Ecclesiastes 12

Remember your creator; old age and death are coming 1
All is vanity; the preacher finds wise words 8
Conclusion; fear God, judgment is coming 13
.1 ¶ Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them;
 2  While the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars, be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain:
 3  In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look out of the windows be darkened,
 4  And the doors shall be shut in the streets, when the sound of the grinding is low, and he shall rise up at the voice of the bird, and all the daughters of musick shall be brought low;
.5  Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets:
 6  Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern.
.7  Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it. 
   1 - Remember Solomon returned to faithfulness after apostasy but usually spiritual things become uninteresting and foolish to the mind that has turned away from them.
   3 - Grinders Think of the aging human body.
   5 - Long home His long-time home his coffin. He rests in the grave until the call of the resurrection. The process of dying is described.
  6 - Broken This scene shows a cord, a bowl, a pitcher, and a wheel that no longer work. The body functions cease. Water stops coming from the spring or cistern. This metaphor doesn't fit well into the idea that the soul goes to heaven a higher state at death.
   7 - Spirit Breath stops. The God who gave it, has recalled it. The process of giving life to man in Genesis is reversed. This is not the typical explanation of this verse. Please see re1411g where I discuss word meanings, context, and background of the terms to bring clarity to the verse. See also ps14604, ec0808, ho0209.
The word "spirit" as in verse 7, is from ruach which appears a total of 379 times throughout the Old Testament. Not one of these describes an intelligent entity able to live wthout a physical body. Also see on ge0207, ge3518, nu0514, ec0319-21. Compare nu0502, nu0906. So what "returns to God"? Life is a gift lent to us ac1728. He withdraws the gift until the resurrection of the righteous 1co1550-55.
.8 ¶ Vanity of vanities, saith the preacher; all is vanity.
.9  And moreover, because the preacher was wise, he still taught the people knowledge; yea, he gave good heed, and sought out, and set in order many proverbs.
 10  The preacher sought to find out acceptable words: and that which was written was upright, even words of truth.
 11  The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd.
 12  And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.
   8 - Vanity Solomon had it all including fabulous wealth. He apparently practiced all the so-called pleasures of sin. Here he says it was worthless. He was the "preacher."
   9 - Sought out and set in order many proverbs He is credited for most of the book of Proverbs pr0101, pr1001. Was he a plagiarist? No for two reasons: God gave the wisdom in the first place and was not claiming specifically to have written them all.
   12 - Study Some of us need more work in the garden and other physical exercise.
.13 ¶ Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
.14  For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
   13 - Commandments ... duty People in the days of Solomon were saved by grace through faith just as we are today. Their faith was in the coming Messiah represented by the lamb and bullock. Grace, however, does not replace duty. It draws us into a love relationship with our Creator and empowers us to be faithful. None of the commandments has changed.
   14 - Secret thing See pr2411.
   14 - Judgment Behavior is an index to our faith relationship ep0208, he1106. Although not the means of salvation, it is the criteria for determining our relationship to God mt1627.


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