Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Ecclesiastes 7 and “Wisdom” By Tim Bench 1-23-2015 “False Doctrines of Man”

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "Ecclesiastes 7 and “Wisdom” By Tim Bench 1-23-2015 “False Doctrines of Man”"— Presentation transcript:

1 Ecclesiastes 7 and “Wisdom” By Tim Bench 1-23-2015 “False Doctrines of Man”

2 Relevance of Ecclesiastes “The book of Ecclesiastes, though deeply embedded in the Old Testament scriptures and an exceedingly ancient and curious document is, in many important and striking respects, fresher and more up-to-date than tomorrow’s newspaper. Because its themes are age-lasting, its principles unchanging and unchangeable, and its message to men as applicable and as true as when originally penned, it speaks to our day with an urgency and directness entitling it the most serious consideration.” “The book of Ecclesiastes, though deeply embedded in the Old Testament scriptures and an exceedingly ancient and curious document is, in many important and striking respects, fresher and more up-to-date than tomorrow’s newspaper. Because its themes are age-lasting, its principles unchanging and unchangeable, and its message to men as applicable and as true as when originally penned, it speaks to our day with an urgency and directness entitling it the most serious consideration.” Ecclesiastes by Guy N. Woods, The Old Testament Books and their Messages in the Christian Age, Fort Worth Christian Lectureships, 1961, page 265. Ecclesiastes by Guy N. Woods, The Old Testament Books and their Messages in the Christian Age, Fort Worth Christian Lectureships, 1961, page 265.

3 The Power of Ecclesiastes The message of Ecclesiastes is timeless, eternal, and unchanging. The message of Ecclesiastes is timeless, eternal, and unchanging. It is one of the rare Old Testament books that appears in modern literature as an object lesson in secular literature. It is one of the rare Old Testament books that appears in modern literature as an object lesson in secular literature. Specifically, Ecclesiastes Chapter 4:9-12 is used in John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath…. Specifically, Ecclesiastes Chapter 4:9-12 is used in John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath….

4 Grapes of Wrath, 1939, conversation between Ma Joad and son Tom, page 570. …”He spouted out some scripture once, an’ it didn’t sound like no hell-fire scripture. He tol’ it twicet, an’ I remember it. Says it’s from the Preacher.” …”He spouted out some scripture once, an’ it didn’t sound like no hell-fire scripture. He tol’ it twicet, an’ I remember it. Says it’s from the Preacher.” “How’s it go, Tom?” “How’s it go, Tom?” “Goes, ‘Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, the one will lif’ up his fellow, but woe to him that is alone when he falleth, for he hath not another to help him up.’ That’s part of her.” “Goes, ‘Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, the one will lif’ up his fellow, but woe to him that is alone when he falleth, for he hath not another to help him up.’ That’s part of her.” “Go on,” Ma said. “Go on, Tom.” “Go on,” Ma said. “Go on, Tom.” “Jus’ a little bit more. ‘Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him, and a three-fold cord is not quickly broken.’” “Jus’ a little bit more. ‘Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him, and a three-fold cord is not quickly broken.’” “An’ that’s Scripture?” “An’ that’s Scripture?” “Casy said it was. Called it the Preacher…” “Casy said it was. Called it the Preacher…”

5 Why is Ecclesiastes so difficult for modern-day Christians? “Qoheleth’s sayings are goads and more than goads. They torment the spirit, harass the mind, disturb the heart. They unsettle the complacent, shock the orthodox, and trouble even the wise… “Qoheleth’s sayings are goads and more than goads. They torment the spirit, harass the mind, disturb the heart. They unsettle the complacent, shock the orthodox, and trouble even the wise… Qoheleth has been labeled among other things: a skeptic, a pessimist, a hedonist, a materialist, and, in recent times, the earliest existentialist. Qoheleth has been labeled among other things: a skeptic, a pessimist, a hedonist, a materialist, and, in recent times, the earliest existentialist. He is not any of these for the simple reason that he is a man of faith. He believes in the reality of divine providence (3:11, 3:14-15, 8:17, 11:5), praises divine wisdom (7:12, 7:20, 9:13-18), and expects divine judgment (3:17, 11:9, 12:13-14).” He is not any of these for the simple reason that he is a man of faith. He believes in the reality of divine providence (3:11, 3:14-15, 8:17, 11:5), praises divine wisdom (7:12, 7:20, 9:13-18), and expects divine judgment (3:17, 11:9, 12:13-14).” Ecclesiastes edited by Peter Steese, “Critical Essays” by Peter F. Ellis, page 190. Ecclesiastes edited by Peter Steese, “Critical Essays” by Peter F. Ellis, page 190.

