New American Standard Version. The end of the matter; all has been heard. Thesis: Eccl 11:5 helps us to see that 3 things are God’s Work. Both Solomon and Paul (and other New Testament writers) understand that something is very wrong in the world in which we live. Paul understands that all we see around us is temporary and that the world in its present form will pass away with Christ’s return and that there will be a new heavens and earth. There are moments in which the writer appears to be plumbing the depths of despair and, at other times, he appears to encourage the reader to live a full and joyful life. Solomon observes the natural order, the sun, the wind and the streams and discovers weariness and meaninglessness even here. Solomon intends us to feel the extent of our fall and the futility of the human condition. Join us for King Solomon’s dramatic account of the time he turned from God and looked for satisfaction in the world. There will be days of darkness... a. But when thinking about God and his ways, that’s really all we can say. 10Is there a thing of which it is said, but the sea is not full; It has been already The root of this word is, however, used elsewhere in relation to Solomon. There is nothing new. of later things yet to be Solomon looks at the world with his eyes wide open as it truly is and calls us to do the same. Ecclesiastes 11:5-6 6182 ignorance, human situation 8All things are full of weariness; Rather Solomon limits his enquiry to this fallen world with all of its frustration, difficulty and toil. Go on to: Ephesians 2:4 1The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened-not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 4A generation goes, and a generation comes, The body is formed around the bones. How should we take Solomon’s observation that ‘there is nothing new under the sun’? It is important that we consider carefully what Solomon intends when he considers all that occurs ‘under the sun’ in order to understand the extent of his conclusion that ‘all is vanity’ (v. 2). Ecclesiastes is a difficult book; difficult to translate, difficult to interpret and difficult to reconcile with the broader canon of Scripture. All is vanity. God works with great attention to every detail of our I think Solomon has the same all in view as when he writes, ‘all is vanity’. v. Solomon intends us to feel the futility of ambition (in the pursuit of legacy and fame). The starting point of this twenty-two part series, then, is to ask why believers in the light of the revelation of the New Testament and the cross should study the book of Ecclesiastes. 2 Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! We know this to be true, for most of us have felt this sense of weariness. Most Recent Sermons Old Testament Sermons New Testament Sermons Podcast By Topic By Verse ... – Ecclesiastes 11:5-6. (Matthew 6:10) God tells us through (Ecclesiastes 1:4). The idea expressed here is one of openhanded generosity. —Ecclesiastes 11:5 (KJV) Thoughts on Today’s Verse… I don’t know. Consider. For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Over and against this, Solomon understands that mankind fundamentally does not change. There is here, I think, a reference to the Genesis account of creation and the fall. (1 Corinthians 7:31). The spirit is like the wind. vi. present in that small, dark place. But Solomon’s target is greater than the mere ‘nine to five’ grind. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. Some commentators have erroneously argued that Ecclesiastes promotes a secular outlook on life. Solomon recognises that such endeavours are futile and, as an entire generation passes from the earth, the earth continues to revolve on its axis unmoved. Our lives are but a vapour, a mist, fleeting, transitory and insubstantial. nor will there be any remembrance We constantly crave originality and the new. organizations to promote compassionate and responsible living. Consider, for example, Paul’s warning that believers abstain from becoming involved in the sinfulness of this world in which we live, Paul’s exhortation is grounded upon a fundamental truth regarding this present world. iv. Instead, Jesus urges us to lay up heavenly treasure. “Man has tried to be happy without God, and this book shows the absurdity of the attempt.” That’s what we hear from Dr. J. Vernon McGee as we begin our study of Ecclesiastes. The 11There is no remembrance of former things, It is important, as believers, that we understand this. For instances: Creation of body is God’s work ("how the body is formed in mother’s womb") Many translations of this verse say, “(know not) how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child (KJV)”. Indeed, elsewhere Solomon contrasts the human endeavour to innovate with the God who is able to do whatsoever he pleases. The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. around and around goes the wind, Both Paul and Solomon understand  that creation is deeply flawed and both of them understand that this futility originates in the garden and in accordance with the judgement and decree of a just, holy and supreme God. Think about this in terms of sex, money, fame, power. Ecclesiastes: Youth and the Prospect of Vanity Posted on December 4, 2017 | Pastor: Tim Karr. We do not despair when we see the flawed universe in which we live; we understand that God has rendered the world thus. Solomon intends us to feel the weight of the brokenness of creation. All of us crave significance; we want to feel as though we have made a