Grace Baptist Church

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Rejoice and Remember

Rejoice and Remember

Feb 19, 2017

Passage: Ecclesiastes 11:7-12:8

Preacher: Tom Ascol

Series: Ecclesiastes - Real Life in a Fallen World

Category: Sunday Morning

Keywords: aging, catechism, children, creator, old age, youth


Pastor Tom Ascol continues with his series on Ecclesiastes. Today’s message, entitled “rejoice and remember,’ is built around Chapter 11:7 through Chapter 12:8. Modern western culture seems obsessed with youthfulness. Yet youth is fleeting. Since aging and death are certain, Qohelet, the Preacher, the author of Ecclesiastes, urges readers to recognize these truths and remember their Creator to enjoy life.

The Preacher has little sympathy for superficial outlooks on life. He is realistic; life must be lived in a fallen world. While this sounds discouraging it need not be. Throughout, Ecclesiastes has shown we are to enjoy life. In today’s passage, we are taught enjoyment is possible through remembering our Creator. The Preacher tells us life is good, full of blessings we often take for granted. These blessings, the author uses light as one example, are worthy of rejoicing, particularly as we recognize their origin in the Creator. Still, as we rejoice we are warned, remember the coming “days of darkness.”  No one escapes life without many days of darkness. Real joy, however, is not dependent on painless, problem free living. Paul, in fact, wrote he was “sorrowful yet always rejoicing” (2 Corinthians 6:10). While we may have troubles and sorrows, as we remember we have a loving Savior sovereignly watching over us we too can be sorrowful yet rejoicing.

Qohelet moves on. He calls out to and encourages young people. He understands youth are to make the most of their life, walking in the way of their heart, consciously removing vexations, unnecessary stresses and worries. It is a time of opportunities with a life ahead. The call is for the young to dedicate themselves to remembering and knowing their Creator, knowing and living within the bounds of Scripture as a day of judgment is coming to those who ignore God for the “fleeting pleasures of sin” (Hebrews 11:25). Rejoice responsibly then, knowing what is yet to come. Rejoicing in one’s youth can done properly only as one remembers one’s Creator.

Parents have a responsivity to train the young. As the young get older they assume some of that responsibility. Remembering the Creator when you are young prepares you for that which is ahead. Old age with its accompanying problems await those who, for a time, escape death. The Preacher writes beautiful poetry warning of these trouble affecting teeth (grinders), eyes (windows), hearing (doors on the street), and more, sleep, the voice, balance, fears, greying, physical disabilities, desire and death. Far better to know the Creator, to establish a relationship of trust and presence, when one is young in preparation for the time of trouble, then to wait until one is in those troubles. Besides, God neither owes nor makes guarantees regarding times to come to Him. God says, “now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2). Those who delay do so at their own eternal peril.

Still, God waits for the living to come to Him. Trust Him through the completed work of Jesus Christ so you may remember your Creator and rejoice in the life God has given.