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ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Ecclesiastes 5:1-7 NASB

Ecclesiastes 5:1-7 NASB

1 Guard your steps as you go to the house of God and draw near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools; for they do not know they are doing evil.

2 Do not be hasty in word or impulsive in thought to bring up a matter in the presence of God. For God is in heaven and you are on the earth; therefore let your words be few.

3 For the dream comes through much effort and the voice of a fool through many words.

4 When you make a vow to God, do not be late in paying it; for He takes no delight in fools. Pay what you vow!

5 It is better that you should not vow than that you should vow and not pay.

6 Do not let your speech cause you to sin and do not say in the presence of the messenger of God that it was a mistake. Why should God be angry on account of your voice and destroy the work of your hands?

7 For in many dreams and in many words there is emptiness. Rather, fear God

COMMENT:

How does one pray? What do you say? The disciples also had this question asking Jesus how one ought to pray. If one were to analyze the LORD's Prayer, one could easily see its principles the same as here.

How does one conduct himself in the presence of the LORD?
1. Be careful, guard your steps.
2. Listen.
3. Do not speak impulsively.
4. Do not allow your imagination motivate your commitments to the LORD.
5. Be very slow in making any vow to the LORD.
6. Be very cautious in criticizing a messenger of the LORD.

How often does a body make demands of the LORD that in time will prove to not have been wise? (A case comes to mind of a young boy who was in an accident. He was in ICU at the hospital and almost died. He lived and now has severe spiritual problems. How much better off would he have been to have died...)

Sometimes when we are in severe straits, we promise God that we will do this or that IF he does such. God complies and after the stress is a mere memory we are inclined to rationalize away our promise.V. 5 says it is better to not vow then to vow and not pay.

Much more can be said but I must run...surely someone else has inspiration from these verses to share?


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Sandra Miller

 2011/5/21 9:15Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

  Ecclesiastes 5:8 NASB

Ecclesiastes 5:8 NASB

8 If you see oppression of the poor and denial of justice and righteousness in the province, do not be shocked at the sight; for one official watches over another official, and there are higher officials over them.

9 After all, a king who cultivates the field is an advantage to the land.

COMMENTS:

These verses come back to haunt me, challenge me whenever I hear of oppression carried out by a gov towards its people. Still, this is in God's word and I believe the Holy Spirit inspired Solomon to write it.

Does this refer to religious persecution? Am not sure..the writer does not indicate it to be such...In any case, oppression will not go on forever, even though it may seem like it. Life under these circumstances will be a serious challenge, giving God a glorious opportunity to demonstrate his power to the Believer.


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Sandra Miller

 2011/5/24 15:23Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Ecclesiastes 5: 10 NASB

Ecclesiastes 5: 10 NASB

10 He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income. This too is vanity.

COMMENT:

The rest of this chapter talks about money, but will make a comment on v. 10 at the moment.

Hoarding money. We have all heard of people who have hoarded money while depriving themselves of basic necessities of life.

Then there are those who are so tight with their money they squeak when they walk. They feel like everyone is after their money, so self-absorbed are they.

And neither one enjoys the benefits that come with possessing money. Acquisition/hoarding is an obsession that becomes an addiction, if you will, who only gives it possessor a brief moment of satisfaction, but after that the drive to get more kicks in and the cycle continues. And Solomon calls it vanity, or useless, no good...


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Sandra Miller

 2011/5/26 10:48Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Ecclesiastes 5: 10-20 NASB

Ecclesiastes 5: 10-20 NASB

10 He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income. This too is vanity.

11 When good things increase, those who consume them increase. So what is the advantage to their owners except to look on?

12The sleep of the working man is pleasant, whether he eats little or much; but the full stomach of the rich man does not allow him to sleep.

13 There is a grievous evil which I have seen under the sun: riches being hoarded by their owner to his hurt.

14 When those riches were lost through a bad investment and he had fathered a son, then there was nothing to support him.

15 As he had come naked from his mother’s womb, so will he return as he came. He will take nothing from the fruit of his labor that he can carry in his hand.

16This also is a grievous evil—exactly as a man is born, thus will he die. So what is the advantage to him who toils for the wind?

17Throughout his life he also eats in darkness with great vexation, sickness and anger.

18 Here is what I have seen to be good and fitting: to eat, to drink and enjoy oneself in all one’s labor in which he toils under the sun during the few years of his life which God has given him; for this is his reward.

19 Furthermore, as for every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, He has also empowered him to eat from them and to receive his reward and rejoice in his labor; this is the gift of God.

