While a right focus leads to progress, endurance, and growth, the consequences of a wrong focus is a downward spiral that can end tragically.
Money or possessions are not the way to happiness. Yes, we can enjoy these things, but if that is all we are interested in, we will never be content.
"But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase" (Daniel 12:4). ...
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the curse of a corrupt judicial system described in Ecclesiastes 5:8-9, warns us that corruption in the courts is a fact of life, but it will intensify before Christ returns. We should not be surprised by this curse, realizin. . .
Have you ever observed someone acting churlishly, throwing a wet blanket on an otherwise enjoyable time? Ronny Graham discovers that the Bible confronts such party-poopers, condemning their killjoy attitudes and commanding us to rejoice appropriately.
'Fairness' is a major buzzword in these times. Yet our discontent over perceived mistreatment pales in comparison to what others have endured.
We live in the most prosperous society that humanity has ever known. ...
Discontentment began with Satan the Devil and that he broadcasts his continual unhappiness to humanity. We have to control our minds and not allow his attitude to affect us. ...
Some of us cannot seem to realize a blessing if it slaps us across the face! Ingratitude can hold us back in our relationship with God.
Jeremiah and his scribe, Baruch, lived during a time of great upheaval. Baruch complained that God's plans against Judah were crimping his own ambitions.
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting upon the admonition of Christ that we must take the straight gate or the narrow way (symbols of grave difficulty), indicates that our experience in overcoming and developing character will be fraught with difficulties. Neverthel. . .
Pride, the father of all sins, is the source of self-exaltation, self-justification and the despising of authority. It cloaks rebellion in a deceptive appeal.
John Ritenbaugh, cuing in on Ecclesiastes 2:24-26, affirms that enjoyment from one's labor comes from the LORD and that the proper use of our allotted time becomes increasingly more relevant as we anticipate the conclusion of our physical lives. Solomon in. . .
John Reid observes that many people live in a state of discontent. Ironically, what they set their hearts upon (wealth, power, influence) often displaces the love for family and a relationship with God. True riches consist of godly character coupled with c. . .
Martin Collins, suggesting that we live in a negative, enervating time, indicates that we can have contentment just like the apostle Paul expressed in his letter to the Philippians, a letter in which he thanked the Philippians for their generosity and reve. . .
Korah, Dathan, and Abiram were not content with where God had placed them, but, in a spirit of pride, wanted to arrogate to themselves the office of Moses.
A major theme of the book of Ecclesiastes is satisfaction. In his wisdom, Solomon assiduously sought out the answer to the question, "What brings a person true satisfaction?" John Ritenbaugh proposes that God desires far more for us than mere satisfaction:. . .
The situation that faced God's prophet, Jeremiah, and his scribe and companion, Baruch, in the last days of Judah's monarchy was one of depravity and despair. Charles Whitaker explores the historical, cultural, and religious context of the months just befo. . .
Martin Collins reminds us that in the Declaration of Independence people were guaranteed the opportunity to pursue life, liberty, and happiness, a quest that has proved futile and elusive. This quest should prompt us to carefully number our days and seek a. . .
Because virtually every sin begins as a desire in the mind, the command against coveting (lustful cravings) could be the key to keeping the other commandments.
John Ritenbaugh again warns about the debilitating faith destroying consequences of anxious care and foreboding. If we "put on" (assume the disposition and the way of life of) Christ, we will through continuous practice learn the processes which . . .
The epilogue to Job's story reveals a lesson for us. Job's 'golden age' was before him, not behind, and the key to his optimism was his relationship with God.
Most of ancient Israel, because of their hardened hearts, did not please God. We must reflect on the the ways they stumbled so we can walk differently.
Jesus taught that all outward sin stems from inner inordinate desire. What we desire or lust after automatically becomes our idol.
The inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness can only be realized when we live in gratitude for Our Creator's purpose for us.
God's highest goal is not salvation, but sanctification into godly character, leading to membership in His family as co-rulers with Jesus Christ.
John Ritenbaugh, continuing his exposition of Ecclesiastes as he focuses on a paradox which initially provides a measure of grief and anguish to believers, the paradox which shows an unrighteous man flourishing and a righteous man suffering, points us to t. . .
John Ritenbaugh focuses upon the insidious affliction of welfare mentality, the attitude in people who believe that because they are, they are owed something. Human nature has not changed from the days of the Israelites, who thought they were entitled to m. . .
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting that our national holiday Thanksgiving may be a parody of what God intended should be our understanding of thankfulness. Rather than something we do annually, we should be returning thanks several times daily. Thankfulness equip. . .
Martin Collins points out that our Savior has a tender spot for those who are weak in the faith but are doggedly struggling to hold fast to what they believe. People sometimes unfairly brand others who display a one-time weakness, as in the case of "D. . .
Martin Collins marvels that despite the continuous dramatic increase of material wealth in Modern Israel, this affluence or prosperity has not remotely led to joy. Clinical depression, requiring professional help (usually consisting of a host of powerful a. . .
There is a danger that arises when the righteous suffer and the wicked prosper: trying to put God under obligation to bless us through becoming 'super-righteous'.
The two principal robbers of peace are pride and the drive to have complete control of our lives. Discontent and imagined victimization led Adam and Eve into sin.