English Standard Version
I searched with my heart how to cheer my body with wine—my heart still guiding me with wisdom—and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was good for the children of man to do under heaven during the few days of their life.
King James Bible
I sought in mine heart to give myself unto wine, yet acquainting mine heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was that good for the sons of men, which they should do under the heaven all the days of their life.
American Standard Version
I searched in my heart how to cheer my flesh with wine, my heart yet guiding me with wisdom, and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what it was good for the sons of men that they should do under heaven all the days of their life.
I thought in my heart, to withdraw my flesh from wine, that I might turn my mind to wisdom, and might avoid folly, till I might see what was profitable for the children of men: and what they ought to do under the sun, all the days of their life.
English Revised Version
I searched in mine heart how to cheer my flesh with wine, mine heart yet guiding me with wisdom, and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what it was good for the sons of men that they should do under the heaven all the days of their life.
Webster's Bible Translation
I sought in my heart, to give myself to wine, yet acquainting my heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was that good for the sons of men, which they should do under the heaven all the days of their life.
Ecclesiastes 2:3 Parallel
CommentaryKeil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament
The judgment contained in the words, "vanity and a striving after the wind," is confirmed: "That which is crooked cannot become straight; and a deficit cannot be numerable," i.e., cannot be taken into account (thus Theod., after the Syro-Hex.), as if as much were present as is actually wanting; for, according to the proverb, "Where there is nothing, nothing further is to be counted." Hitzig thinks, by that which is crooked and wanting, according to Ecclesiastes 7:13, of the divine order of the world: that which is unjust in it, man cannot alter; its wants he cannot complete. But the preceding statement refers only to labour under the sun, and to philosophical research and observation directed thereto. This places before the eyes of the observer irregularities and wants, brings such irregularities and wants to his consciousness, - which are certainly partly brought about and destined by God, but for the most part are due to the transgressions of man himself, - and what avails the observer the discovery and investigation? - he has only lamentation over it, for with all his wisdom he can bring no help. Instead of לתקן (vid., under תקן), לתקן was to be expected. However, the old language also formed intransitive infinitives with transitive modification of the final vowels, e.g., יבשׁ, etc. (cf. ישׁון, Ecclesiastes 5:11).
Having now gained such a result in his investigation and research by means of wisdom, he reaches the conclusion that wisdom itself is nothing.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
give myself unto wine or draw myself with wine
and to lay
But the vine said to them, 'Shall I leave my wine that cheers God and men and go hold sway over the trees?'
and wine to gladden the heart of man, oil to make his face shine and bread to strengthen man's heart.
There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil. This also, I saw, is from the hand of God,
I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live;
also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil--this is God's gift to man.
Behold, what I have seen to be good and fitting is to eat and drink and find enjoyment in all the toil with which one toils under the sun the few days of his life that God has given him, for this is his lot.
For who knows what is good for man while he lives the few days of his vain life, which he passes like a shadow? For who can tell man what will be after him under the sun?
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ESV Text Edition: 2016. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.