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Ecclesiastes: Chapter 1 Verses 4-11

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SIH TOTT ICONWhat Is Your Life If Not Lived For The Lord? (Part 3)

 

 

INTRODUCTION:

Solomon addresses himself as “the Preacher”.   He is the one that will proclaim the spritiual truths of God to those in his nation and to Christians throughout time.

Keep in mind, Solomon learned these truths by trying to find the meaning to life through experiencing all this world has to offer.  Solomon was uniquely suited to learn these lessons and share these truths with the people of God…

First of all, very few men possess sufficient wealth and power to be able to sample all this world has to offer (1 Kings 10:23).

Secondly, only Solomon and a few others throughout time, have been universally respected causing his teachings to be taken very seriously and thoughtfully by all (1 Kings 4:30-34).  (Keep in mind, even Christ Himself and His teachings were rejected by many of those around Him.)

Solomon was God’s man, in God’s place, at God’s time, by God’s grace, to learn this most important truth and proclaim it with authority to those he loved.  May we all listen carefully as Solomon reveals to us the true meaning to life and answer the question…  “What Is Our Life If Not Lived for The Lord ?”.

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Eccl 1:4-11 –

“One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.  

The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose.  The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.  All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again.  All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it: the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.  The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. 

Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.  There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.”

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

After explaining that all that this world has to offer (“under the sun”) is short lived and worthless, Solomon now gives us several examples of life cycles to prove this to his readers.

In each of these cycles, please notice that there is constant change in the midst of continual existence…

One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.  

 

Example #1 – The cycle of the human generations.

Mankind is born, matures, gives birth to the next generation, grows old and dies.  Then the cycle begins once again.  Humans constantly exist on the earth, however different men exist in each generation.

 

The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose. 

Example #2 – The cycle of the sun.

The sun follows a seemingly endless daily cycle as well, it rises in the morning sets in the evening and then begins the cycle all over again the following morning only it holds a slightly different position in the sky than the day before.

 

The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.

Example #3 – The cycle of the wind.

The wind blows in a cyclical nature as well.  Based upon the seasons and type of weather that exists the wind blows from various directions.  These changes in the wind are basically consistent and cyclical with various types of change constantly taking place.

 

All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again. 

Example #4 – The Cycle of The Water

Water flows from the mountains through the rivers into the seas and oceans, it then evaporates in the air, falls as rain and snow onto the mountains and the cycle begins once again.

All of these cyclical examples from nature teach us the same basic truth… life and nature continue to exist in a consistent, cyclical nature that endures constant changes.  From a human standpoint, these cyclical events have no lasting purpose for its existence.

This is genuine vanity.  Much like the bubble that exists, rises to the top of the water, and then disappears, only for the next bubble to form and the cycle to start again.

 

All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it: the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing. 

Men have exercised much labor in attempting to understand and recognize these cycles that exist. Yet, they fall short in fully understanding the purpose behind them. They cannot explain it, although they see it take place they do not really recognize the purpose behind them.  Although they hear many theories and explanations, the truth cannot be found on earth.

  

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.  Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.

Based upon human observation (limited to the earthly realm) these cycles will never cease. They will simply repeat themselves over and over again.  Likewise, many theories of their purpose are presented throughout time and yet there is no truth found among them.  They are all simply error filled guesses that are repeated and recycled and fall short of Godly truth.

Truly in the observation of these cycles, and in the explanation of them, there is nothing new under the sun.

 

There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.

What is, perhaps, the saddest point about these cycles?

Because of their changing, cyclical nature, they are easily forgotten with the next cycle replacing the previous one.  No one remembers most sunrises, breezes that blow, or rain storms.

But, especially sad is that many do not remember the generation that has gone before them.  Once again, Solomon has shown to us why, if we leave our Lord out of the equation, everything is simply vain.

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Folks, without Christ, all of nature, all of the offerings of this world, all of the teachings and philosophies of man, and especially, all of our very lives are totally, thoroughly, and absolutely vain.

May the Lord graciously help us to seek fulfillment and lasting joy for our lives in Him and not “everything under the sun”.

 

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