Ecclesiastes 1:1-3:22, 2 Corinthians 6:1-13, Psalm 46:1-11, Proverbs 22:15
Today is the second day of September, welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I am Brian and it is wonderful to be here with you, as we continue moving into this brand-new month in front of us. And this brand-new month has brought us to a brand-new book.
Introduction to the Book of Ecclesiastes:
So, yesterday we concluded the book of Job, which brings us to the threshold and we will begin today, the book of Ecclesiastes. And just by way of reminders, both Job and Ecclesiastes, as well as Proverbs and Song of Solomon, some of the Psalms, these are a part of a grouping of books known as wisdom literature. This is the genre that they are written in. So, as strange as it’s going to seem as we begin the book of Ecclesiastes that we are studying wisdom, to think about the ways that we define things. In some cases, we could say that is wisdom and we would be making a definition. We could also say that is not wisdom and therefore make a definition of wisdom by it not being something. Or for that matter, even with the Lord. We could say God is like and then make some sort of metaphor description that says more than just a definition. Or you could say God is not like and then make a definition by subtraction. So, not like to get this all muddy and convoluted but like with wisdom, we could say all the things that wisdom are and it be true. We could also say everything that wisdom is not and it still be true, in defining what wisdom is. In Ecclesiastes, we have a little bit of that going on. And by the way, the…the sort of affirming what something is or defining it by what it is not, this is called apophatic and cataphatic ways of looking at things. The apophatic way being sort of the subtraction, the negation. Saying that something is not like this other thing. In many ways we have this kind of view in the book of Ecclesiastes, it’s just interwoven into a life. In this case, the life of Israel’s third King, King Solomon. And it should be said, that there are raging debates among scholars and have been for a long time about who wrote the book of Ecclesiastes. It is generally attributed to King Solomon. This has been debated for a very long time. I personally like to read it as if it’s from Solomon or about Solomon because it kind of book ends his life. We see Solomon arising to the throne of Israel and his humility before God and asking for wisdom and his rise to power and his unbelievable development of the land of Israel. The Bible speaks of him as the wisest man in the world his wisdom is still famous today. But we also know from the Scriptures that the latter years of his reign, he did not finish well. He was seduced away into complete idolatry. So, it’s easy to wonder like, what happened to this guy, things were going so swimmingly, it was perfect, he brought Israel to climax in their culture like, what happened? Well, we could say, well he was seduced away by his many, many wives. But maybe it’s even deeper than that. Solomon’s known to be the wisest man in the world. So, he should see through some of this stuff, we would think. He was powerful, he was a king, he had the power of life and death in his hands. He was wealthy, one of the most wealthy people in the world at that time. So, what we’re looking at, is a person that has peace all around him provided by his father, King David. He has all of the resources his heart could desire. He has anything that he wants, like nothing, pretty much, nothing is off-limits to him. So, in some ways, Ecclesiastes is almost a dark memoir, a look back at what has been accomplished and realizing its chasing the wind, it’s meaningless. Like, if we had the memoir of Solomon, we would think it would be full of his greatness, his epic greatness and the greatness that Israel achieved during his time. Ecclesiastes reads a little more depressing than that, and in some ways, it just looks hopeless and like he’s just a, just a rant. But if we’ll look below the surface, we’ll find that he’s not really saying things that we haven’t thought or that we don’t say ourselves, especially when we’re feeling hopeless. It’s just, everybody has goals and dreams, everybody pursues things, everybody achieves things, but not very many people in the world, there are people in the world, but not very many people in the world, have the resource and the energy to do whatever they want. Like, they can do whatever they want, whenever they want pretty much. We, most of us, on the other hand have to work really hard to achieve certain things and it’s much less than the people who have unlimited resources. And then we start thinking, through comparison, if I could just have that, my life would be complete. If I had the ability to do whatever I want, whenever I want, I would be overjoyed and full of happiness. It would be amazing. But what we read from the book of Ecclesiastes is…is the perspective of a person who has had every advantage, every resource, everything, he’s the king of Israel. He has developed the land; he has lots and lots of gold. He has lots and lots of glory. He has lots and lots of girls. Like, he has everything that he desires. And so, to have this person live their life and then kind of reflect back and be honest about the experience, that’s helpful because most of us aren’t going to achieve that, but we spend our entire lives in pursuit of it. So, what we ultimately find from the teacher in Ecclesiastes is that you can gain the whole world and lose your soul, that you can have everything and still be empty inside, that you can achieve whatever you set your hands to do, and it’s still not be enough. It’s meaningless without God. A human being, no matter their wealth or power cannot make meaning that lasts, there are voids within us that no matter what we try to cram into those holes in our lives and fill them with, it doesn’t last. We can run and chase life as hard as we can and realize that we’re creating experiences, but life is lived in relationship with God. We were made this way, He is the source, the true source of life. And so, Ecclesiastes gives is this rare view, and we’ll start reading this book and if you’ve never read Ecclesiastes before, it can be like what is, this is the Bible? This is in the Bible? And the answer is, of course it is. We all feel this way, we just don’t usually have an example like a person who has every resource and every strength and every power available to them. So, it gives us a perspective on what it might look like if we actually got everything that we claim that we want. And so, with that we begin Ecclesiastes 1, 2, and 3 today.
Father, we love You, we thank You for Your word. We thank You for this new territory that we are entering into, as we move into the book of Ecclesiastes, it feels so different than so many of the other portions of Scripture. And it’s intriguing to consider what wisdom looks like if you’ve tried everything and done it all. Very, very few of us, have those experiences in our lives and yet You are giving us the wisdom from it, because almost all of us pursue any kind of comfort we can get our hands on. And so often, we are ignoring You, the comforter. So, may we learn the deep wisdom from the book of Ecclesiastes. We pray in the name of Jesus, we ask. Amen.
