Ecclesiastes 2:15
New International Version
Then I said to myself, "The fate of the fool will overtake me also. What then do I gain by being wise?" I said to myself, "This too is meaningless."

New Living Translation
Both will die. So I said to myself, “Since I will end up the same as the fool, what’s the value of all my wisdom? This is all so meaningless!”

English Standard Version
Then I said in my heart, “What happens to the fool will happen to me also. Why then have I been so very wise?” And I said in my heart that this also is vanity.

Berean Study Bible
So I said to myself, “The fate of the fool will also befall me. What then have I gained by being wise?” And I said to myself that this too is futile.

King James Bible
Then said I in my heart, As it happeneth to the fool, so it happeneth even to me; and why was I then more wise? Then I said in my heart, that this also is vanity.

New King James Version
So I said in my heart, “As it happens to the fool, It also happens to me, And why was I then more wise?” Then I said in my heart, “This also is vanity.”

New American Standard Bible
Then I said to myself, “As is the fate of the fool, it will also happen to me. Why then have I been extremely wise?” So I said to myself, “This too is futility.”

NASB 1995
Then I said to myself, "As is the fate of the fool, it will also befall me. Why then have I been extremely wise?" So I said to myself, "This too is vanity."

NASB 1977
Then I said to myself, “As is the fate of the fool, it will also befall me. Why then have I been extremely wise?” So I said to myself, “This too is vanity.”

Amplified Bible
Then I said to myself, “As it happens to the fool, so death will also happen to me. What use is it then for me to be extremely wise?” Then I said in my heart, “This too is vanity (meaningless).”

Christian Standard Bible
So I said to myself, “What happens to the fool will also happen to me. Why then have I been overly wise? ” And I said to myself that this is also futile.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
So I said to myself, "What happens to the fool will also happen to me. Why then have I been overly wise?" And I said to myself that this is also futile.

American Standard Version
Then said I in my heart, As it happeneth to the fool, so will it happen even to me; and why was I then more wise? Then said I in my heart, that this also is vanity.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
I said in my heart: "surely, according to the misfortune of a fool, it will happen also to me, and why am I more wise? And I said in my heart: "this also is futility!"

Brenton Septuagint Translation
And I said in my heart, As the event of the fool is, so shall it be to me, even to me: and to what purpose have I gained wisdom? I said moreover in my heart, This is also vanity, because the fool speaks of his abundance.

Contemporary English Version
Finally, I said to myself, "Being wise got me nowhere! The same thing will happen to me that happens to fools. Nothing makes sense.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And I said in my heart: If the death of the fool and mine shall be one, what doth it avail me, that I have applied myself more to the study of wisdom? And speaking with my own mind, I perceived that this also was vanity.

English Revised Version
Then said I in my heart, As it happeneth to the fool, so will it happen even to me; and why was I then more wise? Then I said in my heart, that this also was vanity.

Good News Translation
I thought to myself, "What happens to fools is going to happen to me, too. So what have I gained from being so wise?" "Nothing," I answered, "not a thing."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I thought to myself, "[If] the destiny that waits for the fool waits for me as well, then what is the advantage in being wise?" So I thought that even this is pointless.

International Standard Version
Then I told myself, "Whatever happens to the fool will happen also to me. Therefore what's the point in being so wise?" And I told myself that this also is pointless.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Then said I in my heart: 'As it happeneth to the fool, so will it happen even to me; and why was I then more wise?' Then I said in my heart, that this also is vanity.

Literal Standard Version
and I said in my heart, “As it happens with the fool, it happens also with me, and why am I then more wise?” And I spoke in my heart, that also this [is] vanity:

NET Bible
So I thought to myself, "The fate of the fool will happen even to me! Then what did I gain by becoming so excessively wise?" So I lamented to myself, "The benefits of wisdom are ultimately meaningless!"

New Heart English Bible
Then said I in my heart, "As it happens to the fool, so will it happen even to me; and why was I then more wise?" Then said I in my heart that this also is vanity.

World English Bible
Then I said in my heart, "As it happens to the fool, so will it happen even to me; and why was I then more wise?" Then I said in my heart that this also is vanity.

Young's Literal Translation
and I said in my heart, 'As it happeneth with the fool, it happeneth also with me, and why am I then more wise?' And I spake in my heart, that also this is vanity:

Additional Translations ...
Context
The Wise and the Foolish
14The wise man has eyes in his head, but the fool walks in darkness. Yet I also came to realize that one fate overcomes them both. 15So I said to myself, “The fate of the fool will also befall me. What then have I gained by being wise?” And I said to myself that this too is futile. 16For there is no lasting remembrance of the wise, just as with the fool, seeing that both will be forgotten in the days to come. Alas, the wise man will die just like the fool!…

Cross References
Ecclesiastes 2:16
For there is no lasting remembrance of the wise, just as with the fool, seeing that both will be forgotten in the days to come. Alas, the wise man will die just like the fool!

