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What does the Bible mean when it says that "time and chance happen to them all"? Ecclesiastes 9:11

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  • What does the Bible mean when it says that "time and chance happen to them all"? Ecclesiastes 9:11

    What does the Bible mean when it says that "time and chance happen to them all"? Ecclesiastes 9:11


    Lou Newton

    Former Steel Mill Crane Designer and Physics Teacher

    ECCLESIASTES 9:11

    These other English translations will help you understand. You can go to Ecclesiastes 9:11 - Bible Gateway and click on ALL ENGLISH TRANSLATIONS after you look up your verse.

    I like the NIRV in this verse. I have listed it first. Men may be intelligent, skillful, wealthy, strong or powerful; but men are not in control, God is.

    It helps to also remember this verse:

    Romans 8 TLB

    26 And in the same way—by our faith—the Holy Spirit helps us with our daily problems and in our praying. For we don’t even know what we should pray for nor how to pray as we should, but the Holy Spirit prays for us with such feeling that it cannot be expressed in words. 27 And the Father who knows all hearts knows, of course, what the Spirit is saying as he pleads for us in harmony with God’s own will. 28 And we know that all that happens to us is working for our good if we love God and are fitting into his plans.

    29 For from the very beginning God decided that those who came to him—and all along he knew who would—should become like his Son, so that his Son would be the First, with many brothers. 30 And having chosen us, he called us to come to him; and when we came, he declared us “not guilty,” filled us with Christ’s goodness, gave us right standing with himself, and promised us his glory.

    31 What can we ever say to such wonderful things as these? If God is on our side, who can ever be against us? 32 Since he did not spare even his own Son for us but gave him up for us all, won’t he also surely give us everything else?

    NOTE: God does not make everyone rich or strong. Many times it is best for us if we are weak or poor. Remember Jesus became weak and poor for us.


    NIRV

    Here’s something else I’ve seen on this earth. Races aren’t always won by those who run fast. Battles aren’t always won by those who are strong. Wise people don’t always have plenty of food. Clever people aren’t always wealthy. Those who have learned a lot aren’t always successful. God controls the timing of every event. He also controls how things turn out.

    CEB

    I also observed under the sun that the race doesn’t always go to the swift, nor the battle to the mighty, nor food to the wise, nor wealth to the intelligent, nor favor to the knowledgeable, because accidents can happen to anyone.

    CEV

    Here is something else I have learned: The fastest runners and the greatest heroes don’t always win races and battles. Wisdom, intelligence, and skill don’t always make you healthy, rich, or popular. We each have our share of bad luck.

    ERV

    I also saw other things in this life that were not fair. The fastest runner does not always win the race; the strongest soldier does not always win the battle; wise people don’t always get the food; smart people don’t always get the wealth; educated people don’t always get the praise they deserve. When the time comes, bad things can happen to anyone!

    GW

    I saw something else under the sun. The race isn’t won by fast runners, or the battle by heroes. Wise people don’t necessarily have food. Intelligent people don’t necessarily have riches, and skilled people don’t necessarily receive special treatment. But time and unpredictable events overtake all of them.

    GNT

    I realized another thing, that in this world fast runners do not always win the races, and the brave do not always win the battles. The wise do not always earn a living, intelligent people do not always get rich, and capable people do not always rise to high positions. Bad luck happens to everyone.

    ICB

    I also realized something else here on earth that is senseless: The fast runner does not always win the race. The strong army does not always win the battle. The wise man does not always have food. The smart man does not always become wealthy. And the man with special skills does not always receive praise. Bad things happen to everyone.

    ISV

    I considered and observed on earth the following: The race doesn’t go to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor food to the wise, nor wealth to the smart, nor recognition to the skilled. Instead, timing and circumstances meet them all.

    TLB

    Again I looked throughout the earth and saw that the swiftest person does not always win the race, nor the strongest man the battle, and that wise men are often poor, and skillful men are not necessarily famous; but it is all by chance, by happening to be at the right place at the right time.

    MSG

    I took another walk around the neighborhood and realized that on this earth as it is— The race is not always to the swift, Nor the battle to the strong, Nor satisfaction to the wise, Nor riches to the smart, Nor grace to the learned. Sooner or later bad luck hits us all.

