HUGH HEFNER WAS A MODERN DAY KING SOLOMON AND I TOLD HIM THAT OVER AND OVER (PART 6) Letter from 2-2-16 (GROUNDHOG DAY)

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Image result for hugh hefner

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Image result for hugh hefner younger days

 

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Over and over I have read that Hugh Hefner was a modern day King Solomon and Hefner’s search for satisfaction was attempted by adding to the number of his sexual experiences. Greg Laurie noted:

WASTED YEARS: DOES THAT DESCRIBE YOUR LIFE?

He was a young man who loved God – yet he became a hedonist extraordinaire, a playboy who made Hugh Hefner look like a lightweight. He was highly educated, yet went on unbelievable drinking binges. He was an architectural genius, masterminding the building of incredible structures, and yet chased after women like there was no tomorrow. And he was worth billions.

King Solomon lived thousands of years ago, yet the lessons and experiences of his life are as current as tomorrow’s newspaper. It was he who coined the phrase, “There’s nothing new under the sun.”

Solomon became the king of Israel after his father David’s death. No one, not even David, had such incredible potential to be a great king. He had a godly heritage from his dad, was given wisdom on a scale that had never been known up to that point and wealth beyond anyone’s most fevered imagination. As a result, he had virtually unlimited power to do good.

Solomon started his reign beautifully. But the joy and beauty began to fade all too soon, as he turned away from the Lord who had so richly blessed him. By the time he came to the end of himself in his later years, he had thrown away a life with unbelievable potential. Here’s how he began his memoirs in the book of the Bible called Ecclesiastes:

These are the words of the Teacher, King David’s son, who ruled in Jerusalem.

 

“Everything is meaningless,” says the Teacher, “utterly meaningless!”

Solomon liked the word “meaningless,” using it again and again as he wrote about life. In the original language, the word meant emptiness, futility, a wisp of a vapor, a hollow, empty ring, nothingness, a bubble that bursts.

Ecclesiastes tells us that nothing on this earth will satisfy us completely. No thing, no pleasure, no relationship, no accomplishment will bring enduring value in life. It’s like riding one of those stationary bikes. You peddle and peddle but never really go anywhere. You get off in the very same place where you started.

In Ecclesiastes, Solomon was looking back on a life lived without God. He was reflecting on man’s attempt to meet the deepest needs of human life, while leaving God out of the equation.

Initially, Solomon followed the Lord and his father’s good example. But as time passed, the young king forgot this commitment, allowing his heart to become at first divided, and then hardened. He began to love both the Lord and the world. According to Scripture, however, that will never wash. And in this rebellion against God, much like the prodigal son, Solomon broke away from his roots, his foundation, and decided to take a crash course in sin.

Did he ever! And he had the resources to do it! Unlimited sex, gallons of booze, non-stop partying, unrestrained materialism – not to mention the finest education, entertainment and art collecting. You name it, Solomon tried it. He actually did what most people only dream of. But in the end, it all turned into a nightmare.

 

And then, after many wasted years, Solomon finally came to his senses. He had learned the bitter lessons of life the hard way, but he really had no one to blame but himself. Among other things, he deeply regretted wasting his youth, warning others not to make the same mistake. He wrote: “Don’t let the excitement of youth cause you to forget your Creator. Honor him in your youth before you grow old and no longer enjoy living” (Ecclesiastes 12:1, NLT).

Solomon wraps up his book, saying, “Look, take it from a seasoned pro. Believe me, I know what I’m talking about here! If you leave God out of the picture – no matter what else you may have going – your life will be empty, meaningless and futile. Do you want to have a full life, a more abundant life? Do you truly want to live out your life as a whole woman, a whole man? Well, here’s your answer: Fear God and keep His commandments.”

 

Many of the sermons that I heard or read that inspired me to write Hugh Hefner were from this list of gentlemen:  Daniel Akin, Brandon Barnard,Matt Chandler, George Critchley,  Steve Gaines, Norman L. Geisler, Greg Gillbert, Billy Graham, Mark Henry, Dan Jarrell, Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., R. G. Lee,  Chris Lewis, Kerry Livgren, Robert Lewis,    Bill Parkinson, Ben Parkinson,Vance Pitman, Nelson Price, Adrian Rogers, Philip Graham Ryken, Francis Schaeffer, Lee Strobel, Bill Wellons, Kirk Wetsell,  Ken Whitten, Ed Young ,  Ravi Zacharias, Tom Zobrist, and Richard Zowie.

My letter below is based primarily on a sermon by Chris Lewis (pictured below).

