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Guarding Against Vanity

Ecclesiastes                    November 3, 2002


Scripture Reading:


Ecclesiastes is a difficult book to understand and sometimes seems outright self-contradictory, yet understood in the proper light is chock full of wisdom.

The name of the book itself is a Greek word meaning 'teacher of the assembly – or church'.

But just who is the teacher? Many have understood it to be King Solomon, but there are many inferences that do not support this. It seems clear the book was written after the exile in Babylon.

It seems best to understand the book written by an anonymous author who takes on the personification of Solomon as he teaches us some of the wisdom that Solomon discovered in his life.

You remember that Solomon as a young king asked God for wisdom (1Kings 3:12) and so God gave him 'a wise and discerning heart'.

As the ruler of the greatest empire Israel would ever see until Jesus comes, Solomon indeed amazed the known world with his wisdom (1Kings 10:23-24).

Solomon, without the knowledge of the entire Bible as we know it, and without the teachings of Jesus about salvation and resurrection, discovers some amazing secrets about life under God.

These are the very things that such a king might discover. He had absolute power and wealth and time on his hands to think and ponder about the nature of life – and life is confusing at best.

Solomon agonized and sorted through all the confusion to arrive at the only sure conclusion that could be said to be true in all instances in the times that he knew.

His conclusions along the way sometimes seem contradictory because life is contradictory. His conclusions are therefore true to life – like proverbs – only we must understand that proverbs can be considered to be true only in the instances where they apply. Proverbs do not provide wisdom at no cost to the intellect – you have to think about them.

He is responding to a messy universe, which is why, in the end, his book is somewhat messy, nonlinear, and nonsystematic. It is difficult to see how any author of intelligence and integrity could approach a complicated universe in a markedly different way.

What Solomon eventually had to discover – what his agonizing search for the meaning of life had to lead to – was that all wisdom is God's wisdom, given by God to lead to God.

Wisdom stolen for yourself to exalt yourself leaves only frustration. Solomon had to discover his limitations – that he wasn't God.

The Bible as a whole sets the entirety of human existence as we know it within the context of our failed human attempt to become like God, derived from our refusal to accept divinely ordained boundaries.

The Teacher wants to save us from this ongoing human quest and thus save us from a life characterized by futility.

This is true wisdom – that your life is not your own. God has – always has – the upper hand. Sovereignty is his. God defies our control of him. This is an important thing for a king to discover. It is an important thing for each of us to discover.

The main obstacle to living well in the world is that mortal beings consistently refuse to accept their mortality – that they are finite.

Our ultimate purpose is not our own gain, but to know God, fear God, serve God – and be happy about it as long as we have life 'under the sun'.

So how can we break into Solomon's wisdom, through the confusion, to discover and apply it to ourselves?

The most consistent theme in Ecclesiastes is the constantly recurring phrase "everything is meaningless" in the NIV. It occurs 38 times in 30 verses throughout the book and only once elsewhere (Job).

This is an unfortunate translation because it implies a futility of life that Ecclesiastes doesn't really intend to promote.

The word (hebel) in the Hebrew means "breath" or "breeze" which by extension means things that are insubstantial or fleeting or actions that are vain or to no ultimate purpose.

It is a "chasing after the wind." It means an ephemeral quality. The nature of reality is elusive. The word is translated "vanity" in most English translations.

The "Teacher" wants us to understand all that he discovered via Solomon about the vain things in life and how they conflict with ultimate truth. He wants us to be under no illusion about the nature of the universe or what can be humanly achieved within it.

Human goals should be set in accordance with the nature of reality, not in defiance of it; otherwise human existence becomes embroiled in pointless striving.

ILLUS: Discovering the 'zeroes' along the maze of life --- from the Maze at the Glenview Covenant Church last Sat. eve with the youth group.

Big Question:

What are the vain things in life that I must guard against – and why?

