“The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun? A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever. The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it rises.
The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns.
All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again.
All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.
Is there a thing of which it is said, “See, this is new”? It has been already in the ages before us.
There is no remembrance of former things, nor there be any remembrance of later things yet to be among those who come after,” Ecclesiastes 1:1-11.
The author of this portion of Ecclesiastics was Solomon who has been considered by many to be the wisest man that ever lived. In the final analysis, he declared that the best thing that one could do was to eat and drink and find enjoyment in the work that God has given to him.
“Behold, what I have seen to be good and fitting is to eat and drink and find enjoyment in all the toil with which one toils under the sun the few days of his life that God has given him, for this is his lot. Everyone also to whom God has given wealth and possessions and power to enjoy them, and to accept his lot and rejoice in his toil —his is the gift of God. For he will not much remember the days of his life because God keeps him occupied with joy in his heart,” Ecclesiastes 5:18-20.
And yet, Solomon in all of his great wisdom, didn’t possess the spiritual life that we now can have in Christ. Yeshua had not yet come in the flesh to die for us and to give us all things. We are now given new life, and that new life proclaims that, “All is not vanity.”
Jesus has said that:
“The thief cometh not but to steal and to kill and to destroy. I AM come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly,” John 10:10.
We now can have a life that in spite of no wealth, or the greatest knowledge or wisdom in the world, can give us life even more abundantly. Solomon understood many things, and his wisdom exceeded many, and yet, he may have become utterly depressed thinking that life was such a vain thing.
Life is not meant to be just, “A striving after the wind,” or meaningless. There is a purpose and a hope for us in this life and beyond, that we can now live.
He said that “There is nothing new under the sun,” and yet, Isaiah prophesied that,
“Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert,” Isaiah 43:19.
You see, the sun comes up and goes down every day as it always has for thousands and perhaps millions of years. We are born and we die as all have before us. Mankind marries and works, and laughs and cries as he always has. But there are new things every morning with us in our walk with God. There are divine encounters, and there are new things that He wants to reveal to us.
Solomon speaks to us as the master who lived and explored much in the life that he lived. He sought out the meaning and understanding of science, math, language, and a myriad of many other things. And yet he comes to warn us that it is futile in just seeking after an understanding of all of these things, “if” we don’t have a life to live beyond this one.
Ultimately, there is no fulfillment in merely seeking an understanding of many things, if there is no hope or meaning beyond them.
And many and perhaps most, great thinkers have sought out a meaning to this life that we live. It can be a very arduous and sorrowful task if that quest is sought without the personage of a living God.
Solomon lived and died as all did before the coming of the Son of God. These looked towards a new kingdom and a new covenant that would come, that would have the ultimate meaning for all of mankind.
~ Stephen Hanson
Stephen Hanson of In His Truth Ministries came to the LORD is a special way in 1975 and has prophesied regularly since. In these end-time birthing pangs we are reminded that judgment must first begin with the household of God. Will we be prepared and ready?