Friday, October 24, 2014

Lesson - Ecclesiastes Gives Reason Why We Are Here

VERSES:   Ecclesiastes 1:1-12:14

MEMORY VERSE:   Ecclesiastes 12:1.  "Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   2 Corinthians.  Write "2 Corinthians" on small slips of paper and hand out at the end of class, so the students may take them home to memorize.

PRAYER:   Thank God for all the beauty that He made for us to enjoy.

SPECIAL SONG:   God Created Everything (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3 on this blog. Click orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Draw a flower like in the Acitvity below on a whiteboard or chalkboard. Write verses as you teach. When you are done, and if you have drawn a VERY large flower, the students will be able to see and copy your words.

  • Let's turn to the book of Ecclesiastes. It is located almost in the middle of the Bible and comes right after the book of Proverbs. Let's talk about this small book. The word 'Ecclesiastes" means "Preacher." Ecclesiastes is a book that some say that Solomon wrote and it tells us many wise things. It talks about life and why we are here on this earth. There are many grown-up people who do not know the purpose of life or why they are here. Solomon tells us in these twelve chapters about things we should know in life. 
  • In chapter 1, Solomon said that everything here on the earth is temporary or it would not last forever. He had tried to find happiness many ways. He said laughter and wine did not last. He built houses, gardens and orchards; he made pools of water; he had servants to wait on him; he had great possessions; he had silver and gold; he had singers sing to him; he had instruments of music play for him; none were lasting. But after trying all of these things, Solomon said that everything was vanity or it was all for nothing. There was no lasting happiness in earthly things.
  • However, Solomon said that there were four good things in life. They were the food that he ate, the drink that he drank, the work that he did, and marriage. They were all gifts of God (2:13, 9:7, 9) and all were good.  
  • Solomon, also, tells us many other wise sayings in the book of Ecclesiastes. He says:
    • God has made everything beautiful in His time (3:11).
    • Be a good citizen and obey authority. We must obey the laws of the land unless they are against God's laws. (8:2,3; Acts 5:29)
    • It doesn't matter how wise a man is, he cannot know everything (8:16, 17).
    • God is in control (9:1).
    • Death is certain (9:2-5).
    • Whatever you find to do, do it with all of your might or power (9:10).
    • One reason we have trials is that time and chance happen to all men (9:11).
    • Be careful what you say (10:20).
    • Don't worry about things you cannot change (11:3).
  • The most important thing in the whole book of Ecclesiastes that Solomon tells us is found in the last chapter of the book. It's like he saved the most important till the very end. He says that we should remember the Creator or God while we are young, that way we will have our whole lives to do much work for the LORD. The very last two verses of this good book, Solomon tells us why we are living on this earth--why we are here. He says we must fear or reverence and honor God and keep His commands. (Mark 12:30 is also a good verse to read about the man's purpose.) That is it. Our whole lives, we should honor God and obey him. That is the reason we are alive on this earth!
"Older Student" Tips:
  • The definition of Ecclesiastes is 'Preacher."
  • See how many times the students can find the phrase "under the sun." This is a repetitive saying of the writer of this book.
  • There are four life cycles mentioned in Ecclesiastes 1:4-7. Can the students find them?
  • One wise thing that this book tells us is that "All is vanity."  Do we know what 'vanity' means?
ACTIVITY:   He Made Everything Beautiful In His Time
Materials needed:  9" x 12" blue construction paper, 9" x 12" orange construction paper, 4" x 4" yellow construction paper, 5" x 6" green construction paper, glue, scissors, marker, crayons, pencil.
  1. Hand out blue paper.
  2. Round corners with scissors.
  3. Hand out orange paper.
  4. Fold orange paper in thirds and then fold in half to create six squares.
  5. Cut one circle out of each square, using most of the paper. These are the petals of the flower.
  6. Hand out yellow paper.
  7. Cut big circle out of yellow paper. This is the middle of the flower.
  8. Cut 2" strip off of edge of green paper. This is the stem.
  9. Fold remaining green paper in half and cut out two leaves.
  10. Glue yellow circle in the middle of the blue paper.
  11. Glue orange circles all around the yellow circle, making sure not to cover much of the yellow paper.
  12. Glue edge of stem and tuck under orange petals.
  13. Glue green leaves to stem.
  14. On yellow paper, write, "He hath made everything beautiful in His time. (3:11).
  15. On each orange petal write a good shortened verse, such as...Be a good citizen (8:2, 3), a wise man does not know everything (8:16, 17), God is in control (9:1), Whatever you do, do it with all of your might (9:10), Be careful what you say (10:20), Fear God and keep His commands (12:13, 14).
  16. Write "Ecclesiastes" on one leaf and "Preacher" on the other.
  17. If there is time, Write "Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth..." "Ecclesiastes 12:1-14" and "Fear God and keep His commandments" all around the outside of the blue paper. (See picture above.)
    1. Simply beautiful!