Life Is So B-O-R-I-N-G (Eccl. 1:3-11)
Well, good morning. Good to see everyone. Good to see this good number here today. Glad that you're hearing this Super Bowl Sunday in it Super Bowl. So how many Bengal fans are in here this morning? 1, 2 3 4 5, how many? RAM Vans 12? Okay. I'll write it is. Well, that's why I was out right and how many? Don't care. And probably a bunch up. There we go. Okay. Well, that's all right. Now. The day's not the I don't keep up with this but today is not the Daytona 500, is it? It's next week? Okay. Alrighty. I thought it was somewhere around the Super Bowl. I didn't know. But good, good to see you. We're glad that you are here today. We're going to continue. In our new series that we started last week. I think most of you were here last week. So we have started a new series and here it is searching for heaven on Earth. And if you remember last week, we talked about kind of energy used to Book of Ecclesiastes. And we talked about folks searching for a purpose and meaning here on this Earth. And how is kind of it's a futile search. If you do it without God, and we talked about a lot of things last week about the idols and all and matter fact, if you'll just look in the first verse of the day. We going to look at verses 3 through 11, but just look at the first verse here, in Ecclesiastes chapter one says the words of the preacher. Son of David kendrews. Them vanity of vanities, says the preacher vanities and vanity. All is Vanity, how many times the word vanity is in that, in the first two first, two verses. So I have a slide. I want to show you from last week. And here's, here's the title of the message life. Today, life is so boring. Is that not right to you sometime. If you ever thought you were like, is monotonous and boring. Well, that's what we going to talk about. Play the repetitive cycle of our existence. Well, I carried over to slide from last week because I want you to look at it here in the first two verses vanity of vanities. What does that mean? It's the Hebrew word hevel. It literally means breath or vapor. Remember James at our life is like a vapor here today, gone tomorrow, but it can also mean idle. And remember we said last week, that those who look for the things of this world. Pleasure success. Accept a job relationship. If you want to try to find meaning in that it's just vanity on vanity. It will not work because you're trying to fill your life. With something that is temporary. You're trying to fill your life with the gift of God. And sometimes if we're not careful, we turn those gift into Gods themselves. And then that's when life gets frustrating. And also remember this next.
Good things pleasure, sex money success, acceptance job. Just fill in the blank. All the good things that we have in life relationships, good things. Can become bad things. Obsessions addictions Idols, when Good Things become ruling thing in your life. So if you are so obsessed with this person, or with this job, or would making this amount of money if you obsessed with that, that will become a God to you, and you'll start worshipping the creation and not the Creator. And that's what leads to frustration and lack of meaning and lack of purpose in life. So here's what I want to do. I'm going to read verses 3 through 11. That's what we going to go over today. And again the title of this message is life is so boring. And this is what Solomon is going to tell us. So let's read verses 3 through 11, then we'll come back and unpack. So he says, what profit has a man from all his labor in which he toils under the sun. One generation passes away, and another generation comes. But the Earth abides forever. The Sun Also Rises and The Sun Goes Down And hastens to the place where it arose, the wind goes toward the South and turns around to the north. The When Worlds about continually in comes, again, on this circuit all the rivers run into the sea yet to see, is not full to the place from which two rivers come there. They return again. All Things Are full of Labor. What he means there is, there's just so much activity in the world, the sun rising and setting. The wind blowing from one way than the other, the rain, the river fill out flow into a lot of activity going on. All things are full of Labor. All Things Are full of activity. Man, cannot express it. The eyes not satisfied, or singing or the ear filled with hearing. That which has been is, what will be and 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. 