Ecclesiastes 7:19
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Wisdom makes one wise person more powerful than ten rulers in a city.

New Living Translation
One wise person is stronger than ten leading citizens of a town!

English Standard Version
Wisdom gives strength to the wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.

New American Standard Bible
Wisdom strengthens a wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.

King James Bible
Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty men which are in the city.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Wisdom makes the wise man stronger than ten rulers of a city.

International Standard Version
Wisdom given as strength to a wise person is better than having ten powerful men in the city.

NET Bible
Wisdom gives a wise person more protection than ten rulers in a city.

New Heart English Bible
Wisdom is a strength to the wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Wisdom will help a wise person more than ten rulers can help a city.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Wisdom is a stronghold to the wise man more than ten rulers that are in a city.

New American Standard 1977
Wisdom strengthens a wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Wisdom strengthens the wise more than ten mighty men who are in the city.

King James 2000 Bible
Wisdom strengthens the wise more than ten mighty men who are in the city.

American King James Version
Wisdom strengthens the wise more than ten mighty men which are in the city.

American Standard Version
Wisdom is a strength to the wise man more than ten rulers that are in a city.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Wisdom hath strengthened the wise more than ten princes of the city.

Darby Bible Translation
Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty [men] that are in a city.

English Revised Version
Wisdom is a strength to the wise man more than ten rulers which are in a city.

Webster's Bible Translation
Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty men who are in the city.

World English Bible
Wisdom is a strength to the wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.

Young's Literal Translation
The wisdom giveth strength to a wise man, more than wealth the rulers who have been in a city.
Study Bible
Limits of Human Wisdom
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. 20Indeed, there is not a righteous man on earth who continually does good and who never sins.…
Cross References
Proverbs 8:14
"Counsel is mine and sound wisdom; I am understanding, power is mine.

Proverbs 21:22
A wise man scales the city of the mighty And brings down the stronghold in which they trust.

Ecclesiastes 4:13
A poor yet wise lad is better than an old and foolish king who no longer knows how to receive instruction.

Ecclesiastes 7:12
For wisdom is protection just as money is protection, But the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the lives of its possessors.

Ecclesiastes 9:13
Also this I came to see as wisdom under the sun, and it impressed me.

Ecclesiastes 9:16
So I said, "Wisdom is better than strength." But the wisdom of the poor man is despised and his words are not heeded.
Treasury of Scripture

Wisdom strengthens the wise more than ten mighty men which are in the city.

Ecclesiastes 9:15-18 Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered …

2 Samuel 20:16-22 Then cried a wise woman out of the city, Hear, hear; say, I pray …

Proverbs 21:22 A wise man scales the city of the mighty, and casts down the strength …

Proverbs 24:5 A wise man is strong; yes, a man of knowledge increases strength.

Colossians 1:9-11 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease …

(19) Mighty men.--The word is translated "governor" Genesis 42:6, and so see Ecclesiastes 10:5; see also Ecclesiastes 8:8. The preacher returns to the topic of Ecclesiastes 7:12. Of the "For" in the next verse, only forced explanations have been given; the sentiment is Solomon's (1Kings 8:46).

Verse 19. - Wisdom strengtheneth the wise. The moderation enjoined is the only true wisdom, which, indeed, is the most powerful incentive and support. "Wisdom proves itself stronger" (as the verb is put intransitively) "to the wise man." Septuagint, βοηθήσει," will help;" Vulgate, confortuvit, "hath strengthened." The spiritual and moral force of the wisdom grounded upon the fear of God is here signified, and is all the more insisted upon to counteract any erroneous impression conveyed by the caution against over-wisdom in ver. 16 (see note on ver. 17, at the end). More than ten mighty men which are in the city. The number ten indicates completeness, containing in itself the whole arithmetical system, and used representatively for an indefinite multitude. Thus Job (Job 19:3) complains that his friends have reproached him ten times, and Elkanah asks his murmuring wife, "Am I not better to thee than ten sons?" (1 Samuel 1:8). Delitzsch thinks that some definite political arrangement is referred to, e.g., the dynasties placed by Persian kings over conquered countries; and Tyler notes that in the Mishna a city is defined to be a place containing ten men of leisure; and we know that ten men were required for the establishment of a synagogue in any locality. The same idea was present in the Angle-Saxon arrangement of tything and hundred. The number, however, is probably used indefinitely here as seven in the parallel passage of Ecclesiasticus (37:14), "A man's mind is sometime wont to tell him more than seven watchmen that sit above in a high tower." The sentence may be compared with Proverbs 10:15; Proverbs 21:22; Proverbs 24:5. The word rendered "mighty men" (shallitim) is not necessarily a military designation; it is translated "ruler" in Ecclesiastes 10:5, and "governor" in Genesis 42:6. The Septuagint here has Ἐξουσιάζοντας τοὺς ὄντας ἐν τῇ πόλει; the Vulgate, principes civitatis. The persons intended are not primarily men of valor in war, like David's heroes, but rulers of sagacity, prudent statesmen, whose moral force is far greater and more efficacious than any merely physical excellence (comp. Ecclesiastes 9:16). Wisdom strengtheneth the wise,.... Against such extremes as before mentioned; it is a guard about him, as well as a guide unto him; it is a defence unto him, as before observed, Ecclesiastes 7:12; and is better than strength of body, or weapons of war, Ecclesiastes 9:16; and a wise man does greater things by it than a strong man with them, and is safer with it than he can be by them. Some understand this of Christ, the Wisdom of God, without whom a good man can do nothing, but all things through him strengthening him; and who being a strong tower and place of refuge to him, he is safer in him than if he was in the strongest garrison, and under the protection of ever so large a number of valiant men: Christ, and grace from him, strengthen

more than ten mighty men which are in the city; that is, than many mighty men, or men of war, which guard a city; the city of Jerusalem, or any other. The Targum applies this to Joseph, and paraphrases it,

"the wisdom of Joseph the son of Jacob helped him to make him wiser than all his ten righteous brethren.'' 19. Hebrew, "The wisdom," that is, the true wisdom, religion (2Ti 3:15).

than ten mighty—that is, able and valiant generals (Ec 7:12; 9:13-18; Pr 21:22; 24:5). These "watchmen wake in vain, except the Lord keep the city" (Ps 127:1).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.
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