ecclesiastes 7:10 sermon

“Let a man examine himself:” and the Lord Jesus counsels the Ephesian Church. Isaac Newton has been in the news recently, and if you don’t remember who he was, here are some… Amongst those who were endued with piety in the Apostolic age, you find none who were “murmurers and complainers.” Their habit of mind is better expressed by those words of the Apostle, “I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. 3. Notice the unwisdom of the complaint. Passage. (1) And first for antiquity, and the former ages, we may plead thus. THE UNWISDOM OF INQUIRING FOE AN EXPLANATION OF A BELIEF WHICH IS PROBABLY UNFOUNDED. His laurels are yet unsullied. Why destroy yourself? ... Ecclesiastes 1:3-11; Ecclesiastes 7:13-18; Ecclesiastes 9:7-10; Philip Ryken Bio. His courage has been tried. An Empty Life? Is it thus with our love to God? WHY ONE IS NOT WISE IN THINKING THIS... 1. They pronounce the doom of the old world, but the new world has no part in them, unless it copies the sins and follies of the old. And now we call the proud happy, (that is, the heathen,) built up, (that is fortunate,) are the workers of iniquity, they tempt God and notwithstanding escape." Ay, no doubt of it, saith our Saviour, whereas you "fill up the measure of your fathers’ sins," and are every whit as good at "resisting of the Holy Ghost" as they were. And so every nation has had its fancied golden age. {14} for god shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil." ... Like this sermon? Certainly everything is purest in the fountain and most untainted in the original. Our grief may be well founded; for those who "did run well" are sometimes "hindered" and fall into slowest pace. A key word is “vanity” (occurs 35 times in 29 verses), which means “futility, uselessness, nothingness” b. 173, 4): “Difficilis, querulus, laudator temporis acti. They forget how much the flavour of life depends on him who drinks it; and in their flush and hopeful youth they relished it better. If, however, it were only the softening power of distance which had to be taken into the account, it might be necessary to caution men against judging without making allowance for this power, but we should scarcely have to charge it upon them as a fault, that they looked so complacently on what was far back. Years pass on. You may fix on a time when there was apparently less of open wickedness, but this would not necessarily have been a better time for individual piety. Experience teaches us that, before asking for the cause, it is well to assure ourselves of the fact. The former days were better than his days; he could not help seeing that they were. And the Bible, too, tells of a golden age in the far distant past. (2) The worship of the past springs out of man's deep and noble dissatisfaction with the present. Facebook Google+ Twitter Pinterest. We have not done all we meant to do, not been all we meant to be, and have a consciousness of imperfection more vivid than ever. - Ecclesiastes 9:10 - During the Civil War, Union general George McClellan became well known for being hesitant to respond to the enemy and move his army out into the battle. Life’s opening years may be beautiful, but its close may be glorious. Would we for His sake endure hardship, death? And therefore for us it is not only an act of prudence, but a duty—a duty of faith in God, a duty of loyalty to Jesus Christ our Lord—not to ask why the former times were better than these. May 31, 2009 Ecclesiastes 7-10 – Who’s wise? Through unfaithfulness we may have lost the joy and power of the days when first we knew the Lord. ], 2. Please mention the title of the sermon and the Bible text to help me find the sermon in my archives. We "have not wickedly departed from" our God. The wise man sees in the sufferings of the people of God the deserved punishment of their sins, and says, "It is the goodness of the Lord that we are not utterly lost, but the Lord does not cast off for ever, he has compassion again according to his great kindness." The tinsel has been lost, but the fine gold all remains. Browse Sermons on Ecclesiastes 7:10. But may not the mournful inference be mistaken, and what we regard as a diminished happiness be really a profounder blessedness? The dregs are still the most likely to settle in the bottom, and to sink into the last ages. This sermon was preached by Tim Simmonds at CCM:Kingsway on Sunday 18th February 2018 and was based on Ecclesiastes 10:1-20. Improvements may have been made in some respects, and matters may have been deteriorated in others; or particular persons and places may be in less favourable circumstances now than formerly: but times have been much alike in all ages. Nothing has any attraction for them, but some real or supposed evil. What Is Better. I think at the end of Ecclesiastes, as Solomon has surveyed the nature of life over his many years, he gives us some guidelines that can point us in the right direction. Do not say, "Why were the old days better than these?" The morning is beautiful when the rising sun bathes stream and flood, hill and dale with his glorious beams. The vain, meaninglessness of life without God, and the vital importance of having the Lord in our lives, is summed up at the end of the book of Ecclesiastes: we are to fear God, and keep His commandments; for this is the whole duty of man. This proverb does not furnish any point of support for the determination of the date of the authorship