The Conclusion of the Whole Matter
Introduction: If you were to boil your words of wisdom down to three points, what would your instructions be to people to ensure proper living?
1. The teacher vv. 9-10
a. What does the Preacher/Teacher include in his resume?
b. What were the two goals that he had?
i. To write delightful words
ii. To write the truth
2. The text vv.11-12
a. There are two different kinds of writings described.
i. The writing of wise men directed by the Shepherd.
ii. Those that are man’s thoughts alone.
b. How are the wise man’s words described?
c. How are they like goads?
d. What are well driven nails like? How is God’s word like well driven nails?
e. How would you paraphrase the last part of verse 12? Don’t look for the answers to life outside of the Bible and Spirit led believers.
3. The tutorial vv.13-14
a. To sum up the book Solomon comes up with three directives, what are they?
i. Fear God
ii. Obey God
iii. Answer to God
b. What is it to FEAR God? In Ray Stedman’s book “Is This All There Is To Life” he uses Fear as an acronym to define what kind of fear we are talking about here.
F= Faith in His existence, according to Hebrews 11:6 you can’t even come to God unless you believe He is there. Therefore the first part of fear is faith.
E=Experience of His grace, until you have felt his awesome forgiveness how can you even start to have respect and awe for him? Until you have experienced guilt lifted off your shoulders because of his grace, how could you fear Him
A=Awe at the majesty, the wisdom, and the wonder of God. When you stop to think that the Bible tells us to approach His throne boldly. The creation talking to the creator boldly? Just how complex is a human life that God has breathed out of the dust? God is majestic, He is awesome, He is worthy of our FEAR!!
R=Resolve to do what he says, to obey his word, to keep his commandments. A preacher taught me years ago to not make obedience to God an option, but make it an obsession! Jesus asked, “ Why do you call me Lord, and do not the things I have commanded you?”
c. Obeying His Word is not optional, not even for the unbeliever. God expects all to keep His commandments. It applies to everyone.
d. Answer to God – How much of what we do will be scrutinized by God?
i. All things that are good
ii. All things that are evil
Ecclesiastes 12:9-14 (NASB95)
9 In addition to being a wise man, the Preacher also taught the people knowledge; and he pondered, searched out and arranged many proverbs.
10 The Preacher sought to find delightful words and to write words of truth correctly.
11 The words of wise men are like goads, and masters of these collections are like well-driven nails; they are given by one Shepherd.
12 But beyond this, my son, be warned: the writing of many books is endless, and excessive devotion to books is wearying to the body.
13 The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.
14 For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.