Ecclesiastes 12:3
Parallel Verses
New International Version
when the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men stoop, when the grinders cease because they are few, and those looking through the windows grow dim;

King James Bible
In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look out of the windows be darkened,

Darby Bible Translation
in the day when the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look out of the windows are darkened,

World English Bible
in the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those who look out of the windows are darkened,

Young's Literal Translation
In the day that keepers of the house tremble, And men of strength have bowed themselves, And grinders have ceased, because they have become few. And those looking out at the windows have become dim,

Ecclesiastes 12:3 Parallel
Commentary
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

In the day when the keepers of the house - The Body of man is here compared to a House: - mark the metaphors and their propriety.

1. The keepers shall tremble - the hands become paralytic, as is constantly the case, less or more, in old age.

2. The strong men shall bow - The legs become feeble, and unable to support the weight of the body.

3. The grinders cease because they are few - The teeth decayed and mostly lost; the few that remain being incapable of properly masticating hard substances or animal food. And so they cease; for soft or pulpy substances, which are requisite then, require little or no mastication; and these aliments become their ordinary food.

4. Those that look out of the windows - The optic nerves, which receive impressions, through the medium of the different humours of the eye, from surrounding objects - they are darkened; the humours becoming thick, flat, and turbid, they are no longer capable of transmitting those images in that clear, distinct manner, as formerly. There may be an allusion here to the pupil of the eye. Look into it, and you will see your own image in extreme minature looking out upon you; and hence it has its name pupillus, a little child, from pupus, a baby, a doll; because the image in the eye resembles such. The optic nerve being seated at the bottom of the eye, has the images of surrounding objects painted upon it; it looks out through the different humors. The different membranes and humours which compose the eye, and serve for vision, are, the tunica conjunctiva, the tunica sclerotica, the cornea, the iris, the pupil, the choroides, and the retina. The iris is perforated to admit the rays of light, and is called the pupil; the retina is a diffusion of the optic nerve in the bottom of the eye, on which the images are painted or impressed that give us the sensation we term sight or vision. All these membranes, humours, and nerves, are more or less impaired, thickened, or rendered opaque, by old age, expressed by the metaphor, "Those that look out of the windows are darkened."

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

strong

2 Samuel 21:15-17 Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him...

Psalm 90:9,10 For all our days are passed away in your wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told...

Psalm 102:23 He weakened my strength in the way; he shortened my days.

Zechariah 8:4 Thus said the LORD of hosts; There shall yet old men and old women dwell in the streets of Jerusalem...

and those

Ecclesiastes 12:2 While the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars, be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain:

Library
The Conclusion of the Matter
'Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them; 2. While the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars, be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain; 3. In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look out of the windows be darkened, 4. And the doors shall be shut in
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Ancestral Home
John Van Nest Talmage was born at Somerville, New Jersey, August 18, 1819 He was the fourth son in a family of seven brothers and five sisters. The roots of the Talmage genealogical tree may be traced back to the year 1630, when Enos and Thomas Talmage, the progenitors of the Talmage family in North America, landed at Charlestown, Massachusetts, and afterwards settled at East Hampton, Long Island. Dr. Lyman Beecher represents the first settlers of East Hampton as "men resolute, enterprising, acquainted
Rev. John Gerardus Fagg—Forty Years in South China

A Prayer when one Begins to be Sick.
O most righteous Judge, yet in Jesus Christ my gracious Father! I, wretched sinner, do here return unto thee, though driven with pain and sickness, like the prodigal child with want and hunger. I acknowledge that this sickness and pain comes not by blind chance or fortune, but by thy divine providence and special appointment. It is the stroke of thy heavy hand, which my sins have justly deserved; and the things that I feared are now fallen upon me (Job iii. 25.) Yet do I well perceive that in wrath
Lewis Bayly—The Practice of Piety

Solomon's Repentance
Twice during Solomon's reign the Lord had appeared to him with words of approval and counsel--in the night vision at Gibeon, when the promise of wisdom, riches, and honor was accompanied by an admonition to remain humble and obedient; and after the dedication of the temple, when once more the Lord exhorted him to faithfulness. Plain were the admonitions, wonderful the promises, given to Solomon; yet of him who in circumstances, in character, and in life seemed abundantly fitted to heed the charge
Ellen Gould White—The Story of Prophets and Kings

Cross References
Genesis 27:1
When Isaac was old and his eyes were so weak that he could no longer see, he called for Esau his older son and said to him, "My son." "Here I am," he answered.

Genesis 48:10
Now Israel's eyes were failing because of old age, and he could hardly see. So Joseph brought his sons close to him, and his father kissed them and embraced them.

1 Samuel 3:2
One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place.

Psalm 35:14
I went about mourning as though for my friend or brother. I bowed my head in grief as though weeping for my mother.

Psalm 38:6
I am bowed down and brought very low; all day long I go about mourning.

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