Reading the Book of Ecclesiastes

The journey toward completing my dissertation on the apologetic approach of Blaise Pascal has often reminded me of the book of Ecclesiastes. There are so many similarities between Pascal’s apologetics and Solomon’s reflection on the vanity of life without God. Both reflect on our bewildering sinful human nature. Both compellingly urge us to turn to God alone.

In a series of posts, I’ll be sharing a series of lessons I taught on the book of Ecclesiastes. For me, this series was thrilling, not only because it deepened my understanding of this book, but also because it helped me see that all the Old Testament, including Ecclesiastes, points unmistakably to Christ, the center of all Scripture.

Reading Ecclesiastes is like dipping into a powerful river. Although at times it appears to be meandering or erratically veering here and there, we feel its constant and irresistible currents pulling us toward the destination. Similarly, the author of Ecclesiastes moves us toward his conclusion by injecting into this book currents of varying speeds and strengths. He muses on the apparent meaninglessness of life, cries in despair over the frustration of an unfulfilling career, weeps with the comfortless oppressed, shakes his head at fools, smiles at the simple pleasures in life, and finally invites us to bow in reverence before the Creator and Judge of all. No matter which of these currents we dip into, we find ourselves unmistakably moving toward the final conclusion: Fear God since he is the Judge of all.







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