Lbh occurs 38 times in 30 vv. in Ecclesiastes Commentary
 1:2 (NIV) "Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. "Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless." 2 (NASU) "Vanity of vanities," says the Preacher, "Vanity of vanities! All is vanity." 2 (NRA) Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher, {Heb [Qoheleth] , traditionally rendered [Preacher] } vanity of vanities! All is vanity.   1:14 (NIV) I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind. 14 (NASU) I have seen all the works which have been done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and striving after wind. 14 (NRA) I saw all the deeds that are done under the sun; and see, all is vanity and a chasing after wind. {Or [a feeding on wind.] See Hos 12.1}   2:1 (NIV) I thought in my heart, "Come now, I will test you with pleasure to find out what is good." But that also proved to be meaningless. 2:1 (NASU) I said to myself, "Come now, I will test you with pleasure. So enjoy yourself." And behold, it too was futility. 2:1 (NRA) {The Futility of Self-Indulgence} I said to myself, "Come now, I will make a test of pleasure; enjoy yourself." But again, this also was vanity.  2:11 (NIV) Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun. 11 (NASU) Thus I considered all my activities which my hands had done and the labor which I had exerted, and behold all was vanity and striving after wind and there was no profit under the sun. 11 (NRA) Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had spent in doing it, and again, all was vanity and a chasing after wind, {Or [a feeding on wind.] See Hos 12.1} and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.  2:15 (NIV) Then I thought in my heart, "The fate of the fool will overtake me also. What then do I gain by being wise?" I said in my heart, "This too is meaningless." 15 (NASU) Then I said to myself, "As is the fate of the fool, it will also befall me. Why then have I been extremely wise?" So I said to myself, "This too is vanity." 15 (NRA) Then I said to myself, "What happens to the fool will happen to me also; why then have I been so very wise?" And I said to myself that this also is vanity.   2:17 (NIV) So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind. 17 (NASU) So I hated life, for the work which had been done under the sun was grievous to me; because everything is futility and striving after wind. 17 (NRA) So I hated life, because what is done under the sun was grievous to me; for all is vanity and a chasing after wind. {Or [a feeding on wind.] See Hos 12.1}  2:19 (NIV) And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool? Yet he will have control over all the work into which I have poured my effort and skill under the sun. This too is meaningless. 19 (NASU) And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool? Yet he will have control over all the fruit of my labor for which I have labored by acting wisely under the sun. This too is vanity. 19 (NRA) -and who knows whether they will be wise or foolish? Yet they will be master of all for which I toiled and used my wisdom under the sun. This also is vanity.  2:21 (NIV) For a man may do his work with wisdom, knowledge and skill, and then he must leave all he owns to someone who has not worked for it. This too is meaningless and a great misfortune. 21 (NASU) When there is a man who has labored with wisdom, knowledge and skill, then he gives his legacy to one who has not labored with them. This too is vanity and a great evil. 21 (NRA) because sometimes one who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave all to be enjoyed by another who did not toil for it. This also is vanity and a great evil.  2:23 (NIV) All his days his work is pain and grief; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is meaningless. 23 (NASU) Because all his days his task is painful and grievous; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is vanity. 23 (NRA) For all their days are full of pain, and their work is a vexation; even at night their minds do not rest. This also is vanity.  2:26 (NIV) To the man who pleases him, God gives wisdom, knowledge and happiness, but to the sinner he gives the task of gathering and storing up wealth to hand it over to the one who pleases God. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind. 26 (NASU) For to a person who is good in His sight He has given wisdom and knowledge and joy, while to the sinner He has given the task of gathering and collecting so that he may give to one who is good in God's sight. This too is vanity and striving after wind. 26 (NRA) For to the one who pleases him God gives wisdom and knowledge and joy; but to the sinner he gives the work of gathering and heaping, only to give to one who pleases God. This also is vanity and a chasing after wind. {Or [a feeding on wind.] See Hos 12.1}   3:19 (NIV) Man's fate is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath{[19] Or spirit}; man has no advantage over the animal. Everything is meaningless. 19 (NASU) For the fate of the sons of men and the fate of beasts is the same. As one dies so dies the other; indeed, they all have the same breath and there is no advantage for man over beast, for all is vanity. 