of the Book of Koheleth. “when they had left their first love, to remember from whence they had fallen, and to repent, and do their first works [Note: Revelation 2:5. Featuring a sermon puts it on the front page of the site and is the most effective way to bring this sermon to the attention of thousands including all mobile platforms + newsletter. O mores! Surely it is better to be patient in spirit, than to be proud and hasty. ‘Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were better than these? Navigating life under the sun requires mature attention to values. (Ecclesiastes 12:1 RSV) It is clear that this is an appeal to young people to think carefully about their Creator, not merely to remember that he is there. Hengstenberg explains, God causes evil days to alternate with good ones, to the end that man should not find anything which will come after him - i:e., in order that he may not be able to fathom anything which … Who will venture to deny, that as century has rolled away after century, fresh witness has been given to the Bible by the' accomplishment of the predictions recorded in its pages? But may we not misconceive the love we bear to God? He seems but the wreck, the mere shadow of his former self. Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were better than these? The curse of sin is to be fully and for ever removed. Introduction A. Secular – Isaac Newton’s secular achievements 1. APPLICATION. Let it be, that the evidence of miracle is not so clear and powerful as it was; what is to be said of the evidence of prophecy? But shall it be said that the latter must necessarily be less satisfactory than the former? An Empty Life? Has that passion simply changed from red to white? Every movement for reformation is really, when you look into the springs of it, a lament for restoration; what man prays for always is the restoration of the glittering pageant, the golden saturnine reign. Studying the great wisdom of God ... Ecclesiastes 1:3-11; Ecclesiastes 7:13-18; Ecclesiastes 9:7-10; Philip Ryken Bio. I. Young people, for the most part, always believe that everything is going to turn out all right, so they energetically pursue things. 11:7-10) Thus is it sometimes with our religious life--we mistake the signs of progress for those of retrogression, and through this mistake de injustice to ourselves. Buchanan, Ecclesiastes: its Meaning and Lessons, p. 250. ii., p. 240. 2. Always there is the great fact of childhood in our lives, the careless time, the joyous time, when the mere play of the faculties was a spring of enjoyment. For they were not better than these. We fully allow that it may be so. - This is a common saying; and it is as foolish as it is common. This text has a natural and deep connection with Solomon and his times. Excuse not thyself with the good thou hast done, from the good thou hast further to do. You would say that in his ease the former days were better than these. for thou dost not, from wisdom, ask after this.” Cf. (1) The test of love is sacrifice. Now, is this really so? But is it not a richer, though a different kind of beauty, when in autumn it is loaded with delicious fruit? The כי, assigning a reason for the dissuasion, does not mean that the cause of the difference between the present and the good old times is easily seen; but it denotes that the supposition of this difference is foolish, because in truth every age has its bright and its dark sides; and this division of light and shadow between the past and the present betrays a want of understanding of the signs of the times and of the ways of God. It has ever been so, and is likely to be so in the future. The stream of evidence has been like that beheld in mystic vision by Ezekiel, when waters issued out from the eastern gate of the temple. What is the cause? It is in times of pain, loss, adversity, disappointment, that men are most given to extol the past, and to forget its disadvantages as well as the privileges and immunities of the present. For thou [you] dost [do] not inquire wisely [out of wisdom] concerning this. ), What a softening power there is in distance; how often an object, on which you gazed with great delight while beheld afar off, will lose its attractiveness when it is brought near. It is possible to be growing in moral strength and grace, in everything that constitutes perfection of character and life, when appearances are decidedly to the contrary. The needy profane would murder all the rich, for they are lions in the grate. Therefore it was that Solomon hated all his labour that he had wrought under the sun, for all was vanity and vexation of spirit. The wise man interprets the present and the past in the light of wisdom. Thou dost not inquire wisely concerning this; — Common sense teaches us to make the most of the present, and act in the living. (1) By a wise law of Providence, time destroys all the wreck and waste of the past and saves only the pleasures—destroys the chaff and saves the grain. E. Paget, Helps and Hindrances to the Christian Life, vol. Now, we are inclined to suppose that there is much the same power in distance, with regard to what we may call the moral landscape, which is so universally acknowledged with regard to the natural. But from one cause or another men become disgusted with the days in which their lot is cast, and are therefore disposed to the concluding that past days were better. It tells us that we should learn to recognise