New International Version
Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times that fall unexpectedly upon them.
King James Bible
For man also knoweth not his time: as the fishes that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare; so are the sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falleth suddenly upon them.
Darby Bible Translation
For man also knoweth not his time: as the fishes that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are taken with the snare, like them are the children of men snared in an evil time, when it falleth suddenly upon them.
World English Bible
For man also doesn't know his time. As the fish that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare, even so are the sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falls suddenly on them.
Young's Literal Translation
For even man knoweth not his time; as fish that are taken hold of by an evil net, and as birds that are taken hold of by a snare, like these are the sons of man snared at an evil time, when it falleth upon them suddenly.
Ecclesiastes 9:12 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
As the birds that are caught - Man acts so heedlessly, notwithstanding all his wisdom, and all his warnings, that he is often taken, as a fish is, by the baited hook; and the bird by the baited snare. And thus, an evil time, like the snare, gin, trap, hook, falleth suddenly upon them; and they are taken in a moment, and have no means of escaping. How frequently do we see these comparisons illustrated!
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
as the fishes
LibraryThe Lapse of Time.
"Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest."--Eccles. ix. 10. Solomon's advice that we should do whatever our hand findeth to do with our might, naturally directs our thoughts to that great work in which all others are included, which will outlive all other works, and for which alone we really are placed here below--the salvation of our souls. And the consideration of this great work, …
John Henry Newman—Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. VII
Annunciation to Joseph of the Birth of Jesus.
Solomon's Temple Spiritualized
"Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap.
For it will come on all those who live on the face of the whole earth.
till an arrow pierces his liver, like a bird darting into a snare, little knowing it will cost him his life.
Evildoers are snared by their own sin, but the righteous shout for joy and are glad.
Surely the fate of human beings is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath; humans have no advantage over animals. Everything is meaningless.
Since no one knows the future, who can tell someone else what is to come?
I also saw under the sun this example of wisdom that greatly impressed me:
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