Ecclesiastes 7:1 – 8:1 Solomon is making a desperate search for the meaning of life. One of the greatest problems he discovers in a life that is lived without God is the problem of injustice. How do you take things that are wrong in this life and make them right, if there is no God or eternity? Solomon uses his gift of wisdom to search and see if he can find an answer.
Wisdom is like a sweet perfume, but foolishness stinks. It is better to have a good reputation than to wear the best cologne. But what school can you attend to learn wisdom? Solomon discovers wisdom is taught by many of the things we experience in life. But we try to avoid some of these things, if at all possible, such as sorrow, tears, and death. We hate them, but the truth is, we can learn from our pain and it can help us to become better people if we will pay attention.
The fool’s drunken laughter sounds like thorns crackling in a campfire and will last about as long. Ecclesiastes 7:5, 6 But the wisdom we can learn from a wise rebuke will last us for a lifetime. Here are some of the things we learn:
We are foolish to think that people were actually wiser and better yesterday than they are today. The “good ole days,” are usually the product of a bad memory and a good imagination. There have always been people and problems.
Wisdom is worth much more than money because it not only provides protection but helps us to live better as well. Ecclesiastes 7:12 Wisdom doesn’t have the power to change a life, but it can help us to change and enjoy life more.
To yield to our base desires and live like animals would destroy us. It is only the person who reverences God who will find the wisdom to escape from these destructions. Solomon is discovering that if you leave God out of your life, you are not truly living. Ecclesiastes 7:16-18
Wisdom will strengthen you and help you to find direction better than many leaders can. But although you have great wisdom, you still have a problem with a sinful nature. There is no such thing as a just man who is totally good and never does anything wrong. And not only do you have a sin problem, everybody else in the world does too. Ecclesiastes 7:19, 20
The one thing in our lives that reveals sin in our hearts more than any other is our tongue. Solomon says, “Don’t pay too much attention to what people may say about you, because you know that you too have said things you shouldn’t have about others.” Ecclesiastes 7:21, 22
We will not find it in our LEARNING. There are many things right now in our own hearts that we know are wrong, but we do not have the power to change them. You can’t become wise just because you decide to be wise. Ecclesiastes 7:23, 24
We will not find it in LOVE. Solomon learns what the world calls love is usually selfish lust and ends with bitter disappointment and death. If anybody should be qualified to speak about sex, it is Solomon. But he says, “You will not find the answer here.” Sex outside of marriage is a deadly trap that is worse than death, from which only God can help you escape. Ecclesiastes 7:26
We will not find it in this LIFE. Solomon’s search for the meaning of life is ending without answers. He cannot find anyone who can explain the mysteries of life. Something has gone wrong with our world. So, he concludes, if the meaning of life can’t be found in this world, then there must be a better world. We want to live upright and proper lives, but something has happened to us and we have become scheming sinners. Ecclesiastes 7:29
How many times have we heard someone say, “That’s not fair.” Who told us life was fair? Where did we get the idea that there should be justice? We certainly did not get it from the world around us, because this life is not fair. Our desire for justice and our reaction to injustice is one of the greatest proofs of the existence of God. Our concept of justice doesn’t come from planet earth, so it must have come from heaven and God, Who is the only One Who is fair.