The Words of Ecclesiastes

Chapter 5

Vanities in divine service, 1-7; in murmuring against oppression, 8; and in riches, 9-17. Joy in riches is the gift of God, 18-20.

1 Keep your foot when you go to the house of God, and be more ready to hear than to give the sacrifice of fools, for they do not consider that they do evil. 2 Do not be rash with your mouth, and do not let your heart be hasty to utter anything before God. For God is in heaven, and you upon earth; therefore, let your words be few.

For a dream comes through the multitude of business,/
and a fool's voice is known by a multitude of words.

4 When you vow a vow to God, do not defer to pay it, for he has no pleasure in fools. Pay that which you have vowed. 5 It is better that you should not vow, than that you should vow and not pay. 6 Do not allow your mouth to cause your flesh to sin, neither say before the angel that it was an error. Why should God be angry at your voice and destroy the work of your hands? 7 For in the multitude of dreams and many words there are also diverse vanities. But fear God.

8 If you see the oppression of the poor and violent perversion of judgment and justice in a province, do not wonder at the matter. For he who is higher than the highest regards, and there are higher than those. 9 Moreover, the profit of the earth is for all. The king himself is served by the field.

10 He who loves silver shall not be satisfied with silver, nor he who loves abundance with increase. This is also vanity. 11 When goods increase, they are increased who eat them. And what good is there to their owners, except the beholding of them with their eyes? 12 The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, whether he eats little or much, but the abundance of the rich will not allow him to sleep.

13 There is a grievous evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for their owner to his hurt. 14 But those riches perish by evil labor, and if he begets a son, there is nothing in his hand. 15 As he came into the world, so he shall return naked as he came, and shall take nothing of his labor that he can carry away in his hand. 16 And this also is a grievous evil, that in all points as he came, so he shall go. And what profit does he have who has labored for the wind? 17 All his days he also eats in darkness, and he has much sorrow and wrath with his sickness.

18 Behold that which I have seen. It is good and fitting for one to eat and to drink and to enjoy the good of all his labor that he takes under the sun all the days of his life which God gives him, for it is his portion. 19 Every man also to whom God has given riches and wealth and has given him power to eat of it, to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labor—this is the gift of God. 20 For he shall not often remember the days of his life, because God answers him in the joy of his heart.


Matthew Henry Commentary - Ecclesiastes, Chapter 5[➚]


[v.15] - Reference, Job 1:21; 1st Timothy 6:7.