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And that’s it for today, I’m Brian, I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here, tomorrow.
Prayer and Encouragements:
Good morning, it’s Graced Filled Decastro here. It’s the 30th of August and I am just here listening; I’ve just finished listening to Kingdom Seeker Daniel. His testimony about his bride returning home. Oh, my goodness, praise God, hallelujah. I am so thankful and grateful to God for this restoration. I was thinking about you guys this morning, whilst I was listening to Brian. You were very heavily on my mind. And so, when I heard your voice towards the ending of the prayers that were coming through, I was just like, you know, oh my Gosh, please tell me this is what I want to hear, this is what I want to hear. And yes, you did. So, I am celebrating with you, my brother. And also, happy, happy, happy birthday. This truly has been a blessed birthday for you and God is good, He is merciful, He is kind and He, He does answer our prayers. He really does. I just wanna send a shout to Brian and family, thank you for doing what you do. This is such an amazing platform and I feel so grateful every single morning, that I’m blessed to open my eyes and listen to the DAB, the prayer requests, the testimonies, they’re amazing. I’m running out of time now guys. Have a wonderful, blessed day. Take care. Love you. Bye Bye.
Hello Daily Audio Bible, this is David from Houston, Texas. I’m calling today because I would like to request prayers for myself. On the 28th of August I decided to re-dedicate my life to Jesus. And I don’t know if this has been like the 10th time over in my, almost 40 years of living, that I’ve gone through this part. And somehow, I always fall back into sin, and I get away from the Lord. But I’m praying this time around that you know, and I’m seeking prayers from the community, this time around, I have to change position this time in my life. And I’m going to pursue Jesus like I’ve never before. And this will be the final time in my life, where I have to go through a re-dedication process. This time that I stick with Jesus. Thank you.
Hey Daily Audio Bible family, this is Billy from Montgomery with A Trinity Stone. I wanted to put a prayer request out there for Margo from Liberia, West Africa. Margo I just want to let you know that was a tragic, tragic thing that happened to the four-year-old child. Absolute travesty. I really don’t even know what to say other than we’re gonna keep you covered in prayer. Because I think you do need to finish your work over there, sounds like it’s very important. But it’s just a travesty, total tragic, tragic thing that happened. We just want to let you know we’re keeping you covered up in prayer over here. And want to let you know we’re washing you with the blood of Jesus. That’s all we can do over here is just a tragic, tragic thing that happened. And that is it. I just wanted to let you know that Margo. And we love you. And love to all you guys too, out there in DAB land. I will talk to you guys later. Bye
Hi DAB family, this is Natalie from North Carolina. I found the DAB community last year, January 1st. And almost finished out the year but life got a little crazy and I fell off the wagon a little bit. I actually, just recently started listening to this year’s series. I am coming to you all for prayers. It’s been a little tough lately. My husband travels for work. I have two little ones at home. And I work full time. We don’t really have any family or friends that I can rely on nearby. And I’ve just been feeling very overwhelmed a little lonely. So, I just was hoping to come to ya’ll for some prayers. And I just thank you all for this amazing community. It always helps, listening to Brian every day. And I look forward to it. Thank you.
Hello Daily Audio Bible family. I am calling in response to a prayer request that was sent in on the August 31st reading by, he said his name was Anonymous. He said his wife had symptoms of long COVID and that she was stuck in the house. And she can’t drive because of those symptoms. And that he was having a tough time separating himself from the world. I just wanted to just encourage you. I don’t quite understand, you know, quite understand the symptoms of long COVID but I know the feeling of being stuck inside and losing joy. And so, Lord, I just pray right now for his wife, Lord God, that You will just come into that home right now and just give her peace and joy, Lord Jesus. Restore to her the joy of her salvation, Lord God. And I thank You for healing every symptom that she has, Lord Jesus, and that no symptoms will remain, Lord God. That all these doctor appointments she won’t have to go to anymore because You are going to touch her body and make her whole and healed, in Jesus’s name. And Lord, I pray for him as well, Lord, we all waiver through the back and forth between the world and following You, Lord Jesus. Nobody is above that, Lord God. And Lord, I pray right now to just give him strength and direction, Lord Jesus, that he is not alone in this walk, Lord God, but he always has somebody to reach out to and that is You and the Daily Audio Bible family. So, Lord, I pray right now to just give them both strength, peace and joy, Lord God, and restore the love that they have for each other, Lord Jesus. Lord, we know that You’re in the miracle working business, and nothing is too hard for You, Lord Jesus. So, now we consider it done and in Jesus’s name. I hope everything is good and I can’t wait to hear for an update.
Hey everybody, it’s Margo in Liberia. And I just want to say such a heartfelt thank you to everyone that has been praying for me. Those of you that have called in and those that haven’t. I have felt many prayers. And I’m so grateful to know that I’m not alone in this. The day I called in I just, you know, I felt like I might never feel okay again. You know that grief where you just feel like you can’t even breath. And I heard your prayers, those of you that called in, and it’s amazing how comforting it is to know that someone else feels pain alongside you. Somebody that doesn’t even know you. And I’m just so grateful for this family. And I have felt your prayers. I feel as though the shock is just finally wearing off and that’s such a relief. The grief continues but at least that shock is wearing off. The little girl’s name was Winnie. I just want to share that, and she was a little darling, such a little darling. Little Winnie. Thank you for thinking of her, thank you that she meant something to you, even though you never met her. Thank you that you agree with me that this death is unjust and unfair. Thank you for being my brothers and sisters in walking beside me in this. I’m really, really grateful. Okay, bye for now.