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Ecclesiastes: Chapter 9 Verses 13-18

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SIH TOTT ICON What Is Your Life If Not Lived For The Lord? (Part 29)

 

 

 

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 9:13-18

(13)  This wisdom have I seen also under the sun, and it seemed great unto me:  (14)  There was a little city, and few men within it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it:  (15)  Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that same poor man.  (16)  Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.  (17)  The words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry of him that ruleth among fools.  (18)  Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroyeth much good. 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

This wisdom have I seen also under the sun, and it seemed great unto me:  There was a little city, and few men within it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it:  Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that same poor man. 

As Solomon observed the role of one seemingly insignificant woman who saved the city of Abel which was on the brink of defeat, he was reminded of the great value of wisdom…

2Sa 20:15-22 – “And they came and besieged him in Abel of Bethmaachah, and they cast up a bank against the city, and it stood in the trench: and all the people that were with Joab battered the wall, to throw it down.  Then cried a wise woman out of the city, Hear, hear; say, I pray you, unto Joab, Come near hither, that I may speak with thee.  And when he was come near unto her, the woman said, Art thou Joab? And he answered, I am he. Then she said unto him, Hear the words of thine handmaid. And he answered, I do hear.  Then she spake, saying, They were wont to speak in old time, saying, They shall surely ask counsel at Abel: and so they ended the matter.  I am one of them that are peaceable and faithful in Israel: thou seekest to destroy a city and a mother in Israel: why wilt thou swallow up the inheritance of the LORD?  And Joab answered and said, Far be it, far be it from me, that I should swallow up or destroy.   The matter is not so: but a man of mount Ephraim, Sheba the son of Bichri by name, hath lifted up his hand against the king, even against David: deliver him only, and I will depart from the city. And the woman said unto Joab, Behold, his head shall be thrown to thee over the wall.   Then the woman went unto all the people in her wisdom. And they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and cast it out to Joab. And he blew a trumpet, and they retired from the city, every man to his tent. And Joab returned to Jerusalem unto the king.”

This poor woman exercised wisdom by searching out the reason behind Joab’s attack on her city and came up with a solution that saved the inhabitants of her city while satisfying Joab’s demands.

 

Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.  The words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry of him that ruleth among fools.  Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroyeth much good. 

Based upon this event, and probably others, Solomon comes to the conclusion that wisdom holds much more value than brute force.  The words of men who speak wisely without drawing attention to themselves should be given much more weight than the words of foolish rulers who cry aloud, attracting attention and demanding to be heard by all.

However, the world does not recognize this principle so it rejects wisdom.  Many times the problems that face this world could easily be resolved through wisdom, however, they remain unresolved because the “wise way” is not the “method of choice” in today’s society.  Our foolish rulers scream and demand to be heard and followed when most of them are leading us down the path of spiritual defeat.   These type of fools can do much harm to our world and to the wisdom that quietly resides in it.

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Folks, in today’s society we need to take heed to the words of wise men, not necessarily those who possess great authority, fame, or riches.   Sadly, it seems as if these are the very people that our society seeks to hear and follow.

May the Lord raise up not only Godly men of wisdom but an attitude of willingness to hear and follow their words in the face of the multitude of trials that face our country, churches, and families.

Solomon’s pursuit of the meaning of life included:

 

1. 2:1-3 The pursuit of carnal desires  (the base pleasures found in a fallen world)
2. 2:4-11 The pursuit of material possessions through human labors
3. 2:12-17 The pursuit of worldly wisdom, madness and folly
4. 2:18-23 The pursuit of responsible (frugal & wise) living to retain worldly goods Prt #1
5. 2:24-26 The pursuit of responsible (frugal & wise) living to retain worldly goods Prt #2
6. 3:1-8 A recognition of the Lord’s sovereign control over all life events   Prt #1
7. 3:9-15 A recognition of the Lord’s sovereign control over all life events   Prt #2
8. 3:16-22 A recognition of our need of Christ to see the nature and purpose of our life.
9. 4:1-3 A recognition that never being born is better than the sufferings of this life.
10. 4:4-16 The pursuit of earthly wisdom, diligence and living responsibly
11. 5:1-7 The pursuit of worldly vows, contracts, and promises
12. 5:8-17 The pursuit of worldly riches
13. 5:18-20 A recognition that enjoyment of this earthly life is God’s gracious gift to man
14. 6:1-2 A recognition of man’s inability to enjoy that which God has given to him.
15. 6:3-10 A recognition of man’s sinfulness, mortality and need of humility before God
16. 6:11-12 A recognition of the vanity of all that lies under the sun.
17. 7:1-10 The pursuit of prideful living
18. 7:11-23 A recognition of the value of Godly wisdom
19. 7:24-29 The pursuit of Godly enabling
20. 8:1-5 The pursuit of proper submission to authority  based upon Godly wisdom
21. 8:6-15 A recognition man needs Godly wisdom because he cannot control his own life nor see the eternal benefits of service to the Lord.
22. 8:16-17 A recognition that men cannot fully understand the work of God on earth
23. 9:1-3 A recognition that righteous and wicked share common life events
24. 9:4-12 A recognition that life is better then death
25. 9:13-18 A recognition of the excellence and rejection of Godly wisdom

 

 

 

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