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Seeking Life…Finding Death Part 3: Elusive Success, Certain Failure Seeking Answers A Study in Ecclesiastes Lesson 17, January 29, 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Seeking Life…Finding Death Part 3: Elusive Success, Certain Failure Seeking Answers A Study in Ecclesiastes Lesson 17, January 29, 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Seeking Life…Finding Death Part 3: Elusive Success, Certain Failure Seeking Answers A Study in Ecclesiastes Lesson 17, January 29, 2012

2 Today’s Scripture Ecclesiastes 5: He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. 11 When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes? 12 The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep. 13 There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for the owners thereof to their hurt. 14 But those riches perish by evil travail: and he begetteth a son, and there is nothing in his hand. 15 As he came forth of his mother's womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand. 16 And this also is a sore evil, that in all points as he came, so shall he go: and what profit hath he that hath laboured for the wind? 17 All his days also he eateth in darkness, and he hath much sorrow and wrath with his sickness.

3 Today’s Scripture Ecclesiastes 5: Behold that which I have seen: it is good and comely for one to eat and to drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labour that he taketh under the sun all the days of his life, which God giveth him: for it is his portion. 19 Every man also to whom God hath given riches and wealth, and hath given him power to eat thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour; this is the gift of God. 20 For he shall not much remember the days of his life; because God answereth him in the joy of his heart.

4 Today’s Scripture Ecclesiastes 6:1-6 1 There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, and it is common among men: 2 A man to whom God hath given riches, wealth, and honour, so that he wanteth nothing for his soul of all that he desireth, yet God giveth him not power to eat thereof, but a stranger eateth it: this is vanity, and it is an evil disease. 3 If a man beget an hundred children, and live many years, so that the days of his years be many, and his soul be not filled with good, and also that he have no burial; I say, that an untimely birth is better than he. 4 For he cometh in with vanity, and departeth in darkness, and his name shall be covered with darkness. 5 Moreover he hath not seen the sun, nor known any thing: this hath more rest than the other. 6 Yea, though he live a thousand years twice told, yet hath he seen no good: do not all go to one place?

5 Today’s Scripture Ecclesiastes 6: All the labour of man is for his mouth, and yet the appetite is not filled. 8 For what hath the wise more than the fool? what hath the poor, that knoweth to walk before the living? 9 Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity and vexation of spirit. 10 That which hath been is named already, and it is known that it is man: neither may he contend with him that is mightier than he. 11 Seeing there be many things that increase vanity, what is man the better? 12 For who knoweth what is good for man in this life, all the days of his vain life which he spendeth as a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?

6 Thought for Today A wise man will desire no more than what he may get justly, use soberly, distribute cheerfully, and leave contentedly. -- Benjamin Franklin

7 Dumb people never learn from their mistakes. Smart folks do. Wise ones learn from the mistakes of others. -- Unknown -- ??????

8 Martin Luther Nov 10, 1483 – Feb 18, 1546 Lived in Germany Very well educated as a young man Oct 31, 1517, nails “95 Theses” to door of Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany challenging Pope’s authority Bible is the only source of religious authority (Sola Scriptura) Excommunicated for his beliefs and resistance to the authority of the pope and Catholic church Translates Bible into German Started Lutheran church after the Catholic church would not “reform” Caught in a thunderstorm July 2, 1505 and makes a rash vow…

9 The Inexplicable, Unfathomable, and Immutable Purpose of God: man is unable to predict, control, explain, determine, or alter it !!! (3:1-15) Is there a time for justice for the downtrodden and oppressed and why does a loving and merciful God allow injustice to exist in a world that He alone controls? (3:16-4:3) Can the motive for man’s labor under the sun alter it’s benefit to him or does a false motive just make that which is already empty seem even more empty ? (4:4 – 5:9) If a man’s motive in his labor under the sun is pure and he achieves success in his endeavors, are the fruits of his labor still perishable? (5:10 -6:9) The Inexplicable, Unfathomable, and Immutable Purpose of God (6:10-12) If a man’s motive in his labor under the sun is pure and he achieves success in his endeavors, are the fruits of his labor still perishable? (5:10 - 6:9 and/or 5:1 – 6:9)

10  A rash vow to God -- the sacrifice of fools -- that is not kept may result in God destroying the works of his hand (5:1-7; see Hebrews 13:15)  Governments and corrupt officials may impose taxes that confiscate the assets of even a successful man (5:8-9)  Stockpiling of assets, even incorruptible things like gold, are not a protection against loss of wealth; it also takes considerable effort and cost to safeguard the stockpile (5:10-12)  Misfortune (“bad investment”) can overtake a man and reduce him to poverty (5:13-17) Solomon tells us that regardless of motive or level of success, the fruits of man’s labor under the sun is perishable Solomon again urges the enjoyment of life (5:18-20) But some will not be able to enjoy life even though he has wealth; better for this person to have died at birth or a miscarriage (6:1-7) Be content with what you have (6:8-9; see Hebrews 13:5) Solomon urges the enjoyment of the fruit of your labor

11 The Inexplicable, Unfathomable, and Immutable Purpose of God: man is unable to predict, control, explain, determine, or alter it !!! (3:1-15) Is there a time for justice for the downtrodden and oppressed and why does a loving and merciful God allow injustice to exist in a world that He alone controls? (3:16-4:3) Can the motive for man’s labor under the sun alter it’s benefit to him or does a false motive just make that which is already empty seem even more empty ? (4:4 – 5:9) If a man’s motive in his labor under the sun is pure and he achieves success in his endeavors, are the fruits of his labor still perishable? (5:10 - 6:9) The Inexplicable, Unfathomable, and Immutable Purpose of God (6:11-12) The Inexplicable, Unfathomable, and Immutable Purpose of God (6:10-12)

12 Solomon’s use of “named” in Ecclesiastes 6:10a. Look also at Genesis 1:5, 8, 10, 26; 2:19-20, 23 Among the ancients, naming something expressed dominion or lordship over the named object and expressed a willingness by the person doing the naming to provide for and care for the named God has sovereign dominion over His creation and therefore any attempt by man to challenge what God has purposed results in vanity (6:10b-11) Man does not know what is best for him nor what the future holds (6:12) The Inexplicable, Unfathomable, and Immutable Purpose of God


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