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Ecclesiastes: Chapter 9

If you superficially read through this chapter, and indeed most of Ecclesiastes, you may come away with the idea that what you do, how you act or who you try to be in this life doesn’t matter. The good, the bad, the fool, the wise, the rich, the poor, they all have the same destiny – the grave.

But that is a false conclusion. What the teacher is saying is that being wise or rich or good or evil is not a guarantee to result in any one particular outcome. The goal in life is not to achieve things or gain possessions. Solomon warns that trying to do so is fruitless for it all goes away in the end or sometimes things never come to pass the way we certainly thought they would. Jesus taught the same lesson in the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12:16-21. A rich man has a great crop so he tears down his barns and builds bigger ones so he can retire and eat, drink and be merry. That night he dies and of course gets none of the benefits of his labor.

So what are we to do in this life? The teacher advises us to enjoy our life in the position that God presently has us in. Whether that is an exalted one or lowly, whether we are struggling or on easy street (right now). Keep God in the center of your life. Whatever he draws you to or keeps you from is in his hands, not ours. Let go and let God.

Key Verse:
“Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for it is now that God favors what you do.” ~ Ecclesiastes 9:7

Questions to ponder:

  • What plans that you had for your life did not work out the way you thought they would?
  • Are you enjoying your life as it is now, or do you spend most of your time and effort striving to get to a new level?
  • Take some time reflecting on your present life situation and thanking God for who he has made you and what you are now.
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