Ecclesiastes 11:2
New International Version
Invest in seven ventures, yes, in eight; you do not know what disaster may come upon the land.

New Living Translation
But divide your investments among many places, for you do not know what risks might lie ahead.

English Standard Version
Give a portion to seven, or even to eight, for you know not what disaster may happen on earth.

Berean Study Bible
Divide your portion among seven, or even eight, for you do not know what disaster may befall the land.

New American Standard Bible
Divide your portion to seven, or even to eight, for you do not know what misfortune may occur on the earth.

King James Bible
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

Christian Standard Bible
Give a portion to seven or even to eight, for you don't know what disaster may happen on earth.

Contemporary English Version
Share what you have with seven or eight others, because you never know when disaster may strike.

Good News Translation
Put your investments in several places--many places even--because you never know what kind of bad luck you are going to have in this world.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Give a portion to seven or even to eight, for you don't know what disaster may happen on earth.

International Standard Version
Apportion what you have into seven, or even eight parts, because you don't know what disaster might befall the land.

NET Bible
Divide your merchandise among seven or even eight investments, for you do not know what calamity may happen on earth.

New Heart English Bible
Give a portion to seven, yes, even to eight; for you do not know what evil will be on the earth.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Divide what you have into seven parts, or even into eight, because you don't know what disaster may happen on earth.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Divide a portion into seven, yea, even into eight; For thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

New American Standard 1977
Divide your portion to seven, or even to eight, for you do not know what misfortune may occur on the earth.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Give a portion to seven and even to eight, for thou dost not know what evil shall come upon the earth.

King James 2000 Bible
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for you know not what evil shall be upon the earth.

American King James Version
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for you know not what evil shall be on the earth.

American Standard Version
Give a portion to seven, yea, even unto eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil there shall be upon the earth.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight: for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

Darby Bible Translation
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

English Revised Version
Give a portion to seven, yea, even unto eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

Webster's Bible Translation
Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

World English Bible
Give a portion to seven, yes, even to eight; for you don't know what evil will be on the earth.

Young's Literal Translation
Give a portion to seven, and even to eight, For thou knowest not what evil is on the earth.
Study Bible
Cast Your Bread upon the Waters
1Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it again. 2Divide your portion among seven, or even eight, for you do not know what disaster may befall the land. 3If the clouds are full, they will pour out rain upon the earth; whether a tree falls to the south or the north, in the place where it falls, there it will lie.…
Cross References
Matthew 5:42
Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.

Luke 6:30
Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what is yours, do not demand it back.

1 Timothy 6:18
Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, and to be generous and ready to share,

1 Timothy 6:19
treasuring up for themselves a firm foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.

Psalm 112:9
He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor; his righteousness endures forever. His horn will be lifted high in honor.

Proverbs 19:17
Kindness to the poor is a loan to the LORD, and He will repay the lender.

Ecclesiastes 11:3
If the clouds are full, they will pour out rain upon the earth; whether a tree falls to the south or the north, in the place where it falls, there it will lie.

Ecclesiastes 11:8
So if a man lives many years, let him rejoice in them all; but let him remember the days of darkness, for they will be many. Everything to come is futile.

Ecclesiastes 12:1
Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of adversity come, and the years approach of which you will say, "I find no pleasure in them,"

Treasury of Scripture

Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for you know not what evil shall be on the earth.

a portion

Nehemiah 8:10
Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength.

Esther 9:19,22
Therefore the Jews of the villages, that dwelt in the unwalled towns, made the fourteenth day of the month Adar a day of gladness and feasting, and a good day, and of sending portions one to another…

Psalm 112:9
He hath dispersed, he hath given to the poor; his righteousness endureth for ever; his horn shall be exalted with honour.

seven

Job 5:19
He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee.

Proverbs 6:16
These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:

Micah 5:5
And this man shall be the peace, when the Assyrian shall come into our land: and when he shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him seven shepherds, and eight principal men.

for

Daniel 4:27
Wherefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable unto thee, and break off thy sins by righteousness, and thine iniquities by shewing mercy to the poor; if it may be a lengthening of thy tranquillity.

Acts 11:28-30
And there stood up one of them named Agabus, and signified by the spirit that there should be great dearth throughout all the world: which came to pass in the days of Claudius Caesar…

Galatians 6:1
Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.







