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Futility of Materialism

2:4 I increased my possessions:26

I built houses for myself;27

I planted vineyards for myself.

2:5 I designed28 royal gardens29 and parks30 for myself,

and I planted all kinds of fruit trees in them.

2:6 I constructed pools of water for myself,

to irrigate my grove31 of flourishing trees.

2:7 I purchased male and female slaves,

and I owned slaves who were born in my house;32

I also possessed more livestock—both herds and flocks—

than any of my predecessors in Jerusalem.33

2:8 I also amassed silver and gold for myself,

as well as valuable treasures34 taken from kingdoms and provinces.35

I acquired male singers and female singers for myself,

and what gives a man sensual delight36—a harem of beautiful concubines!37

2:9 So38 I was far wealthier39 than all my predecessors in Jerusalem,

yet I maintained my objectivity:40

2:10 I did not restrain myself from getting whatever I wanted;41

I did not deny myself anything that would bring me pleasure.42

So all my accomplishments gave me joy;43

this was my reward for all my effort.44

2:11 Yet when I reflected on everything I had accomplished45

and on all the effort that I had expended to accomplish it,46

I concluded:47 “All these48 achievements and possessions49 are ultimately50 profitless51

like chasing the wind!

There is nothing gained52 from them53 on earth.”54


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