Ecclesiastes 7:18
Parallel Verses
New International Version
It is good to grasp the one and not let go of the other. Whoever fears God will avoid all extremes.

New Living Translation
Pay attention to these instructions, for anyone who fears God will avoid both extremes.

English Standard Version
It is good that you should take hold of this, and from that withhold not your hand, for the one who fears God shall come out from both of them.

New American Standard Bible
It is good that you grasp one thing and also not let go of the other; for the one who fears God comes forth with both of them.

King James Bible
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.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
It is good that you grasp the one and do not let the other slip from your hand. For the one who fears God will end up with both of them.

International Standard Version
It is good for you to grab hold of this and not let go, because whoever fears God will escape all of these extremes.

NET Bible
It is best to take hold of one warning without letting go of the other warning; for the one who fears God will follow both warnings.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
It's good to hold on to the one and not let go of the other, because the one who fears God will be able to avoid both extremes.

Jubilee Bible 2000
It is good that thou should take hold of this; and also from the other not withdraw thy hand; for he that fears God shall come through with everything.

King James 2000 Bible
It is good that you should take hold of this; yea, also from this withhold not your hand: for he that fears God shall come forth of them all.

American King James Version
It is good that you should take hold of this; yes, also from this withdraw not your hand: for he that fears God shall come forth of them all.

American Standard Version
It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from that withdraw not thy hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth from them all.

Douay-Rheims Bible
It is good that thou shouldst hold up the just, yea and from him withdraw not thy hand: for he that feareth God, neglecteth nothing.

Darby Bible Translation
It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from that withdraw not thy hand: for he that feareth God cometh forth from them all.

English Revised Version
It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from that withdraw not thine hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all.

Webster's Bible Translation
It is good that thou shouldst take hold of this; yes, also from this withdraw not thy hand: for he that feareth God shall escape from them all.

World English Bible
It is good that you should take hold of this. Yes, also from that don't withdraw your hand; for he who fears God will come forth from them all.

Young's Literal Translation
It is good that thou dost lay hold on this, and also, from that withdrawest not thy hand, for whoso is fearing God goeth out with them all.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

7:11-22 Wisdom is as good as an inheritance, yea better. It shelters from the storms and scorching heat of trouble. Wealth will not lengthen out the natural life; but true wisdom will give spiritual life, and strengthen men for services under their sufferings. Let us look upon the disposal of our condition as the work of God, and at last all will appear to have been for the best. In acts of righteousness, be not carried into heats or passions, no, not by a zeal for God. Be not conceited of thine own abilities; nor find fault with every thing, nor busy thyself in other men's matters. Many who will not be wrought upon by the fear of God, and the dread of hell, will avoid sins which ruin their health and estate, and expose to public justice. But those that truly fear God, have but one end to serve, therefore act steadily. If we say we have not sinned, we deceive ourselves. Every true believer is ready to say, God be merciful to me a sinner. Forget not at the same time, that personal righteousness, walking in newness of life, is the only real evidence of an interest by faith in the righteousness of the Redeemer. Wisdom teaches us not to be quick in resenting affronts. Be not desirous to know what people say; if they speak well of thee, it will feed thy pride, if ill, it will stir up thy passion. See that thou approve thyself to God and thine own conscience, and then heed not what men say of thee; it is easier to pass by twenty affronts than to avenge one. When any harm is done to us, examine whether we have not done as bad to others.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 18. - It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand. The pronouns refer to the two warnings in vers. 16 and 17 against over-righteousness and over-wicked-ness. Koheleth does not advise a man to make trial of opposite lines of conduct, to taste the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, that from a wide experience lie may, like a man of the world, pursue a safe course; this would be poor morality, and unmeet for the stage at which his argument has arrived. Rather he advises him to lay to heart fire cautions above given, and learn from them to avoid all extremes. As Horace says ('Epist.,' 1:18. 9) -

"Virtus est medium vitiorum et utrinque reductum."

"Folly, as usual, in extremes is seen,
While virtue nicely hits the happy mean."


