Sunday, November 18, 2012

Nov 18: Ecclesiastes 1

Today's reading in our daily plan is Ecclesiastes 1. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)

  • The author of Ecclesiastes calls himself “teacher.” However, authorship is almost unanimously attributed to King Solomon, who was the son of King David. King Solomon was widely considered the wisest and richest king to ever live (at least during the time it was written). Other kings and queens from around the world would travel to get wise advice from Solomon, and all noted his wealth.
  • The first chapter begins with a great question: “What do people really gain from all the hard work they do here on earth?” This is a question that still haunts us today. And this is what the whole book of Ecclesiastes discusses.
  • Throughout the rest of the first chapter, Solomon talks about how nothing is new in the world. What Solomon says about “nothing being new” could apply to us today as well. With many of today's movies being simple reworks of the old ones we grew up with, and all the “wise” people saying the exact same things and asking the same exact questions as decades ago, we could come to the same conclusions.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)

  • The book of Ecclesiastes is a pretty interesting book. It is a book about wisdom but it’s more than that; Ecclesiastes is a book about finding fulfillment in life. And in a world as hectic as ours and as consumed with pleasure as ours today, I can’t think of a better book to dive into to gain clarity about how we can live our lives in a way that pleases God.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • Instead of jumping to quick conclusions, let’s ponder the same questions ourselves through the next few weeks. Take a moment right now and ask God to help you come to the answers he wants you to have for how to have real fulfillment in life.