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A time to be born and a time to die,

a time to plant

and a time

to uproot what was planted,

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There are very few things in life that we can control, rather we must do what we can within the confines of God’s appointed times and seasons. For instance, we cannot control life or death.

We should plant when it is time to plant, but planting season does not go on indefinitely, there is an appointed time for uprooting what has been planted, and you better not stay in planting mode when the uprooting time comes.


1: “a time for uprooting”

It appears that Solomon was not talking about the process of planting and harvesting grains because the grain stalks were cut and then plowed under. Rather he was thinking about things like vegetables, fruit trees, shade trees, and flowering or exotic shrubs. Some of those, like some vegetables, have a cycle that ends with pulling them out of the ground by the roots, which is exactly what this verb means. It is likely that Solomon personally experienced the need to uproot some of the trees and shrubs he had planted. This saddened him because trees and shrubs take so long to grow, but he found himself needing to make a change. This was one example among many of the ways that God showed Solomon that our best laid plans are not permanent and often need to be altered.