“Vanity of vanities,” says the Preacher. “Vanity of vanities! All [that is done without God’s guidance] is vanity [futile, meaningless – a wisp of smoke, a vapor that vanishes, merely chasing the wind].” – Ecclesiastes 1:2 AMP
The voice of the Lord echoes through the ages and generations, calling men to come to the place of understanding about what life is really about and what it’s not. The word of God is the place of understanding, where we see life for what it was meant to be according to the design of God. Many out there think life is all about making money or making a living, dating beautiful women, getting married, attaining a high status of influence in the society, and having lots of material possessions.
Those who sustain this kind of thinking are those who live their lives in the sensual plane, the natural plane, the sense-ruled plane. Unfortunately, most of the population of the earth walk on this path, but I will be honest with you because I love you and I want you to get it right, because you only have one life to live. You see, life is more than the things we see physically and the things that money can buy. In one of his books, King Solomon writes in great detail about the futility and emptiness in his life which he experienced despite the hundreds of women at his disposal, with vast amounts of gold and silver, many houses, gardens and all that money can buy (See Ecclesiastes 2:1-11).
Same Old Same
‘All the rivers flow into the sea, yet the sea is not full. To the place where the rivers flow, there they flow again. That which has been is that which will be [again], and that which has been done is that which will be done again. So there is nothing new under the sun.’ – Ecclesiastes 1:7,9 AMP.
Ever since the times of Solomon, the world has not changed. There are still vanities in the world, and as a matter of fact, they are ever on the increase day after day. The early apostles called it lust (See James 1:14, Romans 6:12, 1 John 2:16, 1 Peter 4:3, Titus 2:12) and warns God’s people to live carefully and not give themselves to the mad chasing after the lusts/vanities of the world.
I’m not trying to say that we don’t need the things that make life more comfortable like good houses, beautiful relationships, nice warm clothes and good cars for easy movement; but you see, the enemy has infected the world out there with his madness and makes people get obsessed and really crazy about those things! Do you understand what I’m trying to get across to you? God is not against us using those things, but He just doesn’t want His children to get obsessed with them!
There are people who lose their joy and hope because they were unable to get their sensual or sexual appetites gratified. They get depressed when they lose a physical possession – even as little as a smartphone or a wristwatch! This exactly was Solomon’s experience, the more he looked for satisfaction in the flesh, the emptier and more depressed he became, until he finally realized he had been foolishly chasing after the wind for so long!
The only escape out of being trapped in the vanities/lusts of this world is found in the Word of God. Those who live by God’s word and establish the foundations of their moral character and faith on it will find satisfaction and fulfilment in their lives! God’s people shouldn’t be chasing after the wind like King Solomon [and many others in history] because God has made Himself our chief joy!
The Dunghill of Vanities
‘I said to myself, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure and gratification; so enjoy yourself and have a good time.” But behold, this too was vanity (futility, meaninglessness]. Also, I collected for myself silver and gold and the treasures of kings and provinces. I provided for myself male singers and female singers, and the delights and pleasures of men – many concubines.” – Ecclesiastes 2:1,8 AMP.
King Solomon’s experiences were written down for our learning, helping us to navigate toward the path that leads to God and away from emptiness and futility. We live in a world where the devil seemed to have smeared his venom all over the place, causing and pulling people towards the things that are pleasurable but vain in God’s sight. For instance, the entertainment world of movies, music and sports have large followership/crowds more than you can imagine.
Politicians lust for more power and control, and would not even be satisfied with their own territories but seek to exercise political dominion and control over other nations. Marital infidelity and compromise are encouraged by the world, even as the devil and his mad crowd push to legalize the things that scriptures clearly show us are abominations to God i.e. abortion and same-sex marriage (See Romans 1:24-32).
Sadly, such is the world into which we were all born; a dunghill of vanities, a place of various lusts and a school of moral depravity and corruption. Lacking the wisdom of God and His righteousness, people walk right into the enemy’s nets and gets sucked into his hideous systems. They become slaves of sin, lovers of vanities and many other sensual pleasures, walking with their physical eyes open but blind toward the realities of God in their hearts!
The Golden Seed from the Dunghill
‘He has made everything beautiful and appropriate in its time. He has also planted eternity [a sense of divine purpose] in the human heart [a mysterious longing which nothing under the sun can satisfy, except God] – yet man cannot find out (comprehend, grasp) what God has done (His overall plan) from the beginning to the end.’ – Ecclesiastes 3:11 AMP.
One of the reasons why the enemy desperately works to keep men occupied with lusts and vanities is so that men would not get into divine fellowship with God. He wants to keep God’s creation away from Him by all the means he could achieve. He fears it when men know their Creator, he detests it, he’s envious of it – so he tries to fight it. But God’s wisdom is deep – hidden beyond what the enemy could ever hope to find or understand! No matter what the devil does, God had it all settled way before the devil knew what was really going on.
Sometime and somewhere in the process of creating man, God had taken eternity – a deep sense of yearning for God – and planted it like a seed into man’s heart-ground. In their heart of hearts, every man knows that he has a Source – and that Source is God. In the quiet corners of his heart, he knows that he was designed for intimate fellowship and obedience to God – even though the enemy has him going in the opposite direction!
However, some discover this golden seed faster than others, while some never discover it at all – nonetheless, God did it! When the golden seed begins to sprout and to grow, the vanities and the idols the enemy uses to sustain them will have no choice but to melt away. King Solomon eventually begins to rediscover this seed in his heart, and suddenly realizes that the wine, the women, and the riches he lavishly enjoys are a far cry from God’s eternal purpose for his life!
Marching With a Purpose
‘I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good as long as they live; and also that every man should eat and drink and see and enjoy the good of all his labor – it is the gift of God.’ – Ecclesiastes 3:12,13 AMP.
You have a destiny from heaven, and although the enemy has tried many times – and will keep trying – to rob you, victory is yours in the name of Jesus Christ! You need to open your heart to God, making room for His seed in your heart to grow strong. The truth is this: Our life only has a meaning when each one of us consciously makes Jesus the center of his gravity. Christ alone delivers us from the enemy’s endless attempts to lure us into the vanities of sin and godlessness. He gives each man a good reason to live and a definite purpose to accomplish for heaven.
I encourage you to power your destiny by eating and drinking – but not physical food and drink – rather, the spiritual food of the Word of God and the spiritual drink of Praying in the Spirit! (See Matthew 4:4 & 1st Corinthians 12:13). It all starts with making a decision, and following it up by asking God’s boundless grace to help live above the fleshly desires that gravitate toward vanity.
His grace is sufficient, and as we ask, He readily supplies and helps us live purposefully for the glory of His name!