Sunday, March 20th, 2016

The book of Ecclesiastes contains Proverbs, maxims, sayings, and is largely an autobiographical story. Solomon wrote it late in his life, approximately 935 B.C. He had become aware of the mistakes that he made throughout his life and began to document them. The purpose of Ecclesiastes is to spare future generations the suffering and misery of seeking after foolish, meaningless, materialistic emptiness, and to offer wisdom by discovering truth in seeking after God. (Biblehub.com)
As you read, study and apply, ask the Holy Spirit to lead your group discussions. Work hard to make sure everyone has the opportunity to participate. Close by praying for one another.

  1. Ecclesiastes 12:13 says, “The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” You can sum up the author’s entire message about the futility of placing your hope in this life with the action items of fearing God and keeping His commandments. In your own words, what does it mean to fear God? What commandment’s are we too keep?
  2. Read Matthew 21:1-11 and 23:37-39. Briefly recap everything that happens in between these two portions of text. How is it that Jesus enters the city triumphantly in one scene and then we find Him weeping over it in the next? Why do you think Jesus had this reaction? What was it about the people that Jesus was addressing in His lament?
  3. Read Matthew 26:36-46. Jesus prays the same thing 3 times to the Father. What is your interpretation of His prayer? Why do you think He prays it three times? What significance is there in Jesus’ laboring over the suffering He was about to endure?
  4. What is your reaction to Ecclesiastes 12:1-8? Are you sad? Discouraged? Read Philippians 3:8. What does Paul discount as loss? Just some things? Discuss similarities to Ecclesiastes 12:1-8 with Philippians 3:4-14.
  5. Read Colossians 3:2 and 2 Corinthians 4:18. What is the theme with those passages and ones like Philippians 3:4-14? In our day-to-day lives, how do we end up not focusing on eternal things? On the flip side, what is the danger of being “too heavenly minded that they are no earthly good”? Discuss ways of maintaining a balance.
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