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English Standard Version

Ecclesiastes 2:1–3

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The Vanity of Self-Indulgence

I xsaid in my heart, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure; enjoy yourself.” But behold, this also was vanity.1 I ysaid of laughter, “It is mad,” and of pleasure, “What use is it?” I zsearched with my heart how to cheer my body with wine—my heart still guiding me with wisdom—and how to lay hold on afolly, till I might see what was good for the children of man to do under heaven during the few days of their life.

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The Hebrew term hebel can refer to a “vapor” or “mere breath”; also verses 11, 15, 17, 19, 21, 23, 26 (see note on 1:2)

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