Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12

Money does not make you happy

8 The poor people who live in your country may be hungry. But the government does not help them, and the government is not fair to them. Do not be surprised about that. The government's officers do not decide what to do. Other more important people tell them what they must do. The king is the most important person in the country. 9 When people pay money to the government, the king receives a lot of it.

10 You may love money.

But you will never have enough money.

You may like to have valuable things.

But you will always want to have more of them. This is silly.

11 If you have a lot of money, other people will want some of it.

You will not enjoy the money that you have.

Other people will spend it for you.

12 A man who has worked all day will sleep well at night.

This is true even if he did not eat very much food.

But the rich man cannot sleep well because he has eaten too much.

13 I have seen something else that is not fair on the earth.

People may get a lot of money.

But, if they try to keep it,

it will be very bad for them.

14 At a future time, they may discover that they have lost all their money.

Then, after they die, there will be no money for their children.

15 They were born with nothing.

When they die, they will have nothing.

They cannot take anything with them when they leave this earth.

They will have nothing for all their work.

16 That is not fair.

People leave this earth, as they came into it, with nothing.

They live as if they were trying to catch the wind.

But after all their work, they have nothing.

17 During their lives, they are always sad, angry and sick.

18 God has given to us a short life on this earth. I think that we should enjoy our lives. We should eat and drink. And we should do our work well. That is what God wants us to do. 19 If you are rich, you will have many things. You should enjoy those things. You should enjoy your work, too. This is a gift from God to you. 20 God will keep you busy and he will make you happy. You will be too busy to think about your troubles each day.

5:20Here, the Teacher says that we should be honest. We should be honest when we worship God. The things that some people say may not be true. But God will know if they are not being honest. The Teacher tells us something else. Even if we have a lot of money, we may not be happy. But we should enjoy the things that God has given to us. And we should thank God for those things.

Ecclesiastes 6

1 On this earth, there is something else that is not fair. 2 God may give to you all the things that you want. He may give riches to you. And he may give to you money to spend. He may give to you a house to live in. But he may not let you enjoy those things. Somebody that you do not even know may get them all. That is not fair and it will confuse you a lot. 3 You may live for a long time and you may have many children. But you may not enjoy your life. When you die, people may not bury you properly. A child that is dead at its birth does not have a good life. But your life is worse than that. 4 A child like that will never live to see the sun. 5 It will not even have a name. It will leave this earth and it will go to a dark place. But that child will have more peace than you do. 6 You may live for a very long time, but you may not enjoy your life. We all go to the same place after we die. This is what will happen. Remember that.

7 We work so that we will have food.

But we never have enough food.

8 Our lives have not been more happy because we have been wise.

A fool would be as happy as we have been.

We may try to live in the right way.

But that does not make us happier if we are still poor.

9 It is not good always to want more things.

We should enjoy the things that we have. That is better.

Somebody who wants more things all the time is silly.

He is like somebody who tries to catch the wind.

10 God decided a long time ago what we should be like.

We cannot argue with God about that. He is very much stronger than we are.

11 If we talk too much, we will say silly things.

It is better not to talk a lot.

12 We live for only a few years and our lives mean nothing. Our lives are like shadows that pass over the earth. We do not know the best way to live. We do not know what will happen after our death.

6:12When the Teacher speaks, he is very honest. Some people will be poor and their lives will be difficult. And it will not be possible for them to change things. So we should enjoy the things that we have. This is what God has given to us.