Chapter 6

6.1-2. Prosperity. Prosperity is not always good. Some people lose their spiritual drive when they are blessed with prosperity. Solomon has learned that if you do not keep your spiritual man active toward God, then prosperity can actually be an evil in your life.

6.3-6 ibid. He continues to underscore the importance of the spiritual health above all things. To live and be lost is worse than never living at all. The quality of life continues to be his theme. Life is a gift from God is the canopy he continues to present. The arrival at the grave and the afterlife seem to mesmerize Solomon. It seems as though he cannot shake the unknown after a lifetime of learning about all of life. The moment of death and beyond seem to haunt him with it’s unknown. He circles this moment of unease in his writings again and again. He states what he does know. Life here is to be lived and enjoyed. If you live thousands of years and miss this concept, you have failed.

6.7-9 ibid. Solomon presents a telling point. In the things that matter most, wealth is not an advantage. The fool has the ability to enjoy food as much as the wealthiest man on earth. It is best to enjoy what you have in the present life, rather than dwell on the wandering desire of the future. To sacrifice present satisfaction to the altar of wishful future things is hebel, vanity. 

6.10-12 the cycle of life. Solomon returns to the cycle of life to illustrate the hebel of life. This is a keynote of hebel. Man is too limited to explain all the problems of life. The term “who knoweth” is used four times in Ecclesiastes. This is further supported by the seven times Solomon says “man does not know”. After a lifetime of seeking knowledge in all areas of life, the hebel of life is, we still do not know all things. This is why man is encouraged to enjoy the gift of life while it is available. Life is a shadow, ever changing, ever inching toward the unknown life after death. This is true hebel.

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