Proverbs 17:23; Isaiah 1:23; 33:15

Verse 8
Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
Better
Psalms 126:5,6; Isaiah 10:24,25,28-34; Luke 16:25; James 5:11; 1 Peter 1:13
the patient
Proverbs 13:10; 14:29; 15:18; 16:32; 28:25; Luke 21:19; Romans 2:7,8; Hebrews 10:36; James 5:8; 1 Peter 2:20,21; 5:5,6

Verse 9
Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.
hasty
1 Samuel 25:21,22; 2 Samuel 19:43; Esther 3:5,6; Proverbs 14:17; 16:32; Jonah 4:9; Ephesians 4:26,27; James 1:19
anger
Genesis 4:5,6,8; 34:7,8,25,26,30,31; 2 Samuel 13:22,28,32; Proverbs 26:23-26; Mark 6:19,24

Verse 10
Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were better than these? for thou dost not enquire wisely concerning this.
What
Judges 6:13; Jeremiah 44:17-19
wisely
Heb. out of wisdom.
Genesis 6:11,12; Psalms 14:2,3; Isaiah 50:1; Romans 1:22-32; 3:9-19

Verse 11
Wisdom is good with an inheritance: and by it there is profit to them that see the sun.
good with an inheritance
or, as good as an inheritance, yea, better too.
9:15-18; 1 Kings 3:6-9; Luke 16:8,9; 1 Timothy 6:17-19
them
11:7

Verse 12
For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it.
wisdom
Job 1:10; 22:21-25; Proverbs 2:7,11; 14:20; 18:10,11; Isaiah 33:6
a defence
Heb. a shadow.
Judges 9:15; Psalms 57:1; Isaiah 30:2; 32:2
the excellency
Deuteronomy 30:19,20; 32:47; Proverbs 3:18; 8:35; 9:11; 11:4; John 12:50; 17:3; Philippians 3:8

Verse 13
Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight, which he hath made crooked?
Consider
Job 37:14; Psalms 8:3; 107:43; Isaiah 5:12
who
1:15; Job 9:12; 11:10; 12:14; 34:29; Isaiah 14:27; 43:13; 46:10,11; Daniel 4:35; Romans 9:15,19; Ephesians 1:11

Verse 14
In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him.
the day
3:4; Deuteronomy 28:47; Psalms 30:11,12; 40:3; Matthew 9:13; John 16:22,23; James 5:13
but
Deuteronomy 8:3; 1 Kings 8:47; 17:17,18; 2 Chronicles 33:12,13; Job 10:1,2; Psalms 94:12,13; Psalms 119:71; Isaiah 22:12-14; 26:11; 42:25; Jeremiah 23:20; Micah 6:9; Haggai 1:5-7; Luke 15:17,18; Acts 14:22
set
Heb. made.
12:8,13; Hosea 2:6,7

Verse 15
All things have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is a just man that perisheth in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man that prolongeth his life in his wickedness.
have I
2:23; 5:16,17; 6:12; Genesis 47:9; Psalms 39:6
there is a just
3:16; 8:14; 9:1,2; 1 Samuel 22:18,19; 1 Kings 21:13; 2 Chronicles 24:21,22; Job 9:22,23; Matthew 23:34,35; John 16:2; Acts 7:52
there is a wicked
8:12,13; Job 21:7-15; Psalms 73:3-13; Isaiah 65:20; Jeremiah 12:1,2

Verse 16
Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself?
Be not
This verse is probably the language of an ungodly man; to which Solomon answers, as in the following verse, "Do not multiply wickedness; do not add direct opposition to godliness, to the rest of your crimes. Why should you provoke God to destroy you before your time?"
Proverbs 25:16; Matthew 6:1-7; 9:14; 15:2-9; 23:5,23,24,29; Luke 18:12; Romans 10:2; Philippians 3:6; 1 Timothy 4:3
neither
12:12; Genesis 3:6; Job 11:12; 28:28; Proverbs 23:4; Romans 11:25; 12:3; 1 Corinthians 3:18,20; Colossians 2:18,23; James 3:13-17
destroy thyself
Heb. be desolate.
Matthew 23:38; Revelation 18:19

Verse 17
Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time?
not
Jeremiah 2:33,34; Ezekiel 8:17; 16:20; James 1:21
why
Genesis 38:7-10; 1 Samuel 25:38; Job 15:32,33; Psalms 55:23; Proverbs 10:27; Acts 5:5,10; Acts 12:23
before thy time
Heb. not in thy time.

