The Conclusion Of The Whole Matter (Eccl. 11-12)
Good to see you were glad that you're here. Glad for our visitors to be here today. Make sure you feel them. Make them feel welcome and Well today, scores last week. We talked about the resurrection today. I'm going to finish our series. Only crazy ass stays the day. Will be the last message on Ecclesiastes. Not remember, we've been talking about finding meaning and purpose in life, and we talked about a lot for the last 3 months, and this is our series searching for heaven on Earth and we didn't go in through the Book of Ecclesiastes. Here's today's message. The conclusion of the whole matter. What we're going to talk about is Solomon's final false on the meaning and purpose of life. And so we're going to look I'm going to give you four attitude will talk about those in a moment. Well, it was during WWII. Here's a story of three. Teenage boys that had been captured and they were out of a Nazi concentration camp. Well, one night. There was an uprising amongst all the prisoners. You don't really hear these stories that much but about 400 went up against some of the Nazi guards and about a hundred of them escaped. And they fled for the woods. Well, three of those 100 were these three teenage boys. And they spent 4 days and nights trying to escape from that place or what they would do. They would sleep during the day and then they would move at night. And then on the fourth night, they was out in the woods and they can see some lights and a building in the distance. And they said, we have finally escaped and they ran into that building. Unknowingly, they were running back to the same prison that they had just escaped from 4 days. Earlier and other words, what they had done is they had spent four days traveling in a circle. And didn't know where they were with a course, they ended up back where they started and they were arrested again. Well, Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes. It's kind of a picture of someone just living life in a circle. Just going from one thing to the other and this book kind of describes Solomon's if you want to call it. That a round trip experience with God. Remember what he began the book say and he said all is Vanity, all is just useless. I mean life. We just can't understand it. Well, we conclude our study today. And we're going to talk about one main theme here and we started earlier in the series. We said that this was following his book of regrets. If you think of it like that, he looks back upon his life because he's an old man now and he just regretted that he tried to live his life apart from God. All these things that you read in here about what life has no meaning what he's talkin about. Is if you try to live life with God on the periphery or God in the background, it's not going to work. You're not going to find meaning. You're not going to find purpose. You're not going to find love. You're not going to find enjoyment. You just cannot do it. And so in a way his life was like those three teenagers wandering in the woods. Without a roadmap ended up exactly where they began frustrated and meaningless. And that's what life is without God. So in this lesson today, one of them, Who is trying to just give you kind of an overview of all the questions that he has raised in these 10 chapters and I want to give it to you in a summary form. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to give you four attitudes that you need to have if you're going to find meaning and purpose in life for attitude. So let's go ahead and again with number one in the first attitude is this life is uncertain. So embrace it. Now, this is on the back of your bulletin, or you can follow up here on the screen slalom. And he take great. He takes great pains here to communicate in this book, the uncertainty of life. Now, there's a Temptation especially among Christians to kind of sit back and kind of relax in the face of life's uncertainty. Just kind of play it safe. Don't Rock the Boat, just kind of bide your time. What Simon says, don't do that. He says, you need to be proactive in your life as you approach life. You don't need to do crazy things, you need to practice and do life with wisdom, but you just don't sit back and let life come to you. You need to be proactive. So, how does he say that? Well, let's look at it here in a crazy ass things. Chapter 11. And I want you to look at verse one because what he says is we need to be Diversified in our investments. Now. Look how he says this inverse. 1 of chapter 11 pieces, cast your bread upon the waters for. You will find it after many days. You said what, what in the world would that mean? Well again, this is what it's called, an Old Testament. Idiom in the idiom is cast your bread upon the waters. Now, here's how to understand that. In Solomon's day merchants. Would load their ships with grain or die, or something like that. And they would send them by ship across, who knows a hundred 203 for 500 miles to another land and they would trade that for something that the people in the other land had. So he says, cast your bread upon the waters in the Hope was when the ship would come back, what you would have coming to? You would be more valuable than what you sent and noticed. The word here Waters is in the plural, hear what that indicates, is the wisdom of not sending everything that you have. On one ship. It means you may put grain and go to the north. You may put die or something and go to the South. You may put wool or something like that. And go east, go west, you diversify. So he says here, cast your bread upon the waters, don't in other words. If you're looking at it in our day, don't put all your eggs in one basket. Don't do that. Don't put all your money. In the stock market, don't put it all there. You can put some there. Diversified put some in stock splits. Plumbing Bond. Do you have a