We have all made foolish mistakes in life; some have been more costly than others. In this section of the book of Ecclesiastes, Qoheleth displays the great cost of a little folly while teaching us the value of a course of wisdom as we live life under the sun.
The entire book of Ecclesiastes is Solomon’s application of wisdom to search out the meaning of life under the sun (1:13). Of all men who ever lived, Solomon was given wisdom which surpassed all who were over Jerusalem before him (1:16, 2:9); yet even the application of such great wisdom left the Preacher without answers concerning the things of God. Although the wisest of men may never fully understand the ways of God, nevertheless, wisdom is important to living life under the sun; and this text, as so many in Ecclesiastes, continues to deal mainly with just that, our earthly existence. It is significant that in these 26 verses, God is not mentioned once. But there is human value to using wisdom navigate our way through life in this dangerous world.