Ecclesiastes chapter 12

The author has fully explored the meaning of human existence. The conclusion is that we fear God and keep his commandments. That is our whole duty.

 


 

WALK WITH GOD WHEN YOU ARE YOUNG

 

VERSE 1. Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come, and the years draw near, when you will say, “I have no pleasure in them;”

Remember also your Creator. It is easy for people to inadvertently fall away from their faith. The remedy is to walk with the LORD every day.

in the days of your youth. It is easy for teens to become skeptical and reject their faith. The remedy is to walk with the LORD every day.

Luke 9:23. He said to all, “If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross [daily], and follow me.

 

VERSE 2. Before the sun, the light, the moon, and the stars are darkened, and the clouds return after the rain;

clouds return after the rain. This is an image of the cloudy and rainy winter in Palestine.

 

VERSE 3. in the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those who look out of the windows are darkened,

The phrases in this verse are often interpreted as the symptoms of growing old:

PHRASE INTERPRETATION
keepers of the house shall tremble our arms grow weak
strong men shall bow themselves our legs grow weak
grinders cease because they are few our teeth fall out
look out of the windows are darkened our eyes grow dim

 

VERSE 4. and the doors shall be shut in the street; when the sound of the grinding is low, and one shall rise up at the voice of a bird, and all the daughters of music shall be brought low;

 

VERSE 5. yes, they shall be afraid of heights, and terrors will be on the way; and the almond tree shall blossom, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail; because man goes to his everlasting home, and the mourners go about the streets:

afraid of heights. Older people are often more afraid of heights.

 

VERSE 6. before the silver cord is severed, or the golden bowl is broken, or the pitcher is broken at the spring, or the wheel broken at the cistern,

NLT translation: Yes, remember your Creator now while you are young, before the silver cord of life snaps and the golden bowl is broken.

the silver cord of life. Some people say this verse teaches about a physical connection between our physical body and our eternal soul. It is a silver cord, they say. It has infinite elasticity. It keeps our soul tethered, like the string on a balloon keeps it from flying away. The moment of our death is when the silver cord finally severs, they say.

 

VERSE 7. and the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.

the spirit. That is, “the life breath” (NAB translation).

 

ALL HUMAN ENDEAVOR IS MEANINGLESS

 

VERSE 8. “Vanity of vanities,” says Kohelet. “All is vanity!”

Kohelet. This can also be spelled as “Quoheleth.”

 

VERSE 9. Further, because Kohelet was wise, he still taught the people knowledge. Yes, he pondered, sought out, and set in order many proverbs.

proverbs. That is, wise sayings.

 

VERSE 10. The Preacher sought to find out acceptable words, and that which was written blamelessly, words of truth.

 

VERSE 11. The words of the wise are like goads; and like nails well fastened are words from the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd.

like goads. These wise sayings goad us to fuller insights about life.

 

VERSE 12. Furthermore, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.

 

FEAR GOD AND KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS

 

VERSE 13. This is the end of the matter. All has been heard. Fear God, and keep his commandments; for this is the whole duty of man.

This verse is fantastic! Would you consider memorizing it? More great verses to memorize from the Book of Ecclesiastes and from the entire Bible.

NIV 1984 translation: 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.

This reminds us of Micah chapter 6:

Micah 6:8. He has shown you, O man, what is good. What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?

 

VERSE 14. For God will bring every work into judgment, with every hidden thing, whether it is good, or whether it is evil.

 


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Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.


 

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