James 3:5

“The tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts.

Consider what great forest is set on fire by a small spark.”

James 3:5

Ecclesiastes -Wisdom for Living Well- The Vanity of Work. Lesson 11.

Verse of the day:

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Please add this verse to your scripture journal.  🙂

Open up your Bible to Ecclesiastes 2:18-26

Slowly read and color code these verses.  Remember, color coding is optional.  Here is the color coding chart to help you.

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The Futility of Labour 

Solomon was the King of Israel and God had blessed him with knowledge, wisdom and wealth.  

Solomon was learning the meaning of life under the sun, but without including God in his daily life. Solomon did not have direction for his own life because of this.  

This is also “Vanity.”  

He hated all of his labour that he had done under the sun!  He hated the fact that all that he laboured for, his long hard work would account for nothing.  “Why even bother,” said Solomon.  None of it will go to heaven with him, but instead his belongings will be given away, and left to the men living after him.  And who knows if it will be left to the wise man or the fool, but we do know that he shall have rule over all of Solomon’s treasures that he laboured for under the sun.  Even if the men did not labour for any of it! He’s the one that laboured under the sun showing himself wise!  

This is also “Vanity” and great evil!  

So Solomon went on with his life living with a heart full of despair.  Again, Solomon asks with vexation in his heart, “why did he bother to labour under the sun?” Each day has sorrows and grief and because of this his heart does not rest in the night.

This too is “Vanity.” 

God gives to a man the things that are good in his sight. Wisdom, knowledge and joy.  But to the sinner He gives travail, to gather and heap up, so that he may give to people who are good before God.  

This is also “Vanity” and “Vexation” of spirit.    

In Verse 18, we can see that Solomon hated something.  

1.  What did he hate and why?

Solomon hates the thought of all of his labour under the sun not going to heaven with him.  He hates the thought that all of his own labour will be left behind. Another man will take his possessions whether he is a wise man or a fool.  Solomon hates giving his hard earned things to another man who did not labour for any of it.   

In Verse 20, Solomon tells us that after considering all of this; his heart was in despair and he became depressed.  

Labouring under the sun will never fill us up and neither will the treasures obtained because of our labour.  

We are left empty when we do not have God in our daily lives.  

2.  According to verse 23, what happens at night to the workaholic and how long does this last?

The workaholic cannot rest at night.  His heart feels grief for all of his days are sorrows and travail.

This is also “Vanity.”

3.  Have you experienced this in life?  (Committing to something and then regretting it later.)  

  • Write about this time and what you learned from it?

4.  In Conclusion, Solomon finally brings God into the picture!  

  • What do verses 24-26 say about Solomon’s solution to his problems?  

  • Solomon sees that to eat, drink and enjoy goodness from your labour, is given from the hand of the almighty God. 

  • For God gives Wisdom and Knowledge and Joy to His people. 

  • Vanity is the unsaved sinner.  They have toil and they gather material things; piled in a heap to give to the Lord.  All is vanity and vexation of spirit.

5.  Have you considered your own mortality?

6.  How will you be remembered?

7.  What will your legacy be?

Closing Prayer: 

Dear God,

We come together in prayer today.  Thank you for the simple pleasures in life that come from your hand as food and drink. 

God you are good and in your hands are wisdom and joy. 

Help us to use our talents, time and hard work for your glory. 

Give us a sweet night of rest tonight. 

In Jesus’ name we pray. 

Thank you Jesus, thank you God.  Amen!

We are Women Walking With Jesus.  Thank you for joining me.  🙂

 

 

 

Ecclesiastes -Wisdom for Living Well- Comparing Wisdom and Folly Lesson 10.

Verse of the day:

 

 

Please add this verse to your scripture journal.  🙂

Open up your Bible to the book of Ecclesiastes 2:12-17.  Slowly read and color code these verses.  Remember, color coding in your Bible is optional.  Here is the color coding chart to help you.  

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Women Walking with Jesus is a new Ministry that I started in 2017.  

This ministry is for women.  (Based on the fact that I am a woman and therefore can write from a woman’s perspective.)  However, men could benefit from the Bible Studies in this group too. God’s Word is for everyone.   

*Women Walking with Jesus Facebook Group is a Bible Study Group.

By studying the Bible we can learn how to live the way God wants us to. He sent Jesus to save us from the world; and His Word tells us how to live so that we can receive eternal life in heaven.

*My website is https://womenwalkingwithJesus.com.  

*When I started Women Walking with Jesus; I just followed my heart and the idea grew.  I just put it in God’s hands, for He knows the plan for me.  My goal is to study the Bible and then teach what I have learned.

So I created my website which is the focus of Bible Studies set up at a go at your own pace.  

