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The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

Chapter 3

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Man Cannot Hit on the Right Time To Act

1There is an appointed time foreverything, and a time for every affair under theheavens. 2A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to uprootthe plant. 3A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to tear down, and a time to build. 4A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance. 5A time to scatter stones, and a time togather them; a time to embrace, and a time to be farfrom embraces. 6A time to seek, 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 be silent, and a time to speak. 8A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

9 t Eccl 1, 3 . What advantage has the worker from his toil? 10I have considered the task which God has appointed for men to be busied about. 11 u Eccl 8, 17; 11, 5; Gn 1, 31 . He has made everything appropriate to its time, and has put the timeless into their hearts, without men's ever discovering, from beginning to end, the work which God has done. 12I recognized that there is nothing better than to be glad and to do well during life. 13 v Eccl 2, 24 . For every man, moreover, to eat and drink and enjoy the fruit of all his labor is a gift of God. 14I recognized that whatever God does will endure forever; there is no adding to it, or taking from it. Thus has God done that he may be revered. 15 w Eccl 1, 9 . What now is has already been; what is to be, already is; and God restores * what would otherwise be displaced.

The Problem of Retribution. 16 x Eccl 4, 1 . And still under the sun in the judgment place I saw wickedness, and in the seat of justice, iniquity. 17 y Eccl 12, 14 . And I said to myself, both the just and the wicked God will judge, since there is a time for every affair and on every work a judgment. 18I said to myself: As for the children of men, it is God's way of testing them and of showing that they are in themselves like beasts. 19For the lot of man and of beast is one lot; the one dies as well as the other. Both have the same life‐breath, and man has no advantage over the beast; but all is vanity. 20 z Eccl 12, 7; Gn 2, 7; 3, 19; Ps 103, 14; Wis 2, 3; Sir 10, 9; 17, 1; 40, 11 . Both go to the same place; both were made from the dust, and to the dust they both return. 21 a Wis 2, 2 . Who knows if the life‐breath of the children of men goes upward and the life‐breath of beasts goes earthward? 22 b Eccl 8, 7; 10, 14 . And I saw that there is nothing better for a man than to rejoice in his work; for this is his lot. Who will let him see what is to come after him?

Notes:

t: Eccl 1, 3 .

u: Eccl 8, 17; 11, 5; Gn 1, 31 .

v: Eccl 2, 24 .

w: Eccl 1, 9 .

x: Eccl 4, 1 .

y: Eccl 12, 14 .

z: Eccl 12, 7; Gn 2, 7; 3, 19; Ps 103, 14; Wis 2, 3; Sir 10, 9; 17, 1; 40, 11 .

a: Wis 2, 2 .

b: Eccl 8, 7; 10, 14 .

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