“The race is not for the swift nor the battle for the strong”

--Informant Info--
Nationality: American
Age: 18
Occupation: student
Residence: LA
Date of Performance/Collection: 04/22/20
Primary Language: English
Other Language(s):

The original script is found in the Bible but originally written in Hebrew. “I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, not the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.” Ecclesia 9:11

Full proverb: The race is not for the swift nor the battle for the strong

M: In church we like to say “the race is not for the swift nor the battle for the strong”

My interpretation is that the fastest one doesn’t always win the race. Stuff happens. God (or fate) determines the outcome of the race. This is why we tell our children stories like the tortoise and the hare. It’s about the principles that they teach. The goal is to maintain humility even anticipated victory because the outcome in this world is the one thing we will never have control over. What this proverb teaches people is to drop their sense of entitlement but still hold onto their hope.