20 For he will not often consider the years of his life, because God keeps him occupied with the gladness of his heart.

COMMENT:

Money. No subject will evoke as much discussion as that of money: either how to invest it to make more or how to spend it, whether it be wisely to to finance self-indulgences. And are all self-indulgences sin? Ahhh...there in lies the rub...is it wrong to buy an ice cream cone?

These verses discuss one's attitude towards acquired wealth.

1. Does one hoard it?

2. Does one invest it where the family is deprived of necessities? v. 14. (How many of us have seen dads make foolish investments - while a child could have used some help - and then the investment goes sour? Yet, if the child had some misfortune with the money given by dad the parent would have been upset?)

3. Money is intended to be enjoyed - you were born without it and you will die without it, so use it where it will bring delight and joy. You cannot take it with you.

4. Live and enjoy the blessings that come your way. This is part of being thankful. Fear will evoke hoarding and that is a joy-robber.

5. Be wise and enjoy life. This is a gift from God: v.20: For he will not often consider the years of his life, because God keeps him occupied with the gladness of his heart

God is good - do we appreciate the temporal blessings he has allowed into our lives? and are we wise in its use?


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Sandra Miller

 2011/5/31 9:57Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Re: Ecclesiastes 6:1-7 NASB

Ecclesiastes 6:1-7 NASB

1 There is an evil which I have seen under the sun and it is prevalent among men—

2 a man to whom God has given riches and wealth and honor so that his soul lacks nothing of all that he desires; yet God has not empowered him to eat from them, for a foreigner enjoys them. This is vanity and a severe affliction.

3 If a man fathers a hundred children and lives many years, however many they be, but his soul is not satisfied with good things and he does not even have a proper burial, then I say, “Better the miscarriage than he,

4 for it comes in futility and goes into obscurity; and its name is covered in obscurity.

5 “It never sees the sun and it never knows anything; it is better off than he.

6 “Even if the other man lives a thousand years twice and does not enjoy good things—do not all go to one place?”

7 All a man’s labor is for his mouth and yet the appetite is not satisfied.

COMMENT:

What good does it do to work hard, accumulate but then not get to enjoy the fruits of your labors? You work so hard, you become an work-alcoholic - your [100] children will not even give you a proper burial...You [apparently] have alienated your family in the process of acquisition but you cannot enjoy the results of your work. What benefit is there?

What drives a person to such extremes? In v.7 it informs us it is the appetite, hunger. The fear of being hungry - "gotta get it so I will not be hungry or naked." But you die anyways and your legacy will die with you, you will go into obscurity.

What a tragedy.

Who am I living for today? What is life for? What do I expect to accomplish? How long will it last?


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Sandra Miller

 2011/6/1 10:06Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

  Ecclesiastes 6:8-12 NASB

Ecclesiastes 6:8-12 NASB

8 For what advantage does the wise man have over the fool? What advantage does the poor man have, knowing how to walk before the living?

9 What the eyes see is better than what the soul desires. This too is futility and a striving after wind.

10 Whatever exists has already been named, and it is known what man is; for he cannot dispute with him who is stronger than he is.

11 For there are many words which increase futility. What then is the advantage to a man?

12 For who knows what is good for a man during his lifetime, during the few years of his futile life? He will spend them like a shadow. For who can tell a man what will be after him under the sun?

COMMENT:
What are my goals in life? I want to be wise but...
What good does more learning do? Others have done that and know more then you!
You can discuss and haggle but what good does that do?
The good you do is merely a shadow...Ah,of what? Now we're getting somewhere.
You can do a lot of good but that does not mean it will endure after you are gone. Working to be good is futile...
*******************************************************

Negative? Yes. But when one's focus is on self, it will all be negative. Too many times we get caught in this trap unknowingly. We are told to be goal driven; we are told to work for the future but miss living today. We are only sure of the moment and for some that is all they have, life can make unexpected radical turns in a moment, like those caught in a tornado.

Do I really live? Really live? and how does one achieve this? Ecclesiastes does answer this question - eventually. But before we can understand this answer, one must be aware of the hindrances to living a full life.


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Sandra Miller

 2011/6/2 10:13Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Ecclesiastes 7:1-4 NASB



Ecclesiastes 7:1-4 NASB

1 A good name is better than a good ointment,
And the day of one’s death is better than the day of one’s birth.

2 It is better to go to a house of mourning
Than to go to a house of feasting,
Because that is the end of every man,
And the living takes it to heart.