19 (NRA) For the fate of humans and the fate of animals is the same; as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and humans have no advantage over the animals; for all is vanity.   4:4 (NIV) And I saw that all labor and all achievement spring from man's envy of his neighbor. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind. 4 (NASU) I have seen that every labor and every skill which is done is [the result of] rivalry between a man and his neighbor. This too is vanity and striving after wind. 4 (NRA) Then I saw that all toil and all skill in work come from one person's envy of another. This also is vanity and a chasing after wind. {Or [a feeding on wind.] See Hos 12.1}   4:7 (NIV) Again I saw something meaningless under the sun: 7 (NASU) Then I looked again at vanity under the sun. 7 (NRA) Again, I saw vanity under the sun:  4:8 (NIV) There was a man all alone; he had neither son nor brother. There was no end to his toil, yet his eyes were not content with his wealth. "For whom am I toiling," he asked, "and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?" This too is meaningless-- a miserable business! 8 (NASU) There was a certain man without a dependent, having neither a son nor a brother, yet there was no end to all his labor. Indeed, his eyes were not satisfied with riches [and he never asked], "And for whom am I laboring and depriving myself of pleasure?" This too is vanity and it is a grievous task. 8 (NRA) the case of solitary individuals, without sons or brothers; yet there is no end to all their toil, and their eyes are never satisfied with riches. "For whom am I toiling," they ask, "and depriving myself of pleasure?" This also is vanity and an unhappy business.   4:16 (NIV) There was no end to all the people who were before them. But those who came later were not pleased with the successor. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind. 16 (NASU) There is no end to all the people, to all who were before them, and even the ones who will come later will not be happy with him, for this too is vanity and striving after wind. 16 (NRA) there was no end to all those people whom he led. Yet those who come later will not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and a chasing after wind. {Or [a feeding on wind.] See Hos 12.1}   Eccl 5:7 (NIV) Much dreaming and many words are meaningless. Therefore stand in awe of God. Eccl 5:7 (NASU) For in many dreams and in many words there is emptiness. Rather, fear God. Eccl 5:7 (NRA) With many dreams come vanities and a multitude of words; {Meaning of Heb uncertain} but fear God.     Eccl 5:10 (NIV) Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless. Eccl 5:10 (NASU) He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance [with its] income. This too is vanity. Eccl 5:10 (NRA) The lover of money will not be satisfied with money; nor the lover of wealth, with gain. This also is vanity.  6:2 (NIV) God gives a man wealth, possessions and honor, so that he lacks nothing his heart desires, but God does not enable him to enjoy them, and a stranger enjoys them instead. This is meaningless, a grievous evil. 2 (NASU) 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. 2 (NRA) those to whom God gives wealth, possessions, and honor, so that they lack nothing of all that they desire, yet God does not enable them to enjoy these things, but a stranger enjoys them. This is vanity; it is a grievous ill.  6:4 (NIV) It comes without meaning, it departs in darkness, and in darkness its name is shrouded. 4 (NASU) for it comes in futility and goes into obscurity; and its name is covered in obscurity. 4 (NRA) For it comes into vanity and goes into darkness, and in darkness its name is covered;  Eccl 6:9 (NIV) Better what the eye sees than the roving of the appetite. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind. Eccl 6:9 (NASU) What the eyes see is better than what the soul desires. This too is futility and a striving after wind. Eccl 6:9 (NRA) Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of desire; this also is vanity and a chasing after wind. {Or [a feeding on wind.] See Hos 12.1}   6:11 (NIV) The more the words, the less the meaning, and how does that profit anyone? 11 (NASU) For there are many words which increase futility. What [then] is the advantage to a man? 11 (NRA) The more words, the more vanity, so how is one the better?  6:12 (NIV) For who knows what is good for a man in life, during the few and meaningless days he passes through like a shadow? Who can tell him what will happen under the sun after he is gone? 12 (NASU) 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? 12 (NRA) For who knows what is good for mortals while they live the few days of their vain life, which they pass like a shadow? For who can tell them what will be after them under the sun?  7:6 (NIV) Like the crackling of thorns under the pot, so is the laughter of fools. This too is meaningless. 6 (NASU) For as the crackling of thorn bushes under a pot, So is the laughter of the fool; And this too is futility. 6 (NRA) For like the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of fools; this also is vanity.  