Friday, August 5, 2016

Meaningful vs. Meaningless Life

In the book of Ecclesiastes we read about King Solomon who pretty much had everything, yet he said it was all vanity. Money doesn’t buy happiness. You can’t take it with you. Name the cliché about earthly riches not being the answer, and Solomon would probably agree.

“And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labour: and this was my portion of all my labour. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 2:10-11

“Therefore I hated life; because the work that is wrought under the sun is grievous unto me: for all is vanity and vexation of spirit.” Ecclesiastes 2:17

Those of you who aren’t serving the Lord are living a meaningless life. Your house is your habitat, and your job keeps you busy like a hamster running on a wheel. If you aren’t doing anything with lasting value, you are basically living the life of an animal. Your motto is “let us eat and drink; for to morrow we die.” But what about after that?

First of all, you need to be saved, or you will spend eternity in Hell. After salvation, though, a wise person will start laying up treasures in heaven. Some of what we do in life is necessary--like working to provide for our family, taking care of our homes, etc. Recreational activities help us to improve our relationships with family and friends. Even personal hobbies are fine, because the Bible does teach that we should enjoy life. Be careful though, that you don’t fill up all of your time with things that have no eternal value.

“Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.” 1 Corinthians 3:12-15

God did not put us on this earth to merely exist, which is why we often have an empty feeling at the end of a wasted day. Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are “created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Reproducing ourselves spiritually and physically, learning the Bible, and investing in other people should be high on our priority list. Souls being won to Christ is what really makes a difference in this world.

“And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.” Jude 22-23

Decide each day that your day is not going to be meaningless. In addition to accumulating a little wood, hay, and stubble, be sure that you are doing something meaningful every day of your life. Different people are in different situations and some have more free time than others, but we can all carve out some time to read the Bible, pray, win souls, and influence others to do the same.

“And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” Daniel 12:3

Here is a sermon to go with this article.


Clive O'Hagan said...

Excellent sermon with a powerful message. Stay away from these love everyone preachers, it is not coming from God and that is for sure.

Anonymous said...

As a mom and wife to a man that doesn't really care about spiritual things, how can I make my life more meaningful? I am trying to raise my little child to serve God but other than that, we attend a pretty dead church and I have no one to teach or practice soul winning with me. I don't even really have an opportunity to witness to others when I am so distracted with my toddler. I feel like I am definitely living "God's plan b" for my life. It is depressing. Pastor, what would you recommend in my situation?

AlexRepented said...

Exactly right

Anonymous said...

I'm with the other "Anonymous". I live in a horrible country where real preachers are banned and we have to download your sermons to actually GET preaching. Most professing Christians aren't even saved and are incredibly worldly. I live here with my wife and children and they are of course a blessing, but I have no friends, my family is 6000 miles away and all but one disowned me. I try to speak with other people but it is painful when all they care to talk about is booze, girls and TV shows, I just can't join in with that - I've lost the ability to have shallow conversation. So I've become incredibly introverted as a result. I used to use the internet to write and reach others, give the Gospel and teach from the Bible but I gave up after 5 years when it was clear I was wasting my time in doing so (since people here are not receptive as I thought they were).

So for now I am handing out "ATT" DVDs whenever I go outside, I do try to give people the Gospel or counsel them whenever I encounter someone, but it really feels like I'm failing God. There is no real church to go to, there are no believers around us (that we know of) and basically we are stuck in this hellhole of a country. Oh we could go back to where I came from, but that's an even worse country and basically people like you and I would be arrested there for our beliefs. Every day I pray to God to give me a purpose or to show me what to do, every day there is nothing. So yeah, I do want to work for the Lord but right now I still have that empty, idle, failure feeling after every day.