Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of Ecclesiastes Chapter 2
Metaphysically Interpreting Ecclesiastes 2:1-3,10-11,24
2:1I said in my heart, Come now, I will prove thee with mirth; therefore enjoy pleasure: and, behold, this also was vanity. 2:2I said of laughter, It is mad; and of mirth, What doeth it? 2:3I searched in my heart how to cheer my flesh with wine, my heart yet guiding me with wisdom, and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what it was good for the sons of men that they should do under heaven all the days of their life.
2:10And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them; I withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced because of all my labor; and this was my portion from all my labor. 2:11Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labor that I had labored to do; and, behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was no profit under the sun.
2:24There is nothing better for a man than that he should eat and drink, and make his soul enjoy good in his labor. This also I saw, that it is from the hand of God.
October 30, 1938: Eccles. 2-1, 3, 10, 11
In what does the abundant life consist? To life abundently it is necessary to [unreadable] those of the self. No one who lives for mirth and pleasure alone can live successfully or satisfyingly.
How is one's work made enduring? Work endures or vanishes according to the quality of the thought put into it. A man who loves his work because of what he hopes to accomplish through it, and not merely because it is his, will see his efforts bear rich and lasting fruit.
What is intemperance in work? Work that is not done in accord with the spiritual law is done intemperately. A man can toil without consciousness of the presence or help of God, until he loses his incentive to progress, and his duties become a treadmill. Unless he expresses his true self his efforts are a "striving after wind."
October 31, 1948: Eccles.2:1-3
Is the trial-and-error method of proving truth or error advisable? It is not. According to the text of today's lesson Solomon tried this method and was caught in the mesh of evil, even though he thought his heart was being guided by wisdom. It is dangerous to try out evil for the sake of finding out what it is good for.
How can we find out what is good for us to do? Through prayer and meditation and the habit of claiming divine wisdom as our portion, we shall know what is good for us to do, and how to meet any emergency that may arise. We can also learn much from history and the works of those who have lived a rich, rewarding life.
March 7, 1942: Eccles. 2:1-3, 10, 11
WHAT IS THE SCIENTIFIC ATTITUDE TOWARD THE ALCOHOL HABIT? It is one of experimentation to prove the effect of alcohol on the mind and body. I "Come now, I will prove thee with mirth;therefore enjoy pleasure."
September 28, 1947: Eccles. 2:1, 11, 24
Did the Preacher work toward the realization of his desire for understanding? In the beginning of his reign he worked faithfully, giving praise and thanksgiving to God for every divine favor, and keeping all his words and actions in harmony with the divine law as he understood it. Having obeyed the laws that govern increase of wisdom, he realized wisdom in full measure for the practical purpose for which he desired it.
Is pessimism in any way related to faith? It is unrelated to faith but related directly to skepticism and disillusionment.
In the Book of Ecclesiastes what proof have we that the Preacher had lost his original faith in God? The boredom that he expressed in his conviction that there is no new thing under the sun. To the man of faith every day is a new beginning. The joy that one takes in simple things is proof of an unspoiled faith and of a spiritual foundation that will hold fast.
Transcribed by Tom Schulte on 9-6-2013