Tom Ascol | A Meaningful Life In A Fallen World - Ecclesiastes 1:12-2:26

August 28, 2022 00:51:31
Tom Ascol | A Meaningful Life In A Fallen World - Ecclesiastes 1:12-2:26
Sermons by Founders Ministries
Tom Ascol | A Meaningful Life In A Fallen World - Ecclesiastes 1:12-2:26

Aug 28 2022 | 00:51:31

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Show Notes

Pastor Tom Ascol continues his series on the book of Ecclesiastes with a message entitled “A Meaningful Life in a Fallen World” centered on Ecclesiastes 1:12 – 2:26. Ecclesiastes takes an honest look at things people do in order to make their lives work addressing head on the cultural complaint heard decades ago from the Rolling Stones, “I can’t get no satisfaction.” The author proclaims all is vanity. This is true in a life without God. However, the author recognizes God is good, gives all gifts to enjoy, and, for His own people, eliminates the apparent futility of life.

At the end of today’s passage Solomon (assuming he is the author of Ecclesiastes) draws this conclusion: in a broken world real joy can be found in God’s provision. He reaches this conclusion after unsuccessfully trying to find meaning living by wisdom (1:12 – 18). The world is so fundamentally flawed we cannot fix it. Wisdom alone cannot be the answer since those that live by wisdom and those by folly all ultimately come to the same end. The benefits of wisdom, genuine as they may be, are limited since even the wise understand “what is crooked cannot be made straight.” Neither wisdom nor folly prevent death.

At this point the reader must pause and ask himself if all die what is to become of me. Solomon saw the futility of life without God. In fact, the closing verses of the book indicate the only meaning in life is coming to God, establishing a relationship with Him, and living life in obedience to His commands. Though Ecclesiastes never mentions Jesus Christ, it clearly points to the futility of life without Him. It points to a coming time when, rather than looking forward to salvation, people will look back to the work of the Cross as the one means of establishing a salvation relationship with God and finding meaning rather than futility in life.

Living for pleasure is also meaningless. With the vast resources at his command, Solomon claims to have denied himself nothing, riches, slaves, concubines, wine, creativity, only to again find meaninglessness. Solomon, however, is not done. He finds working hard to get wealth is also meaningless. All our possession will go to someone else. Not only will your wealth go to someone else but according to vv. 22 – 23 working without proper regard for God inevitably diminishes the quality of life. What has been lacking in the author’s search for meaning through wisdom, pleasure, and work is God. A meaningful life recognizes and embraces God’s grace. There is joy in the routines of life, joy in the provisions of God, and a right relationship with God results in real blessings (v. 26).

Solomon concludes that the meaninglessness and futility of life can only be overcome by a right relationship with God. Life “under the sun,” that is without God, living only horizontally not vertically, is vanity, a chasing after the wind. And yet, God’s Word tells us we can draw near to God in faith and enter into a relationship that puts meaning into life, even today, and can eliminate the sense of futility present without the Creator.

This sermon was given by Dr. Tom Ascol on October 30, 2016 at Grace Baptist Church in Cape Coral, FL.

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