The vanity of human courses in the works of pleasure.
Ecclesiastes 2:1 Then sayde I thus in my herte: Now go to, I will take myne ease and haue good dayes. But lo, that was vanitie also: Ecclesiastes 2:2 in so much that I sayd vnto laughter: thou art mad, and to myrthe: what doest thou? Ecclesiastes 2:3 So I thought in my hert, to withdrawe my flesh from wyne, to apply my mynde vnto wysdome, & to comprehende folishnes vntill þe time that (among all þe thinges which are vnder the sunne) I might se what were best for men to do, so long as they lyue vnder heauen. Ecclesiastes 2:4 I made Gorgious fayre workes. I buylded me houses, & planted vineyardes. Ecclesiastes 2:5 I made me ortchardes & gardens of pleasure, & planted trees in them of al maner frutes. Ecclesiastes 2:6 I made poles of water, to water þe grene & frutefull trees withall. Ecclesiastes 2:7 I bought seruauntes and maidens and had a greate housholde, As for catell and shepe, I had more substance of them then all they that were before me in Ierusalem, Ecclesiastes 2:8 I gathered syluer and gold together, euen a treasure of kynges and landes. I prouyded me syngers and wemen which coulde playe of instrumentes, to make men myrth and pastime. I gat me drinckyng cuppes also and glasses. Ecclesiastes 2:9 Shortly, I was greater and in more worshippe, then all my predecessours in Ierusalem. For wysdome remained with me Ecclesiastes 2:10 and loke what soeuer myne eyes desyred, I let them haue it: and wherein soeuer my herte delited or had any pleasure, I wyth helde it not from it. Thus my herte reioysed in all that I dyd, and this I toke for the porcion of all my trauayle. Ecclesiastes 2:11 But when I consydered all the workes that my handes had wrought, and all the laboures that I had taken therein, lo, all was but but vanytye and vexacion of mind, & nothyng of any value vnder the Sunne.
Though the wise be better than the fool, yet both have one event.
Ecclesiastes 2:12 Then turned I me to consyder wysdome, erroure and folyshnesse (for what is he amonge men, that myght be compared to me the kyng in suche workes?) Ecclesiastes 2:13 and I saw that wysdome excelleth folishnesse, as farre as lyght doth darcknesse. Ecclesiastes 2:14 For a wyse man beareth his eyes about in his head, but the foole goth in the darcknesse. I perceaued also that they both had one end. Ecclesiastes 2:15 Then thought I in my mynde: If it happen vnto the foole as it doeth vnto me, what nedeth, me then to laboure anye more for wysdome? So I confessed wythin my herte, that thys also was but vanitye. Ecclesiastes 2:16 For the wyse are euer as lytle in remembraunce as the folish, and al the daies for to come shalbe forgotten, yea the wyse man dyeth as well as the fole. Ecclesiastes 2:17 Thus began I to be werye of my lyfe, in so muche that I coulde awaie wyth nothynge that is done vnder the Sunne, for all was but vanytye and vexacion of mynde:
The vanity of human labour, in leaving it they know not to whom.
Ecclesiastes 2:18 Yea I was weerye of al my laboure, which I had taken vnder the Sunne, because I shoulde be fayne to leaue them vnto another man, that commeth after me Ecclesiastes 2:19 for who knoweth, whether he shalbe a wyse man or afole? And yet shall he be lorde of al my laboures, which I wyth suche wysdome haue taken vnder the Sunne. Is not this a vayne thynge. Ecclesiastes 2:20 So I turned me to refraine my mynd from all such trauayle, as I toke vnder the Sunne Ecclesiastes 2:21 for somuch as a man shuld weery hym selfe with wisdome, wt vnderstanding & oportunyte & yet be faine to leaue his laboures vnto another, that neuer swet. for them. This is also a vayne thinge and a greate miserie. Ecclesiastes 2:22 For what getteth a man of all the laboure and trauaile of his mind, þt he taketh vnder þe Sunne, Ecclesiastes 2:23 but heauinesse, sorow and disquietnes al þe daeis of his life? In so much that his herte can not rest in þe night. Is not this also a vaine thing?
Nothing better than joy in our labour; but that is God's gift.
Ecclesiastes 2:24 Is it not better then, for a man to eat & drinke, and his soule to be mery in his labour? Yea I sawe that thys also was a gyfte of God: Ecclesiastes 2:25 For who may eat, drinke, or bring any thing to passe wythout hym? And why? Ecclesiastes 2:26 he geueth vnto man, what it pleaseth him: whether it be wysdome, vnderstandyng, or gladnesse. But vnto the sinner he geueth werines and sorow þt he may gather and heape togather the thing that afterward shalbe geuen vnto him whom it pleaseth God. This is now a vayne thynge yea a very disquietnes and vexacion of mind.