Beyond Today Bible Commentary: Ecclesiastes

You are here

Table of Contents

Introduction to Ecclesiastes

Vanity of vanities—things come and go

The vanity of human wisdom, pleasure and toil

Outcome for the wise and fool, wisdom and enjoyment through God

Wisdom and enjoyment through God

A time and season for every purpose under heaven

Problems of injustice, oppression and self-focused toil

Wealth and labor are no benefit of themselves

Wealth and labor are no benefit of themselves

Prosperity is not always best

Adversity is not always worst

People are not innocent (deserving freedom from adversity)

Benefits of wisdom, respecting government and fearing God, enjoyment through God commended

None can comprehend God’s work in everyone’s lives, the righteous and wicked having similar experiences

This physical life will end, so live joyfully now and do whatever you do with all your might

Live boldly yet wisely amid life’s uncertainties, avoiding sin and folly

Deal wisely in matters of government and powerful people, be careful in any given task

Diversify efforts as a hedge against calamity, and don’t wait for perfect conditions before acting

Temper enjoyment of the present with reflection on coming dark days and divine judgment

Remember God in youth before old age and death

Initial summation: vanity of vanities

Wisdom gathered yet from God, keep focus on what He has revealed

Conclusion: fear and obey God, mindful of judgment