Everything Is Meaningless ?

Remember him—before the silver cord is severed, or the golden bowl is broken; before the pitcher is shattered at the spring, or the wheel broken at the well, and the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.” – Ecclesiastes 12:6-7 (NIV)

A few days ago, I was listening to a podcast of a radio show called “Back To The Bible”. Have you ever heard it ? It’s hosted by Dr. Woodrow Kroll. I think Dr. Kroll is an excellent teacher of God’s Word and he’s currently doing a daily study on the book of Ephesians that’s going to last for about eight weeks (!). He was discussing the “roads” we take to try to connect with God and he gave a real good example of that. If you’re driving up and down I-95 on the East Coast, you can travel all the way from Florida to Maine. There may be interesting stops along the way and many places to visit. But you can’t get to Los Angeles traveling on I-95. And if you’re trying to get to LA, no matter what you do, you can’t get there on this highway. That also reminded me of something I heard the motivational speaker Tony Robbins say once….that many people spend their lives chasing the sunset, but they run towards the east looking for it.

Although Dr. Kroll was using his example in regards to the book of Ephesians, I immediately thought of Ecclesiastes when he said it. I just finished Ecclesiastes about a week ago and have been listening to it on CD since then to review it. The Teacher in Ecclesiastes (Solomon ?) gave many examples himself of the different roads he traveled throughout his life “under the sun”, as he put it. Some roads were in search of wisdom, acquiring wealth, enjoying great pleasures of life – “eat and drink and be glad” (8:15, NIV). And even hard work. But all of these journeys are ultimately “meaningless”, says the Teacher. Unless we spend the short time that we are all here pursuing God, knowing and having a relationship with Him, and making it first and foremost in our life, all of these roads eventually just lead to emptiness. This is something that unfortunately took me a long time to realize in my own life.

I think Ecclesiastes is a great wakeup call for us. It challenges you to ask yourself, “Is this really worth pursuing ?” “Should I really be spending my valuable time doing this or worrying about that ?” And most importantly, “Where does God fit in with all of this ?” The book of Ecclesiastes a reminder for us to stop, get some perspective, and put God in His proper place in our lives. And to remember Him while we’re out trying frantically to get a promotion, pursuing a degree, or anything really.

Otherwise, as the Teacher explains, we’re ultimately just “chasing the wind”.

Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13, NIV)

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3 thoughts on “Everything Is Meaningless ?

  1. oldspacetoby

    Ecclesiastes is the door that leads to an incredible truth to life, and yet still people decide not to take the author’s word seriously. We spend our time obsessed with pursuing personal goals for our own worldly gain. Paul understood completely, “Indeed I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord….that i may know him and the power of his resurrection and may share his sufferings, becoming like Him in his death that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.” (Philippians 3:8, 10-11)

    The whole center of Christianity lies in this privilege that man has the opportunity to know God. Not just about Him mind you, but personally know Him as a son to a father, friend to a friend, subject to a King. But we seem so eager to become caught up with the meaningless endeavors of life. I do not question modern Christians’ sincerity to serve God. I question whether they are truly in love with the most incredible, righteous, holy God whose greatness stretches far beyond our own imaginations.

  2. ~M

    So… I originally posted this under the next posting, but I meant to do it under this one!

    Great thoughts.
    Thanks, brother!

    I had a conversation with a friend this morning about future related things, and your post is a helpful reminder as to what I am to be pursuing.

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