Introduction to Ecclesiastes
By Katherine Appello

Let’s look at Ecclesiastes overall. Overall these pieces are meant to provide a truth for us to apply to our daily lives, to have life skills and common sense, which is sorely lacking these days. There is in general a search for the ultimate truth that one can live by, and this Book of the Bible gives us one in a nutshell. The ultimate truth is that life is a gift from God to be appreciated, honored, and lived to the fullest without harm to self or others. It is to be appreciated from conception to death and are connected to authoritative instructions given by God to mankind in the beginning of time, as those given to Moses. Ecclesiastes was most likely written by King Solomon in the second half of his life, as he reflects on his stupidity and vanities and how they have affected him. In that reflection, we can find a great deal of wisdom for our own lives. Often in crises and also in later years, one realizes the folly of materialism, of pursuit of pleasure and selfishness, of vain pursuits, especially at the expanse of family, society and self.

This book was read at the Feast of Tabernacles on day three as a way of letting us know that despite our imperfection after “The Fall”, God still loves us and takes our hand as we find our way home to him. He may not like what we do and what we become, but he loves us and his heart aches when we do turn from him and his Word, his wise statutes. There are a few thoughts on the structure of the book, but the one I tend to agree with is that the one that views it as a rhetorical critique of life. This critique is divided into sections: the futility of relying on the wisdom of self, the futility of human achievement and success as the ultimate goal, similar to the message of proverbs and reverence of God, as well as life brings about a joyful and mature life. If we can study the book in that context, it wont be that daunting. One of the goals of God and his communication through the Bible is to communicate correct and healthy living values, which people may or may not follow, and as we have free will, he can’t micromanage us, but he can to some extent macro-manage by withdrawing his blessings, protection and glory from us and nations when leaders and even its’ citizens live unnatural lives. Abundance, prosperity all that is not bad within itself, but when the pursuit of the worldly has us neglecting our relationship with God, the study of God’s Word, Family, Relationships, Community so on and so forth, then it is sinful and hurtful to God’s heart. Let us never forget that.

I understand that not everyone is in agreement with this perspective, but as a Judeo-Christian who seeks to live her live in the spirit of the Bible as God’s inspired and true Word, I share it with belief and conviction. I do not share it to convert, as no human being can convert anyone, since that would be a false conversion or change of perspective, but only to bring reflection to you.

Author's Bio: 

Born in New Jersey, August 1965, this Italian-American has always had a great interest in music, particularly the Oldies, Country and Ethnic music, including Irish. For over 10 years Ms. Appello passionately taught ESL to students of varying ages. Grounded if her Christian faith and spirituality, Katherine endured a range of issues, including a great deal of pain, which was finally diagnosed to be associated with Fibromyalgia. The essence and the power of music, of words, allow Katherine to overcome these struggles each and every time.