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Summary: Solomon tells us about the greatest gift

Three Gifts-5 18-20.docx

Ecclesiastes 5:18-20

God uses Solomon to remind us that there are some gifts so valuable that they can’t be purchased with money

The ability to enjoy life’s blessings is a “gift from God”

Solomon will expand on this thought in chapter 6

He points out the unhappiness of people who possess wealth but are not able to enjoy it

If Solomon were living today, I suspect he would admit, “I may look successful and secure, but the half hasn’t be told. I may appear to be fulfilled and happy, but the half hasn’t be told. My possessions would lead people to think that I’ve got it all together. Many may have the idea that I’ve got life wired, but those who think that don’t know the other side.”

It is much better to receive wealth as a gift from God, along with the God-given ability to enjoy it, then to see wealth as an end in itself

Solomon is warning his listeners against the love of money and the delusions that wealth can bring.

Solomon is affirming once again the importance of accepting our station in life and enjoying the blessings that God gives us

It has been said that if we focus more on the gifts than on the Giver, we are guilty of idolatry

If we accept His gifts but complain about them, we are guilty of ingratitude

If we hoard His gifts and will not share them with others, we are guilty of indulgence

But if we yield to His will and use what He gives us for His glory, then we can enjoy life and be satisfied

Let’s not three gifts

Read Verses so that We can Know Him and Make Him Known

1) The gift of enjoyment in your life—vs. 18

a) Seven times Solomon gave us this wise counsel

b) Solomon encourages us as we are eating and drinking that is living out our lives to enjoy ourselves

c) In other words, refuse to allow yourself to get caught up in the greed trap

d) Refuse to place top priority on make more, more and more

e) Enjoy life

f) Laugh more-find pleasure in the simple things

g) Man must get enjoyment not possessions

h) And that capacity to enjoy no matter how great or how small, is a gift from God

i) I believe there is a great truth here

j) God offers as a gift, if men will seek it in the manner that He in His excellent and beautiful plan has chosen to give it

k) Happiness, enjoyment, pleasure and a knowledge of how the whole substance of life is integrated into a meaningful pattern in the plan of God are all linked in the living God

l) In John 17:3—“to know Him”

m) Several things I really enjoy

i) A relationship with my savior

ii) A relationship in His service

iii) A relationship with my wife

iv) Relationship with my kids

v) A relationship with my church family

2) A gift of fulfillment in your work—vs. 19

a) It is wonderful to find fulfillment in your work

b) We need to invest more in the vertical dimension of life and less in the horizontal

c) Invest your riches for God’s work

d) Invest your time for His glory

e) Give generously

3) A gift of contentment in your heart—vs. 20

a) Solomon seems to be describing those who aim for money and lose real life

b) He moves from the outside to an inward look

c) Look at what he considers—vs. 20a

i) It may mean that the person who rejoices in God’s daily blessings will never have regrets

ii) One version translates it this way: “the person who does that will not need to look back with sorrow on his past, for God gives him joy”

iii) Psalm 90:12—“so teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom”

iv) I think it is interesting that vs. 20 may also mean that the believer who gratefully accepts God’s gift of salvation will not fret and worry about how long he or she will live

v) It is an established fact that the people who have the most birthdays live the longest, but if they keep complaining about “getting old” they will have very little to enjoy

vi) People who are thankful to God “will not dwell overmuch upon the passing years” (NEB)

vii) Prov. 20:29—“the glory of young men is their strength and the honor of old men is their gray hair”

viii) “Grey headed” reflects the idea of the wise mentor

ix) He is not the confused, solitary senior citizen often portrayed in movies and prime time

x) The biblical image sees this person connected to all of life and making his finest and most important contribution

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