When I set up Women Walking with Jesus Messenger Group, I took family and friends with me to the group from Facebook.  But not everyone chose to stay in the Messenger Group and I would lose a member once in a while.  At first it saddened me that they left the group. I thought, “what should I change or do better?”  But then I realized that my focus is on learning and teaching what I learn.  As long as I stay focused then, Jesus has the rest.  “People will come and people will go; but as long as I stay and do not give up; I will reap the rewards of my labour.”  Since then I have deleted Women Walking With Jesus Messenger Group; but continue with the Facebook Group and the Website.

So I took a new turn. Instead of worrying about who is or isn’t in the group;  I will follow God and lead through His direction.  Focusing on all of the positives and letting anything negative; go…Living; Learning; and Teaching what I’ve Learned.  Thank you Jesus.  🙂

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In Verse 12  we can see that King Solomon takes a new turn.  Now he is considering the comparison between wisdom and folly.  

1.  Which does he decide is better according to verse 13? __

Solomon decided that wisdom exceeds folly just as light excelleth darkness.

2.  What fate awaits both of them?

The fate that awaits the wiseman and the fool is;  death…

*   Death is certain and universal.  No matter how wise or foolish, how wealthy or hardworking, statistics show that one out of one–die.*

3. Look up Psalm 49:10.

1. What does it say about the death of the wise and the fool?

*For he seeth that wise men die, likewise the fool and the brutish person perish and leave their wealth to others.*

4. What also bothers Solomon about their same fate according to verse 16 & 17?

* Be not afraid when one is made rich, when the glory of his house is increased.  For when he dieth he shall carry nothing away; his glory shall not descend after him.*

Another mirage is fame and remembrance. The internet has made it easy for us to seek fame and fortune. We can post our talents online and hope to get noticed by someone significant. Selfies are also a way to get people’s attention and many try gaining modeling careers by sending selfies to modeling agencies.  Our biggest hurdle is overcoming rejection and worry. It’s like feeding a negative beast! And it’s always hungry!

People long to be remembered after death. We place headstones on our loved ones graves so their name does not fade. But, reality is; that most of us are forgotten within the first generation or two.  The Pharaohs of egypt had huge pyramids used as tombs. Even with huge pyramids; they have still been forgotten. Most of us can’t even name those Pharaohs and I am one of those people who can’t name them.  

5. What does Solomon conclude in verse 17-20?

*Solomon concludes that when we die, we will take nothing from this earth with us. Men will praise us on earth for what we have that is visible to the eye. But nothing will go with us in the end, nothing material that is.  Man that is in honour; and understand not, is like the beasts that perish.*

*Solomon is at a dead-end; again.  He “hates” life!  Don’t forget that Solomon is accessing life under the sun without God in it.*  We don’t have to fall into that same pit of depression as Solomon did since we are believers in God.* 

6. We should view death and labor according to these passages:

1 Corinthians 15:55-58 

O death, where is thy sting?  O grave, where is thy victory?  The sting of death is sin; and the strenght of sin is the law.  

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.  

Philippians 2:12-16  

Wherefore, my beloved as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but how much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.  

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

Do all things without murmurings and disputing:

That you may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;  

Holding forth the Word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.  

Galatians 6:6-10  

Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things.

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap.

For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.

And let us not be weary in well-doing; for in due season we will reap, if we faint not.

As we have therefore opportunity let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

Galatians 6:9

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7.  How Does Galatians 6:9 encourage you in the midst of the season of life you are in today?

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Courtney Joseph expressed that this verse has kept her going through several of her own life events.  

I agree with Courtney.  I have also used this scripture through many of my own life’s trials and tribulations and continue to use it often.

Do not grow weary!  We sure do need to hear these Words; often.  Especially in the world today.

Rest assured that our labor for our Lord is not in vain. Upon due season we will reap our rewards.  

Do not give up!  Keep going!  

Closing Prayer:  

Dear God,  We come together in prayer today.  Please help us not grow weary in doing well in this world. There is so many terrible things happening in the world around us; help us to stay focused on you Lord through it all.  We thank you for the blessings we will receive for not giving up.  Help us to walk in the truth that we learned today about wisdom and folly.  We thank you Lord.  In Jesus name we pray, Amen! 

We are Women Walking With Jesus. Thank you for joining me.  🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ecclesiastes -Wisdom for Living Well- The Vanity of Pleasure and Wealth. Lesson 9.

Slowly read and color code Ecclesiastes 2:1-11.  

Here is the color coding chart to help you.  

Remember that color coding is optional.

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Verse of the day:  

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord, and not for men. Colossians 3:23 

(Add to your Scripture Journal please.)