7:15 (NIV) In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these: a righteous man perishing in his righteousness, and a wicked man living long in his wickedness. 15 (NASU) I have seen everything during my lifetime of futility; there is a righteous man who perishes in his righteousness and there is a wicked man who prolongs [his life] in his wickedness. 15 (NRA) {The Riddles of Life} In my vain life I have seen everything; there are righteous people who perish in their righteousness, and there are wicked people who prolong their life in their evildoing.  8:10 (NIV) Then too, I saw the wicked buried--those who used to come and go from the holy place and receive praise {[10] Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint (Aquila); most Hebrew manuscripts and are forgotten}in the city where they did this. This too is meaningless. 10 (NASU) So then, I have seen the wicked buried, those who used to go in and out from the holy place, and they are [soon] forgotten in the city where they did thus. This too is futility. 10 (NRA) {God's Ways Are Inscrutable} Then I saw the wicked buried; they used to go in and out of the holy place, and were praised in the city where they had done such things. {Meaning of Heb uncertain} This also is vanity.  8:14 (NIV) There is something else meaningless that occurs on earth: righteous men who get what the wicked deserve, and wicked men who get what the righteous deserve. This too, I say, is meaningless. 14 (NASU) There is futility which is done on the earth, that is, there are righteous men to whom it happens according to the deeds of the wicked. On the other hand, there are evil men to whom it happens according to the deeds of the righteous. I say that this too is futility. 14 (NRA) There is a vanity that takes place on earth, that there are righteous people who are treated according to the conduct of the wicked, and there are wicked people who are treated according to the conduct of the righteous. I said that this also is vanity.  9:9 (NIV) Enjoy life with your wife, whom you love, all the days of this meaningless life that God has given you under the sun-- all your meaningless days. For this is your lot in life and in your toilsome labor under the sun. 9 (NASU) Enjoy life with the woman whom you love all the days of your fleeting life which He has given to you under the sun ; for this is your reward in life and in your toil in which you have labored under the sun. 9 (NRA) Enjoy life with the wife whom you love, all the days of your vain life that are given you under the sun, because that is your portion in life and in your toil at which you toil under the sun.  11:8 (NIV) However many years a man may live, let him enjoy them all. But let him remember the days of darkness, for they will be many. Everything to come is meaningless. 8 (NASU) Indeed, if a man should live many years, let him rejoice in them all, and let him remember the days of darkness, for they will be many. Everything that is to come [will be] futility. 8 (NRA) Even those who live many years should rejoice in them all; yet let them remember that the days of darkness will be many. All that comes is vanity.  11:10 (NIV) So then, banish anxiety from your heart and cast off the troubles of your body, for youth and vigor are meaningless. 10 (NASU) So, remove grief and anger from your heart and put away pain from your body, because childhood and the prime of life are fleeting. 10 (NRA) Banish anxiety from your mind, and put away pain from your body; for youth and the dawn of life are vanity.  12:8 (NIV) "Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. {[8] Or the leader of the assembly; also in verses 9 and 10} "Everything is meaningless!" 8 (NASU) "Vanity of vanities," says the Preacher, "all is vanity!" 8 (NRA) Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher; {[Qoheleth] , traditionally rendered [Preacher] } all is vanity.    1:3-11Labor: won’t ultimately change anything since generations, seasons, earthly cycles continue on and everything must be repeated. There can  be little real remembrance of anyone who has come and gone. There is essentially nothing new on a global scale that man can do outside of God or to compete with God who has established this cyclical (not linear) pattern. Man's labor cannot add or subtract from the works of God. We must put it in right perspective. 1:12-18Wisdom: wisdom for wisdom's sake – perpetual learning – can drive a person mad. It only leads to more unanswered questions and becomes a burden. Even if wisdom can help one understand, it seldom can fix anything, and leads to sorrow and grief. The world will continue to perpetuate its lack of wisdom even if there are some who possess true wisdom. If wisdom can be had it is for one's own sake, and outside of God has no meaning. 2:1-11Pleasure: the pleasures of laughter, wine, folly, accomplishments, possessions, women – even if pursued with wisdom - leave one empty in the end since life is short. None of these things will last. They are like the wind. Nothing is truly gained of lasting value.                      