Solomon addresses himself as “the Preacher”. He is the one that will proclaim the spiritual 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 ?”.
Eccl 12:13-14 – Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter:
Solomon now shares with us the end lessoned learned from all his research and life experiences…
Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
Solomon’s conclusion is three-fold…
- fear God – recognize His greatness and His authority over us. Humbly recognize we cannot stand before Him of our own merit. Recognize our inward and outward sins we have committed against Him. Recognize our dangerous condition apart from His grace shown to us.
- keep his commandments – seek out, protect and follow his desires for our lives. Keep in mind He only desires what will be for our good. We only gain by following His instructions for our lives.
- these are the “whole duty” of man – Please note “duty” is not in the original manuscripts. Solomon is telling us that fearing God and keeping His commands is the “whole of man”. In others words, they should be the center of our lives. They are the whole purpose for our existence. These are our “whole” life.
These three give our lives true meaning and purpose, apart from them all of our accomplishments and life experiences are truly vain.
For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
Solomon not only shares with us the need to fear God and keep His commandments, but he also gives us a motivation to do these things. The future judgment. The Bible makes it clear that in the future every man will stand before the Lord and answer for what we have done with our lives….
2Co 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
May we all heed Solomon’s advice to us all and “fear God and keep His commands”. Folks this is what our life is all about. May we all be motivated to fear and obey Him knowing that we will stand before Him in eternity and answer for all we have done with our lives.
The first, and most important way we are to fear Him and keep His commandments is by turning from our sins and coming to Christ believing in Him as our Lord and Savior. It is through faith in Him that we will receive the forgiveness of our sins and eternal life in Him.
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|
|26.||10:1-15||A recognition of the dangers of foolishness|
|27.||10:16-17||A recognition of principles for good rulership|
|28.||10:18||A recognition of the dangers of slothfulness|
|29.||10:19||A recognition of the value of money|
|30.||11:1-6||A recognition of the need to sow our seed for the benefit of others.|
|31.||11:7-8||A recognition of the need to enjoy the days of blessings and expect the troublesome times of life.|
|32.||11:9-10||A recognition of the need to use the blessings of youth in service to the Lord.|
|33.||12:1-7||A recognition of the devastating effects of the aging process on all mankind.|
|34.||12:8-12||A recognition of the vanity of all the world’s offerings and the need to appreciate Solomon’s dedication to proclaim the truth to us.|
|35.||12:13-14||The Conclusion of The Whole Matter|
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