Apr 16

Ecclesiastes 2:3-11
Memorise Matthew 6:24
“there was no profit under the sun.”

As Solomon surveyed the fruit of all the works which his hands had wrought, and the labour he had laboured, we can see this sense of despair and grief that he had, as he cried out, “behold, all is vanity and vexation of the spirit!” Despite all that Solomon had accomplished, and the seemingly good life that he lived, he still found no satisfaction in the life that he had. Instead, he realised that there was really no profit in all that he did.

Why did he feel this way? This was because he realised that he had been pursuing a life that is centred all on himself. It was a life that was lived under the sun, apart from God. All that he did was in accordance  to his own will, and he did not do it to please God. In the process of it   he transgressed numerous commandments of the Lord, and wasted all the blessings that God’s grace had bestowed upon him. 1 Kings 11 also describes how he had 700 wives and 300 concubines, and these women turned his heart away from the Lord to seek after other gods. At the end of his life, as he returned to the Lord, he realised that these things which he once held on so dearly to, and thought could satisfy him, in so doing he had sorely disappointed his Lord. And so his heart was vexed, for he saw the futility of all such endeavours. This is the result of pursuing a life that is centred all on self, and not on God.

After reading such a description of life, are we still envious? Do we too desire such riches and wealth and accomplishments? Are we so proud as to think that we can be better than Solomon, that we can chase after the world but yet continue to maintain a close relationship with God? Realise that no man can serve two masters. It is either God or the world. The world will continue to pressure you to seek after the pleasures of the world. They will dangle all manner of attractions before you, and try to convince you that these things will definitely satisfy you and bring joy to your lives. We must understand that Solomon recorded all this for us not to show off, or that we would be envious of him, but it is so that we can learn from his life and not repeat the same mistakes. Solomon, with all his achievements and privileges, asks us to learn from him, and sincerely believe and realise that all these trappings of the world will never bring true joy, but only sorrow, grief, and vexation of the spirit.

Thought: Can I be more wise than Solomon?
Prayer: Lord, may You guard my heart, and help me to serve you wholeheartedly.