6 Leading up to Chapter 7 The speaker in Ecclesiastes (“Koheleth”, or “Qoholeth”, translated as “The Preacher”)1 spends much of the first 6 chapters of the book expressing man’s failures, faults, and vanity (the term “all is vanity” appears 25 times within the book). Qoholeth occurs nowhere else in the Bible except in Ecclesiastes. “The title of the book in Hebrew, Qoholeth, is the word translated “Preacher” in chapter one, verse one….The Greek word Ekklesiastes, which means “speaker of a called out assembly” is derived from the word ekklesia, which is the New Testament word for “church.” Hebrew-Greek Key Word Study Bible, AMG International, 1984, page 833. Chapter 7 begins a new section which focuses on true wisdom (7:12), more important than anything man typically strives to acquire. 1-The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, James Orr, General Editor, 1939, page 896.

7 Chapter 7 Now, Ecclesiastes focuses on what is and should be truly important to a Christian… Wisdom. Knowledge and application of that knowledge to help us discern good from evil, what is important and what is not, what is Godly and what is of this world, what draws us to God v. what fulfills our own carnal desires, etc.

8 Chapter 7 overview 1..The value of a good name 1..The value of a good name 2-5…The advantages of sorrows and correction. 2-5…The advantages of sorrows and correction. 6…The emptiness of a fool’s joy. 6…The emptiness of a fool’s joy. 7…Oppression. 7…Oppression. 8…The ending better than the beginning. 8…The ending better than the beginning. 9…Against hastiness of spirit. 9…Against hastiness of spirit. 10…Comparison of former and present times. 10…Comparison of former and present times. 11-12…Excellence of wisdom. 11-12…Excellence of wisdom. 13-15…Dispensations of Providence. 13-15…Dispensations of Providence. 16-18…Against extremes. 16-18…Against extremes. 19…The strength of wisdom. 19…The strength of wisdom. 20….Mankind is forever liable to sin. 20….Mankind is forever liable to sin. 21-22…We should always carefully guard words that we use. 21-22…We should always carefully guard words that we use. 23-25…Difficulty of obtaining wisdom. 23-25…Difficulty of obtaining wisdom. 26…The dangers of a bad woman. 26…The dangers of a bad woman. 27-29….The scarcity of those who are truly upright. 27-29….The scarcity of those who are truly upright.

9 Verse 1….the importance of a good name. Riches and other material wants may come and go, but the importance of a good name cannot be overstated (i.e. “better than precious ointment”). See also Proverbs 22:1. Riches and other material wants may come and go, but the importance of a good name cannot be overstated (i.e. “better than precious ointment”). See also Proverbs 22:1. A celebrated name, a good reputation, respect/esteem of one’s acquaintances. A celebrated name, a good reputation, respect/esteem of one’s acquaintances. “That good name is compared to fragrant oil which was very precious in the ancient world. Perfumed oil was profusely employed to overcome the odor of perspiration. It was considered a great luxury. Such oil was abundantly dispensed at joyous occasions (see Amos 6:6). A man’s most cherished ambition was to leave a good reputation, and hand down to future generations an honorable remembrance.” “That good name is compared to fragrant oil which was very precious in the ancient world. Perfumed oil was profusely employed to overcome the odor of perspiration. It was considered a great luxury. Such oil was abundantly dispensed at joyous occasions (see Amos 6:6). A man’s most cherished ambition was to leave a good reputation, and hand down to future generations an honorable remembrance.” The Wisdom Literature and Psalms, James E. Smith, 1996, page 758. The Wisdom Literature and Psalms, James E. Smith, 1996, page 758.

