This Day in History: 0000-10-12

October 12 – Ecclesiastes 1:2-11

“Everything is meaningless,” says the Teacher, “completely meaningless!”
What do people get for all their hard work under the sun? Generations come and generations go, but the earth never changes. The sun rises and the sun sets, then hurries around to rise again.  The wind blows south, and then turns north. Around and around it goes, blowing in circles. Rivers run into the sea, but the sea is never full. Then the water returns again to the rivers and flows out again to the sea. Everything is wearisome beyond description. No matter how much we see, we are never satisfied. No matter how much we hear, we are not content.
History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new. Sometimes people say, “Here is something new!” But actually it is old; nothing is ever truly new. We don’t remember what happened in the past, and in future generations, no one will remember what we are doing now.

Kind of a depressing passage, I know… but in reality, I don’t think it really is. It’s just truth with which we all need to come face to face.

If we’re making our way through this life searching for meaning from this world, we are doomed to failure. Like chasing after the wind, it can’t be done.  Yet it’s a trap that almost all of us fall into.

Human beings the world over search high and low for that one thing that will satisfy. We’re so hesitant to believe our world is fallen.  We want to believe things are getting better rather than worse.  It’s the crux of evolution isn’t it?  That creation is continually getting better; “evolving?”  It’s a tempting idea, but one that simply isn’t true.

Everything is deteriorating.  Everything dies.  What’s here today will be gone tomorrow.  We start to die the day we’re born, and there isn’t a created thing we’ll encounter in our short time here on earth that will satisfy or bring contentment.

Before we get too discouraged, though, let’s consider why this passage was included in Scripture.  What’s the reason that such disheartening information would need to be shared?

It’s really pretty simple. Coming to grips with the reality that nothing in this world will ever satisfy is the beginning of true wisdom.  Once we understand the futility of such pursuits we can then turn to the one source of true contentment.  The only satisfaction we will ever find comes as a result of right standing before God, and that justification can come only through the redeeming blood of Jesus Christ.

Friends, may we always remember our salvation, and cling to it.  May we delight in our Savior and look to nothing else to quench our thirsty souls.  May we remember that though the things of this world are meaningless, because we are His, we have found meaning!