difference. or how the body is formed 11:5 Or know how life (or the spirit) / enters the body being formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things. The baby is carefully formed and every part mindfully put 7All streams run to the sea, Ecclesiastes 11. This also is the exhortation of Jesus, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. I take the first five of these reasons from the prologue and the final two reasons from the final chapter of the book. But here you tell me to diversify. future. you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. This anxiety then leads to bizarre and unhelpful readings and interpretations. If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, iii. Thank you for visiting all-creatures.org. In Ecclesiastes, we hear the skeptical voice of “the teacher.” He observes that living by the book of Proverbs doesn’t always bring positive results. Solomon uses the prologue to set out his terms of reference, his scope of enquiry. For who hopes for what he sees? Invest in Many Ventures - Ship your grain across the sea; after many days you may receive a return. We are told two things that help us identify the voice behind Ecclesiastes. crying, or pain, or death. Who makes all things. Just as you do not know the path of the wind and how bones are formed in the womb of the pregnant woman, so you do not know the activity of God who makes all things. The first people listed in the Hebrews' roll-call of 'faith', lived before the flood. to the place where the streams flow, Solomon anatomises fallen creation and human existence in minute detail and, having completed his task and concluded that ‘all is vanity’ he reaches the conclusion of his conclusion. May be copied only for personal use or by not-for-profit This verse is a warning against procrastination. Spirit is a force that moves swiftly throughout our lives, accomplishing beauty in that one life. I think not. nor the ear filled with hearing. in the ages before us. A web site sponsored by Solomon feels, and wants us to feel, that the vanity that we perceive running through the human condition is imprinted into the very fabric of creation. vanity of vanities! This has led commentators to take widely differing views with regards to the overall meaning of the book, some arguing that the writer is an agnostic, others that he is orthodox; some that this book is pessimist in its view of life and others that the writer is an optimist. VIII. www.all-creatures.org. Whether this is true or not, it is clear that Solomon wants us to see the world as it truly is so that we might shun the temptation to make creation or created things our ultimate treasure. vii. into the destiny God has for us. “See, this is new”? Invest in seven ventures, yes, in eight; you do not know what disaster may come upon the land. As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things. People remain fickle, selfish, greedy, cruel, lustful and self-interested creatures. This phrase, Cast your bread upon the waters, was a proverb in Israel for what looked like wasteful expenditure. I intend, therefore, to set out seven reasons why Christians should study the book of Ecclesiastes. The wind, referred to in this verse is the Spirit of God. nor the ear filled with hearing. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. The language is unusual, there are words and phrases that are not used anywhere else in Scripture. For in this hope we were saved. The truth is that Solomon does have a particular application in mind, but he makes us wait until the final chapter of Ecclesiastes. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. It is significant that Solomon refers to himself as ‘the Preacher’ (other versions translate this as ‘Teacher’ (NIV)). We can be sure that there is great value in reading, studying and preaching the words of this book, because this is how Solomon intends Ecclesiastes to be approached. and goes around to the north; Click here to stream or download the podcast of this sermon. Solomon intends us to live our lives under the sun with our hearts inclined heavenwards. Or, ‘There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil.’ (Ecclesiastes 2:24), seems to run in the face of other biblical text which exhort sobriety and warn against gluttony. material whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owners. Sermons. Still, we leave the big question unanswered. Text Sermons : ~Other Speakers A-F : Dan Biser : Ecclesiastes 11:5 Open as PDF " As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that iswith child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all." We see endless activity with no resolution; Solomon concludes that this is meaningless. 11There is no remembrance of former things, The sun rises, the sun sets and the sun rises again and yet, fundamentally, nothing changes. We are a fallen people living in a fallen world and Solomon wants us to feel the weight of that. with child. Interestingly, the New Testament does not quote directly from Ecclesiastes. These are speaking of some of the mysteries of God. God’s purposes, plans and holy degrees cannot be thwarted nor frustrated. 11:5?" Is Solomon imagining a world (as some commentators argue) where God has lifted his hands from the steering wheel? reprinted material must contain proper credits and web site link This is, I think, equivalent to Solomon’s exhortation. The themes are difficult to pin down. No one would take good bread and throw it in the river. 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