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Ecclesiastes: Chapter 12

The Creator is to be remembered in due time, 1-7. The preacher's care to edify, 8-12. The fear of God is the chief antidote of vanity, 13, 14.

1 Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, while the evil days do not come, nor the years draw near, when you shall say, "I have no pleasure in them"; 2 While the sun, the light, the moon, or the stars are not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain; 3 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 who look out of the windows are darkened, 4 And the doors are shut in the streets; when the sound of the grinding is low, and he shall rise up at the voice of the bird, and all the daughters of music shall be brought low; 5 When they are afraid of that which is high, and fears are in the way; when the almond tree flourishes, the locust is a burden, and desire fails. For man goes to his eternal home, and the mourners go about the streets. 6 Remember your Creator before the silver cord is loosed, the golden bowl is broken, the pitcher is broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern, 7 And the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it. 8 "Vanity of vanities," says the preacher. "All is vanity."

9 And moreover, because the preacher was wise, he still taught the people knowledge. He even gave good heed, sought out, and set in order many proverbs. 10 The preacher sought to find out acceptable words. And that which was written was upright, even words of truth.

11 The words of the wise are as goads and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd. 12 And further, my son, be admonished by these: of making many books there is no end, and much study is a weariness of the flesh.

13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. 14 For God will bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it is good, or whether it is evil.