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? Wow? What a kind of a pessimistic view of life that. But again, that is the view of Life under the sun. Which means what life without God. Life Under the Sun, Life East of Eden. In a sin cursed world. This is what Solomon sea. So he began by asking the question kind of to prove his main point. That everything is pointless and meaningless and see, he says, what does a man gain by all his labor or by all his efforts that were gained their armies profit or Advantage? So in under the phone, this is an important phrase here that we're going to talk about. It's found 30 times in this book and it means Solomon is looking at the question from an Earthly perspective, a question when God is not involved. So just leave God out and look at your life. And you'll see how meaningless and pointless your life is. So I want to make a statement here and this is probably going to be the most important statement that I met in this entire Series. In this is if this world in which we live in, If this world is all there is, if there's no God and no afterlife. And no judgement. If that's true. Then everything that we do has no meaning and no purpose whatsoever. Everything. You say well, what do you mean? Well, Are all the love. You give all the good works. You give all the compassion you give all the friendship you give has absolutely no meaning whatsoever. If there's no afterlife. No God and no final judgment. It has no me. None whatsoever. Well, Solomon expects, a negative answer to his question. What does it profit if this life is all there is then the point of our existence is Neil and there's no net gain. We all just end up with a big fat zero. Good things we do to bad things. We do neutral things. We do negative things. We do, whatever in the end. It's all going to end up, Neil just zero. It's all going to balance out all of our work, education in love, really gained us. Nothing because nothing Solomon says, ever changes. It's just a continuous cycle. Well, Jesus ask that same question. He said, what does it profit? A man, if he gain the whole world and do what lose his own soul. Well, that's a rhetorical question, is nothing, how much you make? How much you learn, how popular you are? Is meaningless because life, without God is feudal. No matter how many people like you, no matter how many people dislike you, no matter how many good works, you do. If there's nothing after this life, it is all meaningless. So, what permanent value do you have in your life? If after you live by it? There's no profit whatsoever. So he goes from verses 3 through 11, and he points to the repetitive Cycles in nature that prove that there is nothing gained by all of our activity. So Solomon, remember he was the wisest man in the world and he extrapolates wisdom from us looking at nature, the natural cycles, demonstrate that all of our activity in life is pointless because nothing changes. Even though there's a lot of activity. In other words what he paints here is a picture that we are trapped in a monotonous prison. That's what our life is like without God. We're just in a monotonous prison, we do the same thing over and over and over and You know, what yourself, if you have a job, I bet you get up the same time every day or more than 10 or 15 minutes of that time, every single day. You clock in. At the same time. You probably eat lunch almost at the same time every single day you put on your shoes, the same way you comb your hair the same way, you wash your hair the same way you wash your clothes. The same way you load the dishwasher the same way. Everything is a monotonous cycle. And so we see here that this cycle. He any begins here in first for, will look at it in a minute. He talks about the generations in Jerome said a historian said this, he said, what is more vain than this? That we humans who are made to subdue and take care of the earth. We die and go back down in the earth while the Earth remains. He says there's something wrong with that. God said that we are to care for the Earth. We are to subdue the Earth that was his commandment. But yet it's the Earth that lives in humanity dies and goes back down in the earth. He said that is Vanity of all vanity. So Humanity dies and a new generation comes with the Earth still safe. Now. I was out deer hunting one time a couple years ago and I was at back in the woods and I found a oak tree in the back of woods that I could not reach around twice probably. I mean that thing was huge and I thought to myself there's no telling how many hundreds of years old this tree is. And here I am 50, some years old. Industries will not live me. If the if the lightning doesn't strike at this tree is going to. It was here before me, and it will be here after me. Something's wrong with that. Something's wrong with that picture. So, let's see what following says. So, here's the first point in this section, and it is simply this the futility of life and we see it in verses 3 through 7 in what Solomon is saying, here is everything is pointless. Now, let's look how he says it. Well, he he begins in verse 4. By looking at the course of Life. The course of like, my look how he says it. One generation passes away. Another generation comes, but the Earth. Abides forever say that's what I was saying out there in the woods. This trees going out. Live me. I'm just going to pass away in this tree. Still going to be here. Now. It looks like silent could have been reading one of our small-town newspapers. If you remember getting the newspaper, maybe not a lot of people do that now, but at one time then use paper, especially in small towns, they would put in the verse every week and the deaths every single week. So the same day that a baby is born. Guess what? An older person dies. It's just a repetitive cycle. People are born. People die. It's just repetitive. One generation comes in one generation in man is transient. But the Earth stays the same in Solomon is thinking about all