The book of Ecclesiastes is the most cynical book in the Bible. The title of the book comes from the Greek form of what the author called himself Hakoheleth the teacher of an assembly, or a congre¬gation, or an ecclesia hence the word ecclesiastes.
The key to the book is this man’s search for meaning.
What are we here on earth for?
What’s the point of it all?
That is what this man grapples with. Now don’t miss the most brilliant opening gambit: by a master stroke he destroys all our favourite fantasies, for this writer writes as the biographer of King Solomon.
Now Solomon had everything he could wish for, all the money in the world, more power than a man can handle, all the sex he could cope with, aesthetic satisfaction, and yet he was bored stiff. At a stroke he has des-troyed our favourite delusions, namely if only we had more money, more sex, more food, more fame, more fortune, more security we’d be happy. This man had the lot, and he concludes in his favourite phrase that everything is vanity by which he means vain, empty, giving no real lasting satisfaction. If you don’t believe me read his case against living for pleasure (or hedonism) which you find in the first eleven verses of Chapter 2. Most people, even today, think that’s what you’re here for. “You’re here to enjoy yourself.”
Now starting from that he begins to demolish, one after the other, our favourite fantasies and in the process he covers some very modern concepts. People who think they live in a clockwork universe, or fatalism, is dealt with in chapter 3. And the mistake of seeking, expecting or demanding security or certainty in this world.
From chapters 3 – 6 he explodes three of our favourite myths namely that we can get security from justice, from religion, or by living to a ripe old age. He also leaves us in no doubt that because we are made with a capacity for God nothing on this earth will ever satisfy us. He is left seeking what the Bible calls wisdom. Remember, in the Bible, wisdom doesn’t mean academic cleverness, it means learning what life is for and how to live it. So in the later chapters of the book he asks, “what is it that makes sense of everything we experience on this earth?” He asks, “where can it be found?” then, “Is it worth finding?” “What does it do?” “What difference does it make?” In the end when you collect up all the pieces of the wit and wisdom of Solomon, you’re left with the idea that men are born with a capacity for life which does not end at the grave and knowing this, having all the wisdom does not satisfy our need.
Life’s inside secret needs to be embodied in a relationship which includes the wise and the foolish, the law abiding and the lawless, with authority which has compassion which can save others, but which cannot save itself. Now where has the world ever come across
a man like that…‚Ķ..just one, and His name is Jesus.

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Thought 4 The Day

You can be perfectly free to go to your Bible with the assurance that you will find Jesus Christ everywhere in its pages. (A. W. Tozer)

Through the year calendar

December 2010
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Click on any previous date in the above calendar to read the relevant Through The Year post
Believe it or Not
Sometimes you just can't believe it's true!
A Word in Time
Life has a funny way of connecting us all!
Cooke's Tour of The Bible
Frank Cooke's journey through the Old and New Testaments
Take 2
Some useful life lessons
Mind Stretchers
An open mind is a healthy mind!
Bible Bloopers
Even the Bible has its funnies!