Ecclesiastes 4:16
Parallel Verses
New International Version
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.

New Living Translation
Endless crowds stand around him, but then another generation grows up and rejects him, too. So it is all meaningless--like chasing the wind.

English Standard Version
There was no end of all the people, all of whom he led. Yet those who come later will not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and a striving after wind.

New American Standard Bible
There 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.

King James Bible
There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them: they also that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
There is no limit to all the people who were before them, yet those who come later will not rejoice in him. This too is futile and a pursuit of the wind.

International Standard Version
There was no end to all of his subjects or to all of the people who had come before them. But those who come along afterward will not be happy with him. This is also pointless and a chasing after wind.

NET Bible
There is no end to all the people nor to the past generations, yet future generations will not rejoice in him. This also is profitless and like chasing the wind.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
There was no end to all those people, everyone whom he led.?kings[."> But those who will come later will not be happy with the successor. Even this is pointless.]It's like[ trying to catch the wind.]

Jubilee Bible 2000
There is no end of all the people that have been before them; those also that come after shall not be content in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.

King James 2000 Bible
There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them: they also that come after him shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and grasping after the wind.

American King James Version
There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them: they also that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.

American Standard Version
There was no end of all the people, even of all them over whom he was: yet they that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and a striving after wind.

Douay-Rheims Bible
The number of the people, of all that were before him is infinite: and they that shall come afterwards, shall not rejoice in him: but this also is vanity, and vexation of spirit.

Darby Bible Translation
[There is] no end of all the people, of all that stood before them; those however that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and a striving after the wind.

English Revised Version
There was no end of all the people, even of all them over whom he was: yet they that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and a striving after wind.

Webster's Bible Translation
There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them: they also that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.

World English Bible
There was no end of all the people, even of all them over whom he was--yet those who come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and a chasing after wind.

Young's Literal Translation
there is no end to all the people, to all who were before them; also, the latter rejoice not in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.
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 16. - There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them. The paragraph plainly is carrying on the description of the popular enthusiasm for the new favorite. The Authorized Version completely obscures this meaning. It is better to translate, Numberless were the people, all, at whose head he stood. Koheleth places himself in the position of a spectator, and marks how numerous are the adherents who flock around the youthful aspirant. "Nullus finis omni populo, omnibus, quibus praefuit" (Gesenius, Rosenmüller, Volck). Yet his popularity was not lasting and his influence was not permanent. They also that come after shall not rejoice in him. In spite of his cleverness, and notwithstanding the favor with which he is now regarded, those of a later generation shall flout his pretensions and forget his benefits. If we still continue the allusion to Joseph, we may see here in this last clause a reference to the change that supervened when another king arose who knew him not (Exodus 1:8), and who, oblivious of the services of this great benefactor, heavily oppressed the Israelites. This experience leads to the same result; it is all vanity and vexation of spirit.





Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them,.... Before the present generation, the living that walked under the sun; a vast number they were that lived before them, and they were of the same restless temper and disposition; changeable in their affection and behaviour towards their governors; no end of their number, nor any stable affection for, nor settled satisfaction in, their rulers; but this itch of novelty, of having new princes over them, went from age to age, from generation to generation. Some understand this of the king and his son, the predecessor and successor, and of those that went before them; and of their behaviour to the kings that reigned before them; the people have not their end or satisfaction in their governors, but are restless: which comes to the same sense;

they also that come after shall not rejoice in him; that come after the present generation, and after both the reigning prince, and even after his successor; they will not rejoice long in him that shall be upon the throne after them, any more than the present subjects of the old king, or those that now pay their court to the heir apparent; they will be so far from rejoicing in him, that they will loath and despise him, and wish him dead or dethroned, and another in his room.

Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit; to a king, to see himself thus used by his subjects; for a short time extolled and praised, and then despised and forsaken.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

16. Notwithstanding their now worshipping the rising sun, the heir-apparent, I reflected that "there were no bounds, no stability (2Sa 15:6; 20:1), no check on the love of innovation, of all that have been before them," that is, the past generation; so

also they that come after—that is, the next generation,

shall not rejoice in him—namely, Rehoboam. The parallel, "shall not rejoice," fixes the sense of "no bounds," no permanent adherence, though now men rejoice in him.

Ecclesiastes 4:16 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Futility of Power
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 1:14
I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

Ecclesiastes 4:15
I saw that all who lived and walked under the sun followed the youth, the king's successor.
Treasury of Scripture

There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them: they also that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.

no end

2 Samuel 15:12,13 And Absalom sent for Ahithophel the Gilonite, David's counselor, …

1 Kings 1:5-7,40 Then Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, I will …

1 Kings 12:10-16 And the young men that were grown up with him spoke to him, saying, …

they also

Judges 9:19,20 If you then have dealt truly and sincerely with Jerubbaal and with …

2 Samuel 18:7,8 Where the people of Israel were slain before the servants of David…

2 Samuel 19:9 And all the people were at strife throughout all the tribes of Israel, …

this

Ecclesiastes 1:14 I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, …

Ecclesiastes 2:11,17,26 Then I looked on all the works that my hands had worked, and on the …

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