Ecclesiastes 9:16
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
But I say that wisdom is better than might, though the poor man’s wisdom is despised and his words are not heard.

King James Bible
Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.

American Standard Version
Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And I said that wisdom is better than strength: how then is the wisdom of the poor man slighted, and his words not heard?

English Revised Version
Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.

Webster's Bible Translation
Then said I, wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.

Ecclesiastes 9:16 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The author, however, recommends no continual dolce far niente, no idle, useless sluggard-life devoted to pleasure, but he gives to his exhortation to joy the converse side: "All that thy hand may reach (i.e., what thou canst accomplish and is possible to thee, 1 Samuel 10:7; Leviticus 12:8) to accomplish it with thy might, that do." The accentuation is ingenious. If the author meant: That do with all might (Jerome: instanter operare), then he would have said bechol-kohhacha (Genesis 31:6). As the words lie before us, they call on him who is addressed to come not short in his work of any possibility according to the measure of his strength, thus to a work straining his capacity to the uttermost. The reason for the call, 10b, turns back to the clause from which it was inferred: in Hades, whither thou must go (iturus es), there is no work, and reckoning (vid., Ecclesiastes 7:25), and knowledge (דּעתו)

(Note: Not ודעת, because the word has the conjunctive, not the disjunctive accent, vid., under Psalm 55:10. The punctuation, as we have already several times remarked, is not consistent in this; cf. דּעתו, Ecclesiastes 2:26, and וערב, Psalm 65:9, both of which are contrary to the rule (vid., Baer in Abulwald's Rikma, p. 119, note 2).)

and no wisdom. Practice and theory have then an end. Thus: Enjoy, but not without working, ere the night cometh when no man can work. Thus spake Jesus (John 9:4), but in a different sense indeed from Koheleth. The night which He meant is the termination of this present life, which for Him, as for every man, has its particular work, which is either accomplished within the limits of this life, or is not accomplished at all.

Ecclesiastes 9:16 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

wisdom

Ecclesiastes 9:18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroys much good.

Ecclesiastes 7:19 Wisdom strengthens the wise more than ten mighty men which are in the city.

Proverbs 21:22 A wise man scales the city of the mighty, and casts down the strength of the confidence thereof.

Proverbs 24:5 A wise man is strong; yes, a man of knowledge increases strength.

the poor

Proverbs 10:15 The rich man's wealth is his strong city: the destruction of the poor is their poverty.

Mark 6:2,3 And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying...

John 7:47-49 Then answered them the Pharisees, Are you also deceived...

John 9:24-34 Then again called they the man that was blind, and said to him, Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner...

1 Corinthians 1:26-29 For you see your calling, brothers, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called...

James 2:2-6 For if there come to your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment...

Cross References
Proverbs 8:14
I have counsel and sound wisdom; I have insight; I have strength.

Proverbs 21:22
A wise man scales the city of the mighty and brings down the stronghold in which they trust.

Ecclesiastes 7:12
For the protection of wisdom is like the protection of money, and the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the life of him who has it.

Ecclesiastes 7:19
Wisdom gives strength to the wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.

Ecclesiastes 9:18
Wisdom is better than weapons of war, but one sinner destroys much good.

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