the things that inhibit life and to live above life’s inhibitions. Authored by Solomon and like Proverbs, it also falls under the classification of wisdom literature in Scripture. (3) The test of love is confidence. Instead of complaining of the times, let us all endeavour to make them better—, [Much is in our power, for the improvement of the worst of times. Why die before your time? You may have seen the raw recruit, fresh from his country home, setting out to join the war in a distant land. We look back to our conversion, to the glittering joy which welled up in our soul in those days, and the memory moves us to tears. And to take the world in a lower epochs, what after-age could exceed the lust of the Sodomites, the idolatry and tyranny of the Egyptians, the fickle levity of the Grecians? There is no weight nor truth in it; but men use it to excuse their crimes, and the folly of their conduct. "For one thing, to believe that the present is worse than the past shows a complete ignorance of history" (Longman p. 189). Here, once more, are we sure of ourselves? … 9 Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger settles in the lap of a fool. A still more glorious golden age awaits it in the ages that are to come. It may be that we are not less pure than formerly, only the Spirit of God has been opening our eyes, heightening our sensibility, and faults once latent are now discovered; the clearer vision detects deformities, the finer ear discords, the pure taste admixtures which were once unsuspected. But let them remember the days of darkness, for there will be many. Dreamers have dreamed of its charms. Once again, it may be so. II. "—Ecclesiastes 9:10 If God had … And if wisdom ought to be respected, we know that it is the offspring of experience, and experience the child of age and continuance. "I am not so holy as I once was," is another note of self-depreciation with which we are unhappily familiar, and with which, perhaps, we are sometimes disposed to sympathize. Faith, hope, and love would soon make a today which would cast all the yesterdays into the shade. In keeping with the topic of “Wisdom In Crisis”, we veer from Proverbs today to explore a passage from Ecclesiastes. The author designates this question as one not proceeding from wisdom: מח, like the Mishnic חכמה מתּוך, and על שׁאל, as at Nehemiah 1:2; 'al - zeh refers to that question, after the ground of the contrast, which is at the same time an exclamation of wonder. Ecclesiastes 10:7 I have seen slaves on horseback, while princes go on foot like slaves. When we look back longingly to any past age, we look not at the reality, but at a sentimental and untrue picture of our own imagination. His feelings do not flow out so steadily toward the Saviour whom he loves, nor do the tears come as freely now as they did long ago when he sits down at the table of the Lord. Father Latimer saw so much wickedness in his days, that he thought it could not be but that Christ must come to judgment immediately, like as Elmerius, a monk of Malmesbury, from the same ground gathered the certainty of Antichrist’s present reign. Deborah Hannay Sunoo OK, that was different. Enoch, the seventh from Adam, complained; so did Noah, Lot, Moses, and the prophets; Christ, the archprophet, and all his apostles; the primitive fathers and professors of the truth. Be not soon angry, nor quick in resenting an affront. e.g., 2 Chronicles 9:29) - thus by contrast to much better than the present tones, that in astonishment he asks: “What is it = how comes it that?” etc. This is a common opinion, that in all ages prevails among men, that former times were better than present ones; that trade flourished more, and men got more wealth and riches, and lived in greater ease and plenty; and complain that their lot is cast in such hard times, and are ready to lay the blame upon the providence of God, and murmur at it, which they should not do; for thou dost not inquire wisely concerning this: this is owing to ignorance of former times; which, if rightly inquired into, or the true knowledge of them could be come at, it would appear that they were no better than the present; and that there were always bad men, and bad things done; frauds, oppressions, and violence, and everything that can be complained of now: or if things are worse than they were, this should be imputed to the badness of men; and the inquirer should look to himself, and his own ways, and see if there is not a cause there, and study to redeem the time, because the days are evil; and not arraign the providence of God, and murmur at that, and quarrel with it; as if the distributions of it were unequal, and justice not done in one age as in another. But let them remember the days of darkness, for there will be many. (A series on Ecclesiastes) Fear God and Keep His Commandments. Of Christian nations these words are not true. Preaching Today provides pastors and preachers sermon prep help with sermon illustrations, sermons, sermon ideas, and preaching articles. When the fool stays at home, no one realizes his foolishness. Why should such superior power be supposed to reside in the seeing a miracle? The futility of life “under the sun” - cf. "If ye keep My commandments, ye shall abide in My love; even as I have kept My Father's commandments, and abide in His love Ye are My friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you." Yes, the Christian religion now appeals to mightier proofs than when it first engaged in combat with the superstitions of the world. It is not lost, but well laid out. Sure, we’ve heard these kinds of things before – but from the Bible? That admitting this supposition as true, that the former ages are really the best, and to be preferred: yet still this querulous reflection upon the evil of the present times, stands obnoxious to the same charge of folly: and, if it be condemned also upon this supposition, I see not where it can take sanctuary. For it is unwise of you to ask about this. But in all that is true, and noble, and unselfish, he is a braver and a better man. (2) The test of love is obedience. WE ARE NOT TO SAY "WHY WERE THE FORMER DAYS BETTER?" Watkinson. And their aim is, to diffuse the same malignant feeling throughout the whole community. 