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Focus Verses: Ecclesiastes 12:12b-14
12b Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body. 13
Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear
God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. 14 For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.
"Teacher" of Ecclesiastes (Solomon, perhaps?) does his best to assess
and illuminate the human experience. He honestly and humbly
acknowledges that from his human point of view he is only able to study
within the observable limitations of what is "under the sun" and what
happens between birth and death.
No matter how hard
he tries to make sense of life, and reduce it to simple and
predictable equations, he cannot. Ultimately, the only wise
conclusion he can reach is: the meaning of life is beyond human
understanding. He concludes that living within God's commands, with
reverence and humility before God, is the only wise course for life.
Purpose, hope, and meaning are not to be found in human activity or
analysis, but rather through faith in God.
Response and Action:
meaning and purpose of life are beyond my understanding. Attempts to
find an explanation of life small enough to fit within the limits of
human knowledge and experience are sure to fail. I will put my faith
in God. My faith and humility for God will guide me and sustain me as I
ask questions, seek wisdom, work hard, and do my best to enjoy life.
My limited understanding of life does not diminish my faith in God;
it reinforces my need for God.
God, help me to trust in you with all my heart and not lean on my own
understanding. In all my ways—in every aspect of my life—teach me to
acknowledge you. Direct my path and make my way straight. Cause my
faith to grow stronger each day that I might enjoy the life you have
given me, and live with contentment, purpose, and hope. Through Christ,
who has become my wisdom, I pray. Amen.
Spiritual Formation Verses: 1 Corinthians 1:20-21
Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher
of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21 For
since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know
him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to
save those who believe.
Can Man Live without God?
by Ravi Zacharias