3 Sorrow is better than laughter,
For when a face is sad a heart may be happy.

4 The mind of the wise is in the house of mourning,
While the mind of fools is in the house of pleasure.

COMMENT:

Death. Most folks shy away from discussing it; hate to go to funerals - cannot take the grief displayed there, or simply do not like to be in the presence of death..

Solomon says it is better to go to the house mourning then the house of feasting. Why is this so? Why is the day of ones death better then the day of one's birth?

Verse two says, "Because that is the end of every man, And the living takes it to heart." When one goes to a funeral or a wake, we always are reminded that one day this fate will befall us as well. Since this is the case, what am I doing to get ready for this event?

Ever notice what people are saying at a wake or funeral? Ever been to one where the Spirit of the LORD was so keenly present? ever been to one where there was an unsettled, disturbed feeling in the air? Ever attended the funeral of a suicide victim? This should teach us something - if we listen and take it to heart.

The mind of the wise is in the house of mourning - he considers his own end and will work to assure all is well between him and God. The fool, on the other hand, will pursue pleasure to silence the voice of the spirit in his soul.

Which one am I? the fool or the wise one?


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Sandra Miller

 2011/6/3 22:29Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Re: Inspiration from Ecclesiastes

For the next two weeks I likely will not be able to post any insights from Ecclesiastes.

I am working to prepare for the classes of teens I plan to teach at VBS, beginning on June 13.

The LORD is leading that I would teach the beatitudes taken from Matthew 5 which means I will have to write out my own lessons which will be time consuming.

If the Holy Spirit prompts you to pray for this, please do so. In the meantime if someone else wants to go ahead and share insight from Ecclesiastes, I would welcome that - I am not the owner of this thread! I know the book has the dubious reputation of being negative, but I consider this tragic - so many principles of life exposed here...

God bless...

ginnyrose


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Sandra Miller

 2011/6/6 9:32Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Re:

Just an update on VBS...

It was held this week instead of last week as was originally planned.

The turnout this year was around a third less then previous years. We do not know why, but I for one did pray that the rowdy ones would not show up. And they didn't. The quietness was remarkable.

My girls were good - reverent, participated when asked to. At the end they asked why I do not help with Kidz Klubs! This was a real honor....Before they asked me this, the idea was floating in my mind that perhaps I should. In the meantime, much prayer has to go into this endeavor.

These teenagers are very knowledgeable about the WORD and what God expects of his people. If only one can help them realize the sacrifice is worth it all.

The children that come to our VBS come from likely the poorest, and the most dysfunctional homes in the county. The town is dreadfully poor. The organizers are not aware of any homes headed by a dad, all single parent homes. For God to redeem this town would involve a major miracle, even greater then the healing of the lame! I am serious.

Earlier this year one of our Kidz Klubz teachers was told by a black pastor in the area how they are noticing a difference in the children that come. This was a real encouragement because so many are discouraged - it seems they work and see so little progress. Then this week, the audience was more subdued...

There is one thing that we did differently: more classes were held in the woods. Years ago our church purchased a wooded area that surrounds our property. The boys clubs cleared out winding paths among the trees, creating rooms with benches. My girls' classes were help in a pavilion build by these boys and their sponsor. What effect does being out in nature have on children given to disruptive behaviors?

In any case, it was a good week and we all feel a lot has been accomplished - perhaps someday there will be more fruit.

ginnyrose


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Sandra Miller

 2011/6/18 18:53Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471
Mississippi

 Ecclesiastes 7:7-9 NASB

Ecclesiastes 7:7-9 NASB

7 For oppression makes a wise man mad,
And a bribe corrupts the heart.

8 The end of a matter is better than its beginning;
Patience of spirit is better than haughtiness of spirit.

9 Do not be eager in your heart to be angry,
For anger resides in the bosom of fools.

COMMENTS:

Life consists of many decisions made and needing to be made: it is done all day long.

But some decisions are vexing: if one would only know the probable end it would be a whole lot easier, or so one thinks.

In any case some decisions are difficult and what are the issues that make them so? let us see what Solomon says:
1. Oppression. Someone more powerful is in control, someone who refuses to relinquish his power and authority to common sense because it might impact his income.
2. Bribery. Someone has paid money to a powerful person protect his own interest at the expense of common sense and a weaker person[s].
3. Sometimes situations anger a person. Anger will always cloud a persons' judgement, his ability to make rational decisions.

These are the challenges one faces. How is one to deal with it? This is the question and a partial answer is "do not get angry." A clear, Holy Spirit inspired mind will be open to ways to deal with complex, annoying situations. Anger, frustration cloud this ability, always.

Now, if I could always remember this....


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Sandra Miller

 2011/6/20 13:30Profile





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