this at the end of his life. Not many people are asking similar questions today in there. More to life than this Daily Grind & Cycle of work, late work, sleep you ever thought about that. You just feel like you go to work. If you come home and go to bed, to get up to the same thing over and over, and over and over again. Many people are asking that question and then you die Solomon saying from that perspective. Life seems pointless and meaningless and Friends. It is hard to disagree with it. It is pointless in meaningless. When you look at it without God, so he says look at the course of life been in verse 5. He says, look at the circle of the song that look at it in verse 5. The Sun Also Rises and The Sun Goes Down. And hastens to the place where it a rose. I've had the window open before and I would wake up in the morning and the sun's Rays would be shining down on the bed. And I can wake up the next morning and those razors shining in the same exact spot. How is that the sun rises in the east? Sets in the west Nightfall, and then when you wake up the same morning the next morning, it's all the way back over here to East again. And it does the same thing day after day after day. It does the same thing. And so he said the circle of the sun, the sun rises, the sun goes down. Well course. Now we know that sun rise in go down is the Earth moving and all but Solomon, thought it moved across the sky in the repetitive cycle, which was endless rice, a tricep triset. That's all. It's been doing that since creation. The same exact thing the course of Life. The circle of son. Solomon is telling us how life is monotonous, monotonous and pointless. Now, look what he says in verse 6, he uses the wind, the Circuit of the wind my watch. Dwayne goes towards South. And turns around to the north. The wind world's about continuing and comes again on it. Circle. It not right. The wind either blow out the north or south of the East the West Northeast northwest southeast Southwest. That's what I mean. Every single day is one of those yesterday. I was working in the yard. There's a gentleman way across the road. He was burning something. And the wind was blowing out for South. Well, he live south of me. So that wind was blowing that smoke directly in my yard at my house. And I was sitting on the front porch, and I thought to myself that wind was blowing out the side. So, I said, when would you please turn the blowout? North it didn't, it didn't pay attention to what I said. It was going to blow out of the baby deer hunting sitting in a tree and I can say to myself. I wish the wind was coming out of North with these deers. Don't smell, it doesn't matter what I wear what I say, or what I do. The winds going to blow out the doors with it wants to go out in north or south east west, south east, south west, north east, north west all the time. That's what the wind up in. This is what Solomon is saying here. Now, it's amazing. It's all done. Could make these observations about nature. Without having any to, I mean, if you ever noticed when you watch the weather at night, they show you. The satellite pictures. I got satellites based big show, you the jet stream and how it dips and then goes up like that Solomon. He didn't have any of that. He simply observe the cycles of nature in its search for meaning and in what he come to a conclusion was that even in nature? It's just meaningless. That's just the wind can only blow 45 directions. And I said the phone does the same thing every day. He said it's all meaningless and it's all repetitive. Well, then look what he does in verse 7 next. He talks about the cycle of water. That look what he says all the rivers run into the sea. Get the sea is not full to the place from which the rivers calm their they return. Again, water is another great example of repetitiveness. The rivers run into the sea, but yes, why the sea never gets full? I remember when I was a little boy. We had a pain across the road in a cow pasture. It was a good size pot. And sometimes in the summer, when it got dry, you can see the level of the water going down. But then in other times Seasons, when it would just pour, we would have hurricanes come through. We get four, five, six in ranked 10, in of rain. It's overflowing or anyting. I said, I just don't understand if this is what Solomon is saying. He says the wind, the Sun, the water, even the generations. It's all like life. They come and go and repeat themselves over and over. There's this type of mechanical monotony to the way the World Turns. And it just seems, It's just futile when you consider it apart, from God, and many people are asking this morning. Why am I here? Might my life seems pointless and purposeless, but when we fail to remember God, we find ourselves. As despondent as Solomon was Solomon says that ass is never done. It just repeats itself over and over. There's no satisfaction Under the Sun. We're trapped in a meaningless cycle. All the activity that we do. Accomplishes. Nothing and Human Experience mirrors. This, our existence is characterized by monotony and pointlessness. If you will, it's the same old. Same old, not tell me if you've ever experienced this. You walk into the kitchen. And the sink is full of dirty