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According to verses 1 & 2, where does Solomon start his search for the meaning to life, when it comes to pleasure and wealth? 

Solomon starts his search with himself.  He does not talk to any elders; or pray to God before starting.  He decided to go with his own heart.  Go out and be amused and enjoy the pleasure and the laughter it will be a blast.  

What does Solomon turn to next according to verse 3?

Solomon wanted to gain wisdom about wine and to understand the foolishness of men. Why would the sons of men drink all of the days of their lives while living under the heavens.  But once again, Solomon still finds a dead-end to the answers of this life “under the sun.”

Ephesians 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, in which is excess.  But be filled with the Spirit instead.  

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Take a moment to reflect.  

Have you received messages from the world regarding laughter, wine, and pleasure?  

Do you have a time in your life when one of these ended up taking you to a dead-end Road?  

Write about your experience?  

Solomon also mentions that he explored folly, or foolish acts.  Foolish people often seem happier than people who are more prudent.  

Read verses 4-8.  

What does Solomon focus on accumulating?

Solomon is focusing on accumulating many things and above all, his great works!  So he begins building houses.  He planted vineyards and made gardens and orchards and planted trees in them of all kinds of fruits.  He made pools of water, to water the wood that brings forth trees.  

He had servants and maidens, and servants that were even born in his house.  

He had great possessions of large and small cattle, more than all of the people in Jerusalem before him.  

Solomon gathered gold and silver, and the peculiar treasures of Kings and of the provinces.  

He got men and women singers, and the delights of the son of men as musical instruments, and that of all sorts.  

Solomon attempted to build heaven on earth.  

In Luke 12:15

Jesus says, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: For a man’s life does not consist by the abundance of the things which he possessth.  

Don’t be jealous by other people’s abundance of possessions.  These things are only a mirage, and they do not bring happiness and peace.  

What does Solomon conclude about his projects and possessions according to verses 9-11?

“So I was great,” said Solomon.  I increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem:  And also my wisdom remained with me.  And whatever my eyes desired; I shall have.  His heart rejoiced in all his labour; and this was his portion, or piece of something because of his labour.  

Solomon denied himself nothing and he took pleasure in his toil.

Then he looked at all the works his hands had worked and laboured. And Behold! All of this was vanity and vexation of spirit and he realized that there was no profit “under the sun.”

 It’s not wrong to find pleasure in our work when we do the work God created us to do, and we do our projects for the Lord,  then there is pleasure.

But Solomon did all this for himself.  He did not do anything for the Lord.  Selfish endeavors lead to a meaningless existence and unsatisfied longings.  

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What do these verses tell us about our pleasures and earthly treasures?

Mathew 6:19-21  Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon the earth, where moths and rust does corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal.  But lay upon yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where theives do not break through nor steal.  For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.  

We were not made to find pleasure in the gifts God gives us; but instead, find pleasure with the giver of the gifts.

In verse 11, Solomon “considered” all his hands had done.  In Hebrew, “considered” means to literally face something or someone and look it straight in the eye.

Look your life right in the eye.  

(It could be dream, a situation, a goal or something that God is laying on your heart right now.)  

What gifts has God given you that you need to stop using for your own purposes and begin using for His glory?  

This concludes Lesson 9.  

Closing Prayer:

Dear God, we come together to ask that you please reveal to us the things in our lives that we have selfishly pursued.  Turn those things into gifts that we can use for your glory.  Help us to walk in the truth that we learned today about the vanity of pleasure and wealth.  Thank you for this wisdom, Lord.  In Jesus name, we pray, amen.

Thank you for joining me today.  

We are Women Walking with Jesus.  🙂

 

Ecclesiastes -Wisdom for Living Well- The Vanity of Wisdom. Lesson 8.

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Verse:  Psalm 90:14  

Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, so that we may rejoice and be glad all of our days.  

What does this verse mean to you?  

Wake us in the morning Lord; and satisfy us with your never-ending love so that we can rejoice; and be happy; and glad for all of our days.  Forever!

*Remember, to write this Scripture in your Journal.* 

Read and/or color code the scriptures in Ecclesiastes 1:12-18.  

*Remember, color coding is optional, but helpful in slowing us down while reading.*  

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What does this scripture say?  

Vanity of Human Wisdom:

The preacher; was also the King of Jerusalem who was named Solomon. God blessed him in the beginning with more wisdom than anyone before him or anyone after him. He searched with his heart to find out everything that happens under the heaven. This sore travail; or this hard path that God has given man to follow will not be easy and will be traveled regardless of how hard it becomes.  

Discussion:  

How do we know that verse 14 is Solomon looking for humans to have some of their own wisdom, apart from God’s wisdom?