10 A good name v. wealth? Wealth and riches may be left to someone who is foolish (Ecclesiastes 2:18-19). Wealth and riches may be left to someone who is foolish (Ecclesiastes 2:18-19). Riches typically draw people away from God and towards their own desires. Riches typically draw people away from God and towards their own desires. A good reputation/name finds honor before both God and man, and benefits us even after death (such as with the “elders” of the OT; see also Hebrews 11:2). A good reputation/name finds honor before both God and man, and benefits us even after death (such as with the “elders” of the OT; see also Hebrews 11:2).

11 “Better than…” In verses 1-10, the term “better” (or “better than…”) appears 8 times. In verses 1-10, the term “better” (or “better than…”) appears 8 times. The writer here uses the often-overlooked (or even neglected) aspects of life to illustrate the temporal nature of that which man often desires. The writer here uses the often-overlooked (or even neglected) aspects of life to illustrate the temporal nature of that which man often desires. For example, a good name is better than precious ointment (verse 1). The day of death is better than the day of one’s birth (see also Revelation 2:10). A “house of mourning” is better than a “house of feasting” (verse 2). Sorrow is better than laughter (Verse 3). The “rebuke of the wise” is better than the “song of fools”. The end is better than the beginning (verse 8). The patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit (verse 8). The “good old days” were not better than the here and now (verse 10). For example, a good name is better than precious ointment (verse 1). The day of death is better than the day of one’s birth (see also Revelation 2:10). A “house of mourning” is better than a “house of feasting” (verse 2). Sorrow is better than laughter (Verse 3). The “rebuke of the wise” is better than the “song of fools”. The end is better than the beginning (verse 8). The patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit (verse 8). The “good old days” were not better than the here and now (verse 10).

12 How is the day of one’s death better than the day of one’s birth? The day of one’s birth is the beginning of many sorrows to be endured. Job even observed this and cursed the day of his own birth (see Job 14:1, Job 3:1-3). Jeremiah did likewise (see Jeremiah 20:14-18). The day of one’s birth is the beginning of many sorrows to be endured. Job even observed this and cursed the day of his own birth (see Job 14:1, Job 3:1-3). Jeremiah did likewise (see Jeremiah 20:14-18). For the righteous, the day of one’s death is the beginning of eternal bliss and reward (see Isaiah 57:1-2, Philippians 1:21-22, Revelation 14:13). For the righteous, the day of one’s death is the beginning of eternal bliss and reward (see Isaiah 57:1-2, Philippians 1:21-22, Revelation 14:13).

13 How is attending a “house of mourning” (i.e. a funeral) better than a party? All of us will ultimately face death and judgment day. We cannot escape (or even delay) this inevitability. We will all die and face the afterlife, prepared or not (see Hebrews 9:27). All of us will ultimately face death and judgment day. We cannot escape (or even delay) this inevitability. We will all die and face the afterlife, prepared or not (see Hebrews 9:27). A party typically focuses on fun, frivolity, and satisfying one's physical wants. A funeral reminds us of the brevity of life and the importance of preparing for that day. A party typically focuses on fun, frivolity, and satisfying one's physical wants. A funeral reminds us of the brevity of life and the importance of preparing for that day.

14 How is sorrow better than laughter? Laughter has its place…it provides a temporal reprieve from the burdens of life. Sorrow, however, is superior in making the heart of man better in the eyes of God (see Hebrews 12:11). Laughter has its place…it provides a temporal reprieve from the burdens of life. Sorrow, however, is superior in making the heart of man better in the eyes of God (see Hebrews 12:11). Sorrow at a funeral can force us to analyze our own hearts, actions, and commitment to God and make appropriate changes. Sorrow at a funeral can force us to analyze our own hearts, actions, and commitment to God and make appropriate changes.

15 How is the “rebuke of the wise” better than the “song of fools”? “A wise man loves those occasions from which he can derive spiritual advantage…But the fool-the gay, thoughtless, and giddy-prefers places and times of diversion and amusement. Here he is prevented from seriously considering either himself or his latter end.” “A wise man loves those occasions from which he can derive spiritual advantage…But the fool-the gay, thoughtless, and giddy-prefers places and times of diversion and amusement. Here he is prevented from seriously considering either himself or his latter end.” Clarke’s Commentary, Volume 3 by Adam Clarke, page 824. Clarke’s Commentary, Volume 3 by Adam Clarke, page 824.