dishes. You look at them. You say where I could wash them. Or I could put them in the dishwasher now. Sometimes I've even dreaded loading, the dishwasher. You don't even have to wash them and send you sat there and look at them. But let's just say you walk in the house. There's a sink full of dirty and you roll up your sleeve, you clean them. You drive me to put them away and then six hours later. You want back in the kitchen. What do you see? More dirty dishes stacked up in the sink. It's just a monotonous cycle over and over and over you go upstairs. You go into your closet and there you have a laundry basket full of dirty clothes. What do you have to do? You have to take them back downstairs. If your laundry is not upstairs, you have to put them in the wash and take them out of the washer and put them in the dryer. And then you have to fold them and then you have to take them back upstairs and put them up. And then the next day, you walk in your closet. What do you have dirty? Clothes of dirty. Dirty clothes. Hamper slam. Full hanging off the sides. You have to do the same thing over and over and over. These are the facts of life, more bills, more emails, more haircut, more grass to mow. It doesn't matter, what it is, never in, and people tries their own way of Breaking Free, not a fight Reba McEntire. If I remember correctly, wrote the song and it was entitled. Is there life out there. You remember, is there life out there? And she was asking the same question and then people have what they call these midlife crises. And then they commit adultery and they have these career shifts and they're trying to break free from the dissatisfaction in their lives. And what they're doing is they're chasing the win. Or like I said last week, when we try all these creative things to fill this void in our life, we may as well be plowing water or shoveling smoke. It will not work. It will not work and even Christians try to deal with this and we do it and not too helpful of a way. I heard a preacher preaching one time and he was talkin about this subject and he said if you are dissatisfied with your life, he said let me tell you what to do. He said just try something new. Well, I mean that may work for a while, but just think of the people who's in there, who's dissatisfied with their marriage? Do I need to do? I'll just pick another person. Well, that was not his intent, of course. But people look to someone else they're dissatisfied with their job and they say, okay. Well, I'm just going to quit and then they're going to go and get a job that they think that they're going to fall in love with and they may love it for a week or two. And then after that they say they're in the exact same place. They were can't stand a job working with people that they don't like and they hate their job. You see? It's like the sea will never, it is Never Enough. We are Never Satisfied. We moved to another relationship and then all the sudden the same dissatisfaction persist. And in the reason is because we never dealt with the lack of contentment that we had before. All we're doing is just we're rearranging the pieces of the puzzle. You get to your new job and you're just as bored as you were before. The grass is not always greener. You can always get more money. Another partner a bigger promotion a nicer house, a bigger car, but just as the sea is Never full, it will never be enough for you because you Trying to feel you're trying to put a square peg in a round hole. It was never meant for you to find meaning and purpose through the created things of this life. Well, that brings us to our last point. First of all, we said the futility of life. Everything is pointless. Point number to the frustration of life. Everything seems old to us. Everything is old and nothing. Verse 8 tells us, nothing is for feeling. Nothing, let's look at verse 8. All Things Are full of Labor. Man, cannot express. The eye is not satisfied with seeing nor the ear filled with. So, Solomon, conclusion, verse say, that our existence is just one of weary and he gives three behaviors. That parallel, the song, The Wind and The see what he says here is we can't say enough, we can't see enough and we can't hear enough. We can't say enough words to find meaning in the midst of monotony that I will never see it all. There's always more sites to see more experiences and Pleasures to take more pictures to look at. We can't see it all in the ear has never heard it off. There's always more gossip to hear more gossip to spread more songs to see, more jokes, to listen to, there's always something more. Nothing we can say, see or hear can bring meaning to this redundancy called life. A listening years ago to a song. Remember the group The Rolling Stones. You remember this song? You Supply the last word? I Can't Get No Satisfaction. They saying that probably back in the 70. I Can't Get No Satisfaction. What does that mean? It means our desires are never satisfied. We're not happy. We're not content. We always want more. We think, if I could just go up, two floors in this building. If I could get a bigger house, if I could just live in that gated, if I could just live in this neighborhood right out here, if I could just have me a house, like one of