Solomon tells us that he has seen all of the works that are done under the sun, and he has discovered that it is all vanity and vexation of spirit.  He is looking at a man’s life under the sun.  Solomon is looking at this with an earthly perspective instead of an above the sun view.  

As believers in Jesus Christ, we have one goal: Trust in the Lord with all of your heart!  Fill your life with God and you will be shown above the sun answers to your earthly questions.  

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Why does Solomon call our work under heaven an “unhappy business”?  

He tells us that all things are filled with labour.  And there are no new things under the sun.  What comes around goes back around, and the earth stays the same. The more wisdom a person has the more grief they have as well; and the person that increases knowledge also increases sorrow.  Nothing on earth can fill you up. Only the Spirit can.  Nothing on earth can make you happy.  Only the Spirit can.

Life is hard living under the sun.  The curse beginning, at the Garden of Eden, has been hanging over us forever.  And the fallen world we live in makes living here even more difficult.  

Verse 15 Concludes:  

That which is crooked cannot be made straight; and that which is wanting cannot be numbered.  

Verse 15 is considered a Proverb.  

A proverb is a short pithy saying stating a general truth.

This world is crooked and people are crooked too. Whether it is metal or people, crooked cannot be made straight.  Therefore, don’t waste your time trying.  And the number of people wanting is never-ending! Everyone wants something! But they do not receive anything unless they believe upon the Lord God; and Jesus Christ our Savior.  

Read verses 16 & 17.  

Solomon not only searched out wisdom and knowledge but what else did he seek to know in verse 17?  

He also seeked to know madness and folly; understanding this is also vexation of spirit.  

Why do you think he wanted to know about this?

Solomon wanted to know how their pleasure felt; even though it was all vanity.  He drank wine and laughed. He laboured in his works and it turned out to be all vanity and vexation of spirit!  There was no profit under the sun.  

Verse 17 could be a reference to Solomon’s turning away from God and turning to idolatry and disobedience.  (1 Kings 11:1-9).  

Did Solomon find joy in madness and folly?  

No, Solomon did not find joy and happiness in folly and madness.   

If we try too hard to understand life and the meaning for it, we are left empty.  It can get frustrating and depressing.  Solomon concludes that human wisdom is pretty much useless and only brings pain and sorrow.  

Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. Colossians 3:2.  

Solomon did not set his mind on things above the earth. All that he was interested in, turned out to be temporary things of the earth.  Nothing satisfied Solomon.

Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, so that we may rejoice and be glad all of our days.  Psalm 90:14

Discussion Questions:  

1. What Lessons have you learned so far about the meaning of work, knowledge and wisdom?

I have learned that God wants us to work for our needs. Nothing in this world is free.  We must pay for our own way in this world and legitimately work for everything that we obtain on earth.  The more you work does not improve the outcome on how much you will receive. Knowledge increases are good, however, the more you know the harder life is.  Knowledge brings negative results on earth.  Wisdom is the same as knowledge.  On earth people are not thankful, but instead think of a person with wisdom as a big-headed person that thinks they are better than other people.  

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How are you living?  Are you living only for this world, “under the sun” and “chasing after the wind,” or are you living for Jesus, who is the Creator of the sun and is above the sun?  

I am living for Jesus who is the Creator of the sun and is above the sun.  I am not living only for this world and I realize that is not the correct thing to do.  We must live in this world; work for a living; and stay focused on Jesus, who is not of this world.  

Closing Prayer;

Dear God,

Thank you for your constant and perfect love that never fails.  

Help us to seek wisdom in your Word on a daily basis.  

Help us to serve and to work for your glory and not our own.  

Give us joy on our journey of life.

 In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

Thank you for joining me.  

We are Women Walking with Jesus.  🙂

 

Ecclesiastes -Wisdom for Living Well- Examining the Earth. Lesson 7.

At the end of Lesson 6 I mentioned that we would begin today with the Discussion Question for St. John 3:16.

Verse: St. John 3:16.                       

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

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What does this verse say to you?

  • I believe St. John 3:16 is telling us the following?

  • That God loved the world, but needed to correct the sin people continued doing in the world.

  • So God gave His only son to His people.  Whoever believes in God’s son will not die, but will have everlasting eternal life. 

  • This concludes Lesson 6.

Ecclesiastes Lesson 7 Examining the Earth.

Verse of the day:

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Please put this scripture in your journal. Thank you.

Lesson 7 Examining the Earth:

  • Slowly read and color code Ecclesiastes 1:1-11  

  • The coloring chart is a tool to help slow us down so that we can SOAK in the Word of God.

  • NOTE:   There is not a right or wrong way to do your coloring; the chart is just a guide.

