Ecclesiastes 7:29

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Puritan Board Junior
Ecclesiastes 7:29 says, “Behold, I have found only this, that God made men upright, but they sought out many devices.”

What is meant by "devices"?

Presbyterian Deacon

Puritan Board Graduate
חִשְּׁבֹנֹ֥ות speaks of a device, or invention, a contrivance.

Matthew Henry says, "It is lamentable that man, whom God made upright, has found out so many ways to render himself wicked and miserable."

John Gill writes: "Sins are the inventions of men, and these are many and numerous; they sought to gratify their senses, on which followed innumerable evils; and then they sought for shifts and evasions to excuse themselves; the man shifting it from himself, and throwing the blame upon the woman, and the woman upon the serpent: and so sinning, they lost the knowledge they had; their righteousness and holiness, the rectitude of their nature; the moral freedom of their will to that which is good, and their power to perform it; and they lost the presence of God, and communion with him:..."

Thus it seems that the "inventions" maybe identified as the sinful acts of man in general, but I think in particular, the reference in the verse connects to verse 26 (in the context) where it seems to liken man's "inventions" to the bitter fruits Solomon experienced through breaking God's marriage law regarding the joining of one man to "one" woman.
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