Lexicon
Divide
תֶּן־ (ten-)
Verb - Qal - Imperative - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5414: To give, put, set

your portion
חֵ֥לֶק (ḥê·leq)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 2506: Portion, tract, territory

among seven,
לְשִׁבְעָ֖ה (lə·šiḇ·‘āh)
Preposition-l | Number - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 7651: Seven, seven times, a week, an indefinite number

or even
וְגַ֣ם (wə·ḡam)
Conjunctive waw | Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 1571: Assemblage, also, even, yea, though, both, and

eight,
לִשְׁמוֹנָ֑ה (liš·mō·w·nāh)
Preposition-l | Number - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 8083: A cardinal number, eight, eighth

for
כִּ֚י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 3588: A relative conjunction

you do not
לֹ֣א (lō)
Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's Hebrew 3808: Not, no

know
תֵדַ֔ע (ṯê·ḏa‘)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - second person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3045: To know

what
מַה־ (mah-)
Interrogative
Strong's Hebrew 4100: What?, what!, indefinitely what

disaster
רָעָ֖ה (rā·‘āh)
Adjective - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 7451: Bad, evil

may befall
יִּהְיֶ֥ה (yih·yeh)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1961: To fall out, come to pass, become, be

the land.
הָאָֽרֶץ׃ (hā·’ā·reṣ)
Article | Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 776: Earth, land
(2) To seven, and also to eight.--Quite similar forms of expression occur in Job 5:19; Proverbs 30:21; Amos 1:3; Micah 5:4. The numbers seven and eight are used indefinitely in the advice to multiply our modes of exertion, ignorant as we are which may miscarry.

Verse 2. - Give a portion to seven, and also to eight. This further explains, without any metaphor, the injunction of beneficence in ver. 1. Give portions of thy "bread" to any number of those who need. Delitzsch and others who interpret the passage of maritime enterprise would see in it a recommendation (like the proceeding of Jacob, Genesis 32:16, etc.) not to risk all at once, to divide one's ventures into various ships. But the expression in the text is merely a mode of enjoining unlimited benevolence. The numbers are purposely indefinite. Instances of this form of speech are common enough (see Proverbs 6:16; Proverbs 30:7-9, etc.; Amos 1:3. etc.; Micah 5:5; Ecclus. 23:16 Ecclus. 26:5, 28). Wordsworth notes that the word for "portion" (chelek) is that used specially for the portion of the Levites (Numbers 18:20); and in accordance with his view of the date of the book, finds here an injunction not to confine one's offerings to the Levites of Judah, but to extend them to the refugees who come from Israel. For thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth. A time may come when you yourself may need help; the power of giving may no longer be yours; therefore make friends now who may be your comfort in distress. So the Lord urges, "Make to yourselves friends by means of the mammon of unrighteousness" (Luke 16:9). It seems a low motive on which to base charitable actions; but men act on such secondary motives every day, and the moralist cannot ignore them. In the Book of Proverbs secondary and worldly motives are largely urged as useful in the conduct of life (see the Introduction to Proverbs, pp. 8, 9.). St. Paul reminds us that we some day may need a brother's help (Galatians 6:1). The Fathers have spiritualized the passage, so as to make it of Christian application, far away indeed from Koheleth's thought. Thus St. Gregory: "By the number seven is understood the whole of this temporal condition... this is shown more plainly when the number eight is mentioned after it. For when another number besides follows after seven, it is set forth by this very addition, that this temporal state is brought to an end and closed by eternity. For by the number seven Solomon expressed the present time, which is passed by periods of seven days. But by the number eight he designated eternal life, which the Lord made known to us by his resurrection. For he rose in truth on the Lord's day, which, as following the seventh day, i.e. the sabbath, is found to be the eighth from the creation. But it is well said, 'Give portions,' etc. As if it were plainly said, 'So dispense temporal goods, as not to forget to desire those that are eternal. For thou oughtest to provide for the future by well-doing, who knowest not what tribulation succeeds from the future judgment'" ('Moral,' 35:17, Oxford transl.). 11:1-6 Solomon presses the rich to do good to others. Give freely, though it may seem thrown away and lost. Give to many. Excuse not thyself with the good thou hast done, from the good thou hast further to do. It is not lost, but well laid out. We have reason to expect evil, for we are born to trouble; it is wisdom to do good in the day of prosperity. Riches cannot profit us, if we do not benefit others. Every man must labour to be a blessing to that place where the providence of God casts him. Wherever we are, we may find good work to do, if we have but hearts to do it. If we magnify every little difficulty, start objections, and fancy hardships, we shall never go on, much less go through with our work. Winds and clouds of tribulation are, in God's hands, designed to try us. God's work shall agree with his word, whether we see it or not. And we may well trust God to provide for us, without our anxious, disquieting cares. Be not weary in well-doing, for in due season, in God's time, you shall reap, Ga 6:9.
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