Q&AIn Ecclesiastes, Solomon does a Q&A with himself on a variety of life topics.  Listen in as Solomon conducts this “interview” with himself.

Q: What advantage does man have in all his work Which he does under the sun? (1:3)

A: All things are wearisome; Man is not able to tell it. The eye is not satisfied with seeing, Nor is the ear filled with hearing.  That which has been is that which will be, And that which has been done is that which will be done.  So there is nothing new under the sun. (1:8-9)

Q:  Is there anything of which one might say, “See this, it is new”?  (1:10a)

A: Already it has existed for ages Which were before us.  (1:10b)

Q: I said to myself, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure. So enjoy yourself.” And behold, it too was futility.  I said of laughter, “It is madness,” and of pleasure, “What does it accomplish?” (2:1-2)

A: Thus I considered all my activities which my hands had done and the labor which I had exerted, and behold all was vanity and striving after wind and there was no profit under the sun. (2:11)

Q: So I turned to consider wisdom, madness and folly, for what will the man do who will come after the king except what has already been done? (2:12)

A: And I saw that wisdom excels folly as light excels darkness. (2:13)

Then I said to myself, “As is the fate of the fool, it will also befall me. Why then have I been extremely wise?” So I said to myself, “This too is vanity.” (2:15)

Q: For what does a man get in all his labor and in his striving with which he labors under the sun? (2:22)

A: Because all his days his task is painful and grievous; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is vanity. (2:23)

Q: What profit is there to the worker from that in which he toils? (3:9)

A: I have seen the task which God has given the sons of men with which to occupy themselves.  He has made everything appropriate in its time. He has also set eternity in their heart, yet so that man will not find out the work which God has done from the beginning even to the end. (3:10-11)

Q: For what advantage does the wise man have over the fool? What advantage does the poor man have, knowing how to walk before the living? (6:8)

A: What the eyes see is better than what the soul desires. This too is futility and a striving after wind. (6:9)

Q: Do not be excessively righteous, and do not be overly wise. Why should you ruin yourself? Do not be excessively wicked, and do not be a fool. Why should you die before your time? (7:16-17)

A: It is good that you grasp one thing, and also not let go of the other; for the one who fears God comes forth with both of them. (7:18)

Q: Is there anything of value, Solomon?  Is there anything worth pursuing?

A: The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil. (Ecc. 12:13-14)