    NOG

    I saw something else under the sun. The race isn’t won by fast runners, or the battle by heroes. Wise people don’t necessarily have food. Intelligent people don’t necessarily have riches, and skilled people don’t necessarily receive special treatment. But time and unpredictable events overtake all of them.

    NABRE

    Again I saw under the sun that the race is not won by the swift, nor the battle by the valiant, nor a livelihood by the wise, nor riches by the shrewd, nor favor by the experts; for a time of misfortune comes to all alike.

    NIRV

    Here’s something else I’ve seen on this earth. Races aren’t always won by those who run fast. Battles aren’t always won by those who are strong. Wise people don’t always have plenty of food. Clever people aren’t always wealthy. Those who have learned a lot aren’t always successful. God controls the timing of every event. He also controls how things turn out.

    NLV

    Again I saw under the sun that the race is not to the fast and the battle to the men of war. Bread is not to the wise and riches are not to the men of understanding. Favor is not to able workers. Time comes and goes and things happen for no reason to them all.

    NLT

    I have observed something else under the sun. The fastest runner doesn’t always win the race, and the strongest warrior doesn’t always win the battle. The wise sometimes go hungry, and the skillful are not necessarily wealthy. And those who are educated don’t always lead successful lives. It is all decided by chance, by being in the right place at the right time.

    OJB

    I returned, and saw under the shemesh, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the gibborim, neither yet lechem to the chachamim, nor yet osher to the intelligent, nor yet chen (favor) to the experts; but et (time) and pega (chance) happeneth to them all.

    VOICE

    I turned and witnessed something else under the sun: the race does not always go to the swift, the battle is not always won by the strong, bread does not always fill the table of the wise, wealth does not always accrue to the skillful, and favor is not always granted to the knowledgeable; but time and misfortune happen to them all.

    WYC

    I turned me to another thing, and I saw under [the] sun, that running is not of swift men, neither battle is of strong men, neither bread is of wise men, neither riches be of teachers, nor grace is of craftsmen; but time and hap is in all things. (I turned me to another thing, and I saw under the sun, that the race is not always to the swift, or the battle to the strong, or bread to the wise, or riches to those who teach, or favour to the skilled, but timing and happenstance be to everything.)
    Last edited by Lou Newton; June 13, 2020, 07:28 PM.

  • #2
    Romeo Madrid

    If the Creator of mankind had indeed exercised his power to foreknow all that history has seen since man’s creation, then the full weight of all the wickedness thereafter resulting was deliberately set in motion by God when he spoke the words: “Let us make man.” (Ge 1:26) These facts bring into question the reasonableness and consistency of the predestinarian concept; particularly so, since the disciple James shows that disorder and other vile things do not originate from God’s heavenly presence but are “earthly, animal, demonic” in source.—Jas 3:14-18

    Why did God give us willpower if he already knows what will happen to us?
    Lou's reply:



    Lou Newton
    Original Author

    God created time, In the beginning. He created time and all matter and energy. God has always existed outside of space-time in eternity. We live in space-time that He created. We can only remember the past, see the present, and do not know the future. But God can see the past, present and future. But because God can see our future that we can not see, does not mean that we do not decide or choose what we do. God allows us to choose what we are going to do; but He knows our choice before we know.

    Romans 11 NIV

    33 Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
    How unsearchable his judgments,
    and his paths beyond tracing out!
    34 “Who has known the mind of the Lord?
    Or who has been his counselor?”
    35 “Who has ever given to God,
    that God should repay them?”
    36 For from him and through him and for him are all things.
    To him be the glory forever! Amen.

    God’s ways are far beyond our understanding. We can not keep our hair from falling out let alone create a star. Who are we to judge God who created everything that exists.

    God proved He wants to save us by coming down from heaven and being born of a woman to become one of us. God is Life and can not die. So He became a man so that He could die to pay for our sin. God also proved that He was able to save us by His Godhood raising His human body from the dead.

    Ps 25: 14 The Lord confides in those who fear him;


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