Ecclesiastes - Focus on the Bible: The Philippians of the Old Testament

Overview

What is the purpose of life? The preacher in Ecclesiastes, just like many today, is in search of life's meaning. But as they look through their limited worldview all they find is "vanity, vanity". Pure emptiness! They are in search for something which will have eternal value. To find it, we need to look beyond ourselves. This is what the preacher discovers; that man is powerless, yet God has a design and purpose for all things. He is the giver of all life. Ecclesiastes gives teaching on doctrines such as man, ...

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Overview

What is the purpose of life? The preacher in Ecclesiastes, just like many today, is in search of life's meaning. But as they look through their limited worldview all they find is "vanity, vanity". Pure emptiness! They are in search for something which will have eternal value. To find it, we need to look beyond ourselves. This is what the preacher discovers; that man is powerless, yet God has a design and purpose for all things. He is the giver of all life. Ecclesiastes gives teaching on doctrines such as man, salvation and future judgment.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781845507763
  • Publisher: Christian Focus Publications
  • Publication date: 3/12/2012
  • Series: Focus on the Bible
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

William Barrick is Professor of Old Testament at Master's Seminary, Sun Valley, California. Dr. Barrick has been married to his wife Barbara for 45 years. They have four married children and fourteen grandchildren.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 9

Ecclesiastes' Contribution to Theology 10

'Vanity of Vanities' 12

The Purpose of Ecclesiastes 13

The Title of Ecclesiastes 14

The Canonicity of Ecclesiastes 15

The Authorship and Date of Ecclesiastes 17

Views 17

Linguistic Evidence 18

Internal and Contextual Evidence 20

Literary Description 23

The Message of Ecclesiastes 24

Outline of Ecclesiastes 26

Study Questions 27

Chapter 1 A Disappointing Discovery 29

Vanishing Vapors (1:2) 31

Round and Round, and Round and Round … (1:3-8) 34

Nothing New (1:9-11) 39

In Pursuit of Wisdom (1:12-18) 42

Study Questions 47

Chapter 2 A Disappointing Discovery (continued) 49

In Pursuit of Pleasure (2:1-9) 49

Still Pursuing the Wind (2:10-11) 52

Solomon's Assessment of Life under the Sun (2:12-17) 53

Solomon's Assessment of Labor under the Sun (2:18-23) 56

The Search's Conclusion (2:24-26) 58

Study Questions 59

Chapter 3 The Hours, Days, and Years of Our Lives 61

A Poem on Time (3:1-8) 62

The Poem's Message (3:9-22) 66

Study Questions 71

Chapter 4 Two by Two 73

Observing Oppression (4:1-3) 74

Observing Jealousy (4:4-6) 76

Observing Loneliness (4:7-12) 78

Observing-Politics (4:13-16) 80

Conclusion 82

Study Questions 83

Chapter 5 Beyond the Sun 85

Approaching the Presence of God (5:1-3) 86

Guarding Our Steps (5:1a) 87

Drawing Near to Listen (5:1b) 88

Avoiding Hastiness (5:2a) 90

Limiting Our Words (5:2b-3) 90

Apprehending Promises to God (5:4-7) 91

Fulfilling Commitments (5:4-5) 93

Meaning What We Say (5:6) 93

Fearing God (5:7) 94

Understanding the Role of Rulers (5:8-9) 95

Dealing with the Pursuit of Wealth (5:10-17) 97

Concluding Thoughts Regarding Wealth (5:18-20) 99

Study Questions 101

Chapter 6 Possessing Everything, But Enjoying Nothing 103

Case History #1: A Full Treasury (6:1-2) 103

Case History #2: A Full Quiver (6:3-5) 105

Case History #3: A Full Life Span (6:6) 106

The Elusiveness of Satisfaction and Rest (6:7-9) 107

A Sovereign Lord (6:10-12) 108

Study Questions 110

Chapter 7 Life Is Complicated: Live with Care 113

A Person's Present Conditions in the Light of Eternity (7:1-14) 116

Death Is Good (7:1-4) 117

The Superiority of Wisdom (7:5-12) 121

The Sovereign God Is in Control (7:13-14) 125

A Person's Character in the Light of Revelation (7:15-29) 129

Balanced Living (7:15-18) 129

Wisdom Rather Than Perfection (7:19-22) 132

The Search for an Explanation (7:23-29) 133

Study Questions 137

Chapter 8 Wisdom Has Its Limits 139

Wisdom in Situations beyond a Person's Control (8:1-9) 139

Being Wise in a King's Throne Room (8:2-6) 141

Being Wise through Life's Uncertainties (8:7-9) 143

Being Wise in God's Throne Room (8:10-17) 146

Study Questions 151

Chapter 9 Imperatives for Living Wisely 153

In God's Hand (9:1) 153

The Reality of Death and the Urgency of Living (9:2-10) 156

Life's Inescapable Ironies (9:11-12) 164

A Lesson from History (9:13-18) 166

Study Questions 168

Chapter 10 A Final Reflection about Folly 169

Recognizing Fools (10:1-4) 169

An Upside-Down World (10:5-7) 172

Proverbs from Everyday Life Settings (10:8-11) 175

The Words and Work of a Fool (10:12-15) 176

Due Diligence (10:16-20) 177

Study Questions 182

Chapter 11 Sowing in the Morning, Sowing in the Evening 183

What a Person Does Not Know (11:1-6) 184

Rejoice in the Light (11:7-8) 189

Again, Rejoice (11:9-10) 190

Study Questions 193

Chapter 12 Life Under a Setting Sun 195

Solomonic Advice (12:1-7) 196

The Gathering Storm (12:2) 198

The Household of the Deceased (12:3-4) 199

Aging: The Ultimate Harbinger of Death (12:5) 200

Death: Returning to God (12:6-7) 201

Table of Interpretations 203

The Epilogue to Ecclesiastes (12:8-14) 209

Study Questions 214

An Epilogue: Further Thoughts on Ecclesiastes 215

Study Questions 220

Bibliography 221

Subject Index 230

Scripture Index 235

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