Summary: As we approach the book of Ecclesiastes, we get a profound glimpse into the later years of the life of Solomon, King of Israel, and gifted by God with intelligence far beyond his contemporaries. Yet, as Solomon aged, his focus changed, he was drawn away
A Man Who Grew To Hate Life
INTRODUCTION: As we approach the book of Ecclesiastes, we get a profound glimpse into the later years of the life of Solomon, King of Israel, and gifted by God with intelligence far beyond his contemporaries. Yet, as Solomon aged, his focus changed, he was drawn away from God to idols. The Scripture records this -- 1 Kings 11:4 As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father had been.
Consequently, the book of Ecclesiastes was written by an older, more cynical, and less faithful Solomon, and as such provides us with a vivid picture of futility apart from God
I From the very beginning we have a window into the spiritual; condition of King Solomon
A The meaning of the Title
1 The Debator
a A debator is one who seeks to argue for support of his point of view
b A debator by nature is arguing against the view of someone else
c Solomon is in an argument against the view of God
2 The Philosopher
a Philosophy by it nature is …
1) Love and pursuit of wisdom by intellectual means and moral self-discipline.
2) Investigation of the nature, causes, or principles of reality, knowledge, or values, based on logical reasoning rather than empirical methods.
3) A system of thought based on or involving such inquiry: the philosophy of Hume.
4) The critical analysis of fundamental assumptions or beliefs.
5) The disciplines presented in university curriculums of science and the liberal arts, except medicine, law, and theology.
6) The discipline comprising logic, ethics, aesthetics, metaphysics, and epistemology.
7) A set of ideas or beliefs relating to a particular field or activity; an underlying theory: an original philosophy of advertising.
8) A system of values by which one lives: has an unusual philosophy of life.
b Philosophy seeks to either prove God by observation or reason
c Philosophy by nature must ignore and dismiss the principle of faith
B The subject of discussion
1 Is all the work really worth it all?
Eccles. 1:3 What does man gain from all his labor at which he toils under the sun?
2 Does any experience in life provide satisfaction
3 Solomon journey is a personal one – not an illustrative one
a Ecc 2 – 34 times we see the word “I”
4 Monotony is what makes life short
b Esp. verse 9 – “There is nothing new”
II THE THINGS SOLOMON FOUND THAT WILL NOT BRING SATISFACTION (You really gotta look at these!)
A Wine – 2:2-3 – meaning through the pursuit of pleasure
1 Solomon discovered what God already revealed!
Who has woe? Who has sorrow?
Who has strife? Who has complaints?
Who has needless bruises? Who has bloodshot eyes?
30Those who linger over wine,
who go to sample bowls of mixed wine.
B Stuff – 2:10
3 Dug pools
4 Filled the treasury
1 Kings 10:7 But I did not believe these things until I came and saw with my own eyes. Indeed, not even half was told me; in wisdom and wealth you have far exceeded the report I heard.
1 Kings 10:23 King Solomon was greater in riches and wisdom than all the other kings of the earth.
1 Kings 10:27 The king made silver as common in Jerusalem as stones, and cedar as plentiful as sycamore-fig trees in the foothills.
6 His conclusion – 2:11-16
b Like chasing the wind
c No real gain
d No difference between me and the fool
1) Same fate
2) Same legacy
e This is coming from the smartest man in the world!
III THE RESULTS OF A MEANINGLESS SEARCH
A A Meaningless Search Breeds A Hatred Of Life – 2:17
B A Meaningless search Breeds a Pessimistic Life – 2:22
1 Look at the contrast
a Solomon had it all
Eccles. 2:10 I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my work, and this was the reward for all my labor.
b Solomon hated life
Eccles. 2:17 So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
2 Solomon hated what would happen with what he had done
1) Would leave it to someone else
b Did not know the wisdom of the person to follow
1) His own son – Rehoboam would not only lose Solomon’s wealth – he would lose Solomon’s kingdom!
c Solomon for got God’s Ownership
Psalm 24:1 Of David. A psalm.