2 A wise man's heart directs him toward the right, but the foolish man's heart directs him toward the left. It is possible to be growing in moral strength and grace, in everything that constitutes perfection of character and life, when appearances are decidedly to the contrary. But may not the mournful inference be mistaken, and what we regard as a diminished happiness be really a profounder blessedness? In sum, it was the fulness of time which brought Christ into the world; Christianity was a reserve for the last: and it was the beginning of time which was infamous for man's fall and ruin; so, in Scripture, they are called the "last days" and the "ends of the world," which are ennobled with his redemption. The clear-eyed Qoheleth is the last person to be impressed by this golden haze around the past: he has already declared that one age is very much like another ()" (Kidner p. 67). In this section that we're going to look at, he's telling us that God has sent us four text messages that we would be wise to pay attention too. ‘This is the outcry of every age. Though, even if we were forced to concede that the spectator of a miracle has necessarily a superiority over those to whom the miracle travels down in the annals of well-attested history, we should be far enough from allowing that there is less evidence now on the side of Christianity than was granted to the men of some preceding age. There are no people loaded with unqualified goods nor are there any oppressed with unmitigated evil. Speaks to the fleeting nature … Our present troubles we feel keenly, and thus are led to unwisely repine. To sigh for "the good old days" is…doubly unrealistic: a substitute not only for action but for proper thought, since it almost invariably overlooks the evils that took a different form or vexed a different section of society in other times. The contemporary Malachi introduces them in Ecclesiastes 2:17, as speaking: "Ye weary the Lord with your words, and yet ye say, wherein do we weary Him? The value of difficult things over pleasant things. Ecclesiastes 7:8-10 Git-R-Done is a sermon about the ways in which a church can "git-r-done" to grow the church in a way that reaches the community. Once we had the pleasing sense of swift and perpetual progress. What pitiful complaints made Bernard, Bradwardine, Everard, Archbishop of Canterbury (who wrote a volume called Obiurgatorium temporis, the rebuke of the time), Petrarch, Mantuan, Savanarola, &c.! The tree is beautiful when it is covered with blossoms. So, in Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, the Preacher talks to us about the value of difficult things over pleasant things.. We might notice that our life seems to be filled with difficult things – difficult people, difficult situations, problems that are over our head, etc. Scripture: Luke 9:62, Psalms 103:1-14, Ecclesiastes 7:10… Why a thing is presumes that the thing is. 1 A good name is better than fine perfume, and the day of death better than the day of birth. Our love to God may not be so gushing, so florid in expression as it once was, but in this it only bears the sober hue of all ripened things. Enjoy this Ecclesiastes 7 Commentary! Stephen C. Magee. For this is an argument of a mind unthankful for the many mercies, which men enjoy even in evil times. Many sorrowing souls know they are ready to die for Him whom they cannot love as they feel He ought to be loved. Give freely, though it may seem thrown away and lost. (H. Melvill, B. D.). 2. But when he goes out into the world, everyone he comes in contact with, knows he is a fool. (W. L. Ecclesiastes 7:10. Ecclesiastes 7:8-10 - What Is Better. Ecclesiastes 9:10. The times we live in are indeed becoming steadily more difficult. 8 Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the … Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. Those whom the author had in view are described in Ecclesiastes 7:16 of the Epistle of Jude, as γογγυσταὶ μεμψίμοιροι. ); and the former days of the nation better than the present state. The religion of the heart, perhaps, flourishes most when there is most to move to zeal for the insulted law of God. 3. The spring is beautiful with all its stores of bloom and fragrance and song. And thou dost not inquire wisely concerning this — This question shows thy folly in contending with thy Lord and Governor, and opposing thy shallow wit to his unsearchable wisdom. 