Ecclesiastes a scathing and self-deprecating attack on hedonism and secular humanism by Solomon

Ecclesiastes 4-6 | Solomon’s Dissatisfaction

Published on Sep 24, 2012

Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 23, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider

___________________

I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I hope to show how secular humanist man can not hope to find a lasting meaning to his life in a closed system without bringing God back into the picture. This is the same exact case with Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes. Three thousand years ago, Solomon took a look at life “under the sun” in his book of Ecclesiastes. Christian scholar Ravi Zacharias has noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term ‘under the sun.’ What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system, and you are left with only this world of time plus chance plus matter.”

Let me show you some inescapable conclusions if you choose to live without God in the picture. Solomon came to these same conclusions when he looked at life “under the sun.”

  1. Death is the great equalizer (Eccl 3:20, “All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.”)
  2. Chance and time have determined the past, and they will determine the future.  (Ecclesiastes 9:11-13)
  3. Power reigns in this life, and the scales are not balanced(Eccl 4:1)
  4. Nothing in life gives true satisfaction without God including knowledge (1:16-18), ladies and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and great building projects (2:4-6, 18-20).

You can only find a lasting meaning to your life by looking above the sun and bring God back into the picture.

____________

Here is an interesting perspective below:

— In apologetics@yahoogroups.com, “yusefii” <yusefii@…> wrote:

> Having both read the book of Ecclesiastes and contemplated many instances of
wasted potential in terms of various Christians’ gifts and economically unviable
desire to work full-time in Christian ministry, I’m inclined to agree that
nothing matters.

I’m surprised. Ecclesiastes is a scathing and self-deprecating attack on
hedonism and secular humanism by a man who had obviously deeply considered if
not tried both as a way of life. The constant refrain “under the sun” expresses
the context and prespective from which the writer wishes his words to be
understood. In other words “if one takes the view that nothing exists beyond the
world we experience through our five senses” then all is meaningless, or vanity
or a chasing after the wind. Meaning, as opposed to value, only arises in a
wider and eternal context.

If all we had was this brief life, and if we had a true grasp of that fact, then
every second would be exquisitly, painfully, horrendously valuable to us, each
one gone never to return; but if we are born only to die, indeed if the universe
was born in a Big Bang only to die in a Big Crunch or the whimpering stillness
of an ever-expanding, dark, cold, void then, ultimately, everything in between
is completely meaningless.

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