trusted online casino malaysia
Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.
The Scriptorium

Short Memories

Who will remember you? And for what? Ecclesiastes 4.13-16

Ecclesiastes 4 (7)

Pray Psalm 72.1, 2.
Give the king Your judgments, O God,
And Your righteousness to the king’s Son.
He will judge Your people with righteousness,
And Your poor with justice.

Read Ecclesiastes 4.13-16.
Review Ecclesiastes 4.

1. Who was the “old and foolish king”?

2. Who was the “wise youth”, and who was the “second youth”?

These verses have a hint of nostalgia to them. Is Solomon reflecting obliquely on his own experience? Is he thinking back to his days of youthful wisdom, perhaps even trying to relive them? Solomon was “born poor” because he was not David’s first-born; others were ahead of him in line for the throne. He fully tried life “under the sun”, and he found it to be vanity. It seems he had been “admonished” in his old age, and was now taking his own advice, learned through the school of hard knocks.

But what about Rehoboam? Would he be a foolish youth? Or would he be wise like his father was, and had become once again? Solomon seems to fear that he would not be remembered fondly (v. 16). If he, who had been so wise, would be quickly forgotten, for what could Rehoboam hope, if he followed the way of vanity?  

There is in these verses the suggestion of an important Biblical theme, which is easily overlooked. That is the importance of living for the generations, and not just for the moment. We heard this theme in 1.11 and 2.16, and it echoes in other portions of Scripture (cf. Ps. 45.17; Ps. 78.1-8; 2 Tim. 2.2). We cannot know fullness of life by living only for ourselves in the moment.

Yet living for the moment is the only hope they can have, who choose to live “under the sun”. They know they’ll probably never have a page in any history book, so they try to “grab for all the gusto” they can, since they “only go around once in life”. Sadly, many who, like Rehoboam, profess to know God, are living this way as well.

This is not how God intends His redeemed people to think or live. We are part of the past and we contribute to the future. Only by living in the wisdom of God can we make a lasting contribution of good for the generations to come. Good associations and a proper orientation to life in the present, conducted to the glory of God, will help to ensure that our legacy remains, and leads many to give thanks to God.

1. What kinds of things can distract us from seeking the wisdom of God? How can we resist these distractions?

2. What does it mean to live for the generations to come? Why should every Christian live this way?

3. Just as a king like Rehoboam had many people in his sphere of influence, so each of us does as well. How should we work our Personal Mission Field, so that wisdom, rather than vanity, increases there?

Princes see themselves slighted by those they have studied to oblige; this is vanity and vexation of spirit. But the willing servants of the Lord Jesus, our King, rejoice in him alone, and they will love Him more and more to all eternity. Matthew Henry (1662-1714), Commentary on Ecclesiastes 4

Lord, help me to work each day on my legacy for Your glory, so that I honor You as I…

Pray Psalm 72.1-20.
David’s psalm (v. 20) was written for Solomon (superscription), to help him in seeking the Kingdom of God. We are all rulers in God’s Kingdom (1 Pet. 2.9, 10), and we are called to exercise God’s judgment over all things (1 Cor. 2.12-16). Pray for Kingdom wisdom to guide you today, and to make you a blessing to all the people you meet.

Sing Psalm 72.1-20.
Psalm 72.1-20 (Martyrdom: Alas! And Did My Savior Bleed)
O give the King Your judgment, Lord, and righteousness Your Son.
And let Him judge by Your good Word the need of everyone.

Let now the mountains ring with peace, the hills in righteousness.
Let justice rise, oppression cease, and all the needy bless.

Let nations fear You while the sun and moon endure on high.
Refresh, renew us, every one, like sweet rain falling from the sky.

Let righteousness abundant be where Jesus’ reign endures.
Let peace increase from sea to sea ‘til moonlight shall be no more.

And let the Righteous rule the earth, and let His foes bow low.
Let nations praise His matchless worth, and all His bidding do.

The Lord the needy rescues when he cries to Him for grace.
All they who suffer violence find mercy before His face.

Let Christ be praised, and all the gold of Sheba be His right.
Let blessings to His Name be told, and prayers made both day and night.

And let the earth abound with grain, let fields His fame proclaim.
And may our King forever reign and nations bless His great Name.

Now bless the God of Israel, Who wondrous works performs.
And bless His Name, His glory tell both now and forever more!

T. M. Moore

Where does the book of Ecclesiastes fit in the overall flow of Scripture? Our series of studies, God’s Covenant, can show you, and help you discover the great beauty of the unity and diversity of Scripture, and how it all points to Christ. To order your copy of this important workbook, click here.

You can download all the studies in this series on Ecclesiastes by clicking here. If you value Scriptorium as a free resource for your walk with the Lord, please consider supporting our work with your gifts and offerings. You can contribute to The Fellowship by clicking the Contribute button  at the website or by sending your gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 360 Zephyr Road, Williston, VT 05495.

Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. All psalms for singing adapted from
The Ailbe Psalter. All quotations from Church Fathers from Ancient Christian Commentary Series, General Editor Thomas C. Oden (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2006). All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (available by clicking here).

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

Subscribe to Ailbe Newsletters

Sign up to receive our email newsletters and read columns about revival, renewal, and awakening built upon prayer, sharing, and mutual edification.

No