Daily Scripture Reading September 3rd
King James Bible – The Holy Bible
Ecclesiastes 4:1-16 (KJB)
So I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are done under the sun: and behold the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but they had no comforter. 2 Wherefore I praised the dead which are already dead more than the living which are yet alive. 3 Yea, better is he than both they, which hath not yet been, who hath not seen the evil work that is done under the sun. 4 Again, I considered all travail, and every right work, that for this a man is envied of his neighbour. This is also vanity and vexation of spirit. 5 The fool foldeth his hands together, and eateth his own flesh. 6 Better is an handful with quietness, than both the hands full with travail and vexation of spirit. 7 Then I returned, and I saw vanity under the sun. 8 There is one alone, and there is not a second; yea, he hath neither child nor brother: yet is there no end of all his labour; neither is his eye satisfied with riches; neither saith he, For whom do I labour, and bereave my soul of good? This is also vanity, yea, it is a sore travail. 9 Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. 10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. 11 Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? 12 And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken. 13 Better is a poor and a wise child than an old and foolish king, who will no more be admonished. 14 For out of prison he cometh to reign; whereas also he that is born in his kingdom becometh poor. 15 I considered all the living which walk under the sun, with the second child that shall stand up in his stead. 16 There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them: they also that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.
Ecclesiastes 5:1-20 (KJB)
Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil. 2 Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few. 3 For a dream cometh through the multitude of business; and a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words. 4 When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed. 5 Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay. 6 Suffer not thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin; neither say thou before the angel, that it was an error: wherefore should God be angry at thy voice, and destroy the work of thine hands? 7 For in the multitude of dreams and many words there are also divers vanities: but fear thou God. 8 If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they. 9 Moreover the profit of the earth is for all: the king himself is served by the field. 10 He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. 11 When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes? 12 The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep. 13 There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for the owners thereof to their hurt. 14 But those riches perish by evil travail: and he begetteth a son, and there is nothing in his hand. 15 As he came forth of his mother’s womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand. 16 And this also is a sore evil, that in all points as he came, so shall he go: and what profit hath he that hath laboured for the wind? 17 All his days also he eateth in darkness, and he hath much sorrow and wrath with his sickness. 18 Behold that which I have seen: it is good and comely for one to eat and to drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labour that he taketh under the sun all the days of his life, which God giveth him: for it is his portion. 19 Every man also to whom God hath given riches and wealth, and hath given him power to eat thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour; this is the gift of God. 20 For he shall not much remember the days of his life; because God answereth him in the joy of his heart.
Ecclesiastes 6:1-12 (KJB)
There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, and it is common among men: 2 A man to whom God hath given riches, wealth, and honour, so that he wanteth nothing for his soul of all that he desireth, yet God giveth him not power to eat thereof, but a stranger eateth it: this is vanity, and it is an evil disease. 3 If a man beget an hundred children, and live many years, so that the days of his years be many, and his soul be not filled with good, and also that he have no burial; I say, that an untimely birth is better than he. 4 For he cometh in with vanity, and departeth in darkness, and his name shall be covered with darkness. 5 Moreover he hath not seen the sun, nor known any thing: this hath more rest than the other. 6 Yea, though he live a thousand years twice told, yet hath he seen no good: do not all go to one place? 7 All the labour of man is for his mouth, and yet the appetite is not filled. 8 For what hath the wise more than the fool? what hath the poor, that knoweth to walk before the living? 9 Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity and vexation of spirit. 10 That which hath been is named already, and it is known that it is man: neither may he contend with him that is mightier than he. 11 Seeing there be many things that increase vanity, what is man the better? 12 For who knoweth what is good for man in this life, all the days of his vain life which he spendeth as a shadow? for who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?
2 Corinthians 6:14-18 (KJB)
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? 15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? 16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, 18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
2 Corinthians 7:1-7 (KJB)
Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. 2 Receive us; we have wronged no man, we have corrupted no man, we have defrauded no man. 3 I speak not this to condemn you: for I have said before, that ye are in our hearts to die and live with you. 4 Great is my boldness of speech toward you, great is my glorying of you: I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation. 5 For, when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were troubled on every side; without were fightings, within were fears. 6 Nevertheless God, that comforteth those that are cast down, comforted us by the coming of Titus; 7 And not by his coming only, but by the consolation wherewith he was comforted in you, when he told us your earnest desire, your mourning, your fervent mind toward me; so that I rejoiced the more.
