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Ecclesiastes 3 :: New International Version (NIV)

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A Time for Everything

Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:1 - There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:2 - a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot,
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:3 - a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build,
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:4 - a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:5 - a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:6 - a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:7 - a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:8 - a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:9 - What do workers gain from their toil?
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:10 - I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:11 - He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet[fn] no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:12 - I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:13 - That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:14 - I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:15 - Whatever is has already been, and what will be has been before; and God will call the past to account.[fn]
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:16 - And I saw something else under the sun: In the place of judgment—wickedness was there, in the place of justice—wickedness was there.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:17 - I said to myself, “God will bring into judgment both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time to judge every deed.”
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:18 - I also said to myself, “As for humans, God tests them so that they may see that they are like the animals.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:19 - 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[fn]; humans have no advantage over animals. Everything is meaningless.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:20 - All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:21 - Who knows if the human spirit rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?”
Unchecked Copy BoxEcc 3:22 - So I saw that there is nothing better for a person than to enjoy their work, because that is their lot. For who can bring them to see what will happen after them?
NIV Footnotes
Or also placed ignorance in the human heart, so that
Or God calls back the past
Or spirit

Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®
Used by Permission of Biblica, Inc.® All rights reserved worldwide.

See detailed copyright information.

For more information on this translation, see the NIV Preface.

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