Solomon wrote Ecclesiastes late in his life as he looked back with repentance at not keeping God close to him. Ecclesiastes is a critical essay, a sermon, to teach future generations what took Solomon a lifetime to learn—life without God is meaningless.
Solomon had it all. He was king with power over all the Israel and influence throughout the world. He had tremendous wealth and built a magnificent temple for God. He had a sharp mind and was known as the wisest man alive, thanks to God’s blessing of wisdom.
However, it wasn’t enough. No amount of materialistic items can grant happiness or fulfillment. Solomon was a good man, but he lost his devotion to God among his power, wealth and wisdom. Looking back at life, Solomon saw it all as meaningless. He wanted to teach others what it took him a lifetime to learn:
“That’s the whole story. Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty. God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.” Ecclesiastes 12:13-14
One of my favorite passages of the bible is “A Time for Everything…” Ecclesiastes 3:1-15.
“For everything there is a season,
A time for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.