Psalm 47:1-9 (KJB)
To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah. O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph. 2 For the LORD most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth. 3 He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet. 4 He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob whom he loved. Selah. 5 God is gone up with a shout, the LORD with the sound of a trumpet. 6 Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King, sing praises. 7 For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding. 8 God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness. 9 The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.
Proverbs 22:16 (KJB)
He that oppresseth the poor to increase his riches, and he that giveth to the rich, shall surely come to want.
The Emptiness of Pleasure.
Ec 1; 3; 3.
The preacher first lays down the proposition that all things are unreal, and the results of human effort are deceitful, and that life is one unending round. As a scholar and thinker he finds no satisfaction, so he turns to mirth and pleasure. He engaged in banqueting and revelry, fleshly indulgence and worldly excitements; but the feverish excitement soon passed away and left him in a deeper gloom, so he exclaims in Ec 1:2, “All is vanity.”
LESSON–Disappointed men are found, not only on poor farms and in the ranks of the unemployed, but also in the ranks of high society and in the mansions of the fortunate in life. There is the man who is disappointed because he does not get, and there is the man who is disappointed because he DOES get, and the latter is by far worse of the two. The man who is disappointed because he does NOT get may have still the fascination of his hopes before him. But the man who has got what he desires and is then disappointed has pricked the bubble, and knows
the meaning of emptiness and vexation of spirit. The last was the disappointment of Solomon. The selfish man always a disappointed man. This book reveals utter selfishness. It is all I, I, I,–I made, I got, I did, I had, I sought, and that is the end of it all. These is a great art in choosing beneficial pleasures. No Christian in his best moments would sanction those pleasures that lead to immorality or gambling. On the other hand, after all the questionable things are left out there are so many pure and elevating enjoyments, left, that there is no real self-denial, but rather self-enrichment. Mr. Beecher said, “Upon this broad earth, purified with flowers, scented with odours, brilliant in colours, vocal with echoing and re-echoing melody, I take my stand against all demoralizing pleasure.” God made all men to be happy! * * * He has set before us a thousand right and ennobling avenues of enjoyment–let us not sacrifice true and permanent happiness for
The Emptiness of Riches.
Ec 4; 5; 6.
Solomon has shown the emptiness of pleasure, honour, and power. Many will agree with him on this but at the same time will think that money is the supreme good in life. Solomon combats this error in these chapters. and shows that neither the gathering of great riches, nor in the spending of them, is there real happiness, Ec 5:10. It is true that honest labour leads to prosperity, and this is desirable. More often it is the ungodly who increase in riches through dishonesty, speculation, or oppression. Both their wealth and a furious lust of wealth increase, and when they possess the most they seek for more. Their anxieties increase, they do not get refreshing sleep, they get in love with the world, become proud, are much tempted, they draw their hearts away from God and from duty, and make it very difficult for themselves to enter the kingdom of Heaven, Mt 19:23.
LESSON–It is lawful to gather wealth, if we can do so without violating the laws of God and man, and if we consecrate it to the service of God and man. Two questions will be asked rich men at the Judgement: How did you make your money, and how did you spend it? If riches increase, set not your heart upon them, Ps 62:10. On the other hand, remember that it is easier to be contented without riches than with them. It is so natural to make gold our god. to trust in it, and to depend upon it for happiness. The Bible depreciates the value of money because the best things, like salvation, blessedness and peace cannot be bought with it. It is not along golden roads that God’s children pass to bliss. Therefore, happy are those who have learned to be content with little, whose wants are few and moderate, who, having the necessaries of life, are thankful and hopeful. “I never complained of my lot,” said a Persian poet, “but once–when my feet were sore, and I had no money to buy shoes; but I met a man without a foot, and became contented with my lot when I saw him!”
In 2Co 6; he appeals to his fellow workers not to receive God’s loving kindness in vain, also to open their hearts to him, and to prove their love by separating themselves from unbelievers.
In 2Co 7; he tells of his anxiety while waiting for a report from them by Titus. He notes that they were at first grieved by his sharp letter, but afterward followed his counsel and stood firm for the truth. Thus Godly sorrow leads to repentance and brings salvation, which one will never regret he possessed.
1. When in trouble we should find comfort, not in forgetfulness or in dissipation, or in complaining, but in the God of all comfort, for all true comfort conies from Him. Then as with Paul, the comforted shall become comforters.
All though Paul had to say severe things to his friends at Corinth, yet he was not blind to their good qualities, but praised them at every opportunity and never disparaged them to outsiders. If we wish friendship to last and stand the strains to which all human ties are subject, we must never forget this rule: “Praise somewhat!”