Nothing Seems to Satisfy
From an earthly point of view, everything is vanity, that is, worthless, meaningless, futile. However, if Christ is in there, it makes a huge difference. We continue or journey in discovering the truths in
this fascinating book written by a man called Jedidiah, “beloved of the Lord” (2Sam. 12:24-25). For all who serve the Lord, some of you will have big ministries, some will have small, some will have more
difficulties and some will have good things or better things. Regardless of what category you are in, always remember that your labour in the Lord will never be in vain.
I. The futility observed in the cycles of life
A. Nothing seems to change. (Eccl. 1:4-7)
1. The earth abideth forever, even as generations of men come and go. From human point of view nothing is more permanent than the planet earth which we live in. Nature is permanent, but man is transient, a mere pilgrim on earth. His pilgrimage is a brief one, for death finally claims him. At the very beginning of his book, Solomon introduced a topic frequently mentioned in Ecclesiastes: the brevity of life and the certainty of death. In Genesis 5 we find something much like this: “he lived, and he died” repeated many times. It is the way of life from generations to generations.
2. The sun is continuous in its rising and setting – Eccl. 1:5
“The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down,” etc. It has ever been so since the creation of the sun, the moon, and the heavens. They have always been the same. There is nothing new about their movements.
3. The winds continue their whirling cycle – Eccl. 1:6. Once more there is a non-stop, cycle of wind blowing.
4. The water cycle also, as rivers run into the seas, and then through evaporationand rain return to the rivers again – Eccl. 1:7. This is known as the hydrologic cycle.
Looking at nature, it seems nothing ever changes, it just goes in circles and remains the same. A continual, monotonous motion. This is what Solomon saw “under the sun.”
The secular view of nature is that, nature just keeps going and going.
The sun, the wind, and the rivers disappear, but unlike man, they are there again tomorrow!
But for the believer, the one who lives by faith in God, sees this as the very handiwork of God. Psalms 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.
Illustration: Illustration: Something to think of
Do you appreciate the beauty of the earth, the sun, the moon, the stars?
Do you see beauty on the plants, flowers, fruits, animals, birds, or insects?
Their diversity and each unique characteristic shows us that there is an intelligent creator which is God.
II. Nothing seems to satisfy (Eccl. 1:8)
A. Despite all our labours, man is never truly satisfied – Eccl. 1:8a
B. What may satisfy us now will not satisfy us tomorrow. Eccl. 1:8b
C. Given time, we will soon desire something else, something new and different again.
D. That is the problem with our senses, we never can really fill them up, we always come up short. There is always something lacking.
E. We can see all we want to see, hear all we want to see, touch everything, taste everything, and still end up not satisfied. Something will always be lacking.
F. That something is God. God never intended man to live without Him.
G. God cannot be perceived through the senses. It takes faith, true or real faith in the true God who created all things and died for us all that will give us satisfaction we are looking for.
Illustration: Temporary Success
Temporary success may often crown the efforts of the godless, but even their greatest achievements cannot bring complete satisfaction. The 119th-century Bible Scholar G. S. Bowes pointed out the ultimate futility of ambition that isn’t accompanied by dedication to God. Citing four powerful world
rulers of the past, he wrote: “Alexander the Great was not satisfied, even when he had completely subdued the nations. He wept because there were no more worlds to conquer, and he died at an early age in a state of debauchery. Hannibal, who filled three bushels with the gold rings taken from
the knights he had slaughtered, committed suicide by swallowing poison. Few noted his passing, and he left this earth completely unmourned. Julius Caesar, ‘staining his garments in the blood of one million of his foes,’ conquered 800 cities, only to be stabbed by his best friends at the scene of hisgreatest triumph. Napoleon, the feared conqueror, after being the scourge of Europe, spent his last years, in banishment.” No wonder Solomon warned of the poor prospects for anyone who strives to
succeed without relying on God. (ODB)
III. Nothing is new under the sun. (Eccl. 1:9)
A. There is no new things under the sun because God has completed His creation (Gen. 2:1-3). God can still create new things by miracles. (Num. 16:30, Jer. 31:22).
B. Dr. H.A. Ironside, long-time pastor of Chicago’s Moody church, used to say, “If it’s new, it’s not true; and if it’s true, it’s not new.” Whatever is new is simply a recombination of the old. Man cannot “create” anything new because man is the creature, not the Creator. “That which hath been is now, and that which is to be hath already been” (3:15). Thomas Alva Edison, one of the world’s greatest inventors, said that his inventions were only “bringing out the secrets of nature and applying them for the happiness of mankind.
C. Only God can create new things, and he begins by making sinners “new creatures” when they trust Jesus Christ to save them (2 Cor. 5:17). Then they can walk “in newness of life” (Rom. 6:4), sing a “new song” (Ps. 40:3), and enter into God’s presence by a “new and living way” (Heb. 10:20). One day, they will enjoy “a new heaven and a new earth”‘ (Rev. 21:1) when God says, “Behold, I make all things new” (Rev. 21:5). (from The Bible Exposition Commentary: Old Testament © 2001- 2004 by Warren W. Wiersbe.)
Nothing in this secular world can really satisfy. Only Christ. The cycles of nature keep going and going. Man comes and man goes. We want new things always and we learn nothing from history. Only God can create new things. Would you like to be a new creation? Come to Christ and have a new life different from what you have before