Image result for Chris Lewis pastor of Foothill Church

 

I also quoted Ravi Zacharias when I wrote, “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.”

Image result for ravi zacharias ecclesiastes

 

February 2, 2016

Hugh Hefner
Playboy Mansion  
10236 Charing Cross Road
Los Angeles, CA 90024-1815

Dear Mr. Hefner,

Today it is GROUNDHOG DAY and that is the reason I am going to quote extensively from Chris Lewis pastor of Foothill Church in Glendora, CA and  his sermon GROUNDHOG DAY. He got the title from the experience that Solomon pictures in the first 11 verses in Ecclesiastes. You will notice that the theme is CYCLE  and how this cycle repeats over and over again just like the cycle that Bill Murray is caught in as portrayed in the movie GROUNDHOG DAY where is character is caught repeating the same events over and over and over again.

“Ned, I would love to stand here and talk with you… but I’m not going to.”

“What if there is no tomorrow? There wasn’t one today.”

Bill Murray punching clock groundhog day alarm

“This is pitiful. A thousand people freezing their butts off waiting to worship a rat. What a hype.”

“Chance of departure today, one hundred percent.”

“Well, it’s Groundhog Day… again…”

“There is no way this winter is ever going to end, as long as this groundhog keeps seeing his shadow. I don’t see any other way out. He’s got to be stopped. And I have to stop him.”

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1 The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.

Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher,
    vanity of vanities! All is vanity.
What does man gain by all the toil
    at which he toils under the sun? 

4 A generation goes, and a generation comes,
    but the earth remains forever.
The sun rises, and the sun goes down,
    and hastens  to the place where it rises.
The wind blows to the south
    and goes around to the north;
around and around goes the wind,
    and on its circuits the wind returns.
All streams run to the sea,
    but the sea is not full;
to the place where the streams flow,
    there they flow again.
All things are full of weariness;
    a man cannot utter it;
the eye is not satisfied with seeing,
    nor the ear filled with hearing.

9 What has been is what will be,
    and what has been done is what will be done,
    and there is nothing new under the sun.
10 Is there a thing of which it is said,
    “See, this is new”?
It has been already
    in the ages before us.
11 There is no remembrance of former things,
    nor will there be any remembrance
of later things yet to be
    among those who come after.

Notice this phrase UNDER THE SUN since it appears about 30 times in Ecclesiastes. Francis Schaeffer noted that Solomon took a look at the meaning of life on the basis of human life standing alone between birth and death “under the sun.” This phrase UNDER THE SUN appears over and over in Ecclesiastes. The Christian Scholar Ravi Zacharias 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.”

Image result for francis schaeffer

As you know I have been writing you regularly for several months now and I have looking at statements you have made about your life and your philosophy. Many times I have compared them to the active searching that Solomon was doing in the BOOK OF ECCLESIASTES. Today I am going to do that same and it will be about your views on working and what can be gained from it.

Recently I read this in the article, Playboy at 60: Hugh Hefner Looks Back,” The legendary publisher looks back on the first 25 years of his culture-changing creation” By Scott Huver:

Looking back over his 87 years – 60 of which have been defined by his creation, Playboy – Hugh Hefner admits it took being a workaholic during his media empire’s formative years to transform him into an icon of sexual liberation and sophisticated indulgence.

“I had been really consumed the first few years on the magazine – I had this phenomenal success on my hands,” Hefner remembers. “And I didn’t want to miss the party that I had created.”

You did not want to miss out on the success of your magazine and you worked hard to see the rewards that would come from that. HUGH NOW LOOKING BACK WHAT LASTING PROFIT OR GAIN DID YOU GET FROM ALL YOUR HARD WORK? There are two ways to look at it. FIRST, what lasting meaning will there be from it UNDER THE SUN (a phrase Solomon uses over and over). SECOND, once you die what value will it have to you?

Image result for Chris Lewis pastor of Foothill Church

Chris Lewis pastor of Foothill Church in Glendora, CA in his sermon GROUNDHOG DAY about Ecclesiastes  noted:

Because of the wisdom, wealth and power that God gave to Solomon, Solomon is probably the smartest, richest, most brilliant, powerful, good looking man that ever walked the face of the earth. He was like Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, Hugh Hefner, Brad Pitt and George Clooney all rolled into one. It is incredible the gifts that God gave him.
 
God is looking for people who don’t take their direction from the Bible and not the culture. Solomon does follow God early on but later he abandons his God….In the USA we spend 8.5 hours a day working and that is more than every other country except Japan. What are we working so hard for? What are we chasing?
 
