The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.
The Book of Ecclesiastes was written by King Solomon near the end of his life. The book is an overview of his search for life’s meaning and purpose. Yes, the book was written some three thousand years ago. But his observations and conclusions are still practical today as they were back then.
He answers such questions as: What is there to gain in this lifetime? Where does one best invest their time and energy? How does one live a more productive life? Who are the most important people you need to listen too? When is the best time to pursue your goals? Why life matters?
One of the most important topics he discusses is God’s involvement in your life. He answers from a life time of living with God and also rebelling against HIM. He leaves you with a greater insight into your own story. He doesn’t mince words.
His views are like a scientist analyzing the results of a sixty-year study on human behavior. From birth to death, he sorts through God’s relationship with humanity and humanity’s relationship with God. His research takes him viewing how God and time and chance are both occurring throughout life. He views and explains the unfair outcome of people’s lives. From birth to the grave, he states his case and leaves the reader with the conclusion of the matter.
Man’s main responsibility to fulfill in this life is to fear God and observe HIS commandments. To fear God means to acknowledge HIS authority and final word on any matter. That our allegiance places HIM first on all matters. HE is King above Kings and rules everyone. HE deserves are utmost respect and worship.
Because of who HE is, we acknowledge HIS superior wisdom. Thus, we practice HIS decrees for how to best maintain relationships with each other. His ten commandments highlight the means to have a healthy relationship with HIM and others. A society that practices such behavior will only need a small governing structure to handle legal matters. There would be greater trust and security in the land.
Solomon’s final conclusion as king wasn’t for more government involvement to produce fear into the people. Instead, his recommendation is for each person accepted personal responsibility. To respect the authority of God Almighty and follow HIS teachings. When done, life for themselves and the society around them would flourish in freedom and prosperity. Along the way, you would also find meaning and fulfillment.
Nothing has changed since then in regards to human behavior. But today, we have the knowledge and a greater relationship with God Almighty through Jesus Christ. We have the Holy Spirit residing in us. We have a greater understanding and insight of HIS Word along with historical lessons. How much greater is the time we live now than then? What happens when one combines the teaching of this book with Jesus’s gospel message and purpose? One gains a greater perspective of the physical and spiritual dynamics at work.
Fear God may be an old-fashion expression. But like many old-fashion disciplines, maybe it is time to be again reintroduce into the world.
Rooting For You in Christ!
Faith-Integrator, Encourager, Scribbler
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