Day 1: Ecclesiastes 1:1-11

As I read through this passage, a few things stuck out to me:

v.5- “The sun also rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it arose.” It’s so true that the sun almost seems to move from one side of the sky as quickly as it possibly can. We wake up and not much longer, we’re back in bed. We wake up again, and not long after we find ourselves asleep again. The days go by so fast that we don’t have time to stop and watch them pass. We must actively make the most we can of the little time we have for God’s glory.

v.9-10- “That which has been is what will be, that which is done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which it may be said, ‘See, this is new’? It has already been in ancient times before us.” These verses are somewhat confusing but seem to be loaded with significance. Can I truly take pride in anything I accomplish? Is there anything new on this mortal earth that is worth rejoicing over? The answer is, NO! Not apart from God! As I go through life, I may do some unique things or accomplish something of note, but in the long run, there’s no point in me making a big deal of what I do. Someday I will be in Heaven, and only the things done for God will count and will be remembered.

v.11- “There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remembrance of things that are to come by those who will come after.” This was already referred to in the last paragraph, but it’s worth briefly repeating. After I’m gone, people will largely forget about me and the things I accomplish. True, my name may live on after me- and if it does, I hope it does for the right reasons- but many of the things that I do may be forgotten as other things become more prominent in the minds of the next generation. Even more significant, someday the earth will pass away, and all that will be remembered are the things that God did of Himself and through His people. On the one hand the thought is a sobering one, but on the other hand it is a glorious thought! Only that which is done of and for God will be remembered! So the question for me now is: Am I doing for God things that will be remembered? Am I setting my “mind on things above, not on things on the earth” as Colossians 3:2 says?

The time is short,
It is passing away.
“Vanity of vanities!”
The Preacher does say.

What profit has man
In the things he has done?
What joy findeth he
In his toil ‘neath the sun?

All that’s accomplished
Will soon be forgot.
There’s no lasting value
In the works he has wrought.

But look to the Heavens
And work for the One
Who rewards all the things
That for Him are done.

And you will find joy
In the work of your hand.
For things done for God
Will not cease to stand.

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