An Unsolved Puzzle
Ecclesiastes 1:2-11, 12:13-14
I heard about a man who was approaching mouth surgery. He was literally scared to death. He confided in his nurse about his nervousness. "Will I die? Will I be disfigured? Will I be scared? What will become of me?" She said to him, "Don't worry, it is a routine operation and completely safe. Your surgeon is a specialist and you will receive the best of care." "Yeah, I made too much of this whole thing. I will probably laugh about it in the morning!" "Laugh," she said, "with no lips!? Are you kidding?"
How should we approach life? Have you ever tried to solve a Rubik's Cube? After working for many hours you are no better off than when you first started, and if you were like me you gave up in frustration. There are many people who have this same kind of feeling as they search for the meaning of life.
The book of Ecclesiastes examines life and discovers that a meaningful existence can be found only by faith in God. The writer was probably an elderly man who had been blessed with great wealth. This wealth allowed him the opportunity to study and travel extensively. Yet, the more he learned, the more he realized how insignificant he was compared to creation, much less God. He began to ask if man could find real meaning in life. As he examined many theories, he invariably concluded that real meaning in life can only be found as man walked by faith in God.
Think with me about this unsolved puzzle.
1. THE PUZZLE
The word "Vanity" comes from a root word meaning "breath or vapor" and describes that which is brief and of no lasting value. The real question is, does man or the world in which he lives have a meaning or purpose, or is man's brief life of no value at all?
Life is brief. James said, "For what is your life? It is even a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away." The Psalmist said, "The days of our years is threescore years and ten; and ...
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