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Every person “under the sun” searches for something new and exciting.  The monotony of daily living; and the same Ole, same ole sets in.  We are looking for things to fill us up so we stay busy.  Take another college class, get a second job, plan a birthday party, etc… Yet with all of our time “under the sun,” staying busy is not filling us up.  Staying busy is taking a toll on our spirit.  The things of this world will still lead us to emptiness.     Ecclesiastes: 1: 2.

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Do you struggle

What does a person gain by all the toils under the sun? Ecclesiastes 1:3.

  • Then Solomon searches for the answers to his own questions about “life under the sun.”

  • Solomon is writing the answers to his own questions from an “under the sun” perspective.  He contrasts the earth with the generations of mankind that come and go.

  • The old people pass away; while new babies are being born in the world.  The cycle continues but the earth stays the same.  The sun rises and sets everyday in the world.  It does not change; but the people do.  New generations are born as the old pass away. 

What parts of nature display the weariness of life?  Ecclesiastes 1:4-7

  •  The earth, sun, wind and water display the weariness of life.
  • For centuries the earth, sun, wind, and water have been moving constantly without getting anywhere.

Do you ever feel like your life is in constant repetition?

The seasons come and the seasons go; when the warm sun shines of summer we go swimming and enjoy the outdoors.  Fall comes and we get out our warmer clothes and decorate for fall with pumpkins and colored leaves.  Winter brings us to wearing coats and hats and mittens; and when the sun is out we are still cold in the winter.  Spring brings new life to plants and animals.  And then back to summer.  

Do you struggle with the monotony of life?  Do you feel the urge to always seek out something new?

  • When Solomon looked “under the sun”, he concluded that work was just wearisome and like chasing after the wind.  

  • Let’s take a look “above the sun” at God’s view of work.

Look up these references and write out God’s view of work.

  • Colossians 3:23

  • 1 Corinthians 15:58

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God’s view of work:  God says, whatever you do, do it with all of your heart, as the Lord would do and as you would do unto the Lord.  Do not do it unto men; but unto the Lord God.  Work as though you are employed by God and not exactly men.  Colossians 3:23.  Therefore, says God, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, unmovable always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.  

God ordained work in the Garden of Eden; but after Adam sinned; Genesis 3:17b says; “cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life.”  

Work was always a part of God’s plan but because of sin, work brings sweat and sorrow.  Should we conclude that all work is vain?  

No; work has value for this life and the next.  It is work that is done to the glory of God that brings ultimate satisfaction and fulfillment.  We must take the “above the sun” approach to our work.  If we don’t, the end result will be emptiness.  

Now examine Ecclesiastes 1:8-11.  

What two things are never satisfied according to verse 8?

 1.  The eye is not satisfied with seeing;

 2.  And the ear is not filled with hearing.

We live like this everyday.  We scroll through social media; and could continue scrolling all day and never be completely satisfied because there is always more to read or see.  We do the same thing with television.  We scroll through the remote control, channel after channel; again without satisfaction.  We always desire new experiences and keep searching for one daily.  

What does Solomon conclude in Ecclesiastes 1:9-11?  Solomon concludes that, the things that have been, is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.  Is there anything said to be new?  It has already been of old-time, which was before us.  There is no remembrance of former things, neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.  

Advertisers try to sell us new and improved products.  They know buyers grow bored easily and they play on the needs people have for something new.  

Is it really true that “nothing new happens under the sun”?  What about technology?  

Consider this:

Light bulbs resemble the sun, motorcycles resemble horses, airplanes resemble birds and computers resemble our brains!  

All of the modern discoveries and inventions hinge on the creativity of our God.  

We hear people say, “the world is more violent than it used to be”.  But remember that Cain killed Abel back in Genesis 4.  Murder has been with us since the beginning of time.  

In Ecclesiastes 1:11, what do we see Solomon grappling with?  He is understanding that there is no memory of former things, and no memory of things that are to come for the people who shall come after him.

Do you remember your great grandparents? Or your great, great grandparents? Generations come and generations go and we forget who came before us.  God will use each of us for His glory; and we should never seek to make a difference for our own glory.  At the end of the day, there is no glory for man, and the idea of fame is a mirage.  We must not be deceived into chasing after it.  

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Thankfully, our faith in God changes everything.  There is something “new” under the sun, because God is ruling over the sun!  Jesus Christ, the son of God, ushered in the New Covenant in His blood at the cross (Luke 22:20).  Those of us that belive in Christ become “new” creations in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Thank you Jesus for our salvation.  Thank you for giving me a “new” heart and a “new” spirit!  (Ezekiel 36:26).