Ecclesiastes 6:8
What advantage, then, has the wise man over the fool? What gain comes to the poor man who knows how to conduct himself before others?

Ecclesiastes 6:11
For the more words, the more futility--and how does that profit anyone?


Treasury of Scripture

Then said I in my heart, As it happens to the fool, so it happens even to me; and why was I then more wise? Then I said in my heart, that this also is vanity.

even to me

Ecclesiastes 1:16,18
I communed with mine own heart, saying, Lo, I am come to great estate, and have gotten more wisdom than all they that have been before me in Jerusalem: yea, my heart had great experience of wisdom and knowledge…

1 Kings 3:12
Behold, I have done according to thy words: lo, I have given thee a wise and an understanding heart; so that there was none like thee before thee, neither after thee shall any arise like unto thee.

then

Ecclesiastes 1:2,14
Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity…









Verse 15. - Then (and) said I in my heart (Ecclesiastes 1:16), As it happeneth to the fool, so it happeneth even to me. He applies the general statement of ver. 14 to his own case. The end that overtakes the fool will ere long overtake him; and he proceeds, Why was I then more wise? "Then" (אז), may be understood either logically, i.e. in this case, since such is the fate of wise and foolish; or temporally, at the hour of death regarded as past. He puts the question - To what end, with what design, has he been so excessively wise, or, as it may be, wise overmuch (Ecclesiastes 7:16)? His wisdom has, as it were, recoiled upon himself - it taught him much, but not content; it made him keen-sighted in seeing the emptiness of human things, but it satisfied not his cravings. Then I said in my heart, that this also is vanity. This similarity of fate for philosopher and fool makes life vain and worthless; or rather, the meaning may be, if the superiority of wisdom over folly conduces to no other end than this, that superiority is a vanity. The LXX. has glossed the passage, followed herein by the Syriac, "Moreover, I spake in my heart that indeed this is also vanity, because the fool speaks out of his abundance" - ver. 16 giving the substance of the fool's thoughts. Vulgate, Locutusque cum mente mea, animadverti quod hoc quoque esset vanitas. Our Hebrew text does not confirm this interpretation or addition.

Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
So I
אֲנִ֜י (’ă·nî)
Pronoun - first person common singular
Strong's 589: I

said
וְאָמַ֨רְתִּֽי (wə·’ā·mar·tî)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Conjunctive perfect - first person common singular
Strong's 559: To utter, say

to myself,
בְּלִבִּ֗י (bə·lib·bî)
Preposition-b | Noun - masculine singular construct | first person common singular
Strong's 3820: The heart, the feelings, the will, the intellect, centre

“The fate
כְּמִקְרֵ֤ה (kə·miq·rêh)
Preposition-k | Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's 4745: Something met with, an accident, fortune

of the fool
הַכְּסִיל֙ (hak·kə·sîl)
Article | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 3684: Stupid fellow, dullard, fool

will also
גַּם־ (gam-)
Conjunction
Strong's 1571: Assemblage, also, even, yea, though, both, and

befall me.
יִקְרֵ֔נִי (yiq·rê·nî)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular | first person common singular
Strong's 7136: To light upon, to bring about, to impose timbers

What
וְלָ֧מָּה (wə·lām·māh)
Conjunctive waw | Interrogative
Strong's 4100: What?, what!, indefinitely what

then
אָ֣ז (’āz)
Adverb
Strong's 227: At that time, place, therefore

have I
אֲנִ֣י (’ă·nî)
Pronoun - first person common singular
Strong's 589: I

gained
יוֹתֵ֑ר (yō·w·ṯêr)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 3148: Superiority, advantage, excess

by being wise?”
חָכַ֛מְתִּי (ḥā·ḵam·tî)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - first person common singular
Strong's 2449: To be wise

And I said
וְדִבַּ֣רְתִּי (wə·ḏib·bar·tî)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Piel - Conjunctive perfect - first person common singular
Strong's 1696: To arrange, to speak, to subdue

to myself
בְלִבִּ֔י (ḇə·lib·bî)
Preposition-b | Noun - masculine singular construct | first person common singular
Strong's 3820: The heart, the feelings, the will, the intellect, centre

that this
זֶ֖ה (zeh)
Pronoun - masculine singular
Strong's 2088: This, that

too
שֶׁגַּם־ (šeg·gam-)
Pronoun - relative | Conjunction
Strong's 1571: Assemblage, also, even, yea, though, both, and

is futile.
הָֽבֶל׃ (hā·ḇel)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 1892: Emptiness, vanity, transitory, unsatisfactory


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