Summary: How to live 365 days a year.
Introduction: What’s with this title? It’s easy – chapter 9 has 18 verses. In this chapter Solomon gives us insight on how to live 365 days a year. Even though Solomon had gotten off to a good start, he had become side-tracked. He messed up big time. In his pursuit of life away from God, he went to Hollywood and Dollywood. He visited Disneyland, Wonderland and Neverland. He thought leisure would satisfy. He then went to Harvard, Yale, Princeton – you know all those “poison” ivy-league schools. He thought learning would satisfy. Solomon headed for the mountains (a cool Coors); he rode shotgun with the Clydesdale (a bubbling Bud); and he visited Jack Daniels (a shot). He thought liquor could satisfy. The “preacher” turned on the tube for some mad TV (also sad TV). He thought laughter could satisfy. He visited Hugh and al his Playboy bunnies. He thought lust could satisfy. He amassed a fortune as if loot could satisfy.
He’s now come to himself. He’s making his way back to the Lord. He should have never left him in the first place. But he did, and now he’s writing his memoirs. He’s now reasoning from God’s perspective. In this chapter he tells us how to live 365 days a year. What does he say?
I. Appreciate Sovereignty (v. 1, 11)
After his reflection he concluded in order to spare us some heart-ache, he gives us a reality check. “There is a God and He is sovereign.” Note: “The Hand of God”. When we talk about sovereignty we are talking about his rule. One cannot hinder or thwart his plans. He ordains, overrules and orchestrates. He does according to his own will. See Romans 9:18. Simply put, He’s in control!
Does that mean we are a bunch of robots? No. How do you reconcile sovereignty and free agency? I don’t even try. His ways are past finding out.
One might conclude that being in His hand is a guarantee of health, wealth, and prosperity. Not so. Note: “Love or hate.” No one can predict tomorrow. What comforts us is that whatever happens there is a God who cares for us and is in control (every day).
Look at verse 11. Please note the two words “time” and “chance”. Time = His time. “Chance” = His plan. They win out! Submit to God’s will. Accept His will and be content. Get rid of your ‘rabbit’s foot” – it didn’t bring the rabbit any luck!
II. Contemplate Destiny (v. 2-3, 12)
Life is unpredictable. Death is an absolute certainty. Death awaits us all. Death is not an accident but an appointment (Hebrews 9:27). Our destiny will be in one of two places – heaven or hell. Death must be addressed. Live everyday as it was your last.
III. Deliberate on Depravity (v.3)
Evil is in the heart. The heart of the human problem is the problem of the human heart. We go from madness to meanness. Live every day with this in mind and let it drive you to the throne of God for grace to help live godly.
IV. Celebrate Activity (v.4-10)
Note: “Hope”, “dog”. A live dog is better off than the king of the jungle if he’s dead. What should we celebrate?
A. Pulse (4) – As long as you breathe you have hope. You can get prepared to die. You can help bring about change. You may be “over the hill”, but that’s better than being “under the hill”.
B. Present (7) – Celebrate “now”. “Have a blast while you last.” (Swindoll)
C. Pardon (7) – “Favors” = he’s not angry. He approves. See Romans 8:1
D. Purity (8) – “White” – purity/righteousness
E. Power (8) - “Oil” – symbol of Holy Spirit and power
F. Partner (9) – Laugh and romance
G. Pursuits (10) – “Might” – do your best with all your strength
V. Meditate Ability (13-17)
Solomon ends with a little parable. It is possible this man saved the city. It’s possible he could have saved the city, but didn’t. It’s possible he answered the call but the foolish ruler with the loud mouth got all the attention and this man was ignored. Whatever the case may be here is a man who had an opportunity for greatness. All of us have the ability to help turn the tide whether it’s in our individual lives, homes, churches, communities, nation or world. There are many enemies lurking around us seeking to destroy and demolish.
Conclusion: Think about these. Do you want to make the most out of life? Then call 918-365-LIVE! Solomon can give you some great counsel!