The entire book of Ecclesiastes is context for the final two verses. Solomon makes it clear that the perspective is “under the sun.” By repeatedly saying the phrase “under the sun” Solomon is guarding us from coming to any conclusions before he is ready to pronounce “the conclusion of the whole matter” in the closing verses. He is making observations regarding what things seem like from an earthly view and then concludes with the complete picture at the end of the treatise. Sometimes, our earthly perspective is correct, sometimes not.

When we look at things from a strictly earthly perspective, without taking into consideration that “all things work together for good to those that love God,” or that “the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men” then we find some interesting information, but the framework will be incomplete.

You may have noticed that some of the verses in Ecclesiastes are the same as some of the verses in Proverbs. Those would be examples of when the observations are correct.

You may have also noticed that some of the verses in Ecclesiastes are contrary to good biblical doctrine taught clearly elsewhere in Scripture. Those would be examples of when the observations are too simplistic or clouded because of the incomplete context. Solomon deliberately imposed this restricted viewpoint to make a point.

Ecclesiastes 12:13-14
13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this [is] the whole [duty] of man.
14 For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether [it be] good, or whether [it be] evil.

I do not need to try all of the experiences that this wealthy king tried in order to come to the same conclusion. If I did, it would not help, because I would have only gained a very limited and biased view which would lead me astray in my thinking. I can trust The Creator that His Way is the best way to live and endeavour to align my thoughts and actions to His design. This approach to life will result in the most abundantly rewarding life possible.

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