16 How is patience better than pride? Pride is an evil of man and is not of this world (see Mark 7:21-23, 1 John 2:16). Patience, on the other hand, is a virtue to be pursued by the followers of God (see 1 Timothy 6:11, Titus 2:2). Pride leads to contention and destruction (Proverbs 13:10, 16:18). Pride often leads to anger which resides in the hearts of the foolish. Patience is indicative of wisdom and is necessary to salvation (see Proverbs 14:29, Romans 2:7, Hebrews 10:36).

17 Were bygone days better than the current day? People often reminisce in this way, forgetting g the times of suffering and loss, while focusing on the good. People often reminisce in this way, forgetting g the times of suffering and loss, while focusing on the good. Even while experiencing trials in the present, we need to constantly remind ourselves that correction by God is proof of God’s love for us. It is unavoidable and makes us stronger Christians. Even while experiencing trials in the present, we need to constantly remind ourselves that correction by God is proof of God’s love for us. It is unavoidable and makes us stronger Christians. Dwelling on the past might cause us to miss opportunities to do good in the present. Dwelling on the past might cause us to miss opportunities to do good in the present.

18 How can wisdom possibly be more important than wealth? Money can serve as a defense in life (Ecclesiastes 7:12 and Proverbs 10:15) and will also attract many friends (see Proverbs 14:20). However, riches and wealth do not profit a man one iota on the day of wrath (Proverbs 11:4). Wisdom helps a man/woman to use their wealth appropriately, not for their own enjoyment. “Knowledge without wisdom is life without meaning. There is no advantage without wisdom.” Ecclesiastes, by Dayton Keesee, Sunset School of Preaching, 1968, page 14.

19 “In exploring the values of life Koheleth seeks after wisdom-but this seems to increase sorrow (1:12-18). Looking for satisfaction in a varied and balanced life he continues his quest. As a cultured man he seeks to blend pleasure, laughter, the enjoyment of gardens, mansions, wine, and music into one harmonious pattern of living, but this also is futile (2:1-11)” “In exploring the values of life Koheleth seeks after wisdom-but this seems to increase sorrow (1:12-18). Looking for satisfaction in a varied and balanced life he continues his quest. As a cultured man he seeks to blend pleasure, laughter, the enjoyment of gardens, mansions, wine, and music into one harmonious pattern of living, but this also is futile (2:1-11)” The Old Testament Speaks by Samuel Schultz, 1960, page 293. The Old Testament Speaks by Samuel Schultz, 1960, page 293.

20 Solomon’s misguided pursuit of wisdom “He vainly expected to find happiness in knowledge itself apart from its use as a means to conduct one to the source of all knowledge and wisdom. He imbibed deeply of the fountains of science without following their course to their head. “He vainly expected to find happiness in knowledge itself apart from its use as a means to conduct one to the source of all knowledge and wisdom. He imbibed deeply of the fountains of science without following their course to their head. He knew much about the works of God, but forgot God himself…” 2 He knew much about the works of God, but forgot God himself…” 2 2-Ecclesiastes by Guy N. Woods, Fort Worth Christian Lectureship, 1961, page 269. 2-Ecclesiastes by Guy N. Woods, Fort Worth Christian Lectureship, 1961, page 269.

21 Resignation v. indignation God has his purposes, which we cannot change or understand (see Isaiah 43:13, Daniel 4:35, Ecclesiastes 7:13). God has his purposes, which we cannot change or understand (see Isaiah 43:13, Daniel 4:35, Ecclesiastes 7:13). God’s ultimate purposes will provide for each of us days of prosperity, as well as days of adversity (Ecclesiastes 7:14). God’s ultimate purposes will provide for each of us days of prosperity, as well as days of adversity (Ecclesiastes 7:14).

