Reading the Book of Ecclesiastes is almost comical. Now don’t be thinkin I am being cynical or “bashing the word.” Read it yourself.
This guy does everything. He is the King of busy. Solomon built houses, gardens, parks. He bought slaves, livestock and treasures of gold and silver. (Ecclesiastes 2)
Wisdom got the best of him to explore, feast and play judge.
Can you imagine having to work for this guy? Fulfilling his daily need for self-preservation to discover the “meaning of life” must have fallen prey on his staff.
He labored, indulged in pleasures and folly and held captive his 1st place as the smartest guy on the block. Or the world. Yet, he proclaimed it was all futile.
He debated good versus evil, decided there was a “time for everything” and due to oppression concluded the dead were better off than the living. (Ecc. 4: 2)
Labor and toil were meant for reward but achievement invited envy. (Ecc. 2:10 & 4:2)
Dreaming and words have no substance; the rich only want more riches. (Ecc. 5:10)
Nothing is new, all has been done before. A good reputation trumps treasures and be careful what you hear or you may find another cursing you. (Ecc.7:1, 7:21)
Wisdom or evil we all have the same destiny (Ecc.9) but the dead are ignorant with no reward and are forgotten.
No one knows the future or what occurs after he is gone. (Ecc.10:14) Only our Maker knows the path of the wind. (Ecc.11:5)
I am not sure if Solomon was a “King after God’s own heart” or simply so full of knowledge and curiosity he got bored. His inquisitiveness was his own worst enemy. His analytical eye kept him on the road to conquer his lack of satisfaction for solving everything under the sun.
Why this? Why that? invoked a scrutinizing streak within his soul to search, hunt and breathe that which was all God. Only he wasn’t God so he would forever be left disappointed that it all amounted to “chasing after the wind.”
In the end he was left with 700 wives and 300 concubines who led him astray. Any man who would willingly support that many women in one place no matter how much money he was blessed with ain’t keeping his brain in mint condition. Let’s just conclude he played too much without a helmet.
1 Kings 11:3 He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray.
Solomon was known as a “Teacher” of wisdom, pleasure, work, power, religion and all things earthly. Or at least that is how he began Ecclesiastes, but not how he closed the book.
His quest to find meaning and purpose was almost driven by madness to outwit himself or God but he was human. His humanness eventually took over his common sense leading him into sin. In other words, he took his eyes off of God.
Yet, illicit behaviors and idols of gold presented him with no pleasure, nor did work or the graces of all the judgments and information bestowed upon his privileged existence.
Emptiness and desolation prevailed until he had exhausted every nook and cranny set forth on God’s green earth.
The idea of “self” as sufficient was only folly for life is not worth living without God.
Solomon, the man who had it all, found everything really was meaningless, chasing after the wind without the one who created him.
And therein lies the air we breathe….the sustenance of all things possible….the way, the truth and the life.
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