Mary Bell of Houston has counseled many high level executives. Achievement, Bell begins, is the alcohol of our time. These days, the best people don’t abuse alcohol. They abuse their lives. “You’re successful, so good things happen,” Bell says. “You complete a project, and you feel dynamite, so you move up to euphoria. That feeling doesn’t last forever, and you slide back to normal.But you love the feeling of euphoria, so you’ve got to have it again. The problem is, you can’t stay on that high. The highs don’t seem quite so high. You may win a deal that’s even bigger than the one that got away, but somehow that deal doesn’t take you to euphoria. .”An “achievement addict” is no different from any other kind of addict, Bell suggests.
 
ECCLESIASTES chapter 1.

1 The words of the Preacher,[a] the son of David, king in Jerusalem.

2  VANITY of vanities, says the Preacher,
    vanity of vanities! All is vanity.
What does man gain by all the toil
    at which he toils UNDER THE SUN?

The word “VANITY” means a vapor or breath. If it is a cold night you can go outside and you watch your breath and you see it for a moment and then it is gone. Solomon is saying that everything disappears. Time just flies by. LOOK AT HOW FAST YOUR KIDS GREW UP!!!!
 
This also can be translated MEANINGLESS. It’s not just that life is brief but also that nothing has meaning. Your career is meaningless [UNDER THE SUN]. The clothes you have bought recently will someday be at Goodwill. Everything will end up in the junkyard.
 
Verse 3 says, “What does man gain by all the toil  at which he toils UNDER THE SUN?”  In the end for all our hard work we gain NOTHING. What is the profit? Profit is what you have to show for all your hard work. Solomon says the answer UNDER THE SUN to that question is NOTHING.  
 
UNDER THE SUN is a vital phrase. This is what Solomon means by UNDER THE SUN (used 29 times in Ecclesiastes) and that is life through the lense of a Godless world. It is seeing what can only be seen by natural eyes. It is a horizontal view that can not even look up and see that God has something to do with us.
 
What gain or profit is left after I have lived in life UNDER THE SUN apart from God and Solomon says there is NOTHING and it is MEANINGLESS.
 
Jesus in Matthew 16:26 asks a similar question:   “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?”
 
The answer to Jesus’ question is also NOTHING. So if you decide that this life is all there is and you just see this life UNDER THE SUN without reference to God then you end up with NOTHING. All your success is not irrelevant. All your toil is for NOTHING. All the years you put in at work you leave NOTHING to show for it.
 
The wisest man who ever lived said life is FUTILE if you only look at life UNDER THE SUN. Solomon saw that people were crooked, bent and broken, but he couldn’t straighten them out…Solomon knew the problem. Everybody in the world knows something is wrong with the world. You do whether you are a Christian or not. Just go to a bookstore and look at the thousands of SELF HELP books that are selling in the millions. Jesus came to answer every frustration that Solomon had [in the Book of Ecclesiastes about life UNDER THE SUN]. 
 
When Adam and Eve sinned and they rebelled the earth became frustrated. Who will give us the answer to this? Christ said, “The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here”(Matthew 12:42).
 
Why is Jesus greater than Solomon? It is because Jesus is God.
 
I Corinthians 15:58 says, “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”
 
Philippians 1:21 (English Standard Version)  “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
(International Standard Version) “For to me, to go on living is the Messiah, and to die is gain.”
Jesus came not to just inform us but to transform us. Jesus came not to only share our grief but to conquer our sin. So Jesus died in our place for our sin. He became our sin for us so we might become the righteousness of God. Anyone who is in Christ is a new creature, and one day we will hear Christ say, “I am making everything new” (Revelation 21:5). 

There is evidence that points to the fact that the Bible is historically true as Schaeffer pointed out in episode 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACEThere is a basis then for faith in Christ alone for our eternal hope. In some of the past letters I have written you I have included such examples of historical evidence. Please take time and examine the evidence HUGH.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.com, http://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221

PS: This is the 16th letter I have written to you and I have tried in almost every letter to take your own words and then quote them back to you. Also since so many people have compared your life to the life of King Solomon in the Bible I have often used Solomon’s book Ecclesiastes because it is there where Solomon takes a long look back over his life UNDER THE SUN. Just like you Solomon was a workaholic and  I will return to this subject again in a future letter.

Groundhog Day – Ecclesiastes: The Meaning Of Life Part 1

Published on Oct 22, 2013

Sermon preached on Saturday, October 12th, 2013 by Pastor Chris Lewis at Foothill Church in Glendora, CA. Sermon text is Ecclesiastes 1.1-11. For more information please visit http://www.foothillchurch.net.

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