(Howes.) The Vulgate has interpolated a word, and taken the pronoun as masculine, to the sacrifice of the sense and connection: Bonum est te sustentare justum, sed el ab illo ne subtrahas manum tuam, "It is good that thou shouldst support the just man, nay, from him withdraw not thy hand." For he that feareth God shall come forth of them all; shall escape both extremes together with their evil re-suits. The fear of God will keep a man from all excesses. The intransitive verb yatsa, "to go forth," is here used with an accusative (comp. Genesis 44:4, which, however, is not quite analogous), as in Latin ingrediurbem (Livy, 1:29). Vulgate, Qui timet Deum nihil negligit. So Hitzig and Ginsburg, "Goes, makes his way with both," knows how to avail himself of piety and wickedness, which, as we have seen, is not the meaning. St. Gregory, indeed, who uses the Latin Version, notes that to fear God is never to pass over any good thing that ought to be aerie ('Moral.,' 1:3); but he is not professing to comment on the whole passage. Wright, after Delitzsch, takes the term "come out of" as equivalent to "fulfill," so that the meaning would be, "He who fears God performs all the duties mentioned above, and avoids extremes," as Matthew 23:23, "These ought ye to have done, and not to have left the other undone." But this is confessedly a Talmudic use of the verb; and the Authorized Version may be safely adopted. The Septuagint gives, "For to them that fear God all things shall come forth well."

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this,.... This advice, as the Arabic version, in the several branches of it; neither to be over much righteous or wicked, and over much wise or foolish; to avoid the one and the other, to keep clear of extremes, and pursue the path that is safest; such advice as this it is right to lay hold on, embrace, and hold fast;

yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand; from what follows concerning the fear of God; or "this and this" may be rendered "this and that" (c), and the sense be, lay hold on this, that is, the last part of the advice, not to be over much wicked or foolish, which is often the cause of an immature death; and do not slacken or be remiss in regarding that other and first part of it, not to be over much righteous or wise;

for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all; or escape them all; the phrase is become Rabbinical, that, is, he shall be free or exempt from them all; from over much righteousness and over much wisdom, and over much wickedness or over much folly; the fear of God, which is the beginning of wisdom, is the best preservative from, and antidote against, these things; for a man that fears God is humble, and renounces his own righteousness, and distrusts his own wisdom; he fears to commit sin, and shuns folly.

(c) So Broughton, Rambachius, and others.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

18. this … this—the two opposite excesses (Ec 7:16, 17), fanatical, self-wise righteousness, and presumptuous, foolhardy wickedness.

he that feareth God shall come forth of them all—shall escape all such extremes (Pr 3:7).

Ecclesiastes 7:18 Additional Commentaries
Context
Limits of Human Wisdom
17Do not be excessively wicked and do not be a fool. Why should you die before your time? 18It is good that you grasp one thing and also not let go of the other; for the one who fears God comes forth with both of them. 19Wisdom strengthens a wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.…
Cross References
Ecclesiastes 3:14
I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him.

Ecclesiastes 5:7
Much dreaming and many words are meaningless. Therefore fear God.

Ecclesiastes 8:12
Although a wicked person who commits a hundred crimes may live a long time, I know that it will go better with those who fear God, who are reverent before him.

Ecclesiastes 8:13
Yet because the wicked do not fear God, it will not go well with them, and their days will not lengthen like a shadow.

Ecclesiastes 12:13
Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.
Treasury of Scripture

It is good that you should take hold of this; yes, also from this withdraw not your hand: for he that fears God shall come forth of them all.

good

Ecclesiastes 11:6 In the morning sow your seed, and in the evening withhold not your …

Proverbs 4:25-27 Let your eyes look right on, and let your eyelids look straight before you…

Proverbs 8:20 I lead in the way of righteousness, in the middle of the paths of judgment:

Luke 11:42 But woe to you, Pharisees! for you tithe mint and rue and all manner …

for

Ecclesiastes 8:12 Though a sinner do evil an hundred times, and his days be prolonged, …

Ecclesiastes 12:13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep …

Psalm 25:12-14 What man is he that fears the LORD? him shall he teach in the way …

Psalm 145:19,20 He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear …

Jeremiah 32:40 And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not …

Malachi 4:2 But to you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise …

Luke 1:50 And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.

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