The Panting Sun – v. 1:5 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #12)

It has been more than a year since the pandemic began, and we are just now beginning to see the return of some degree of normalcy. The past year has proven that many of the constants that we take for granted can disappear in a moment’s notice, and institutions, rituals, and routines that we once … Continue reading The Panting Sun – v. 1:5 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #12)

Meet The New Generation, Same As The Old Generation – v. 1:4 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #11)

I remember when one of the most pressing topics in the church world - the one that all the important people were concerned about - was about the rise of the Millennials and the urgency of questioning everything we took for granted in order to reach them for the Gospel. Now that Millennials have been … Continue reading Meet The New Generation, Same As The Old Generation – v. 1:4 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #11)

The Profits of Life – v. 1:3 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #10)

In James 4:13-17, we find a brief excursus on those who seek to make plans for business and future profit and how the brevity of life ought to temper the confidence in our planning. It’s very likely that James has Ecclesiastes in mind in here, not only because of his conclusion that we are “mists … Continue reading The Profits of Life – v. 1:3 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #10)

Hebel Hebel’iym – vv. 1:1-2 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #9)

“Hebel hebel’iym, hebel hebel’iym; ha’kol hebel”. Five of the first “words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem” are the same word, and through a brilliant mastery of the Hebrew language Solomon wants to let his readers know the canvas he will be painting on will be one of vapors and mists. … Continue reading Hebel Hebel’iym – vv. 1:1-2 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #9)

The Weight of the Fall (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #6)

In the previous entry, we began examining the major themes of Ecclesiastes, beginning with the book’s roundabout emphasis on the goodness of the eternal God. This theme is seldom made explicit in the book itself; you arrive at the theme via proof of the opposite. A more explicit theme, one that is quite obvious in … Continue reading The Weight of the Fall (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #6)

Eternal God vs Fleeting Mists (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #5)

People often read the book of Ecclesiastes and wonder if this book actually belongs in the Bible. How could God write a book with such a pessimistic and dark outlook on the world? Although God is mentioned plenty of times in the book, he is seldom the central subject, often orbiting around Solomon’s writing on … Continue reading Eternal God vs Fleeting Mists (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #5)

How To Read Ecclesiastes (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #8)

This is the last of the “introductory” posts I will write on Ecclesiastes before diving into the text itself, and before I do that a brief word needs to be said on how one ought to read this book. Much of the misunderstanding, confusion, and aversion of Ecclesiastes comes from a fundamental misunderstanding of what … Continue reading How To Read Ecclesiastes (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #8)

Vanity or Vapor, Pt. 2 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #4)

The significance of the word “hebel” is so important that I want to spend a second installment further fleshing out why the range of this word matters so much in Ecclesiastes. If you haven’t read the previous installment I encourage you to scroll back down to find it. In translating “hebel” as “vapor”, “breath”, or … Continue reading Vanity or Vapor, Pt. 2 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #4)

Vanity or Vapor, Pt. 1 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #3)

It is impossible to discuss the book of Ecclesiastes without discussing the word “hebel” (הֶבֶל), a word that shapes the backbone of nearly every theme in the book. The word literally means “vapor” or “breath”, but in our English translations the word is often translated “vanity” or “futility” to give it some poetic flourish. Both … Continue reading Vanity or Vapor, Pt. 1 (Very Short Studies in Ecclesiastes #3)