I am reading Ecclesiastes with my 8-year old son. It’s funny. He’s trying to figure out why everything is meaningless, how can the Bible say that? “Who wrote this book again?” is his frequent question.
Ecclesiastes is one of my favorite books. I believe it presents the question that the rest of the Bible answers. If we just die and are forgotten, what’s the point?
Solomon’s answer is that nothing on this earth is the point. Everything on earth falls apart, dies, and melts away even out of our memory. Enjoy the good bits, but understand that even they are meaningless.
This is mind-blowing to an 8-year old. Life is open before him, there are so many things to learn and do. Then he’s told that all of it is meaningless.
Some Christians attempt to say that Ecclesiastes cannot be the mindset of a believer. I disagree whole-heartedly. be not conformed to the world; if all things will be dissolved, what manner of life ought we to live; no man can serve God and mammon, etc. It’s kind of a huge point in the Bible.
My son, growing in a culture that tells him to succeed, get educated, be a star, go for it, dream big, etc, needs to hear that all this is blather. Eternal things are the only things that matter, go after these.
Eight-year olds are not the only ones who need to hear this message.