those out here beside us at our church. If I just had more gadgets, then I would arrive and we keep waiting for a change in our circumstances that will make us happy cuz we think we can be happy if we can just manipulate our circumstances. So tell me if you remember this as a young child growing up say you was in high school. You hated the lack of Freedom that you had in your house as a child and you said yourself? I can't wait till I get my license. I can't wait till I get my car and I can go where I want to and especially I can't wait till I graduate high school and I can go off to college and be on my own. I just can't wait till I do that. Then you get the college. You're on your own. And you think yourself I can't stand all this studying. I can't stand all these papers. I got a right, I will be so glad when I get out of college. I'll be so glad when I have no more papers to write, and I can get me a job that I really loved. So, then you graduate and you take a job and you save yourself with this job is all right, it started. Alright, but now I'm kind of bored. You know what I need. I need a relationship. What I need is, I need to get married and what happened? You meet, someone, you date him. You get married and all the sudden you, if you and your wife or your husband and you're sitting around and you know what? We need. We need a family, we need to have some children and then you have some children and all the sudden you start spending more and more money. And, and you just don't understand. You said yourself, you know, something. I can't wait to taste you and graduating high school and get out of this house and those short and graduate and get out of the house and they leave and all the sudden as you and your wife. And you know what to say. I wish you a comeback. They never come back home. I have this empty nest syndrome. I just feel so sad. I'd like to see a more than I do. It is an endless cycle. Is it not? It's just the same thing over and over and you keep thinking to yourself, if I could just get there. Things would be different and then when you arrive there, nothing is different. It's the same over and over. What Simon Says in verse 8 here and he says, it's just nothing is for feeling, it is just so we're done. And then in verse 9 through 11. He says, everything is old is old. And what he's saying here is, nothing is fresh and I look at it and verses 9 through 11. He says that which has been. Is what will be? That which is done. Is what will be done. There is nothing new, you see, everything is old. There's nothing new Under the Sun. Is there anything to which it may be said, see this is new and it's already been in ancient times before us. There is no remembrance of former things nor there be any members of things that are to come by those who will come after there's nothing new Under the Sun, nothing changes people object to that truth. But they're wrong. There is nothing new, nothing does change. You say, there's a lot of things about all the technology. How about all the medicine and the cell phones? And, and you can talk to people and see people on another side of the world. What you mean, nothing changes. We live in a world of change, with all these new inventions, new product, new discoveries, all that. What Solomon means when he says nothing is new? Is he saying nothing new is being created by God. Is what he saying, what God created in. The beginning is all that will ever be created. And anything, we invent is just a rearrangement of what God has already created. So there's really nothing new at all. The fundamental events of Life. Remain the same. You're born, you live, you get married. You have a family, you work and you die. That's the fundamental that and the it's always been that way and we use that phrase. Nothing new Under the Sun in our own vernacular, sometimes what we're really saying isn't and you can complete this, the more things change, the more they want, stay the same. That's what we say. The human race is a same bunch of Sinners. It is always been and nothing. We do really changes that and Solomon even goes on, the no one will ultimately be remembered. Well, somebody May reject that say well, how about Abraham Lincoln or George Washington? People still talk about them and all but the vast billions of people who have ever lived on planet Earth will never gain lasting recognition. Never, I look at my own life. When I die. I'm going to remember this sermon today. Who's going to fight Mike posted all his sermons on Soundcloud. I'm going to go listen to him. 25 years after I died. They're not going to do that cuz I know Mike. I will not be remembered. Most of us will live and die. Unremembered. I just think about that. Do you remember your great-great-grandparents know, probably never laid eyes on, don't remember? You said, when somebody doesn't that can tell me about it. But what happens when they die, then they have nobody to talk about. You say, well, with my children. Remember me. What happens when they die? Who's going to talk about you, then? Nobody grandchildren, where they'll die. Nobody's going to, we will die on. Remember think about it like this. You go to the same job everyday, you punch in punch out at the same time. And one day