2. Many people look back to the "good old days". When we first realized forgiveness, we felt that there was "no condemnation" if the Spirit of God seemed to hallow our whole nature; our heart was cleansed, and strangely glowed. And in considering our rate of progress, we must not forget that the sense of progress is regulated by the desire for progress. II. If men may always find out what they have to do in this world, then they have no right to plead ignorance for the neglect of a duty. In the deepest realities of life, in the work and the purposes of God, the complaint is not true. That which is new is the intelligence which discerns them, and the humanity which relieves them.” But we shall speak only of the religious advantages of different times, in endeavouring to prove “that the former days” were not “better than these.”. Once more we admit that this may be the case. Sermon by on August 31, 2003. Our more dispassionate affection may be equally genuine and positively stronger. The former days were better than these. II. We're doing a sermon series based on Ecclesiastes. Ecclesiastes 9:7-10 7 Go, eat your bread with joy, And drink your wine with a merry heart; For God has already accepted your works. Then “all things were apparelled in celestial light, the glory and the freshness of a dream.” Then we turn to consider tile present phases of our experience, and conclude sadly that we are not so happy now as then--all the gold has changed to grey. The essence of religion is submission to the will of God, and that grave tranquillity of mind which follows upon deeper self-renunciation, the chastened cheerfulness which survives the strain and strife of years, is a real, although not perhaps seeming, gain upon the first sparkling experiences of our devout life. Ecclesiastes 7:10 ... in Scripture, they are called the "last days" and the "ends of the world," which are ennobled with his redemption. Solomon is teaching us that now is the time to work with care, energy, and purpose to get the most and the best from life and to prepare for the hereafter.His basic reason is that the clock is ticking. This text has a natural and deep connection with Solomon and his times. 1. The only thing to be sure about is, that the miracle has been wrought. Ecclesiastes 7:10. Under the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, the Teacher of Israel pens in Ecclesiastes 11:7-10: 7 Light is sweet, and it pleases the eyes to see the sun. The former days were better than these? The common cry ever was, O terapora! Home; About; Church Life; Resources; Events; What to Expect; Registration; Weekly Schedule Will our love to God to-day bear this test? “I do not love God as I once did,” is another sorrowful confession of the soul. for thou dost not enquire wisely concerning this. Previous Sermons Link Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12 – Who wants to be a millionaire? That it is ridiculous to ask why former times are better than the present, if really they are not better, and so the very supposition itself proves false; this is too apparently manifest to be matter of dispute: and that it is false we shall endeavour to prove. The blossoms may have perished, but you have in their stead the mellow, luscious fruit. Get your church set-up with online giving, sermon streaming, and more in under 24 hours. This verse encourages that. When ye say, every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the Lord and He delighteth in them; or, where is the God of judgment?" There may be a very real depreciation in our life; we may have allowed our raiment to be soiled by the world and the flesh. whom we pay ungrudging service. 2. The Vulgate and Syriac, 'against Him' (cf. People often reminisce about "the good old days" 2. And first, it ought to be carefully observed in regard of human nature that it did not grow corrupt by degrees, but became all at once as bad as it was ever to be. &c.] This, saith an interpreter, (a) is the continual complaint of the wicked moody and the wicked needy. I shall now take it in a lower respect; as a case disputable, whether the preceding or succeeding generations are to be preferred; and here I shall dispute the matter on both sides. (A series on Ecclesiastes) An Empty Life? 3. (Ecclesiastes 1:2-3, 12:13) Solomon was in an unusual position to undertake the investigations reflected in this book. To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use the convenient, International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, The former days were better than these? Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might. Explore a passage from Ecclesiastes the field is beautiful when the fresh green blades appear, like a creation..., use more self-denial, be more exemplary. everyone he comes home, no one realizes foolishness... Verse 10 is even more crushing, as Job did ( Eccl better is the cause that the grounds their. Wisdom ] concerning this. 16 so don ’ t be too good or too wise are better than?! 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Past springs out of death say `` Why were the wants and necessities of nature... Old-Timers like this writer can always find a … Ecclesiastes 7:10 `` say thou! In combat with the will of God extended scale, were better than these? comparatively indifferent every! Action are better than these in view are described in Ecclesiastes 7:16 of the time... His bounden duty `` many say, `` do not say, `` were! Darkness, for thou dost not inquire wisely [ out of death 5:8-6:12 – Who wants to be so I... That temporal tribulations have a good foundation old days '' 2 ASSERTION is..

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