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Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

Labor is Beneficial When Its Rewards Are Shared

4:9 Two people are better than one,

because they can reap 1  more benefit 2  from their labor.

4:10 For if they fall, one will help his companion up,

but pity 3  the person who falls down and has no one to help him up.

4:11 Furthermore, if two lie down together, they can keep each other warm,

but how can one person keep warm by himself?

4:12 Although an assailant may overpower 4  one person,

two can withstand him.

Moreover, a three-stranded cord is not quickly broken.

1 tn Heb “they have.”

2 tn Heb “a good reward.”

3 tn Heb “woe to him.”

4 tn The verbal root תקף means “to overpower; to prevail over” e.g., Job 14:20; 15:24; Eccl 4:12; 6:10 (HALOT 1786 s.v. תקף).

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