I’ve started reading Ecclesiastes. Most stay away from this book due to its gloominess. It is written by Solomon, King David’s son, who asked the Lord for wisdom. He is considered to be the wisest man who ever lived. He wrote Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon. As I began to study, I pondered the reason this book gets tagged as negative and gloomy. I think it is because this book was written from the perspective of ‘Under the Sun.’ It is an expose’ of what it is like to live the human life without an eternal perspective. It gives us a view of life without heaven or eternity in view and how every part of life suffers from emptiness without the Lord in it.
Basically this book relays the message that we must have a God-centered worldview because everything matters when God is in it and nothing does when He isn’t. How great a difference it makes when we live in Christ rather than just under the sun!
Ecclesiastes 1:3-4 What does man gain by all the toil
at which he toils under the sun? A generation goes, and a generation comes,
but the earth remains forever.
Without an eternal perspective men and women work to live and it’s a life without purpose and the cycle continues with each generation.
Ecclesiastes 1: 5-8a The sun rises, and the sun goes down,
and hastens to the place where it rises.
6 The wind blows to the south
and goes around to the north;
around and around goes the wind,
and on its circuits the wind returns.
7 All streams run to the sea,
but the sea is not full;
to the place where the streams flow,
there they flow again.
8 All things are full of weariness;
a man cannot utter it.
Without a view from heaven that all creation reflects the glory of God – it just simply illustrates that we live in a weary cycle that goes on and on and on. Where is the new day? or the new thing? So it seems, we can deduce from this book, that to know Christ is the secret to ‘all things new.’
Ecclesiastes 1:8b-9 the eye is not satisfied with seeing,
nor the ear filled with hearing.
9 What has been is what will be,
and what has been done is what will be done,
and there is nothing new under the sun.
Absent of an eternal perspective we find ourselves in a monotonous cycle – it’s much like living ‘groundhog day.’ Its a never ending repetition to which men and women have tried to figure out without God.
Ecclesiastes 1:13-14 And I applied my heart to seek and to search out by wisdom all that is done under heaven. It is an unhappy business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. 14 I have seen everything that is done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind.
Men and women with all their constructs and good ideas, look inward to seek and to search, they dive within to their own psyches. They call it “going deep” and they delve within to find and unpack all that is happening from the perspective of self. They try so hard to understand and yet it is just an unhappy business. It is a burdensome task to find out all there is to understand from within, because we are sorely lacking! Our pride, self-reliance, and self-love blind us. They give us darkness for light without Christ.
Ecclesiastes 1:17 And I applied my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly. I perceived that this also is but a striving after wind.
For all that inward searching, to seek to know and understand, we only find madness and folly because inward searching without an eternal perspective yields only frustration. There are too many gaps and spaces in logic and understand when there is no understanding and perspective of the God of heaven and His presence in the earth.