As we strive to become women walking with Jesus; let us always remember that Jesus is our living well.  He is our living water and we must go to Him daily to be refreshed.

Closing Prayer:  

Dear God, you are so good Father.  Thank you for the sacrifice of your Son and the forgiveness of our sins.  Forgive us for putting our hope and trust in the wrong things.  Help us not to chase after empty futile things and open our eyes and hearts to understand your Word clearly.  Change us and make us more like you.  May we find joy and peace in your presence and a life full of meaning for your glory.  In Jesus name, we pray, Amen.

Thank you for joining me.  

We are Women Walking with Jesus.  🙂

 

Ecclesiaste -Wisdom for Living Well- Let’s Begin. Lesson 6.

Let’s Begin:

Beverly Wise would look up original definitions of the Bible in Hebrew and Greek, and would make notes in the margins of her Bible.  If something did not make sence to Beverly she would research Bible Dictionaries; other versions of the Bible; and ask her commentaries so that she could completely understand what God was telling her.  Beverly Wise worked very hard at understanding scriptures in the Holy Bible.

We should all put in at least this much effort to understand the scriptures in the Holy Bible.  God’s Word.  The book of life that God wrote through inspiring his disciples to tell the people what is the truth.  The directions to living this life that God has given us.

Verse of  the Day:  

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.  

2 Timothy 2:15 (ESV)

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Please add this scripture to your Scripture Journal.  🙂

We will be adding some color coding to our journals.

You can also choose to color code in your Bible or get a new Bible just for color coding; I am going to start color coding in my Bible and my Scripture Journal.  Feel free to color code in one or more of the options mentioned above, or if you have new ideas that you would like to try; that’s fine too.  

In the workbook for Ecclesiastes Wisdom for Living Well; there is a Color Coding chart that I will post below for you to use.  

Beverly Wise uses the SOAK method for color coding. She created this unique way to color code scripture; and by doing this; she also gained more knowledge and wisdom from the scriptures themselves. Taking your time to read God’s Word is important. And gives us a much better understanding.   

Color Coding is just an option; however; I hope you will give it a try.  It will be a fun way to learn. I know I am going to try the Color Coding that Beverly Wise used in the study guide.  

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I can’t wait to find out how this is working for everyone a little further into this study!  We can talk about how our color coding is going.  And talk about how it is helping you learn.  🙂

Open your Bible to Ecclesiastes 1 verse 1.   Color it orange.  Remember in Lesson 1; the author introduces himself as the Preacher, the son of David and the King of Jerusalem.  

Now read verse 2, and color it blue.  In the original language of Hebrew, the word “hebel”, is used for vanity, which means emptiness.  Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher.  All is vanity.  Ecc. 1:2             Vanity of vanities shows that life is extremely vain and life can feel empty and futile.

Now read Ecclesiastes 1:3 and color it blue.

The most important phrase in understanding the text of Ecclesiastes is the term “under the sun“, which is used 29 times in this book.                                                          

This reveals the perspective of the author, as he journals his search for meaning in wealth and wisdom and projects and women and anything…but God.  

When we search “under the sun“, for meaning-all we find is an empty treadmill with nothing that satisfies. Why?  Because we must look above the sun for our answers.                                                                                    

But we all live like this sometimes; looking for the next night out, the next shopping mall trip, or the next movie to watch.  Always moving from thing to thing looking for out next rainbow.  We chase after the wind instead of chasing after our savior.                                        

Nothing under the sun can satisfy our souls.  Nothing can satisfy our souls like knowing and walking with the Lord God.  We know this in our heads, but do we live like we believe this?  

We live in a culture that doesn’t believe people need God.  Or that the only time people need God is during a crisis.  At times of crisis people blame God and become angry at Him instead of humbling themselves before Him.  But this kind of living will lead to further problems, confusion, depression, and disillusionment in this life “under the sun.”

Today we are going to look ahead to see how Solomon’s story will finish.  Open your Bible to Ecclesiastes 12:13 & 14, to the final words of Solomon.                                        

What 2 things does Solomon conclude in verse 13?  Solomon concludes that we must hear the entire matter.  

(1)Fear God, and;

(2)keep his commandments; for this is the whole duty of man.  

We will look at this passage deeper a little later.      

But for now we know where we are headed through our journey through Ecclesiastes.  This journey may cause us to wrestle with the reality of “life under the sun“, but we are not left without hope.  

Ecclesiastes 12:13 opens the door to peace, hope and joy like none other.  

Let’s start with God today!  🙂  

Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me”.  John 14:6

The truth of Jesus’s death on the cross made a way for us to live an abundant life free of emptiness! Jesus gives us forgiveness of our sins; a personal relationship with Him; and a hope for eternal life.  

