1To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:2A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;3A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;4A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;5A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;6A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;7A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;8A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.9What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboureth?10I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised in it.11He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.12I know that there is no good in them, but for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life.13And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.14I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it , that men should fear before him.15That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.16And moreover I saw under the sun the place of judgment, that wickedness was there; and the place of righteousness, that iniquity was there.17I said in mine heart, God shall judge the righteous and the wicked: for there is a time there for every purpose and for every work.18I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of men, that God might manifest them, and that they might see that they themselves are beasts.19For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast: for all is vanity.20All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.21Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?22Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better, than that a man should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion: for who shall bring him to see what shall be after him?
English Standard Version
A Time for Everything
1For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: (Ec 3:17; Ec 8:6)2a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; (Heb 9:27)3a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;4a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; (Ex 15:20; 2Sa 6:14; Ro 12:15)5a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; (2Ki 3:25; Isa 5:2; Joe 2:16)6a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; (Pr 11:24; Mt 10:39)7a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; (Ge 37:29; Am 5:13)8a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace. (Lu 14:26)
The God-Given Task
9What gain has the worker from his toil? (Ec 1:3)10I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. (Ge 3:17; Ec 1:13)11He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. (Ge 1:31; Job 5:9; Ec 8:17; Ro 11:33)12I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; (Ps 34:14; Ps 37:3; Ec 3:22)13also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God’s gift to man. (Ec 2:24; Ec 5:19)14I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him. (Jas 1:17)15That which is, already has been; that which is to be, already has been; and God seeks what has been driven away. (Ec 1:9; Ec 12:14)
From Dust to Dust
16Moreover, I saw under the sun that in the place of justice, even there was wickedness, and in the place of righteousness, even there was wickedness. (Ec 4:1; Ec 5:8)17I said in my heart, God will judge the righteous and the wicked, for there is a time for every matter and for every work. (Ec 3:1; Ec 8:6; Mt 16:27; Ro 2:6; 2Co 5:10; 2Th 1:6)18I said in my heart with regard to the children of man that God is testing them that they may see that they themselves are but beasts. (Ps 49:12; Ps 49:20; Ps 73:22)19For what happens to the children of man and what happens to the beasts is the same; as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts, for all is vanity. (Ec 2:14)20All go to one place. All are from the dust, and to dust all return. (Ge 3:19; Ec 12:7)21Who knows whether the spirit of man goes upward and the spirit of the beast goes down into the earth? (Ec 12:7)22So I saw that there is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his work, for that is his lot. Who can bring him to see what will be after him? (Ec 2:10; Ec 2:19; Ec 2:24; Ec 6:12; Ec 8:7; Ec 10:14)