Ecclesiastes 7:10: The Good Ol’ Days

Read: Ecclesiastes 7:10

Any person alive that has lived for any amount of time has probably reflected on what life was like in the “good ol’ days” and how the “good ol’ days” were better than the current. The Preacher here, however, is giving a staunch warning as to not do this because he thinks that such reasoning is not wise. Job reflects in the “good ol’ days” in Job 29. He thinks back to the days when he was living a blessed life with riches, health, fame, and respect among any number of other things that a person could want or desire. In Job 30, Job reflects on how the people he once received honor from no longer give him honor. He is rather the laughing stock of those who used to honor him. Everything that Job had was taken away from him, and his current state of affairs were most certainly more dismal than the state of affairs before everything was removed. When Job questions God, God answers him by spelling out his majesty and grandeur . At the end of the book, after hearing God’s answer, Job admits that he has spoken of things that he does not understand of things “too wonderful to know” (Job 42:1-6). In light of these confessions, Job repents of his act of questioning God in his current state of affairs. The readers of Job have more information that Job did concerning his state of affairs. Job never ascertained why he went through what he did, and at the end of the day, he was re-blessed with everything he had and more.

The current state of affairs in which one is living may seem dismal at the moment, but there is no telling what outcome may come about as a product of the affairs. It is for this reason that the Preacher is probably encouraging his readers to not think of the past in light of the present, because no one knows tomorrow, save God. The reality of the matter for those that believe in Christ is that the future is most certainly better than the days of the past and the present for that matter. Paul in Philippians 3:4-14 considers for a moment the past when he was a Pharisee and the current state of affairs — that is the suffering he is enduring for Christ’s sake and he considers the future promised in Jesus. Paul counts it all a loss compared to the greatness of knowing Jesus and presses on toward the goal to “win the prize”. Paul’s vision was forward looking toward Jesus rather than reminiscing on the past. In the same manner, Christians would do well to think about where one is going rather than were one has been. This is most wise, because the prize that awaits Christians by far exceeds anything that can be found in the past or present!

Lord, help me press toward the goal so I will receive the prize!