When Ecclesiastes gets into your soul, it brings a revolution of joy. Paradoxically, it is clarity about death that powers this joy. This sermon explores how that dynamic works.
The abuse of power runs rampant in our sin-disfigured world. We see unbalanced power dynamics at work in global injustices and in our personal relationships. How can we live well when others abuse their power over us, and serve well when we have power over others? The Teacher instructs us in how to engage power with a kind of shrewdness that makes space for joy, even in the midst of injustice.
There are good funerals and bad funerals — some that give space for grief, and some that squash it. The Teacher tells us that the search for wisdom culminates in a good funeral: the wise person lets death teach her that even wisdom has its limits. In the face of the reality of the death that awaits us all, how can we let funerals teach us to live lives of serious joy?
Money makes the world go round, so they say. But not according to The Teacher in Ecclesiastes, who shows us that the love of wealth will eat you alive! He has a better way.