you going to punch out the last time you going to retire, your company is going to give you a little party. They're going to give you a plaque or a gift, and the next day. Guess what? Someone sitting in your desk. Someone new is sitting in your desk. And what are they going to do the same job that you did? They can do the same thing. The summarize the business will go on in eventually you will be forgotten because they're going to carry on without you. These are The Facts of Life under the sun. Without God, these are the facts of life. It is meaningless. It is frustrating. It is purposeless. It is futile. It's nothing. Everything is pointless, and everything is old, and then we go to a funeral. And somebody was say, well, she or he made the world a better place. What's Solomon to say in here is nonsense, you didn't really change anyway. You you didn't really change anything. You're just here for a few decades and then you're gone. And then when everybody knows you, when they're gone, you're not remembered anymore. You see, death is the great equalizer. Everyday, we all step on the treadmill of life. And we try to outrun death with all of our activity, but we can't do it. The Grim Reaper is faster than all of us one day. He's going to catch us all all the new enemy in vacations. All the medicines that you can take all the new workouts. You can do, you can do them. All you like you makes in your life two or three years, but unless the Lord comes the Grim Reaper will catch you. We will all be caught. We can only postpone death for a little while, but eventually we're going to be caught. So Solomon faced with this Bleak reality searches for meaning and satisfaction. And when he looks at life, he says it's just like nature. It's just redundant. He said everything is pointless. It's just cycle after cycle, and they're everything. Is old. Nothing, fresh. Nothing for feeling. Well, what he saying is that, nothing in this world can fully satisfy the longings of the human heart. But God, I saw them and knows this because in his life, he was close to God. He prayed one night, Lord. Give me give me wisdom. The lord gave him so much wisdom that he was the wisest man in the world, but he allowed his heart to be led Away by wealth and wisdom and women. And so, he died. I believe a very discouraged and disillusioned person, but he gave us this book at the end of his life. So we would not make the same mistake that he made. He had once been connected to heaven. But he forsook God and gradually lost the meaning of life. And what he says here in Ecclesiastes is that life has no meaning or purpose whatsoever without go now. I'm finished. But I want to say this before we close. It is possible.
You say well you say that God will give meaning and purpose in life. How about the Christian who is not in idolatry? They don't look to the things of this world to fulfill them. At least not up session Ali, you know. How about that person who steal feels like? They don't know why they're here. Is it possible for Chris and enough? You have God living on the inside? In the person the holy spirit. Is it possible for us to say it just seems pointless to me and I'm frustrated a lot and the answer is absolutely. Yes. Disable. Then what is it? If it's not just being saved that will give you meaning and purpose in life then what is it? It is an event. That we're all going to have to go through. At one time and it is because of this one event. When we understand this event, it will Infuse and inject your life with purpose and meaning, even in the mundane things that you do like washing dishes, folding clothes, and changing dirty diapers. It will Infuse your life with purpose and meaning if we would just look at life from this perspective. The problem is, we look at life from the perspective of the present and not from the perspective of the future. You say well, what is that one thing? Because I want to know because I want meaning and purpose in my life. I'll tell you next week because what I want to do next week cuz I'm going to preach and then after I preach I'm going to turn all the way over into the back of the book Ecclesiastes and I'm going to give you the conclusion about life of what? Simon says. You said. What, why don't you just wait until your last sermon to do that? Because I want you to be thinking about it in the nine more weeks that we're going to study this book. I want you to be thinking about this one event and how this is, what gives me purpose and meaning in life. And then let's pray. Father. We thank and praise you and love you today. Lord, for Your word Lord. We thank you for this series that we are undertaking here. Cuz I know that there's many people here who are frustrated with their life. They look at their life and they may even think their life has been a failure, but yet they've been safe for 10, 20, 30 40, 50 years or more. Lord, you didn't call us to live a frustrating futile life. With the Holy Spirit living on the inside of us. Something is wrong. Something is not the way that it's supposed to be. Lord, help us to be good. Interpreters of your word and help us to see life from your perspective, forcing Christ name, I do pray. Amen. All right. Well, thank you for being here today.