small business, put some money over here? Maybe you have a house, something that you want to rent, or trailer, a piece of land that you want to rent, do that. Don't put everything in one basket, is what he said, be Diversified in your investment because life is uncertain. And instead of burying your resources. Like we see in the New Testament. Remember the talents parable of the talents one went out and dusted made money. The other one invested made money love and say well, I'm afraid I'm going to lose it. I'm just going to bury it in the backyard. And when the and then when his master came, he said you lazy server. He said, you could have been bested this and made money and interest on top of it. Instead, you buried. And now you give me exactly what I gave you. He didn't like that. But we don't, we investment. We don't put everything in one pot. So invest, our talents and our money and things like that in a diversified matter, but also he says this, he says be diligent. In your involvement. You say what do you mean here? Let's look at it and verses 3 through 6. He says, if the clouds are full of rain, the empty themselves upon the Earth. And if a tree falls to the South or the North in the place where the tree falls there it shall lie. He who observes the wind will not. So he who regards the clouds will not reap. And you do not know. What is the way of the wind or how the bones grow in the womb of her, who is with child? So you do not know the works of God. Who makes everything. In the morning, so your seed in the evening, do not withhold your head, for you, do not know which will prosper either this or that or whether both alike will be good. You say what he saying? He said, we don't know which way the winds going to blow. We don't know what's going to happen in life. Life is on certain. We have to be diligent instead of being passive and fearful about life, be bold and strong work, hard work, hard, and whatever you do and expect God to be with you. Now, if you work hard for myself, how about if I work hard work? Does that guarantee? I'll be successful. No. But I can guarantee you this. If you don't work hard, you will be unsuccessful. That's a guarantee. I can give you right there. You see, we don't know which way the winds going to blow. We don't know where the rain when is going to rain. We don't know if it's going to be sunny or cloudy. If a tree falls just like he said it may fall to the South. It may fall to the north. We don't know. We don't know which way it's going to fall. We don't know how a child grows in the mother's womb, how the bones are fit. We we do not know all those are uncertainties about life, but friends don't let the uncertainties of Life crippled, you know, where you just afraid to do anything there. Some Christian to say, well, I know I'm going to heaven I'm just going to take it easy until the Lord comes. That's not Christian attitude, at all. The opposite should be true. If you know, you're going to heaven, you should be passionate about your life and about got it about Jesus and about serving him and raising your family and working hard in your job. We should be packing out this passive and say, well, I'm going to have a nice. All I care about is, we can't do that. So life is uncertain. So we need to embrace. It just know that life is uncertain. Number two. Life is short. So we need to enjoy it. Life is short. We're not going to stay young all of our life. So how do we enjoy life? Let me give you four ways. Experience each day. Totally look at it in verse 7. Truly the light is sweet and it is Pleasant for the eyes to behold. The song. What does that mean? That means that we ought to never take. Take it for granted as we live another day. We ought to be thankful for every day that God gives us every single day. We ought to be thankful in any one of you. And some of you have who have lived through a life-threatening illness, knows exactly what I'm talking about. If you've ever made it back from cancer or something like that, you know exactly what I'm talkin about. We out to greet every day with a thank you Lord. Thank you and gratitude for giving me another day. So we need to experience each day, totally to be thankful for numbers to orbi.
Enjoy your youth. Thoroughly. Now, one of them major themes in this book is falling says you need to enjoy life. Despite all the uncertainties that you remember. When you was a young person. You remember when you were ten years old, you couldn't wait until you got how old 30 min? I want to be a teenager. Well, then when you get to be 13, you can't wait till you get to W. 16 s my license. I want to be 16 and then when your 16 years will be a team because that's about the time you graduate from high school. And then when you 18, you say gosh, I wish I was 21. Now. I'm of age, I can go places and I can do things. We're always trying to go from younger, the older but at some point in life when we get older we want to go backwards with ankle while I wish I was sixteen again. I wish I was 21 again. So somewhere along the way we start looking backwards. But for some I was in most of us, we just tried to leave those years of used as fast as we can. But Simon says no, he says this. Here is a time to be treasured. Look how he says it in verse 9. He says Rejoice old young man. In your Youth, and let your hearts hear you in the days of your youth, enjoy the days of your youth. Now. This is a message, actually. For parents as much as it is for young people. And let me say something to parents. Don't make your children grow up before they grow up. Let them enjoy the days of their youth, Don't force them to grow up sooner. I know a lot of guys. I remember I went to high school with, they were good ball players. They wanted to play ball. They couldn't because their daddy made them go. Go to work after school every day. They couldn't be on the team. They couldn't do it. They