Verse 18
It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all.
good
11:6; Proverbs 4:25-27; 8:20; Luke 11:42
for
8:12; 12:13; Psalms 25:12-14; 145:19,20; Jeremiah 32:40; Malachi 4:2; Luke 1:50

Verse 19
Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty men which are in the city.
9:15-18; 2 Samuel 20:16-22; Proverbs 21:22; 24:5; Colossians 1:9-11

Verse 20
For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.
there
1 Kings 8:46; 2 Chronicles 6:36; Job 15:14-16; Psalms 130:3; 143:2; Proverbs 20:9; Isaiah 53:6; Romans 3:23; James 3:2; 1 John 1:8-10
doeth
Isaiah 64:6

Verse 21
Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest thou hear thy servant curse thee:
take no heed
Heb. give not thine heart.
2 Samuel 19:19
unto
2 Samuel 16:10; Isaiah 29:21; 1 Corinthians 13:5-7

Verse 22
For oftentimes also thine own heart knoweth that thou thyself likewise hast cursed others.
also
1 Kings 2:44; Matthew 15:19; 18:32-35; John 8:7-9; James 3:9

Verse 23
All this have I proved by wisdom: I said, I will be wise; but it was far from me.
I said
Genesis 3:5; 1 Kings 3:11,12; 11:1-8; Romans 1:22; 1 Corinthians 1:20

Verse 24
That which is far off, and exceeding deep, who can find it out?
Deuteronomy 30:11-14; Job 11:7,8; 28:12-23,28; Psalms 36:6; 139:6; Isaiah 55:8,9; Romans 11:33; 1 Timothy 6:16

Verse 25
I applied mine heart to know, and to search, and to seek out wisdom, and the reason of things, and to know the wickedness of folly, even of foolishness and madness:
I applied mine heart
Heb. I and my heart compassed.
1:13-17; 2:1-3,12,20
the reason
27; *marg:; 2:15; 3:16,17; 9:1,2; Jeremiah 12:1,2; 2 Peter 2:3-9; 3:3-9
know
9:3; 10:13; Genesis 34:7; Joshua 7:13; 2 Samuel 13:12; Proverbs 17:12; 26:11

Verse 26
And I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart is snares and nets, and her hands as bands: whoso pleaseth God shall escape from her; but the sinner shall be taken by her.
I find
Judges 16:18-21; Proverbs 2:18,19; 5:3-5; 7:21-27; 9:18; 22:14; 23:27,28
whoso pleaseth God
Heb. he that is good before God.
2:26

Verse 27
Behold, this have I found, saith the preacher, counting one by one, to find out the account:
saith
1:1,2; 12:8-10
counting one by one, to find out the account
or, weighing one thing after another, to find out the reason.

Verse 28
Which yet my soul seeketh, but I find not: one man among a thousand have I found; but a woman among all those have I not found.
yet
23,24; Isaiah 26:9
one
Job 33:23; Psalms 12:1
but
Solomon, instead of seeking one rational, virtuous woman, had collected an immense multitude, of various countries and religions, for magnificence and indulgence; among whom, as might have been expected, he had not found one who was thoroughly faithful, upright, and pious. He here uses the language of a penitent, warning others of the errors into which he had been led; and not that of a wasphish satirist, lashing indiscriminately one half of the human species.
1 Kings 11:1-3

Verse 29
Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.
God
Genesis 1:26,27; 5:1
they
The descendants of Adam have sought out an immense number of inventions, in order to find happiness in the world, without God, which have only proved so many variations of impiety and iniquity.
Genesis 3:6,7; 6:5,6,11,12; 11:4-6; Psalms 99:8; 106:29,39; Jeremiah 2:12,13; Jeremiah 4:22; Ezekiel 22:6-13; Mark 7:8,9; Acts 7:40-43; Romans 1:21-32; 3:9-19; Ephesians 2:2,3; Titus 3:3

 


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Bibliography Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Ecclesiastes 7:4". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/ecclesiastes-7.html.

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