Ecclesiastes 4:15
Parallel Verses
New International Version
I saw that all who lived and walked under the sun followed the youth, the king's successor.

New Living Translation
But then everyone rushes to the side of yet another youth who replaces him.

English Standard Version
I saw all the living who move about under the sun, along with that youth who was to stand in the king’s place.

New American Standard Bible
I have seen all the living under the sun throng to the side of the second lad who replaces him.

King James Bible
I considered all the living which walk under the sun, with the second child that shall stand up in his stead.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I saw all the living, who move about under the sun, follow a second youth who succeeds him.

International Standard Version
I observed everyone who lives and walks on earth, along with the youth who will take the king's place.

NET Bible
I considered all the living who walk on earth, as well as the successor who would arise in his place.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I saw all living people moving about under the sun. They sided with the second young man, the king's successor.

Jubilee Bible 2000
I saw all the living who are under the sun walking with the child, the successor that shall stand up in his stead.

King James 2000 Bible
I considered all the living who walk under the sun, with the second child that shall stand up in his place.

American King James Version
I considered all the living which walk under the sun, with the second child that shall stand up in his stead.

American Standard Version
I saw all the living that walk under the sun, that they were with the youth, the second, that stood up in his stead.

Douay-Rheims Bible
I saw all men living, that walk under the sun with the second young man, who shall rise up in his place.

Darby Bible Translation
I saw all the living that walk under the sun, with the child, the second, that should stand up in his stead.

English Revised Version
I saw all the living which walk under the sun, that they were with the youth, the second, that stood up in his stead.

Webster's Bible Translation
I considered all the living who walk under the sun, with the second child that shall stand up in his stead.

World English Bible
I saw all the living who walk under the sun, that they were with the youth, the other, who succeeded him.

Young's Literal Translation
I have seen all the living, who are walking under the sun, with the second youth who doth stand in his place;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

4:13-16 People are never long easy and satisfied; they are fond of changes. This is no new thing. Princes see themselves slighted by those they have studied to oblige; this is vanity and vexation of spirit. But the willing servants of the Lord Jesus, our King, rejoice in him alone, and they will love Him more and more to all eternity.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 15. - I considered all the living which walk under the sun; or, I have seen all the population. The expression is hyperbolical, as Eastern monarchs speak of their dominions as if they comprised the whole world (see Daniel 4:1; Daniel 6:25). With the second child that shall stand up in his stead. "With" (עִם) means "in company with," "on the side of;" and the clause should be rendered, as in the Revised Version, That they were with the youth, the second, that stood up in his stead. The youth who is called the second is the one spoken of in the previous verses, who by general acclamation is raised to the highest place in the realm, while the old monarch is dethroned or depreciated. He is named second, as being the successor of the other, either in popular favor or on the throne. It is the old story of worshipping the rising sun. The verse may still be applied to Joseph, who was made second to Pharaoh, and was virtually supreme in Egypt, standing in the king's place (Genesis 41:40-44).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

I considered all the living which walk under the sun,.... All men that were then alive, who were capable of walking upon the earth; even all of them that were under the heavens, in every land and nation, under whatsoever dominion or government: these, and their manners, Solomon had particularly observed, and made his remarks upon, by which it appeared how fickle the minds of the populace were under every government, and how precarious and uncertain were the honour and dignity of princes;

with the second child that shall stand up in his stead: the heir and successor or every prince, that shall rise up and take the throne of his father or predecessor, and reign in his stead. The wise man observed how the people commonly behaved towards him; how that they generally stood best affected to him, than to the reigning prince; worshipped the rising sun, courted his favour and friendship, soothed and flattered him; expressing their wishes to see him on the throne, and treated with neglect and contempt their lawful sovereign. Some, contrary to the accents, connect this with the word "walk" (h); that walk with the second child, join themselves to him, converse with him, and show him great respect and honour: and there are others that, by this second child, understand the poor and wise child, that succeeds the old and foolish king, whom yet, in time, the people grow weary of; such is the levity and inconstancy of people, that they are not long pleased with princes, old or young, wise or foolish. The Targum interprets this of the foresight Solomon had, by a spirit of prophecy, of those that rebelled against his son Rehoboam, and of those that cleaved unto him, who was his second, and reigned in his stead. Noldius (i) thinks Solomon refers to the history of his friend Hiram, king of Tyre, whose kingdom, in his and in his son's time, was very large, flourishing, and opulent, but in a following reign not so; and he renders and paraphrases the words thus,

""I saw all the works under the sun; with Baleazarus, the son of a friend" (Hiram, for rendered "second", is the same as "a friend"), "who shall stand" or "reign after him: there is no end of all the people",'' &c.

the kingdom in those two reigns being flourishing; yet posterity shall not rejoice in him, in Abdastratus, the grandson of Hiram, destroyed by the four sons of his nurse (k).

(h) So the Tigurine version, Vatablus, Cocceius, Gejerus. (i) Concord. Part. Ebr. No. 1023. (k) Meander apud Joseph. Contr. Apion. l. 1. s. 18.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

15. "I considered all the living," the present generation, in relation to ("with") the "second youth" (the "legitimate successor" of the "old king," as opposed to the "poor youth," the one first spoken of, about to be raised from poverty to a throne), that is, Rehoboam.

in his stead—the old king's.

Ecclesiastes 4:15 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Futility of Power
14For he has come out of prison to become king, even though he was born poor in his kingdom. 15I have seen all the living under the sun throng to the side of the second lad who replaces him. 16There is no end to all the people, to all who were before them, and even the ones who will come later will not be happy with him, for this too is vanity and striving after wind.
Cross References
Ecclesiastes 4:14
The youth may have come from prison to the kingship, or he may have been born in poverty within his kingdom.

Ecclesiastes 4:16
There was no end to all the people who were before them. But those who came later were not pleased with the successor. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
Treasury of Scripture

I considered all the living which walk under the sun, with the second child that shall stand up in his stead.

child

2 Samuel 15:6 And on this manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king …

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