I have tested all this with wisdom; I said, “I will be wise!” But it was beyond my reach. Bible see other translations

“but it was beyond my reach.” The “it” refers back to wisdom. The Sage starts to test the things in life by the wisdom that he has (Ecc. 1:13), and he makes the decision that he will be wise. But in the end, the true wisdom and understanding of life was still beyond him, and his conclusion fits perfectly with the next verse, Ecclesiastes 7:24.

Commentary for: Ecclesiastes 7:23