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Ecclesiastes 1 - NIV

Everything Is Meaningless

1 The words of the Teacher,[a] son of David, king in Jerusalem:


“Meaningless! Meaningless!”
says the Teacher.
“Utterly meaningless!
Everything is meaningless.”


What do people gain from all their labors
at which they toil under the sun?

4 Generations come and generations go,
but the earth remains forever.

5 The sun rises and the sun sets,
and hurries back to where it rises.

6 The wind blows to the south
and turns to the north;
round and round it goes,
ever returning on its course.

7 All streams flow into the sea,
yet the sea is never full.
To the place the streams come from,
there they return again.

8 All things are wearisome,
more than one can say.
The eye never has enough of seeing,
nor the ear its fill of hearing.

9 What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun.

10 Is there anything of which one can say,
“Look! This is something new”?
It was here already, long ago;
it was here before our time.

11 No one remembers the former generations,
and even those yet to come
will not be remembered
by those who follow them.

Wisdom Is Meaningless

12 I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem.

13 I applied my mind to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under the heavens. What a heavy burden God has laid on mankind!

14 I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.


What is crooked cannot be straightened;
what is lacking cannot be counted.

16 I said to myself, “Look, I have increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge.”

17 Then I applied myself to the understanding of wisdom, and also of madness and folly, but I learned that this, too, is a chasing after the wind.


For with much wisdom comes much sorrow;
the more knowledge, the more grief.


