Summary: Does God make us miserable so that we cannot enjoy life’s pleasures. Solomon contemplates this question as he looks at his own life. The question could be phrased this way too, “Is there no such thing as happy ever after without God?” Many say that happil
“Does God want us miserable?”
or “Is there a happily ever after without God?”
Ecc. Pt. 7
Opening Illustration: How valuable is our time” from Blue Fish TV
Hands on illustration - Do the timer – set it for 30 minutes!
Thesis: Does God make us miserable so that we cannot enjoy life’s pleasures. Solomon contemplates this question as he looks at his own life. The question could be phrased this way too, “Is there no such thing as happy ever after without God?” Many say that happily ever after is not a reality in today’s world! I look at our society today and I concur that there is no happily ever after without God in our lives. Because without God there is no ever after!
Scripture Text: Ecc. 6
1I have seen another evil under the sun, and it weighs heavily on men: 2God gives a man wealth, possessions and honor, so that he lacks nothing his heart desires, but God does not enable him to enjoy them, and a stranger enjoys them instead. This is meaningless, a grievous evil.
3A man may have a hundred children and live many years; yet no matter how long he lives, if he cannot enjoy his prosperity and does not receive proper burial, I say that a stillborn child is better off than he. 4It comes without meaning, it departs in darkness, and in darkness its name is shrouded. 5Though it never saw the sun or knew anything, it has more rest than does that man—6even if he lives a thousand years twice over but fails to enjoy his prosperity. Do not all go to the same place?
7 All man’s efforts are for his mouth,
yet his appetite is never satisfied.
8 What advantage has a wise man
over a fool?
What does a poor man gain
by knowing how to conduct himself before others?
9 Better what the eye sees
than the roving of the appetite.
This too is meaningless,
a chasing after the wind.
10 Whatever exists has already been named,
and what man is has been known;
no man can contend
with one who is stronger than he.
11 The more the words,
the less the meaning,
and how does that profit anyone?
12For who knows what is good for a man in life, during the few and meaningless days he passes through like a shadow? Who can tell him what will happen under the sun after he is gone?
Solomon said in our chapter last week that to be able to enjoy life is a gift from God. Lets
listen to his words again from chapter 5:16-20:
As a man comes, so he departs, and what does he gain, since he toils for the wind? All his days
he eats in darkness, with great frustration, affliction and anger. Then I realized that it is good
and proper for a man to eat and drink, and to find satisfaction in his toilsome labor under the
sun during the few days of life God has given him—for this is his lot. Moreover, when God gives
any man wealth and possessions, and enables him to enjoy them, to accept his lot and be happy
in his work—this is a gift of God. He seldom reflects on the days of his life, because God keeps
him occupied with gladness of heart.
Illustration from this week’s Time Magazine Nov. 26, 2007 edition – The article on pages 58, 59. The article shows who are the happiest people, by job, and who are the least happy people, by job. They also have a statement which says, “On the job. Those few at the top can buy anything. Except, maybe, happiness.”
The happiest people in their jobs are clergy!
Reference to our text in chapter 6:
Solomon switches gears here and starts to paint a self portrait of his life, his struggles, his family and he is candid about having it all but being unable to enjoy any of it. He was concerned because he had a lot of kids but that did not bring happiness to his life. The truth is kids can make life miserable especially when they are not walking with the Lord. He even adds what good is it to live a life with no happiness and then to not even receive a decent burial because no one cares about you. Solomon shows that he had a fear of dying and not being buried like he should. This could say a lot about his home life?
We will learn a little more about his family in a moment but let’s back track here this morning and reflect on the last few verses of chapter 5.
T.S. – Solomon reminded us in chapter 5 that joy, living happily ever after is a gift from God! The truth is there is no happily ever after for anyone who decides to reject God and His ways in life. Because the gift of happily ever after comes from God and God alone!