Why Doesn’t Anything Work?! – Ecclesiastes 3:16-4:12
- What do you do for work? Where do you most often feel the futility of work in your job?
- Read Ecclesiastes 3.16-4.3. The Preacher surveys the work of world. What’s your reaction to his synopsis?
- When you see the new headlines that reflect injustice, wickedness and oppression, what’s your typical reaction? (head in the sand – “not going to watch the news!”, disgust, numbness, all of the above?) What can we learn from the Preacher’s response? (Answer: 1) Lament and respond appropriately. 2) See the futility of worldviews without God – they lead to these kind of conclusions)
- Does v.22 surprise you? What is so peculiar about this verse and this view of work?
- Read Ecclesiastes 4.4-12. What are some modern day examples of what the Preacher describes here? (think in terms of envy motivating work, responding to work w/ indifference/ laziness, responding to work with overwork and frenetic activity, and extreme individualism)
- What can we do to help ourselves embrace verse 6 (a handful of quietness/ contentment/ rest versus two hands of toil/ overwork)?
- Read 3.18 again and then read Romans 8:20-23. What’s your reaction to God imposing futility on our work? Why is this a mercy?
- Why does repentance and rest in Christ lead to a different kind of work?
- Do you feel like your current work and vocation is meaningful? Without immediately changing jobs, how can a redeemed view of work change your situation?