Ecclesiastes 10 – 12

Ecclesiastes 9:1-10:7

  1. Why, from a Christian standpoint, is the view of life contained in 9:1-10 untenable? Cf. Luke 23:39-43, and note how and why one of the criminals rebuked the other and found hope for himself.
  2. What do 9:11, 12 teach regarding a man’s attitude to natural talents? In what way is the value of wisdom shown in 9:13-10:4?


Ecclesiastes 10:8-11:8

  1. List the spheres in which the practical wisdom of 10:8-20 apply, and deduce any general principles for your practical guidance.
  2. 11:1-8. Since the future cannot be known, what advice does the writer give regarding an appropriate attitude in life? Cf. 9:10


Note. 11:1, 2. ‘Trust your goods far and wide at sea, till you get good returns after a while. Take shares in several ventures; you never know what will go wrong in this world’ (Moffatt).


Ecclesiastes 11:9-12:14

  1. In the Preacher’s counsel to youth: (a) in what is youth to rejoice, (b) what all-important fact must be taken account of, and (c) who is to be remembered? What is the reason for this counsel?
  2. Contrast the joyful hope of the Christian with the picture of death and old age given here Cf. 2 Cor. 4:16-18; 2 Tim. 4:6-8; 1 Pet. 1:3-5.
  3. In summing up man’s duty, what place is given to God? How, in consequence, ought we to live?



  1. 11:10. ‘Meaningless’ has here the meaning of ‘transitory’ or ‘passing’.
  2. 12:2. Old age is compared here to winter weather, when storm succeeds storm.
  3. 12:3-6. A series of pictures of the failure of man’s various bodily faculties in old age, such as strength of limb, number of the teeth, keenness of sight, etc. ‘When old age fear a height, and even a walk has its terrors, when his hair is almond white, and he drags his limbs along, as the spirit flags and fades’ (verse 5, Moffatt).

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