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Ecclesiastes is the most puzzling and depressing book in the Bible. The reason is that the key word, hebel in Hebrew which literally means "mist/vapour/fog", has been assumed to symbolize emptiness, and has been translated "vanity" and "meaningless". The result is a book which says that God has made everything beautiful (Ecc 3:11), then contradicts it with the heretical statement that God has given us a meaningless life (Ecc 9:9). Fobert assumes that mist, such as a morning fog, is temporary but useful as it provides moisture to the earth. However, it also hinders our perception of our surroundings. Translating hebel as "mist" and interpreting it as "temporary" and sometimes as "puzzling" renders a book, the Mist Version of Ecclesiastes, which is not confusing. Rather it looks at the best ways for godly people to cope with the many problems we meet in our earthly life, and keep our balance in a changing, puzzling and troubled temporary world. Ecclesiastes: The Mist Version is a commentary on the compilation of the Mist Version. It contains an introduction defending the proposed interpretation of hebel, an explanation of the method by which the Mist Version was compiled, a commentary which discusses the selection of words obtained from other translations and commentaries, and a study of the translation of the word hebel in other Old Testament books. It is intended as a challenge to professional translators to reconsider their interpretation of Ecclesiastes, and for others who wish to examine the rationale behind the Mist Version.
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