Ecclesiastes 3:3
Parallel Verses
New International Version
a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build,

New Living Translation
A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up.

English Standard Version
a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

New American Standard Bible
A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build up.

King James Bible
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

Holman Christian Standard Bible
a time to kill and a time to heal; a time to tear down and a time to build;

International Standard Version
a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to tear down, and a time to build up;

NET Bible
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

GOD'S WORD® Translation
a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build up,

Jubilee Bible 2000
a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

King James 2000 Bible
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

American King James Version
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

American Standard Version
a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

Douay-Rheims Bible
A time to kill, and a time to heal. A time to destroy, and a time to build.

Darby Bible Translation
A time to kill, and a time to heal; A time to break down, and a time to build up;

English Revised Version
a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

Webster's Bible Translation
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

World English Bible
a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

Young's Literal Translation
A time to slay, And a time to heal, A time to break down, And a time to build up.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

3:1-10 To expect unchanging happiness in a changing world, must end in disappointment. To bring ourselves to our state in life, is our duty and wisdom in this world. God's whole plan for the government of the world will be found altogether wise, just, and good. Then let us seize the favourable opportunity for every good purpose and work. The time to die is fast approaching. Thus labour and sorrow fill the world. This is given us, that we may always have something to do; none were sent into the world to be idle.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 3. - A time to kill, and a time to heal. The time to kill might refer to war, only that occurs in ver. 8. Some endeavor to limit the notion to severe surgical operations performed with a view of saving life; but the verb harag does not admit of the meaning "rewound" or" cut." It most probably refers to the execution of criminals, or to the defense of the oppressed; such emergencies and necessities occur providentially without man's prescience. So sickness is a visitation beyond man's control, while it calls into exercise the art of healing, which is a gift of God (see Ecclus. 10:10 Ecclus. 38:1, etc.). A time to break down, and a time to build up. The removal of decaying or unsuitable buildings is meant, and the substitution of new and improved structures. A recollection of Solomon's own extensive architectural works is here introduced.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

A time to kill, and a time to heal,.... A time to kill may be meant of a violent death, as a time to die is of a natural one; so the Targum,

"a time to kill in war;''

or else, by the hand of the civil magistrate, such who deserve death. Aben Ezra interprets it "to wound", because of the opposite "to heal"; and so there is a time when wounds and diseases are incurable, and baffle all the skill of the physician, being designed unto death; and there is a time when, by the blessing of God on means, they are healed; the wound or sickness not being unto death: so the Targum paraphrases the last clause,

"to heal one that lies sick.''

This may be applied in a civil sense to calamities in kingdoms, and a restoration of peace and plenty to them; which is the property of God alone, who in this sense kills and makes alive in his own time, Deuteronomy 32:39; And in a spiritual sense to the ministers of the word, who are instruments of slaying souls by the law, which is the killing letter, and of healing them by the Gospel, which pours in the oil and wine of peace and pardon through the blood of Christ, and so binds up and heals the broken hearted; and there is a time for both;

a time to break down, and a time to build up; to break down a building, and build a waste, as the Targum; to break down cities and the walls of them, as the of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar; and to build them up: as in the times of Nehemiah and Zerubbabel: and so in a spiritual sense to break down the church of God, the tabernacle of David, and to raise up and repair the breaches of it; to build up Zion, and the walls of Jerusalem, or to restore the Gospel church state to its glory, for which there is a set time; see Amos 9:11.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

3. time to kill—namely, judicially, criminals; or, in wars of self-defense; not in malice. Out of this time and order, killing is murder.

to heal—God has His times for "healing" (literally, Isa 38:5, 21; figuratively, De 32:39; Ho 6:1; spiritually, Ps 147:3; Isa 57:19). To heal spiritually, before the sinner feels his wound, would be "out of time," and so injurious.

time to break down—cities, as Jerusalem, by Nebuchadnezzar.

build up—as Jerusalem, in the time of Zerubbabel; spiritually (Am 9:11), "the set time" (Ps 102:13-16).

Ecclesiastes 3:3 Additional Commentaries
Context
To Everything There is a Season
2A time to give birth and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted. 3A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build up. 4A time to weep and a time to laugh; A time to mourn and a time to dance.…
Cross References
Genesis 9:6
"Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.

1 Samuel 2:6
"The LORD brings death and makes alive; he brings down to the grave and raises up.

Hosea 6:1
"Come, let us return to the LORD. He has torn us to pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds.

Hosea 6:2
After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence.
Treasury of Scripture

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

time to kill

Deuteronomy 32:39 See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god with me: I kill, …

1 Samuel 2:6,25 The LORD kills, and makes alive: he brings down to the grave, and brings up…

Hosea 6:1,2 Come, and let us return to the LORD: for he has torn, and he will …

a time to heal

Numbers 26:6-9 Of Hezron, the family of the Hezronites: of Carmi, the family of the Carmites…

Isaiah 38:5 Go, and say to Hezekiah, Thus said the LORD, the God of David your …

Jeremiah 33:6 Behold, I will bring it health and cure, and I will cure them, and …

Luke 9:54-56 And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, …

Acts 5:15,16 So that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them …

a time to break

Isaiah 5:5,6 And now go to; I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard: I will …

Isaiah 44:26 That confirms the word of his servant, and performes the counsel …

Jeremiah 31:28 And it shall come to pass, that like as I have watched over them, …

Jeremiah 45:4 Thus shall you say to him, The LORD said thus; Behold, that which …

Ezekiel 13:14 So will I break down the wall that you have daubed with untempered …

Daniel 9:25-27 Know therefore and understand…

Zechariah 1:12 Then the angel of the LORD answered and said, O LORD of hosts, how …

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