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Ecclesiastes 10:10 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— If the iron be blunt, and one do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom [is] profitable to direct.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— If the axe is dull and he does not sharpen [its] edge, then he must exert more strength. Wisdom has the advantage of giving success.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— If the iron is blunt, and he doth not whet the edge, then must he use more strength: but wisdom [is] profitable to direct.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— If the iron be blunt, and one do not whet the edge, then must he apply more strength; but wisdom is profitable to give success.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— If, blunt, be the iron, and, himself, hath not sharpened, the edge, then, much force, must he apply,—but, an advantage for giving success, is wisdom.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— If the iron hath been blunt, And he the face hath not sharpened, Then doth he increase strength, And wisdom [is] advantageous to make right.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— If the iron be blunt, and be not as before, but be made blunt, with much labour it shall be sharpened: and after industry shall follow wisdom.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— If the yron be blunt, and he doe not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisedome [is] profitable to direct.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— If the axe-head should fall off, then the man troubles his countenance, and he must put forth more strength: and [in that case] skill is of no advantage to a man.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom [is] profitable to direct.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
If x518
(0518) Complement
A primitive particle; used very widely as demonstrative, lo!; interrogitive, whether?; or conditional, if, although; also Oh that!, when; hence as a negative, not.
the iron 1270
{1270} Prime
Perhaps from the root of H1269; iron (as cutting); by extension an iron implement.
be blunt, 6949
{6949} Prime
A primitive root; to be dull.
<8765> Grammar
Stem - Piel (See H8840)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 2121
and he x1931
(1931) Complement
The second form is the feminine beyond the Pentateuch; a primitive word, the third person pronoun singular, he (she or it); only expressed when emphatic or without a verb; also (intensively) self, or (especially with the article) the same; sometimes (as demonstrative) this or that; occasionally (instead of copula) as or are.
do not x3808
(3808) Complement
lo; a primitive particle; not (the simple or abstract negation); by implication no; often used with other particles.
whet 7043
{7043} Prime
A primitive root; to be (causatively make) light, literally (swift, small, sharp, etc.) or figuratively (easy, trifling, vile, etc.).
<8773> Grammar
Stem - Pilpel (See H8842)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 19
the edge, 6440
{6440} Prime
Plural (but always used as a singular) of an unused noun (פָּנֶה paneh, {paw-neh'}; from H6437); the face (as the part that turns); used in a great variety of applications (literally and figuratively); also (with prepositional prefix) as a preposition (before, etc.).
then must he put y1396
[1396] Standard
A primitive root; to be strong; by implication to prevail, act insolently.
<8762> Grammar
Stem - Piel (See H8840)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 2447
to x1396
(1396) Complement
A primitive root; to be strong; by implication to prevail, act insolently.
more strength: 2428
{2428} Prime
From H2342; probably a force, whether of men, means or other resources; an army, wealth, virtue, valor, strength.
but wisdom 2451
{2451} Prime
From H2449; wisdom (in a good sense).
[is] profitable 3504
{3504} Prime
From H3498; preeminence, gain.
to direct. 3787
{3787} Prime
A primitive root properly to be straight or right; by implication to be acceptable; also to succeed or proser.
<8687> Grammar
Stem - Hiphil (See H8818)
Mood - Infinitive (See H8812)
Count - 1162
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Ecclesiastes 10:10

_ _ iron ... blunt — in “cleaving wood” (Ecclesiastes 10:9), answering to the “fool set in dignity” (Ecclesiastes 10:6), who wants sharpness. More force has then to be used in both cases; but “force” without judgment “endangers” one’s self. Translate, “If one hath blunted his iron” [Maurer]. The preference of rash to judicious counselors, which entailed the pushing of matters by force, proved to be the “hurt” of Rehoboam (1 Kings 12:1-33).

_ _ wisdom is profitable to direct — to a prosperous issue. Instead of forcing matters by main “strength” to one’s own hurt (Ecclesiastes 9:16, Ecclesiastes 9:18).

Matthew Henry's Commentary

See commentary on Ecclesiastes 10:4-11.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Ecclesiastes 10:10

Wisdom — As wisdom instructs a man in the smallest matters, so it is useful for a man's direction in all weighty affairs.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Ecclesiastes 10:10

If the iron is blunt, and he doth not whet the edge, then must he use more (f) strength: but wisdom [is] profitable to direct.

(f) Without wisdom, whatever a man takes in hand, turns to his own hurt.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance

Ecclesiastes 10:15 The labour of the foolish wearieth every one of them, because he knoweth not how to go to the city.
Ecclesiastes 9:15-17 Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that same poor man. ... The words of wise [men are] heard in quiet more than the cry of him that ruleth among fools.
Genesis 41:33-39 Now therefore let Pharaoh look out a man discreet and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt. ... And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, [there is] none so discreet and wise as thou [art]:
Exodus 18:19-23 Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, and God shall be with thee: Be thou for the people to God-ward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God: ... If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee [so], then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace.
1 Kings 3:9 Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people?
1 Chronicles 12:32 And of the children of Issachar, [which were men] that had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do; the heads of them [were] two hundred; and all their brethren [were] at their commandment.
2 Chronicles 23:4-11 This [is] the thing that ye shall do; A third part of you entering on the sabbath, of the priests and of the Levites, [shall be] porters of the doors; ... Then they brought out the king's son, and put upon him the crown, and [gave him] the testimony, and made him king. And Jehoiada and his sons anointed him, and said, God save the king.
Matthew 10:16 Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.
Acts 6:1-9 And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration. ... Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called [the synagogue] of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen.
Acts 15:2-21 When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question. ... For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every sabbath day.
Romans 16:19 For your obedience is come abroad unto all [men]. I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil.
1 Corinthians 14:20 Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men.
Ephesians 5:15-17 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, ... Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord [is].
Colossians 4:5 Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time.
James 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all [men] liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
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Chain-Reference Bible Search

Gn 41:33. Ex 18:19. 1K 3:9. 1Ch 12:32. 2Ch 23:4. Ec 9:15; 10:15. Mt 10:16. Ac 6:1; 15:2. Ro 16:19. 1Co 14:20. Ep 5:15. Col 4:5. Jm 1:5.

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