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Ecclesiastes 3:18-22

New American Standard Bible

Chapter 3

18 I said to myself regarding the sons of mankind, 'God is testing them in order for them to see that they are as animals, they to themselves.' 19 For the fate of the sons of mankind and the fate of animals is the same. As one dies, so dies the other; indeed, they all have the same breath, and there is no advantage for mankind over animals, for all is futility. 20 All go to the same place. All came from the dust and all return to the dust. 21 Who knows that the spirit of the sons of mankind ascends upward and the spirit of the animal descends downward to the earth? 22 I have seen that nothing is better than when a person is happy in his activities, for that is his lot. For who will bring him to see what will occur after him?
King James Version

Chapter 3

18 I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of men, that God might manifest them, and that they might see that they themselves are beasts. 19 For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast: for all is vanity. 20 All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again. 21 Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth? 22 Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better, than that a man should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion: for who shall bring him to see what shall be after him?
Christian Standard Bible

Chapter 3

18 I said to myself, "This happens so that God may test the children of Adam and they may see for themselves that they are like animals." 19 For the fate of the children of Adam and the fate of animals is the same. As one dies, so dies the other; they all have the same breath. People have no advantage over animals since everything is futile. 20 All are going to the same place; all come from dust, and all return to dust. 21 Who knows if the spirits of the children of Adam go upward and the spirits of animals go downward to the earth? 22 I have seen that there is nothing better than for a person to enjoy his activities because that is his reward. For who can enable him to see what will happen after he dies?
New Living Translation

Chapter 3

18 I also thought about the human condition--how God proves to people that they are like animals. 19 For people and animals share the same fate--both breathe and both must die. So people have no real advantage over the animals. How meaningless! 20 Both go to the same place--they came from dust and they return to dust. 21 For who can prove that the human spirit goes up and the spirit of animals goes down into the earth? 22 So I saw that there is nothing better for people than to be happy in their work. That is why we are here! No one will bring us back from death to enjoy life after we die.
English Standard Version

Chapter 3

18 I said in my heart with regard to the children of man that God is testing them that they may see that they themselves are but beasts. 19 For what happens to the children of man and what happens to the beasts is the same; as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts, for all is vanity. 20 All go to one place. All are from the dust, and to dust all return. 21 Who knows whether the spirit of man goes upward and the spirit of the beast goes down into the earth? 22 So I saw that there is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his work, for that is his lot. Who can bring him to see what will be after him?
New International Version

Chapter 3

18 I also said to myself, 'As for humans, God tests them so that they may see that they are like the animals. 19 Surely the fate of human beings is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath; humans have no advantage over animals. Everything is meaningless. 20 All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return. 21 Who knows if the human spirit rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?'
22 So I saw that there is nothing better for a person than to enjoy their work, because that is their lot. For who can bring them to see what will happen after them?