“What’s the Point?”
HOST: Michael Whitworth
Arguably more so than any other book in the Old Testament, Ecclesiastes is a mysterious book for some. But it is also one that rings with profound relevance in our own day. It is certainly a book that must be “rightly divided” if we are to interpret it properly.
Ecclesiastes claims to have been written by the “son of David,” who was king in Jerusalem. This does not automatically mean that Solomon was its author since “son” in Hebrew could also mean grandson, great-grandson, etc. But the author’s lifestyle certainly fit that of Solomon; the author claims to have searched for meaning in life through the channels of pleasure and wisdom and riches. Suffice it to say, however, that a long-standing tradition identifies Solomon as the author, and I see no valid reason to dispute that.
Ecclesiastes is a book that searches for “the point” or for meaning in life. There are a lot of confusing statements in Ecclesiastes, some that directly contradict other statements in Scripture. What we can definitely agree with, however, is the author’s conclusion at the end of the book. “Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole of man” (12:13).
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