Ecclesiastes 1: 12 – 2: 26

Ecclesiastes 1:12 – 2:26

  1. Name three things that are ‘meaningless’ (transient) according to the passage?
  2. What comes with much wisdom?
  3. How do verses 24 – 26 give insight into what is not meaningless?
  4. How does trying to get ahead by education, hard work, and living it up lead to frustration?
  5. How would people be happier if they learned to enjoy what they already have?

When my wife asks me to do one more thing, I ask, “Why is it never enough?”  and she replies, “It is never too much.”  We’re told that our life lacks real happiness because we lack something.  It’s hard to be happy about having a master’s degree when we don’t have our doctorate.  It’s hard to be content with the car we have when the next car is better.  Our job seems wonderful until we dream of what we could be doing. The pursuit is a chasing after the wind.  Take a look around you at what God has already given you.  Learn to enjoy it before you die.

 Going Deeper

  • What did the Teacher seek to understand by wisdom?
  • What can not be straightened?
  • What is laughter?
  • What great projects did the Teacher undertake?
  • To whom does your work get left?  What is wrong with that?

Interpretation

  • Why is it essential to understand the Teacher’s quest for profit or gain when reading his words?
  • What is the end of any profit or gain that comes to everyone?
  • How does ‘under the sun’ reinforce the idea that man is mortal?
  • How do wisdom, toil, and enjoyment benefit a person who does not look on them for gain?
  • How do wisdom, toil, and enjoyment torture people who are looking to gain ultimate meaning through them?

Application

  • Which of the areas of education, work, and entertainment tends to suck you in?
  • How do godless education, work, and entertainment leave people desolate?
  • How could God make education enjoyable for you day by day?
  • How could God make work enjoyable for you day by day?
  • How can entertainment be a gift from God?

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About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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