As The Tree Falls So It Lies

"And as death leaves us, so judgment finds us," is the home-brewed method of mis-quoting the language of Solomon. There is no such text or idea in the Bible, nor anything like it. The language referred to reads thus:

"If the tree fall toward the south, or toward the north, in the place where the tree falleth, there it shall be."—Eccl. 11:3.

It has no reference whatever to death, or the end of probation, though so often quoted both in and out of the pulpit. The book of Ecclesiastes is the wail of a misanthrope, who looks back at the end of a wasted life, spent in the gratification of ambition and sensuous appetite, and from its wreck draws a lesson for those who are setting out upon the voyage which he has ended. In the eleventh chapter, he counsels men to prepare for misfortunes before they come, and in this counsel is embodied the advice of the text, which may thus be paraphrased: "It never rains but it pours; and when the wind has blown over the trees you have planted with such care, that is the end of them; there is no putting them up again."

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