A Short History of a Small Place – Ecclesiastes 7:15-29
I. Religion (vs. 15-22)
II. Rationality (vs. 23-25)
III. Relationships (vs. 26-28)
IV. Reality (vs. 29)
- What bothers you more—that bad things happen to good people, or that good things happen to bad people. Why?
- Verses 16-18 seem to be advising being middle-of-the-road:but that isn’t the conclusion Jeff gave in the sermon. What does he mean when he says “don’t be overly righteous.”?
- What are the two problems with being overly righteous?
- How do verses 21-22 put us in our place?
- When have you had the experience of thinking that you might be able to figure it out with your own wisdom, only to realize “it was far from me . . . who can find it out?”
- What is v 26 trying to say to us about relationships? Why do intimate relationships seem so promising and also bring us something more bitter than death?
- Proverbs personifies wisdom as a woman, and also personifies wickedness as a woman. Why is sexual sin such a good analogy for how sin works in general?
- V 28 is especially hard to interpret. What are the options for what he means by 1 man among 1000 and no women among 1000? Connect it with what you know about the rest of this passage, and even the life of Solomon.
- V 29 gives a subtle hint of something better. What is it, and how does it connect with the gospel?
- This text is showing us that we look to religion, rationality and relationships to unlock the answers to life, and yet they are still full of paradoxes. Is there one of these areas where you get most frustrated by looking for life and not finding it? What does this say about your definition of what life is?