Previous Verse Next Verse


I saw that all the living who walk under the sun [were]

Go to footnote number

with the youth, the second

Go to footnote number

who stands in his place.


I observed that everyone

on earth

was supportive of

the youthful successor

who rose to take the place of the old king.


1: “were”

As is often the case in Hebrew, the verb must be assumed. Some have added the word “along” to get the idea of “along with” instead of adding a verb. Context seems to favor the addition of a verb of being “were.”

2: “second”

The word used here literally means “the second.” It can also mean “again, or next” and a few other related ideas such as “successor”. There are two ways to interpret this:

1) as a reference to the wise youth introduced in the previous verse,

2) to yet another youth who replaces the first youth.

The details with which the first youth was introduced places significant emphasis on him and thus it would appear that this verse is also talking about the same youth as the successor to the old, foolish king. If it is referring to yet another youth, there is no grammatical indication that such is the case, and no information is given about him, even though the whole world seems to follow him. A second youth seems to be quite a stretch and is not the most natural way to interpret the passage. To understand the word “second” as “successor” to the old king is both natural and contextual.