22 Ecclesiastes 7:26 and his warning about the “woman” This verse expresses the writer’s woes regarding the “woman” who is “more bitter than death”. The Preacher states that her heart is “snares and nets” and that “the sinner shall be taken by her”. Verses 26-28 seem to strongly suggest that the Preacher himself has fallen victim to this temptation, and he thus issues this warning based on experience. Similar warnings about “evil women” can be found in Proverbs 5:3-5, Proverbs 7:26-27, Proverbs 22:14, etc.

23 This is NOT a generalized statement regarding ALL women…. “The reference here is not to women in general nor is it to a particular woman, but to “the woman”. The verse echoes the language of the temptress described in detail in Proverbs 1-9…Throughout the rest of Ecclesiastes, there is no attack on an individual woman.” The College Press NIV Commentary: Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs by Dave L. Bland, 2002, page 360.

24 Searching for a good man, The Preacher was able to find only one in a thousand (as per 7:27- 28). Searching for a good man, The Preacher was able to find only one in a thousand (as per 7:27- 28). A good woman was even more rare…he was able to find none in a sample of a thousand (7:28). King Lemuel likewise believed that a good woman was hard to find (see Proverbs 31:10). A good woman was even more rare…he was able to find none in a sample of a thousand (7:28). King Lemuel likewise believed that a good woman was hard to find (see Proverbs 31:10). Some suggest that this may have been indicative of poor experiences with his 700 wives and 300 concubines (1 Kings 11:1-3). 3 Some suggest that this may have been indicative of poor experiences with his 700 wives and 300 concubines (1 Kings 11:1-3). 3 3-www.executableoutlines.com/ec/ec_07.htm 3-www.executableoutlines.com/ec/ec_07.htm

25 What did “The Preacher” try to fill the void inside himself with? Science (Ecclesiastes 1:4-11). Science (Ecclesiastes 1:4-11). Philosophy (1:12-18). Philosophy (1:12-18). Pleasure (2:1-11), specifically mirth (verse 1), drinking (verse 3), building (verse 4), wealth (verses 5-7), music (verse 8). Pleasure (2:1-11), specifically mirth (verse 1), drinking (verse 3), building (verse 4), wealth (verses 5-7), music (verse 8). Fatalism (3:1-15). Fatalism (3:1-15). Wealth (5:9-6:12). Wealth (5:9-6:12). “All proved empty and fruitless. “All proved empty and fruitless. Solomon’s conclusion was that we must know and serve God. “Fear God and keep his commandments for this is the whole duty of man.”” Solomon’s conclusion was that we must know and serve God. “Fear God and keep his commandments for this is the whole duty of man.”” DeHoff’s Bible Handbook by George DeHoff, 1964, page 127. DeHoff’s Bible Handbook by George DeHoff, 1964, page 127.

26 Conclusions from Chapter 7 Honor is preferable to luxury. Honor is preferable to luxury. Your day of death is better than your birthday. Your day of death is better than your birthday. A funeral is better than a party. A funeral is better than a party. The end is better than the beginning. The end is better than the beginning. Patience is better than pride. Patience is better than pride. The present is better than the past. The present is better than the past. Wisdom is better than wealth. Wisdom is better than wealth. Resignation is better than indignation. Resignation is better than indignation.

27 The Preacher We need to keep in mind that the advice offered throughout Chapter 7 is from a man who has experienced everything that life has to offer….and has still found it to be hollow and meaningless. In short, “life under the sun” (which appears 28 times in book) 4 was lacking. We need to keep in mind that the advice offered throughout Chapter 7 is from a man who has experienced everything that life has to offer….and has still found it to be hollow and meaningless. In short, “life under the sun” (which appears 28 times in book) 4 was lacking. Wisdom and inspiration allow us to focus on the one and only meaning to our lives, our reason for our very existence…..and that is to serve God completely. Wisdom and inspiration allow us to focus on the one and only meaning to our lives, our reason for our very existence…..and that is to serve God completely. 4-DeHoff commentary. 4-DeHoff commentary.


Download ppt "Ecclesiastes 7 and “Wisdom” By Tim Bench 1-23-2015 “False Doctrines of Man”"

Similar presentations


Ads by Google