couldn't enjoy anything that young people there because it was like their parents wanted them to grow up so they can hurry up and get them out of the house. Just hurt. Just grow up, start making money. And when you 18, you can leave It's a wee out, not to be that way. You see, high school isn't a business. High school was a time when young people should have fun. College is a business. You go to college, you have to pay, you have to do this, and they don't care. If you go to class or not. They just sent one to you as not. They don't care. If you get a degree that you have to, it's more like a business. But High School is a time for young people to have fun. It's a place to grow in experience and still be taken care of responsibilities. Will come soon enough and young. People should enjoy their use and don't try to hurry up and get out of it. Oh, I wish I was 16. I wish I was 18. I wish I was 21 when I was 25. I wish I was married, but sometimes when you get married, you wish you wouldn't marry. I'm just, I'm going to stab you sometime if like that. Now, I'm not saying Are you saying that young people I would just go out and so their Wild Oats. I'm not saying that at all. That's not Solomon's. Message. Here's the point. Don't be anxious about leaving God's appointed times and seasons for you. We all have them. There's middle-aged. There's old age. There's a time to be married. There's a time to have fun. There is a time to be young. Enjoy that. Enjoy the season and times that God has given you. And because you said is so fleeting. You don't have but about 8 or 10 years. let your kids be kids because if you don't, They're going to grow up and get married and somewhat sometimes. They're going to be married in these young boys. I'm going to try to be young kid after they're married and when they do that, that's a disaster. Young man should not be acting like young boys. And young women should not be acting like young girls. Let him act like that when they're supposed to when they're young. Let them enjoy Youth and allow them to get some of the things out of their system, because they'll feel less need of doing that. After they become an adult. That's all Solomon is saying, enjoy your youth thoroughly. See, he says, express your face thoughtfully. All right, go to chapter 12. Look at verse 1. Remember now your creator in the days of your youth not noticed that men while ago, I said no, he's not saying y'all to just go out and so Wild Oats in your youth because look what he saying. He says, remember your creator in the days of your Youth. And other words when you're young, don't put God on the shelf and someone come to you and want to talk about God, don't say no. I don't have time for that. Let me go out and let me live and let me have fun. Let me do this. I've got plenty of time to think about God grant. We don't know how much time we have to think about God. We don't know how much time life is uncertain. We don't know how much time we have. But many young people say, well, I'll get serious about God later, friends list, and we need to lay off strong foundation with God in the days of one's youth. If you will do that. It will be the basis of a lifetime of Faith. So, learn to spiritual disciplines, be spiritually. Accountable, express your face. Botley beginning in the days of your youth. Well, I like D. I really like this one. It breaks your aging. Thankfully. I really like this one here. Now, look at it in verses 3 through 5. I want to read these and then we're going to go back through this. He says, in the days when the keepers of the house tremble and the strong man bow down, when the grinder cease because they are few and those did look through the windows, grow them when the doors are shut in the streets, and the sound of grinding is low and one Rises up at the sound of a bird and all the daughters of the music or brought low. Also, they are afraid of heights and a, in the way, when the almond tree blossoms. The grasshopper is a burden and desire fails for me and goes to his eternal home in the morning. To go about the street in the world. Is this talking about? Well, for those of us who are no longer young. Wall mount hair, paint, a very poetic picture of what old age is all about. He uses so many wonderful. I love the Bible, cuz it used to so many metaphors. You read that. You say what in the world is this talk about what? Let's go through it. Look at verse 3 in the Dave and the keepers of the house tremble. You know what, the keepers of the house is you arms and hands because they begin to tremble, when you get old. That's the keepers of the house. The strong men are your legs and knees and shoulders that bow down and caused you to walk with a stoop. You ever seen someone get old and kind of walk bent over like the strongman the strong that the foundation the legs than these The Joint they're not like they used to be and so we kind of walked kind of hunched over a little bit. Then he says here in verse 3 when the grinder seats when you go to bed. What do you grind sometime your teeth? That's what he's told us. He says he says, when the grinder cease because they are what you're losing teeth. I've lost one here. Got to hear gone on purpose. I just didn't want to get a root canal, but I just don't pull it out. But we lose our teeth, the Grinders he says here, and then look what he says. And those that look through the windows, rolled them. What is it? That grows them? When you get old like you did you look through the window, but you just can't see. Cease, talking about old age, are all right, then, look at verse for when the doors are shut in the street. It were first two when you shut a door. You can't hear what's going on in the other room. It refers to loss of hearing. When the doors are shut Grinders again refers to teeth. Then look what he says here. When one Rises up at the sound of a bird, you say, what