Ecclesiastes 1:1-3, 13-14 -- The words of the Teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem: "Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. "Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless." What does man gain from all his labor at which he toils under the sun?

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. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.

Ecclesiastes 1 Commentary of the Bible

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Key pages for Ecclesiastes commentary in the library:

The Search  ( Ecclesiastes 1:1-3 )  Daily Devotion

The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun? (Ecclesiastes 1:1-3 RSV)

The first verse of the book identifies the writer as the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. The son of David could refer to any descendant of David who sat on the throne after him, but this particularly relates to Solomon, as several things in the book will confirm.

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The Search for Meaning  ( Ecclesiastes 1:1-18 )  Sunday Message

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Ecclesiastes is one of the favorite books of the Bible for skeptics, scoffers, atheists and certain of the cultists. The reason for that is that there are certain passages in this book which seem to deny that there is life after death, that it is all over when this life ends. Atheists love to contend that the book of Ecclesiastes seems to confirm that view. That is why they frequently quote from it. Hedonists love this book too because it apparently endorses a rather Epicurean lifestyle.

The Endless Cycle  ( Ecclesiastes 1:4-7 )  Daily Devotion

Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever. (Ecclesiastes 1:4)

The Searcher's theme is stated in verse 4: Humanity is transient, but nature is permanent. A generation comes and a generation goes—the human race passes on from this life, comes into life, lives its term, and goes on—but the earth remains forever.

The Restless Life  ( Ecclesiastes 1:8-18 )  Daily Devotion

All things are wearisome, more than one can say. The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing. (Ecclesiastes 1:8)

Solomon's thesis here is, All things are restless. He has observed that there is an inherent restlessness in everything. In fact, it is so widespread that no one can possibly describe all the restlessness of life.