Ecclesiastes 12 (5)
Pray Psalm 71.12.
O God, do not be far from me;
O my God, make haste to help me!
Read Ecclesiastes 12.9, 10.
1. How does Solomon describe his literary output?
2. The word “upright” here (v. 10) points back to Ecclesiastes 7.29. What is Solomon saying about his writings?
Rehoboam would not be able to deny Solomon’s claim in verse 9. He would have recalled the visit of the Queen of Sheba (1 Kings 10) and her own astonishment at his father’s wisdom. The Book of Proverbs and the Song of Songs were undoubtedly in wide circulation by this time. Doubtless many people found delight and truth (v. 10) in Solomon’s writings, which he “pondered and sought out and set in order” and strove to make “acceptable” and “upright” – that is, to recapture the original purpose of God for men (cf. Eccl. 7.29).
Rehoboam would have had to agree; and yet, by continuing to rebel against these words, he would have shown himself to be a fool, committed to a course of vanity and feeding on the wind.
Like the writings of Solomon, the Bible has a long track record of proving itself true and reliable. It’s important that believers have some basic understanding of all the wonderful, blessed ways the Bible has moved and empowered people to do good works of charity, culture, and moral exemplariness. Even unbelievers will have a hard time denying the Scripture’s power when we hold up familiar accomplishments for their consideration – such as the invention of the hospital, the creation of the university, giving impetus to art and music, the launching of the scientific revolution, the abolition of slavery, popular education, prison reform, and more. Not to mention the many ways Scripture has transformed your life as a believer.
Unbelievers cannot deny such solid contributions on the part of those moved and guided by Scripture. But by acknowledging these, and yet refusing to consider the Bible seriously, they set themselves outside the worldview of Scripture, resigned to a life of vanity and folly “under the sun”. What will they cling to for truth, guidance, and hope if they refuse to consider the “well-driven nails” of the Word of God (v. 11)?
1. What good has the Word of God accomplished in your life?
2. Why is it important that we should be aware of the many ways Scripture has shaped the course of human history?
3. If an unbelieving friend should ask your advice about where to begin reading Scripture, what would you tell him? Why?
The Preacher devotes special care to write acceptable words—pleasant words, words of grace—and words of truth. The truth referred to here is the truth from God. Earl Radmacher (1937-2014), NKJV Study Notes for Ecclesiastes 12.10
Thank You for Your Word, Lord, and for all the ways You have used the Word to change my life, especially…
Pray Psalm 71.17-20.
To whom will you declare the Word and works of God today? Ask God to revive you, and to increase your strength as His witness.
Sing Psalm 71.17-20, 3.
Psalm 71.17-20, 3 (Solid Rock: My Hope is Built on Nothing Less)
O Lord, I praise Your righteousness Who me from youth have taught and blessed.
Forsake me not when I am old, ‘til I Your mercies all have told!
Refrain, v. 3
A Rock of habitation be; command Your Word to rescue me.
My Rock and Fortress ever be!
Your righteous deeds are great and true. O God, there is no one like You!
Though many troubles I have seen, You will revive my soul again!
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.
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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).
Words of Truth
- T.M. Moore
- January 24, 2020
Their truth is evident, but not always believed. Ecclesiastes 12.9, 10
Ecclesiastes 12 (5)