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Ecclesiastes 1:18

    Ecclesiastes 1:18 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increases knowledge increases sorrow.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    For in much wisdom is much grief; and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    Because in much wisdom is much grief, and increase of knowledge is increase of sorrow.

    Webster's Revision

    For in much wisdom is much grief; and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.

    World English Bible

    For in much wisdom is much grief; and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.

    Clarke's Commentary on Ecclesiastes 1:18

    For in much wisdom is much grief - The more we know of ourselves the less satisfied shall we be with our own hearts; and the more we know of mankind the less willing shall we be to trust them, and the less shall we admire them.

    Be that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow - And why so? Because, independently of God, the principal objects of knowledge are natural and moral evils.

    The Targum gives a curious paraphrase here: "The man who multiplies wisdom, when he sins and is not converted to repentance, multiplies the indignation of God against himself; and the man who adds science, and yet dies in his childhood, adds grief of heart to his relatives." A man in science; a foolish child in conduct. How pained must they be who had the expense of his education! But there are many men-children of this sort in every age and country.

    Barnes' Notes on Ecclesiastes 1:18

    We become more sensible of our ignorance and impotence, and therefore sorrowful, in proportion as we discover more of the constitution of nature and the scheme of Providence in the government of the world; every discovery serving to convince us that more remains concealed of which we had no suspicion before.

    Wesley's Notes on Ecclesiastes 1:18

    1:18 Grief - Or, displeasure within himself, and against his present condition. Sorrow - Which he does many ways, because he gets his knowledge with hard and wearisome labour, both of mind and body, with the consumption of his spirits, and shortening of his life; because he is often deceived with knowledge falsely so called, and often mistakes error for truth, and is perplexed with manifold doubts, from which ignorant men are wholly free; because he hath the clearer prospect into, and quicker sense of his own ignorance, and infirmities, and disorders, and withal how vain and ineffectual all his knowledge is for the prevention or removal of them; and because his knowledge is very imperfect and unsatisfying, yet increasing his thirst after more knowledge; lastly, because his knowledge quickly fades and dies with him, and then leaves him in no better, and possibly in a much worse condition than the meanest and most unlearned man in the world.