does that mean? That means when you get up at 4 in the night, to go to the bathroom, when you go back to lay back down, you can't go to sleep. How many old people get up at four 5 this morning? Cuz he just can't sleep. He says, he said that when one Rises up at the sound of a bird, any little thing, wakes you up. You can't go back to sleep. I'll just wake up the middle night and it be 23 4 hours so I can go back to sleep. That's what he's talkin about here. And then he says the daughters and all the daughters of Music are brought low what he's talking about there is when Your voice start to quiver and it's kind of shaky as you get, as you get older. They look at first five. They're afraid of heights. I'm afraid too hot. I use never be afraid of high-rise to go deer hunt. I can climb a tree. I go 3543 didn't bother me at all. Now, on from the ground, in the ground and fall. You know, I don't want to do that anymore. So afraid of height then it says the almond tree blossoms. What does that mean? Means your hair turning gray and white? Start the trees starting tomorrow. Your hair turning gray or the grasshopper is a burden. Well, that means he's like his liking us two grasshoppers. At the end of the summer, when their lifespan is almost over. And then he says, and desire fails. But how many of you older men know when your desire fails? The desire for things that you used to. Like, it means our libido decreases in old age. It means sometimes you have to get testosterone shots. Cause you have low T, the desire fails. And then he says, For me and goes to his eternal and the mourners go about the streets. What is that song about a funeral procession? He's talking about the funeral and then inverse 6, he gets three or four things about death. He says, remember your creator before the silver cord is loosed, death or the Golden Bowl is broken death or the picture shattered at the fountain, death or the wheel broken at the well death. You say, he's stepping us through use. Old age, what happens? And then death told the story about two older fellows who was playing golf. They were to 80 year olds. And one of those are real good golfer but his problem was, he couldn't see it. Well, he can see to hit the ball, but when he would hit it he couldn't see where it landed. So he brought another fell along with inflamed because this fella here, had really good ice, like to be 80 years old. And so he said, I want you to watch me swing and then you tell me what about this? Cuz I can't see it. But the first day I got up and hit and hit it way out there to Fairway. He said, I have no clue where it's going up, man. So I thought he said exactly where he's at and take you right to it. They start walking down, the Fairway. The guy said with, where is the ball? He said? I don't know. He said, I can't remember where he hid. You see, it's either the eyes are going bad, or something. Is happening all the time. That's the way that it is. So what do you supposed to do? Whatever you have right now. Good eyesight, good Limbs, and you're not a t and you're not squeaky and you can see well enjoy that. Because there comes a time when you won't be able to enjoy it. There's coming to town when you won't be able to enjoy it. Because look what it says in verse 1 of chapter 12. Again. He says, remember now, the Creator in the days of your youth, be thankful for that. White before the difficult days come in the Years, Drawing Near, when you say, I have no pleasure in them. It's hard to find pleasure when you get old. Can't say he can't walk. Can't get up. Other people, take care of. You can't play golf, can't do this. Can't do that. Have no desire. Your voice trembles. It's just, that's what Solomon said. Enjoy it while you can. Well, number 3, and will hustle up and finish here. We said that life is uncertain and Brace it, then we said life is short. Enjoy. It number 3, life is mysterious. So we need to examine it and I look at it. What it says in verse 9. And moreover because the preacher was why's he still talk to people knowledge about the people knowledge? Yes, he pondered and sought out and sent in order. Many proverb. Number one, wisdom comes through instruction. Sometimes we need people to instruct us. It will gain wisdom through instructions. So We examined life, we are instructed about life. That's why we go to school. So many years and then wisdom comes through inside. Look what he say in verse 10, the preacher salt define acceptable, words. And what was written was upright words of truth. In other words, when you study all the sudden God gives you insight into the Bible or whatever it is, Maybe. Could be investing could be the way you live location relationship. You have special Insight that comes with instruction. Then the Lord will give you insight and then it comes through inspiration. Look at versus Levin. In the words of the wise are like gold. In the words of Scholars are like well-driven nails given by one Shepherd. How many of you have in your Bible? The word Shepherd capitalized? Is it capitalized in your Bible? It's not. Okay. It should be. Because the shepherd there is talking about the Lord. The Lord will teach you, well driven Nails given by one shepherd, shepherd in my new King James is capitalized as a reference to God, who is the source of all wisdom. He is the Good Shepherd. And I've heard preachers interpret this saying, well, the only book you should ever read is the Bible. Well, y'all know that I love the Bible. And I love studying the Bible, but friend don't don't let the Bible. Be the only book you read. You need to read other books. Sometimes you just need to read the funny papers just so you can get a laugh, but we need, we need to be well-diversified. We need to be we need to look at other books. If we read the Bible, we know what truth is. Then we can read all the secular literature and then we can look at that, say all I