2:12-16Wisdom vs. Folly: even though wisdom is better than folly, the comparison is useless because in the end death will prevail for both the wise man and the fool.          2:17-26Posterity: we have no control on how those who follow us will manage what was done before them and left to them. Our lack of control on the future can cause us great anxiety with what we have labored to build up. This design is in the hands of God so that our limits might be in the time we have been given to find joy in our labors. If anything is passed on, it is to those who please God.  3:1-17 explains that life runs on a rhythm we cannot control – just like we cannot control those who come after us. You can only do what you can do in the present. This is a tremendously liberating thought.                                                          3:18-22Fate: man and animal are alike in their fate – that they will return to dust. The writer hints at a difference in spirit, but man still must remember his mortality and enjoy what he can of life in the present. It is vanity to think of the body of sin as immortal.          4:4Envy and Rivalry: labor done with an immoral sense of competition surely is vanity. It accomplishes nothing because it is not for the purpose of God but for the vanity of man – and this makes for hard labor.        4:7-12Greed: it is vanity to continue to labor hard to support yourself beyond what you need. It is better to work for the good of others beyond yourself. What will happen to your wealth you have put aside for yourself when you die?                        4:13-16Advancement: to strive for advancement is vanity because this too is impermanent among the winds of change among the people.            5:1-7Grandiose words, schemes, dreams: it seems it is the nature of man to speak and plan great things, and rightly so since we have the nature and knowledge of God within us to some degree. But this nature and knowledge is severely impacted by our sin nature and our words, dreams, schemes for our own glory are vain. So if we include God in it (as with a vow) we had best put God over it. Boasting is vain since we have no power outside of God to accomplish it. 5:8-6:2Riches: everyone competes for whatever money and goods are to be had. Man is never satisfied. Since there is no end to the matter, this to is vanity to pursue wealth for the sake of it. As long as someone has resources there is someone who wants to consume them. The less you have the less people want. The desire for a man to protect his riches leave him no rest. Disaster and death take their toll. Accumulation invites degeneration of joy. You can't take it with you so enjoy what wealth you have from God, being conscious of God, while you have life from God. If God is not in it, he will give it to another who is not a stranger to him. Wealth without God is vanity.                       6:7-9Appetite: although food is necessary to life it is a vain thing to be pursued in itself. Since eating must be repeated endlessly as long as life lasts, it serves no purpose other than to sustain life. Eat to live – not live to eat. Food is needed by both the wise man and the fool. It is better to eat what you have than to lust for what you don't have. Just like grass appearing greener on the other side of the fence, the food on the next table over appears richer.  6:10-12Human Knowledge and Discovery: each generation is in the process of discovering what God has created. There is no end to it. What has gone on before is largely forgotten only to be retabulated. Even though there seems to be advance in knowledge, civilizations come and go as man's sin weighs in on him. Knowledge for its own sake is vain. God intends that each generation discover him in what he has created, but man cannot compete with God's knowledge, and he will never discover the end of God who is infinite. God has all knowledge of man's existence in his hands.          7:6Laughter: have you ever known anyone who seemed to live to tell a joke? Laughter is not bad, but the laughter of fools is vanity since it does not enhance life or promote God. Like burning thorns, it had no value in the first place and is quickly gone.                      8:10-15Justice: to expect absolute justice in this life is a vain undertaking. Man's justice yields to power and influence and inconsistency. Those from whom we expect justice disappoint us. Justice is often slow in coming or doesn't come at all as the wicked go unpunished. Many times we see the righteous get what the wicked deserved. Even though there is a hint of God's justice in the end among man, it is vain to stake our happiness upon men carrying it out. It is better to trust God's justice in the end.                                        11:7-8Assuming Immortality: life is a gift from God to be enjoyed. Even though our sin has compromised it, we should enjoy as much of it as we can – keeping the awareness of its account before God. Man should live with this future perspective. Death is inevitable.         11:9-12:8Youth and Vigor: the progression toward death takes its toll on youth and vigor. The decline of old age is preparation for death. Pursue life with the vigor of youth but be aware of the judgment of God to come. Trying to remain young is human vanity. Anything in human life that detracts from God is vanity in the end.      


