Ecclesiastes 10:10
Strong's Lexicon
If
אִם־ (’im-)
Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 518: 1) if 1a) conditional clauses 1a1) of possible situations 1a2) of impossible situations 1b) oath contexts 1b1) no, not 1c) if...if, whether...or, whether...or...or 1d) when, whenever 1e) since 1f) interrogative particle 1g) but rather

the ax
הַבַּרְזֶ֗ל (hab·bar·zel)
Article | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1270: 1) iron 1a) iron 1a1) iron ore 1a2) as material of furniture, utensils, implements 2) tool of iron 3) harshness, strength, oppression (fig.)

is dull
קֵהָ֣ה (qê·hāh)
Verb - Piel - Perfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 6949: 1) to be blunt, be dull 1a) (Qal) to be blunt, be dull 1b) (Piel) to be blunt

and
וְהוּא֙ (wə·hū)
Conjunctive waw | Pronoun - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1931: pron 3p s 1) he, she, it 1a) himself (with emphasis) 1b) resuming subj with emphasis 1c) (with minimum emphasis following predicate) 1d) (anticipating subj) 1e) (emphasising predicate) 1f) that, it (neuter) demons pron 2) that (with article)

the blade
פָנִ֣ים (p̄ā·nîm)
Noun - masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 6440: 1) face 1a) face, faces 1b) presence, person 1c) face (of seraphim or cherubim) 1d) face (of animals) 1e) face, surface (of ground) 1f) as adv of loc/temp 1f1) before and behind, toward, in front of, forward, formerly, from beforetime, before 1g) with prep 1g1) in front of, before, to the front of, in the presence of, in the face of, at the face or front of, from the presence of, from before, from before the face of

unsharpened,
קִלְקַ֔ל (qil·qal)
Verb - Piel - Perfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 7043: 1) to be slight, be swift, be trifling, be of little account, be light 1a) (Qal) 1a1) to be slight, be abated (of water) 1a2) to be swift 1a3) to be trifling, be of little account 1b) (Niphal) 1b1) to be swift, show oneself swift 1b2) to appear trifling, be too trifling, be insignificant 1b3) to be lightly esteemed 1c) (Piel) 1c1) to make despicable 1c2) to curse 1d) (Pual) to be cursed 1e) (Hiphil) 1e1) to make light, lighten 1e2) to treat with contempt, bring contempt or dishonour 1f) (Pilpel) 1f1) to shake 1f2) to whet 1g) (Hithpalpel) to shake oneself, be moved to and fro

more strength
וַחֲיָלִ֖ים (wa·ḥă·yā·lîm)
Conjunctive waw | Noun - masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 2428: 1) strength, might, efficiency, wealth, army 1a) strength 1b) ability, efficiency 1c) wealth 1d) force, army

must be exerted,
יְגַבֵּ֑ר (yə·ḡab·bêr)
Verb - Piel - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1396: 1) to prevail, have strength, be strong, be powerful, be mighty, be great 1a) (Qal) 1a1) to be strong, mighty 1a2) to prevail 1b) (Piel) to make strong, strengthen 1c) (Hiphil) 1c1) to confirm, give strength 1c2) to confirm (a covenant) 1d) (Hithpael) 1d1) to show oneself mighty 1d2) to act proudly (toward God)

but skill
חָכְמָֽה׃ (ḥāḵ·māh)
Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 2451: 1) wisdom 1a) skill (in war) 1b) wisdom (in administration) 1c) shrewdness, wisdom 1d) wisdom, prudence (in religious affairs) 1e) wisdom (ethical and religious)

will produce
וְיִתְר֥וֹן (wə·yiṯ·rō·wn)
Conjunctive waw | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3504: 1) advantage, profit, excellency

success.
הַכְשֵׁ֖ר‪‬(הכשיר*הַכְשֵׁ֖ר‪‬) (haḵ·šêr)
Verb - Hifil - Infinitive construct
Strong's Hebrew 3787: 1) to succeed, please, be suitable, be proper, be advantageous, be right and proper to 1a) (Qal) to please, be proper 1b) (Hiphil) to give success

Parallel Strong's
Holman Christian Standard Bible
If the ax is dull, and one does not sharpen its edge, then one must exert more strength; however, the advantage of wisdom is that it brings success.

New American Standard Bible
If the axe is dull and he does not sharpen [its] edge, then he must exert more strength. Wisdom has the advantage of giving success.

King James Bible
If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom [is] profitable to direct.
Parallel Verses
New International Version
If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed, but skill will bring success.

New Living Translation
Using a dull ax requires great strength, so sharpen the blade. That's the value of wisdom; it helps you succeed.

English Standard Version
If the iron is blunt, and one does not sharpen the edge, he must use more strength, but wisdom helps one to succeed.

New American Standard Bible
If the axe is dull and he does not sharpen its edge, then he must exert more strength. Wisdom has the advantage of giving success.

King James Bible
If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
If the ax is dull, and one does not sharpen its edge, then one must exert more strength; however, the advantage of wisdom is that it brings success.

International Standard Version
If someone's ax is blunt—the edge isn't sharpened— then more strength will be needed. Putting wisdom to work will bring success.

NET Bible
If an iron axhead is blunt and a workman does not sharpen its edge, he must exert a great deal of effort; so wisdom has the advantage of giving success.

American Standard Version
If the iron be blunt, and one do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct.

English Revised Version
If the iron be blunt, and one do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct.

Young's Literal Translation
If the iron hath been blunt, And he the face hath not sharpened, Then doth he increase strength, And wisdom is advantageous to make right.






Cross References
Deuteronomy 32:41
If I whet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine enemies, and will reward them that hate me.

Ecclesiastes 2:13
Then I saw that wisdom excelleth folly, as far as light excelleth darkness.

Ecclesiastes 10:9
Whoso removeth stones shall be hurt therewith; and he that cleaveth wood shall be endangered thereby.

Ecclesiastes 10:11
Surely the serpent will bite without enchantment; and a babbler is no better.

Ecclesiastes 1:1
The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.

Ecclesiastes 10:8
He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him.

Ecclesiastes 10:7
I have seen servants upon horses, and princes walking as servants upon the earth.

Ecclesiastes 10:12
The words of a wise man's mouth are gracious; but the lips of a fool will swallow up himself.

Ecclesiastes 10:13
The beginning of the words of his mouth is foolishness: and the end of his talk is mischievous madness.
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