This Have I Found, Ecc 7:19-29

Solomon applied his heart to know wisdom. And when he did, he found out some things.  He said, in Ecc 7:27, “Behold, this have I found”.  He found that:

This Have I Found that Wisdom Strengthens the Wise

Ecc 7:19 Wisdom strengtheneth the wise man more than ten mighty men which are in the city.  Ten mighty men in the city are strong and strengthened by the city’s defenses.  Yet, a wise man is stronger than these.  Prov 24:5 says, “A wise man is strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength”.  So, if a wise man has the choice between ten mighty men in the city and wisdom, he is stronger with wisdom.

Gideon was strengthened by wisdom when he defeated 135,000 Midianites with 300 men.  When you read this account in Judges 6-8, God didn’t give him the strategy.  Jehoshaphat’s wisdom instructed him to turn to God for help when Judah was attacked by the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, 2 Chr 20.  David’s wisdom led him to inquire of God before the second Philistine attack, 2 Sam 5:22-25.  The men of Gibeon defended themselves with wisdom when they tricked Joshua into believing they were from a distant land, Joshua 9.  In all of these cases, wisdom prevailed above the might of men.

Just men that do good still sin

Ecc 7:20 For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.  Even when a just man does good he often sins.  He may be proud of himself.  He may have an ulterior motive.  Or he may bring glory to himself rather than to God.  He may try to impress others with how good he is.  Doing good, he still sins.

Don’t listen to what others say about you

Ecc 7:21-22 take no heed unto all words that are spoken.  We have a tendency to listen to what others are saying about us.  If you do, at some point, you’re going to hear those close to you talking bad about you.  Solomon said, “lest thou hear thy servant curse thee”.  You don’t want to hear your employees talking bad about their boss, for instance.

If for some reason you do hear them cursing you, remember that you have probably cursed others also.  You’ve surely criticized someone else, as others have criticized you.  The old saying is, “You can dish it out, but you can’t take it”.  Let it go.

As an extension of what Solomon learned, this have I found, that many teens on social media suffer from depression for this very thing.  They get down on themselves when they don’t get the  likes they expect or they get dislikes for their posts on social media.  They’re hearing and saying things that aren’t good.

This Have I Found that Most wisdom is too far from us

Ecc 7:23 All this have I proved by wisdom: I said…

Ecc 7:23 I will be wise but it was far from me.  Solomon asked for wisdom and God gave him more than anyone else around him.  Yet, he wanted more.  Wisdom, Prov 8, presents herself to you and invites you to her house Prov 9.  She will disclose what she wants you to know.  But she knows more and is more, Prov 8, than you will ever know because she is eternal.

Ecc 7:24 far off and exceeding deep who can find it out?  Men think they can.  See Job 28:12-23, 28.  In v.13-14 wisdom is not found in the land of the living, nor the depth, nor the sea.  v.15 it cannot be gotten for gold.  v.20-21 you can’t find where it comes from, and you can’t find its place seeing it is hidden from the eyes of all living.  Here’s the point.  All man’s quest for wisdom is going to leave him short of his objective.  v.23 God understandeth the way and knoweth the place.  v.28 the fear of the Lord that is wisdom.

Ecc 7:25 Solomon made a diligent and thorough search.  He applied his heart to know three things: wisdom, the reason of things, and the wickedness of folly.  But this have I found in Ecc 1:17-18.  With much wisdom there is much grief.  And with much knowledge comes much sorrow.  You couldn’t handle all the wisdom and knowledge that God has.  You should seek wisdom, Prov 8, but you will only have as much wisdom as God will let you have.

This Have I Found Some women are more bitter than death

Ecc 7:26 in Solomon’s search, after all that he found, the one thing he wanted to record for us is that he found something more bitter than death.  The woman whose heart is snares and nets, and whose hands are as bands.  Some good candidates are Delilah, Jezebel, the women who turned his heart away from God, and the strange women of Prov 5:3-5 and Prov 7:21-27.

Whoso pleaseth God shall escape from her, Prov 23:27-28. In Prov 22:14 he that is abhorred of the Lord shall fall therein.

A ratio of 1:1,000 men and 0:1,000 women are upright

Ecc 7:27-28 here’s what Solomon found counting one by one.  He found one man among a thousand; but a woman have I not found.  In the context of Ecc 7:29, it appears that he was looking for upright men and women.  He found one among men and none among women.

The one man among a thousand could be Job, Job 1:1 1:8 2:3. God said of Job that he was upright.  It is interesting that not even Mary was called upright.  Paul was blameless according to the law, yet his righteousness was as dung.  Zacharias was blameless according to the law and yet God made him dumb during Elisabeth’s pregnancy because of his unbelief.

Solomon mentions the upright man many times in Proverbs and states that his father was upright, 1 Ki 3:6.  In 1 Chr 29:17 David, in his prayer, mentioned his own uprightness.  But these were men commenting on men.

Micah said prophetically there is none upright among men, Mic 7:2, 7:4.  Hab 2:4 says, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him; but the just shall live by his faith.

Men have sought out many inventions

Ecc 7:29 God made man upright but they sought out many inventions.  Nothing has ever returned us to the original state we had when God made us upright.  Nevertheless men have invented religions to make themselves look upright.  Many inventions in medicine attempt to extend the life of men dying from sin.  Some like Hitler have invented a philosophy that they are a superior race making themselves more upright than their enemies.  And then there is the invention of evolution, which tries to remove all thought about God.  Evolution has been personified and deified while men believe God is a fairy tale.  All of these inventions are to get around the issues of sin and death and righteousness.

Even Solomon got tripped up by these inventions.  He made high places for the gods of his strange wives and they turned away his heart from God.  This is what man’s inventions will do.  This have I found: Be careful that the inventions you use don’t do the same thing to you.

To study the previous lesson, see Things Set Against Each Other.  To study the next lesson, see The King’s Commandment.