Ecclesiastes 9:11
Parallel Verses
New International Version
I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.

King James Bible
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.

Darby Bible Translation
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to the intelligent, nor yet favour to men of knowledge; but time and chance happeneth to them all.

World English Bible
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happen to them all.

Young's Literal Translation
I have turned so as to see under the sun, that not to the swift is the race, nor to the mighty the battle, nor even to the wise bread, nor even to the intelligent wealth, nor even to the skilful grace, for time and chance happen with them all.

Ecclesiastes 9:11 Parallel
Commentary
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

The race is not to the swift - It is not by swiftness, nor by strength and valor, that races are gained and battles won. God causes the lame often to take the prey, the prize; and so works that the weak overthrow the strong; therefore, no man should confide in himself. All things are under the government, and at the disposal of God.

But time and chance - עת eth, time or opportunity, and פגע pega, incident or occurrence: -

Happeneth to them all - Every man has what may be called time and space to act in, and opportunity to do a particular work. But in this Time and Opportunity there is Incident, what may fall in; and Occurrence, what may meet and frustrate an attempt. These things should be wisely weighed, and seriously balanced; for those four things belong to every human action. While you have Time, seek an Opportunity to do what is right; but calculate on hinderances and oppositions, because time and opportunity have their Incident and Occurrence. Coverdale translates this verse well: "I sawe that in runnynge, it helpeth not to be swift; in batayll, it helpeth not to be stronge; to fedynge, it helpeth not to be wyse; to riches, it helpeth not to be sutyll; to be had in favoure, it helpeth not to be connynge; but that all lyeth in time and fortune."

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

returned

Ecclesiastes 2:12 And I turned myself to behold wisdom, and madness, and folly: for what can the man do that comes after the king?...

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

Malachi 3:18 Then shall you return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serves God and him that serves him not.

that the race

1 Samuel 17:50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him...

2 Samuel 2:18-23 And there were three sons of Zeruiah there, Joab, and Abishai, and Asahel: and Asahel was as light of foot as a wild roe...

2 Samuel 17:14,23 And Absalom and all the men of Israel said, The counsel of Hushai the Archite is better than the counsel of Ahithophel...

Psalm 33:16,17 There is no king saved by the multitude of an host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength...

Psalm 73:6,7 Therefore pride compasses them about as a chain; violence covers them as a garment...

Psalm 147:10,11 He delights not in the strength of the horse: he takes not pleasure in the legs of a man...

Jeremiah 9:23 Thus said the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might...

Jeremiah 46:6 Let not the swift flee away, nor the mighty man escape; they shall stumble, and fall toward the north by the river Euphrates.

Amos 2:14-16 Therefore the flight shall perish from the swift, and the strong shall not strengthen his force...

but

Ecclesiastes 2:14,15 The wise man's eyes are in his head; but the fool walks in darkness: and I myself perceived also that one event happens to them all...

Ecclesiastes 3:14-17 I know that, whatever God does, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God does it...

Ecclesiastes 7:13 Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight, which he has made crooked?

1 Samuel 2:3-10 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogance come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge...

Job 5:11-14 To set up on high those that be low; that those which mourn may be exalted to safety...

Job 34:29 When he gives quietness, who then can make trouble? and when he hides his face, who then can behold him?...

Proverbs 21:30,31 There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the LORD...

Lamentations 3:37,38 Who is he that said, and it comes to pass, when the Lord commands it not...

Daniel 4:35 And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he does according to his will in the army of heaven...

Ephesians 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance...

Library
The Lapse of Time.
"Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest."--Eccles. ix. 10. Solomon's advice that we should do whatever our hand findeth to do with our might, naturally directs our thoughts to that great work in which all others are included, which will outlive all other works, and for which alone we really are placed here below--the salvation of our souls. And the consideration of this great work,
John Henry Newman—Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. VII

Annunciation to Joseph of the Birth of Jesus.
(at Nazareth, b.c. 5.) ^A Matt. I. 18-25. ^a 18 Now the birth [The birth of Jesus is to handled with reverential awe. We are not to probe into its mysteries with presumptuous curiosity. The birth of common persons is mysterious enough (Eccl. ix. 5; Ps. cxxxix. 13-16), and we do not well, therefore, if we seek to be wise above what is written as to the birth of the Son of God] of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When his mother Mary had been betrothed [The Jews were usually betrothed ten or twelve months
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

Ephesus
While Apollos was preaching at Corinth, Paul fulfilled his promise to return to Ephesus. He had made a brief visit to Jerusalem and had spent some time at Antioch, the scene of his early labors. Thence he traveled through Asia Minor, "over all the country of Galatia and Phrygia" (Acts 18:23), visiting the churches which he himself had established, and strengthening the faith of the believers. In the time of the apostles the western portion of Asia Minor was known as the Roman province of Asia. Ephesus,
Ellen Gould White—The Acts of the Apostles

Solomon's Temple Spiritualized
or, Gospel Light Fetched out of the Temple at Jerusalem, to Let us More Easily into the Glory of New Testament Truths. 'Thou son of man, shew the house to the house of Isreal;--shew them the form of the house, and the fashion thereof, and the goings out hereof, and the comings in thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the laws thereof.'--Ezekiel 43:10, 11 London: Printed for, and sold by George Larkin, at the Two Swans without Bishopgate,
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

Cross References
Deuteronomy 8:17
You may say to yourself, "My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me."

Deuteronomy 8:18
But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.

1 Samuel 6:9
but keep watching it. If it goes up to its own territory, toward Beth Shemesh, then the LORD has brought this great disaster on us. But if it does not, then we will know that it was not his hand that struck us but that it happened to us by chance."

2 Chronicles 20:15
He said: "Listen, King Jehoshaphat and all who live in Judah and Jerusalem! This is what the LORD says to you: 'Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God's.

Psalm 76:5
The valiant lie plundered, they sleep their last sleep; not one of the warriors can lift his hands.

Proverbs 1:5
let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance--

Ecclesiastes 9:2
All share a common destiny--the righteous and the wicked, the good and the bad, the clean and the unclean, those who offer sacrifices and those who do not. As it is with the good, so with the sinful; as it is with those who take oaths, so with those who are afraid to take them.

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