As we strive to become women walking with Jesus; let us always remember that Jesus is our living well.  He is our living water and we must go to Him daily to be refreshed.

Discussion Question:

Read John 3:16.  What does this passage mean to you?  Write this question for the next lesson.  We will begin with this verse.  

Closing Prayer:  

Dear God,  You are so good Father.  Thank you for the sacrifice of your Son and the forgiveness of our sins. Forgive us for putting our hope and trust in the wrong things.  Help us not to chase after empty and futile things and open our eyes and hearts to understand your word clearly.  Change us and make us more like you.  May we find joy and peace in your presence and a life full of meaning for your glory.  In Jesus name we pray, Amen.  

Thank you for joining me.  

We are Women Walking With Jesus.  🙂

Ecclesiastes -Wisdom for Living Well-About the author of Ecclesiastes. Review lessons 1-5.

Review Lessons 1-5.  Establishing who the author is of the book of Ecclesiastes.

  1. Ecclesiastes is a book in the Holy Bible. 

  2. Ecclesiastes is pronounced (ko-hel-eth).  And spelled (Qoheleth) in Hebrew.  

  3. The meaning of Ecclesiastes is that of a teacher; a preacher; or a chosen leader.

  4. The word assembly in Greek was pronounced (ekklesia).  Assembly was also known as church.  The people had an assembly; a coming together to listen to the gospel of Jesus Christ.  The two words put together created the English version; Ecclesiastes.

  5. Ecclesiastes was written between 970 and 930 B.C. (Before Christ).

  6. When you read a book in the Bible it is important to understand:

  7. who wrote it;

  8. the time it was written;

  9. and the purpose of the book.

In Beverly Wise’s research she discovered that not all scholars agree on who the author was of this book.  However; traditionally the view is that King Solomon was the author of  Ecclesiastes. 

Let’s look at the details of evidence that King Solomon is the author of Ecclesiastes.

Open up your Bible to Ecclesiastes and read 1:1.  The author never calls himself by name.  The three qualities he used to describe himself were:

  1. He had the words of a preacher.

  2. He was the son of David. 

  3. He was the King of Jerusalem.

Now look at Ecclesiastes 1:16 and 2:9.  What do the verses we just read tell us about the author?

  1. These verses tell us that the author had a long life filled with wisdom and knowledge more than the Kings that lived before him.

  2. He was great and produced more than all the Kings before him. 

  3. He remained wise his entire life.

    Now look at Ecclesiastes 12:9.                                    What did the preacher teach the people?

  4.  The preacher taught the people knowledge about God.  He wrote many proverbs and songs.

Now open up your Bible to Ecclesiastes 2:4-10.            

 The author becomes wealthy building houses and planting vineyards.  He made gardens and orchards and planted trees to bear fruit.  He made pools of water to nourish his crops.  The author had maids and servants.  The author had great possessions of cattle and gold and silver and treasures of interest.  The author was great, and kept his wisdom forever.  He did not have joy in his heart but rejoiced in his labour.

So in Ecclesiastes the author gives us many clues as to who he is.

 How are the two similar?                       

Now look in 1Kings 4:29-34.

1.  God gave Solomon wisdom and knowledge exceeding all other Kings.  

2.   Solomon’s fame was known in all nations.  

3.  Solomon spoke many proverbs and songs.

4.  The people gathered around Solomon to hear his wisdom.

 Now look in 1Kings 10:21-27.

 1.  Solomon had pure gold.  

2. King Solomon exceeded all of the Kings of the earth      for riches and wisdom.  

3. All of the earth sought Solomon for his wisdom and  knowledge that God put in his heart.  

4. And in the end of Solomon’s life his heart was not happy. Pleasure, success, and riches cannot make people happy within their hearts.

When comparing the author of Ecclesiastes with 1Kings and what God says about Solomon; I think we can establish that the author of the book of the Bible of Ecclesiastes is Solomon.  

King Solomon is the author of Ecclesiastes.  

King Solomon wrote the book of Ecclesiastes near the end of his life. As he reflected back he was able to see that all of his riches and treasures; the many wives and servants and maids; the abundance of horses and cattle; all of these things he thought were bringing him happiness in his life were nothing more than things of the world. And near his end he realizes this. None of the things of the world offered him the peace, love and happiness that God had to offer. Solomon lost site of God through the world and the things in it and his heart was left empty in the end.

This concludes our study on the author of Ecclesiastes.  Now we will begin to read what Solomon tells us in this book he wrote and what he says to do in this life to be full in the end.

Thank you for joining me.  We are Women Walking With Jesus.  🙂

 

 

Ecclesiastes-Wisdom for Living Well- Bible Study. Solomon’s Failures. Lesson 5.                            

