Ecclesiastes 11:6
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
In the morning sow your seed, and at evening withhold not your hand, for you do not know which will prosper, this or that, or whether both alike will be good.

King James Bible
In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good.

American Standard Version
In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thy hand; for thou knowest not which shall prosper, whether this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good.

Douay-Rheims Bible
In the morning sow thy seed, and In the evening let not thy hand cease: for thou knowest not which may rather spring up, this or that: and if both together, it shall be the better.

English Revised Version
In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not which shall prosper, whether this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good.

Webster's Bible Translation
In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thy hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good.

Ecclesiastes 11:6 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

"Curse not the king even in thy thought; and in thy bed-chamber curse not the rich; for the birds of the air carry away the sound, and the winged creature telleth the matter." In the Books of Daniel and Chronicles, מדּע, in the sense of γνῶσις, is a synon. of השׂכּל and חכמה; here it is rightly translated by the lxx by συνείδησις; it does not correspond with the moral-religious idea of conscience, but yet it touches it, for it designates the quiet, inner consciousness (Psychol. p. 134) which judges according to moral criteria: even (gam, as e.g., Deuteronomy 23:3) in the inner region of his thoughts

(Note: Hengst., not finding the transition from scientia to conscientia natural, gives, after Hartmann, the meaning of "study-chamber" to the word מדּע; but neither the Heb. nor the Aram. has this meaning, although Psalm 68:13 Targ. touches it.)

one must not curse the king (cf. Ecclesiastes 7:4.) nor the rich (which here, as at 6b, without distinction of the aristocracy of wealth and of birth, signifies those who are placed in a high princely position, and have wealth, the nervus rerum, at their disposal) in his bed-chamber, the innermost room of the house, where one thinks himself free from treachery, and thus may utter whatever he thinks without concealment (2 Kings 6:12): for the birds of the air may carry forth or bring out (Lat. deferrent, whence delator) that which is rumoured, and the possessor of a pair of wings (cf. Proverbs 1:17), after the Chethı̂b (whose ה of the art. is unnecessarily erased by the Kerı̂,

(Note: הכּן with unpointed He, because it is not read in the Kerı̂; similarly החנית (1 Samuel 26:22). Cf. Mas. fin. f. 22, and Ochla veochla, No. 166.)

as at Ecclesiastes 3:6, Ecclesiastes 3:10): the possessor of wings (double-winged), shall further tell the matter. As to its meaning, it is the same as the proverb quoted by the Midrash: "walls have ears."

(Note: Vid., Tendlau's Sprichwrter, No. 861.)

Geier thinks of the swallows which helped to the discovery of Bessus, the murderer of his father, and the cranes which betrayed the murderer of Ibycus, as comparisons approaching that which is here said. There would certainly be no hyperbole if the author thought of carrier-pigeons (Paxton, Kitto) in the service of espionage. But the reason for the warning is hyperbolical, like an hundred others in all languages:

"Aures fert paries, oculos nemus: ergo cavere

Debet qui loquitur, ne possint verba nocere."

Ecclesiastes 11:6 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

sow

Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave...

Isaiah 55:10 For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and returns not thither, but waters the earth, and makes it bring forth and bud...

Hosea 10:12 Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD...

Mark 4:26-29 And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground...

John 4:36-38 And he that reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit to life eternal: that both he that sows and he that reaps may rejoice together...

2 Corinthians 9:6 But this I say, He which sows sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which sows bountifully shall reap also bountifully.

2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and doctrine.

thou knowest

Ecclesiastes 9:1 For all this I considered in my heart even to declare all this, that the righteous, and the wise, and their works...

Haggai 1:6-11 You have sown much, and bring in little; you eat, but you have not enough; you drink, but you are not filled with drink...

Haggai 2:17-19 I smote you with blasting and with mildew and with hail in all the labors of your hands; yet you turned not to me, said the LORD...

Zechariah 8:11,12 But now I will not be to the residue of this people as in the former days, said the LORD of hosts...

Acts 11:20,21 And some of them were men of Cyprus and Cyrene, which, when they were come to Antioch, spoke to the Grecians, preaching the LORD Jesus...

1 Corinthians 3:5-7 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom you believed, even as the Lord gave to every man...

2 Corinthians 9:10,11 Now he that ministers seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown...

prosper

Cross References
Ecclesiastes 9:10
Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might, for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going.

Ecclesiastes 11:7
Light is sweet, and it is pleasant for the eyes to see the sun.

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