know what that mean. I know what they're trying to say, because we know the truth, but you need to read other thing. Let me tell you what I did yesterday. I was studying for my message. And somehow I ended up on Amazon, as I was studying. And I bought a book and it would, it sounds so intriguing to me the name of this book. is the The brain I forget the last word is the the brain audit. Yes, the brain. All that it was sounded so interesting because what it is, it's kind of like for marketing. And for those people who sell and it talks about how the brain is like a conveyor belt and people go through the seven things in their mind before they buy something and it was written for those who are selling something so that you can have the answer to their questions and make them feel at ease. So they'll be ready to buy from you. That has absolutely nothing to do with the Bible. But that sounded so interesting to me that I had to buy and I'm going to read that book, you know, it just sounds so interesting and I've never sold anything by Marty used to work in retail. She's a good salesman. There's no, I don't know any young person who can sell anything. Like my son. Jacob. He can put you can put something on Facebook Marketplace and it's gone within an hour. He can every time I want to sell something. I want to sell a truck or car, anything, I go to Jacob thinks he'll anything. I bet he can sell a root canal. I believe somebody would buy it from and he can just sell Martha's, dad was just a tremendous seller. My sister works at Oakwood Homes or something. One of those homes manufactured home. She's been the top salesman in the entire Southeast for five or six years. That she can sell anything. I can't sell anything. That was why you buying that bus? Cuz I'm just interested in it. I want to know how forever. Do you know? I'm just interested to read read widely. It says here. He says here because the words of Scholars are like, well, drilling Nails. Giving my one Shepherd, the Lord to give you insight and inspiration. For all of that. Well, let's look at the last one. We said life is uncertain and bracelet. Life is short. Enjoy life is mysterious. So we need to examine it. We need to study and we need to understand things and then lastly, life is obedience. So we need to express it. Look what he says in the final two verses of this book. Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter. In other words. This is how you will find meaning and purpose in life. He's going to boil it down to two things. He says his fear, God, and keep his Commandments, for this is man's all. For God will bring every work into judgment. We remember the day of accountability, including every secret thing, whether good or evil one day. We're all going to stand before God and we're going to have to give account not only for the things that we do. But the things that we say, the things that we have even thought every secret thing friends list, this is what gives life. Nene. Remember when we did the sermon on life is so boring and monotonous to go in the kitchen every day. And there's a pile of dirty dishes. You just constantly washing dishes the clothes hampers full of dirty clothes. Your folding towels every night at ten 10:30 at night. And you say, what in the world, my life is just so boring and monotonous Ren's. Listen, God is looking, and when you are faithful over the little things, he will make you ruler over bigger things. He's looking at how we handle the small and mundane things of life. And if there's no accountability, if there is no afterlife, then you can just live. Just like you want to it doesn't matter what you do because it doesn't matter. But because there's an afterlife and a resurrection and because there's a day of accountability, everything we do has meaning and purpose in this life. And we do it as we do it, as unto the Lord, because we going to stand before, him one day fearing, God means to honor and reverence him, and then keeping his Commandments is obedient. That is the bottom line. So, I hope that you will find meaning in life by Solomon. Simple formula hear a fearing God, and keeping his Commandments song. Sometimes we sing trust in the bay for. There's no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to do what, trust and Obey. This is, this is the secret sauce sauce to leave to living a life of meaning. And purpose, life is uncertain. We not embrace it. Life is short. You better enjoy it. Enjoy your youth. Enjoy your marriage. Enjoy your old age while you can. Life is mysterious find out about it. Examine it in life is a pedia. Express it each and every day and you will find meaning and purpose in life. Amen. Let's pray. Father. We thank you and praise you. Love you today, Lord. For this wonderful book that you've given us these last three months to study. Lord, I pray for that one here. That may be here today, that is searching for meaning and purpose in life. They tried, maybe alcohol, and drugs, and sex, and work, and relationships and money. But it has never turned out the way they like, because we all of those are just gift from you. In Lord, we cannot turn a gift into a god. Lord help us to live our life, not with you in the periphery, but you and the center of our life. When we do that, then we'll be able to find meaning and purpose in life with all the gifts that you give us. Or I pray for that one that's here today, that for whatever reason they don't enjoy life, life is hard, life is miserable to them. Lord. I pray that you would speak to that heart there and that you would show them that life doesn't have to be that way, if we have a close personal intimate relationship with you Lord. Thank you for what you've done in this series. I pray for each one here that they will finish their life and live their life. Well, force, in Christ name, I do pray. Amen. Alrighty. Well, thank you for being here. Today.