a. Ecclesiastes 1:1 Or the leader of the assembly; also in verses 2 and 12

Sermons on Ecclesiastes 1 More sermons: Ecclesiastes 1

Reverend Cooper McWhirter avatar
An Age of Nonsense: "The Failure of 'Ism's"
Shared by: Reverend Cooper McWhirter on Sep, 2016
Summary: An Age when our "Yes" no longer means yes, and our "NO" no longer means no. When right is wrong and wrong is right!
John Hamby avatar
The Quest For Wisdom
Shared by: John Hamby on Mar, 2016
Summary: Solomon continues his search for meaning and purpose in life.
Denomination: Baptist
Views: 439
John Hamby avatar
The Search For Meaning
Shared by: John Hamby on Feb, 2016
Summary: Principally and introduction to the study and the exposition of first eleven verses
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-11
Denomination: Baptist
Views: 998
Ronnie Miller avatar
Time according to God. ....Ecclesiastes 3:1 thru 4 01/01/2016
Shared by: Ronnie Miller on Dec, 2015
Summary: Where has the time gone? There is a time for everything but, that never seem to bother me when I was young. But as I get older I consider almost everything in time. It’s time to take my medicine, it’s time to go to the doctor, it’s time for this or time for that.
John McCormack avatar
Shared by: John McCormack on Dec, 2015
Wade M. Hughes, Sr avatar
I just want to be happy! VANITY?
Shared by: Wade M. Hughes, Sr on Oct, 2015
Summary: I hear many say their goal in life is to be happy? Oz is only Oz to those that do not live in Oz.
Chris Jordan avatar
Wisdom: Purpose - Meaning of Life (Book of Ecclesiastes)
Shared by: Chris Jordan on Sep, 2015
Summary: Ecclesiastes ‘represents a brilliant argument for how someone would look at life if God did not play a direct, intervening role in life, and if there were no life after death.’ But because there is a God, and life continues after death, let us fear God!
Denomination: Foursquare
Views: 359
Tom Shepard avatar
Ecclesiastes Chapter One
Shared by: Tom Shepard on Aug, 2015
Summary: This is a verse by verse look at chapter one of Ecclesiastes.
based on 8 ratings
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-18
Denomination: Independent Bible
Views: 2,049
Dean Courtier avatar
Changed by the Stream of the Spirit
Shared by: Dean Courtier on Aug, 2015
Summary: We all experience different situations, circumstances and opportunities. Yet each of us have been and continue to be blessed by God.
based on 4 ratings
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:2-14
Denomination: Pentecostal
Views: 789
Michael Deutsch avatar
Pursuing . . .
Shared by: Michael Deutsch on Jul, 2015
Summary: part 2 looks at Solomon's attempts to find joy through other means.
Michael Deutsch avatar
God Sized Dreams
Shared by: Michael Deutsch on Jul, 2015
Summary: Beginning a series of sermons from Ecclesiastes. What we learn from the Preacher will help us move forward in life.
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-11
Denomination: Baptist
Views: 609
Jeff Strite avatar
Is There Wisdom in Wisdom?
Shared by: Jeff Strite on Jun, 2015
Summary: God was pleased to give Solomon His wisdom and Solomon often spoke of the importance of seeking that wisdom. So, why was Solomon telling us here in Ecclesiastes that wisdom is empty and disappointing?
based on 12 ratings
Views: 7,315
Dr. Gale A. Ragan-Reid avatar
Shared by: Dr. Gale A. Ragan-Reid on May, 2015
Summary: God's undeniable love for the world made the crooked straight through Christ Jesus (salvation plan).
Denomination: Friends
Views: 301
Anthony Zibolski avatar
Finding purpose in your life
Shared by: Anthony Zibolski on Apr, 2015
Summary: Maybe you are here this morning and you need to hear from the Lord concerning where you fit into the plan of God.
based on 1 rating
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-9
Denomination: Nazarene
Views: 1,736
Davon Huss avatar
Says the Teacher Everything Is Meaningless
Shared by: Davon Huss on Jan, 2014
Summary: A sermon introducing a series on Ecclesiastes (Outline and material adapted from Eugene Peterson's book, Five Smooth Stones for Pastoral Work, chapter 4 The Pastoral Work of Nay-Saying)
Davon Huss avatar
The Facts of Life
Shared by: Davon Huss on Jan, 2014
Summary: A sermon introducing a series on Ecclesiastes; this is part two of two part sermon; part one in the morning is Says the Teacher Everything is Meaningless (Outline and material adapted from Derek Kidner's book, The Wisdom of Proverbs, Job and Ecc.)
Mark A. Barber avatar
Can You Catch the Wind With Your Hands?
Shared by: Mark A. Barber on Jan, 2014
Summary: All way to meaning apart from God is but a grasping for the wind. But the way of Christ is the way to meaning.
based on 1 rating
Denomination: United Methodist
Views: 526
Mark A. Barber avatar
Nothing New Under the Sun?
Shared by: Mark A. Barber on Jan, 2014
Summary: Life apart from God is a death of fathomless despair. Life in Christ is an inextinguishable hope.
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:8-11
Denomination: United Methodist
Views: 1,165
Mark A. Barber avatar
Dust in the Wind
Shared by: Mark A. Barber on Nov, 2013
Summary: Only the Christian message gives meaning to life
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-7
Denomination: United Methodist
Views: 1,365
John McCormack avatar
Shared by: John McCormack on Nov, 2013
Jarrod Jones avatar
Rumors of Another World
Shared by: Jarrod Jones on Jun, 2013
Summary: Our unquenchable desires for meaning and more declare that we are made for meaning and more, namely God, and therefore we will only find meaning and more (satisfaction) in Him alone.
based on 1 rating
Views: 1,113
Terry Blankenship avatar
A Life Worth Living
Shared by: Terry Blankenship on Mar, 2012
Summary: There are four questions we ask about life: Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? These questions are asked by everyone at some point. Solomon asks all of those questions as he pursues the meaning in life.
based on 2 ratings
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-18
Denomination: Baptist
Views: 1,103
Robert Fa'atoia Collins avatar
Shared by: Robert Fa'atoia Collins on Jan, 2012
Summary: Do you know who you are when your face with hardship and uncertainty?
based on 1 rating
Denomination: Seventh-Day Adventist
Views: 1,012
Donald McCulley avatar
The Purposeless Driven Life
Shared by: Donald McCulley on Dec, 2011
Summary: Have you ever thought about the purposeless driven life?
based on 5 ratings
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-18
Denomination: Baptist
Views: 1,661
Chris Kanyane avatar
Testimony Against Motivational Speakers & Personal Development Gurus
Shared by: Chris Kanyane on Jul, 2011
Summary: The sermon is based on real personal testimony against motivational speakers, personal development gurus and life coaches. All motivational speakers, personal development gurus and life coaches believe in God. But what kind of God? Learn more.....
based on 2 ratings
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-5
Denomination: Apostolic
Views: 1,295
Thomas Swope avatar
Wealth + Power + Knowledge = Zero
Shared by: Thomas Swope on Dec, 2010
Summary: A study of chapter 1 verses 1 through 18
Series: Ecclesiastes
based on 1 rating
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-18
Denomination: Calvary Chapel
Views: 775
Jonathan McLeod avatar
A Quest for Meaning
Shared by: Jonathan McLeod on Aug, 2010
Summary: What will make you happy?
Series: Ecclesiastes
based on 1 rating
Denomination: Baptist
Views: 749
Monty Newton avatar
Chasing After the Wind
Shared by: Monty Newton on Aug, 2010
Summary: We can live a meaningful life4 in a world filled with vain pursuits.
Freddy Fritz avatar
The Vanity of Wisdom
Shared by: Freddy Fritz on Jul, 2010
Summary: In today's lesson, we learn that apart from God, we will not gain anything from wisdom.
based on 2 ratings
Denomination: Presbyterian/Reformed
Views: 2,099
Jonathan McLeod avatar
Vanity of Vanities
Shared by: Jonathan McLeod on Jul, 2010
Summary: Life is full of meaning when your faith is in Christ.
Series: Ecclesiastes
based on 3 ratings
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 1:1-11
Denomination: Baptist
Views: 1,980