Ecclesiastes 5:8
Parallel Verses
New International Version
If you see the poor oppressed in a district, and justice and rights denied, do not be surprised at such things; for one official is eyed by a higher one, and over them both are others higher still.

King James Bible
If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they.

Darby Bible Translation
If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter; for a higher than the high is watching, and there are higher than they.

World English Bible
If you see the oppression of the poor, and the violent taking away of justice and righteousness in a district, don't marvel at the matter: for one official is eyed by a higher one; and there are officials over them.

Young's Literal Translation
If oppression of the poor, and violent taking away of judgment and righteousness thou seest in a province, do not marvel at the matter, for a higher than the high is observing, and high ones are over them.

Ecclesiastes 5:8 Parallel
Commentary
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

If thou seest the oppression of the poor - For this was a frequent case under all governments; and especially in the provinces or colonies which being far from the seat of government, were generally oppressed by the sovereign's deputies.

Marvel not at the matter - החפץ hachephets, the will, i.e., of God; which permits such evils to take place; for all things shall work together for good to them that love him.

"Marvel not

Ye righteous, if his dispensations here

Unequal seem. What, though disorders reign?

He still presides, and with unerring hand

Directs the vast machine. His wisdom can

From discord harmony produce; and make

Even vice itself subservient to his ends."

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

thou seest

Ecclesiastes 3:16 And moreover I saw under the sun the place of judgment, that wickedness was there; and the place of righteousness...

Ecclesiastes 4:1 So I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are done under the sun: and behold the tears of such as were oppressed...

Psalm 12:5 For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, said the LORD...

Psalm 55:9 Destroy, O Lord, and divide their tongues: for I have seen violence and strife in the city.

Psalm 58:11 So that a man shall say, Truly there is a reward for the righteous: truly he is a God that judges in the earth.

Proverbs 8:17 I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.

Habakkuk 1:2,3,13 O LORD, how long shall I cry, and you will not hear! even cry out to you of violence, and you will not save!...

marvel

Zechariah 8:6 Thus said the LORD of hosts; If it be marvelous in the eyes of the remnant of this people in these days...

1 John 3:13 Marvel not, my brothers, if the world hate you.

Revelation 17:6,7 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her...

matter

Isaiah 10:5-7,12 O Assyrian, the rod of my anger, and the staff in their hand is my indignation...

Isaiah 46:10,11 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand...

Habakkuk 1:12 Are you not from everlasting, O LORD my God, my Holy One? we shall not die. O LORD, you have ordained them for judgment; and...

Acts 4:27,28 For of a truth against your holy child Jesus, whom you have anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles...

Romans 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!

for

Isaiah 57:15 For thus said the high and lofty One that inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place...

Luke 1:32,35,76 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give to him the throne of his father David...

regardeth

1 Kings 21:19,20 And you shall speak to him, saying, Thus said the LORD, Have you killed, and also taken possession? And you shall speak to him, saying...

Job 20:19-29 Because he has oppressed and has forsaken the poor; because he has violently taken away an house which he built not...

Job 27:8-23 For what is the hope of the hypocrite, though he has gained, when God takes away his soul...

Psalm 10:17,18 LORD, you have heard the desire of the humble: you will prepare their heart, you will cause your ear to hear...

Psalm 12:5 For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, said the LORD...

Psalm 58:10,11 The righteous shall rejoice when he sees the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked...

Psalm 82:1 God stands in the congregation of the mighty; he judges among the gods.

Psalm 83:18 That men may know that you, whose name alone is JEHOVAH, are the most high over all the earth.

Psalm 140:11,12 Let not an evil speaker be established in the earth: evil shall hunt the violent man to overthrow him...

Isaiah 3:15 What mean you that you beat my people to pieces, and grind the faces of the poor? said the Lord GOD of hosts.

Isaiah 6:2-6,12 Above it stood the seraphim: each one had six wings; with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet...

Isaiah 8:4-7 For before the child shall have knowledge to cry, My father, and my mother...

Micah 2:1-3,9 Woe to them that devise iniquity, and work evil on their beds! when the morning is light, they practice it...

Micah 3:1-4,9-12 And I said, Hear, I pray you, O heads of Jacob, and you princes of the house of Israel; Is it not for you to know judgment...

Micah 6:10-13 Are there yet the treasures of wickedness in the house of the wicked, and the scant measure that is abominable...

Zechariah 7:9-13 Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and show mercy and compassions every man to his brother...

Malachi 3:5 And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers...

James 2:13 For he shall have judgment without mercy, that has showed no mercy; and mercy rejoices against judgment.

James 5:2-7 Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth-eaten...

higher than they

1 Chronicles 21:15,16 And God sent an angel to Jerusalem to destroy it: and as he was destroying, the LORD beheld, and he repented him of the evil...

Psalm 95:3 For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.

Isaiah 37:36 Then the angel of the LORD went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and fourscore and five thousand...

Matthew 13:41,42 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend...

Acts 12:7-10,23 And, behold, the angel of the Lord came on him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up...

Library
Naked or Clothed?
'As he came forth of his mother's womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand.'--ECCLES. v. 15. '... Their works do follow them.'--REV. xiv. 13. It is to be observed that these two sharply contrasted texts do not refer to the same persons. The former is spoken of a rich worldling, the latter of 'the dead who die in the Lord.' The unrelieved gloom of the one is as a dark background against which the triumphant assurance of
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Literature.
i. editions of chrysostom's works. S. Joannis Chrysostomi, archiepiscopi Constantinopolitani, Opera omnia quæ exstant vel quæ ejus nomine circumferuntur, ad mss. codices Gallicos, Vaticanos, Anglicos, Germanicosque castigata, etc. Opera et studio D.Bernardi de Montfaucon, monachi ordinis S. Benedicti e congregatione S. Mauri, opem ferentibus aliis ex codem sodalitio, monachis. Greek and Latin, Paris, 1718-'38, in 13 vols., fol. This is the best edition, and the result of about twenty
St. Chrysostom—On the Priesthood

Ecclesiastes
It is not surprising that the book of Ecclesiastes had a struggle to maintain its place in the canon, and it was probably only its reputed Solomonic authorship and the last two verses of the book that permanently secured its position at the synod of Jamnia in 90 A.D. The Jewish scholars of the first century A.D. were struck by the manner in which it contradicted itself: e.g., "I praised the dead more than the living," iv. 2, "A living dog is better than a dead lion," ix. 4; but they were still more
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

Cross References
1 Peter 4:12
Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.

Proverbs 22:16
One who oppresses the poor to increase his wealth and one who gives gifts to the rich--both come to poverty.

Proverbs 24:12
If you say, "But we knew nothing about this," does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?

Ecclesiastes 3:16
And I saw something else under the sun: In the place of judgment--wickedness was there, in the place of justice--wickedness was there.

Ecclesiastes 4:1
Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun: I saw the tears of the oppressed-- and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors-- and they have no comforter.

Ecclesiastes 5:9
The increase from the land is taken by all; the king himself profits from the fields.

Ecclesiastes 7:7
Extortion turns a wise person into a fool, and a bribe corrupts the heart.

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