To all those who try to gain from life, whatever it is they claim to be doing, The Teacher presents stark reality – reality that does not change simply because we wish it to, but remains fundamentally as it is in spite of all that comes under the heading of progress.

The more things change, them more they stay the same.

The universe is not designed to enable gain to happen, and those who attempt to fly in the face of reality can only ever know grief and frustration in the end.

The universe is not designed to contain gods and heroes, but mortal beings who accept the limitations that have been set upon their lives and get on with them in quietness and humility.

This life on earth is intended to have as its center the God who created everything and who holds everything in his hand.

ILLUS: On Tues. evening, PBS had a special program by NOVA that discussed the development of evidence by Galileo and Copernicus that contradicted Ptolemy's theory that the earth was the center of the universe. Their hypothesis was that the earth revolved around the Sun, called heliocentrism. This hypothesis was opposed by the Catholic Pope of that time, Urban VIII. This was not so much because he was against the investigation of science, even though he personally believed that Earth was the center of the universe, but because it became a turf battle with the Protestants about who had the keys to interpret Scripture. Galileo was convicted by the Catholic Church of insubordination for teaching heliocentrism. 

We think it very strange today that anyone could ever have thought that Earth was the center of our solar system, let alone the universe. But many of us in various ways commit this foolish error made by the Catholic Pope.

We think the universe revolves around us. The Teacher of Ecclesiastes wants us to know the hard truth – that it doesn't revolve around us. It revolves around God whether we accept it or understand it or not.

And in these latter days, we understand beyond a shadow of a doubt that his name is the Son, Jesus Christ, for all things will be brought into subjection to him.

Now you might believe you are a born-again believer in Jesus Christ. But it is foolish to think you can walk on the world's path for the whole of your life and then simply present your "insurance policy" to God at the end and to inherit the kingdom of God as well.

The Teacher, by not even dwelling on the afterlife, helps us get this much clear: there is a choice to be made now about which version of reality we will embrace and which path we will follow, and this choice has consequences for now.

It also has consequences for later, for life everlasting comes, not as an arbitrary add-on to just any kind of life that is lived here and now, but as the natural extension of the life that is lived with God in the present.

We are challenged to think rightly about death. We cannot protect ourselves from it by seizing everything from life that we can before it is taken away.

Death is the ultimate reality of life that demonstrates the universe cannot be handled by human beings at all.

The universe is not comprehensible and malleable. We cannot make any lasting mark on it. We cannot find fulfillment and joy by pursuing wisdom or wealth.

Death mocks all our attempts at elevation to divinity and our refusal to be mortal and human.

Embrace life for what it is, rather than what you would like it to be. Live it out before God, with reverence and obedience.

This is the pathway to joy, even though puzzlement and pain will also be found there, and there are never any guarantees about how things will turn out.

So how does the Teacher conclude?

“ 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.  For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 NIVUS)

But we do know one more thing that the Teacher didn't know: how divine justice in ultimately delivered in the universe through the death of Christ on the cross.

Big Answer:

What are the vain things in life that I must guard against – and why?

I must guard against anything that takes away from my focus on Christ, because he is the center of all life and creation – and he will judge it.

Timeless Truth:

If you want your life to add up, don't be a zero.

If it isn't of Christ; if it doesn't bring glory to Christ; if it doesn't hold me to Christ; then it ultimately doesn't matter. And if you can figure this out, God didn't do it.

“ In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways,  but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe.  The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” (Hebrews 1:1-3 NIVUS)

 “ He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.  For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.  He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.  And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.  For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him,  and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” (Colossians 1:15-20 NIVUS)

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