Ecclesiastes 3:21
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Who knows if the human spirit rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?"

New Living Translation
For who can prove that the human spirit goes up and the spirit of animals goes down into the earth?

English Standard Version
Who knows whether the spirit of man goes upward and the spirit of the beast goes down into the earth?

New American Standard Bible
Who knows that the breath of man ascends upward and the breath of the beast descends downward to the earth?

King James Bible
Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Who knows if the spirit of people rises upward and the spirit of animals goes downward to the earth?

International Standard Version
Who knows whether the spirit of human beings ascends, and whether the spirit of animals descends to the earth?

NET Bible
Who really knows if the human spirit ascends upward, and the animal's spirit descends into the earth?

New Heart English Bible
Who knows the spirit of man, whether it goes upward, and the spirit of the animal, whether it goes downward to the earth?"

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Who knows whether a human spirit goes upward or whether an animal spirit goes downward to the earth?

JPS Tanakh 1917
Who knoweth the spirit of man whether it goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast whether it goeth downward to the earth?

New American Standard 1977
Who knows that the breath of man ascends upward and the breath of the beast descends downward to the earth?

Jubilee Bible 2000
Who knows that the spirit of the sons of men goes upward and that the spirit of the beast goes downward to the earth?

King James 2000 Bible
Who knows the spirit of man that goes upward, and the spirit of the beast that goes downward to the earth?

American King James Version
Who knows the spirit of man that goes upward, and the spirit of the beast that goes downward to the earth?

American Standard Version
Who knoweth the spirit of man, whether it goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast, whether it goeth downward to the earth?

Douay-Rheims Bible
Who knoweth if the spirit of the children of Adam ascend upward, and if the spirit of the beasts descend downward?

Darby Bible Translation
Who knoweth the spirit of the children of men? Doth it go upwards? and the spirit of the beasts, doth it go downwards to the earth?

English Revised Version
Who knoweth the spirit of man whether it goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast whether it goeth downward to the earth?

Webster's Bible Translation
Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?

World English Bible
Who knows the spirit of man, whether it goes upward, and the spirit of the animal, whether it goes downward to the earth?"

Young's Literal Translation
Who knoweth the spirit of the sons of man that is going up on high, and the spirit of the beast that is going down below to the earth?
Commentary
Matthew Henry Commentary
3:16-22 Without the fear of the Lord, man is but vanity; set that aside, and judges will not use their power well. And there is another Judge that stands before the door. With God there is a time for the redressing of grievances, though as yet we see it not. Solomon seems to express his wish that men might perceive, that by choosing this world as their portion, they brought themselves to a level with the beasts, without being free, as they are, from present vexations and a future account. Both return to the dust from whence they were taken. What little reason have we to be proud of our bodies, or bodily accomplishments! But as none can fully comprehend, so few consider properly, the difference between the rational soul of man, and the spirit or life of the beast. The spirit of man goes upward, to be judged, and is then fixed in an unchangeable state of happiness or misery. It is as certain that the spirit of the beast goes downward to the earth; it perishes at death. Surely their case is lamentable, the height of whose hopes and wishes is, that they may die like beasts. Let our inquiry be, how an eternity of existence may be to us an eternity of enjoyment? To answer this, is the grand design of revelation. Jesus is revealed as the Son of God, and the Hope of sinners.
Study Bible
From Dust to Dust
20All go to the same place. All came from the dust and all return to the dust. 21Who knows that the breath of man ascends upward and the breath of the beast descends downward to the earth? 22I have seen that nothing is better than that man should be happy in his activities, for that is his lot. For who will bring him to see what will occur after him?…
Cross References
Deuteronomy 28:13
"The LORD will make you the head and not the tail, and you only will be above, and you will not be underneath, if you listen to the commandments of the LORD your God, which I charge you today, to observe them carefully,

Ecclesiastes 12:7
then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.
Treasury of Scripture

Who knows the spirit of man that goes upward, and the spirit of the beast that goes downward to the earth?

knoweth

Ecclesiastes 12:7 Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit …

Luke 16:22,23 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the …

John 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive …

Acts 1:25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which …

2 Corinthians 5:1,8 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, …

Philippians 1:23 For I am in a strait between two, having a desire to depart, and …

of man that goeth upwards

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OT Poetry: Ecclesiastes 3:21 Who knows the spirit of man whether (Ecclesiast. Ec Ecc Eccles.) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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