Solomon’s Failures.

Verse of the Day:

Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.  Psalm 127:1                                                

Please add this verse in your Scripture Journal.  

Today is the final lesson that we will be looking at the author of Ecclesiastes; Solomon.

In Lesson 6 we will begin to learn the book of Ecclesiastes in the Holy Bible.

Solomon was the son of King David.  Solomon was a very wise and wealthy man who was gifted with knowledge from God.  This made Solomon famous and he had more wisdom, wealth, and knowledge than any other King after him.  Solomon oversaw many building projects during his life.  The greatest and most magnificent building was the First Temple, that was built-in Jerusalem.  It was called the House of the Lord.  This was God’s dwelling place here on earth for all of His people;  for around 400 years.  During King Solomon’s life; Israel experienced a period of peace, prosperity, and security. Solomon’s fame spread for many miles,  throughout the Kingdom, and people traveled far to hear his wisdom. (1Kings 4:34).  

Solomon is known for being the author of a major portion of the wisdom literature written in the Old Testament. Solomon wrote the book of Proverbs, the Song of Songs, Psalm 72 , Psalm 127 and finally the book of Ecclesiastes.  

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Even with all of these successes Solomon did experience some failure in his life.  King Solomon did not obey God’s commands that He had for a Kings life.  After all of the blessings God had given Solomon, he failed with wealth and women.  Solomon took his life for granted; and finally becomes aware of what he had done near the end of his life while writing the book of Ecclesiastes.  

Read Deuteronomy 17:16,17.                                             What were three of the laws God had for Israel’s King?

1.  The King shall not multiply horses to himself or cause the people to return to Egypt, ever.  Because the Lord has said to you; “You shall no longer go that way.

2.  Neither shall the King multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away:

3 Neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.

These verses are about God’s rules for being King. 

God says that the King is not allowed to get more horses for himself so that he has too many.  And that he will not make the people travel to Egypt to get more horses for him.  There will be no more going that way. 

The King cannot have multiple wives for himself or turn his heart away from God and His commandments.

 The King cannot have more silver and gold than he needs.  

Solomon violated the Lord’s commands. 

Solomon had horses brought to him out of Egypt, and linen yarn: that the King sold to the merchants.  Solomon had chariots pick up the Kings of Hittites, and the Kings of Syria for a price. And they came to shop, and eat and drink, all for a price.

Solomon made silver in abundance in Jerusalem, so it was as common as stones and cedars, and sycamore trees. 

How many wives did Solomon have? 

King Solomon loved many strange women from all nations.  He had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.  Solomon no longer focused on God!                  1 Kings 11:3. 

What happened as a result according to 1Kings 11:4? 

When Solomon got old his wives turned away his heart  for other Gods.
Solomon’s heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, like his father David’s heart was.  David had prayed forgiveness and God gave him another chance.  Solomon did not make the same choice.   Solomon’s life began well,  but because of his sin,
his life did not end very well.  As a result of Solomon’s sin against God, Israel became divided after Solomon’s death.                   1 Kings 11:4.

King Solomon did all of this during his reign as King. He violated all three of God’s commandments  to be a King. 1Kings 10:26-29.

1Kings 11:9-14a Says: 

9) And the Lord was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned away from the Lord God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice, concerning Solomon not going after other Gods.  Solomon did not keep God’s command.

10) And He had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods.  But Solomon did not keep what the Lord commanded.  

11) Therefore the Lord said to Solomon, “since this has been your practice and you have not kept my covenant and my statutes that I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom from you and will give it to your servant.”  

12) Yet for the sake of David your father I will not do it in your days, but I will tear it out of the hand of your son.

13) However, I will not tear away all  of the kingdom; but I will give one tribe to your son, for the sake of David my servant, and for the sake of Jerusalem that I have chosen.  

14) And the Lord raised up an adversary against Solomon.” While King Solomon was in Edom he kept his reputation of being with many women; which resulted in  Hadad the Edomite: he was the King’s seed.  King Solomon’s son.  Surprise!  

God personally appeared to Solomon, and God blessed Solomon greatly. But he could not keep God’s commands.  Solomon failed.  He focused on wealth; luxury; and feasts and wine.  The wisdom God gave Solomon was not used in the way God intended;  instead Solomon sinned his entire life.

 As a result of Solomon’s sin;  Israel would be divided after King Solomon’s death.     

He finally realized that money and items do not bring happiness in this life.  Turning your back on God does not bring happiness.  He writes this down in the book of Ecclesiastes.  God’s guide for living well.

Thank you for joining me for Ecclesiastes Bible Study.

We are women walking with Jesus.  🙂