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The Vanity of Pleasure (Ecclesiastes 2:1)

Introductory Thoughts

Man views pleasure as offering some type of lasting joys; however, it generally delivers nothing more than a temporary happiness. More often, those who seek pleasures are left emptier than if they had never sought the pleasures in the first place. James’ understanding of this truth is reflected by his declaration: “Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton” (James 5:5). Paul joined the chorus when he admonished the widows: “she that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth” (1 Timothy 5:6). Seeking and living in pleasure offers no lasting fulfillment. In John 4:13, the Lord said, “Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again” and so it is with pleasure. Satisfaction, fulfillment, joy, and life only come through a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): The worldly pleasures we see, hear, do, or have, never satisfy the recipients. They are never enough (Ecclesiastes 1:8; Ecclesiastes 5:10; Ecclesiastes 6:7). Only the Lord can meet our need for any type of lasting satisfaction (Psalm 16:11; Psalm 107:9).
  • (For everyone): Has there ever been a pleasurable event you were looking forward to that afterwards left you unfulfilled? Why is it that pleasure offers no lasting satisfaction in the long term?
  • With pleasure, man must continually seek the latest and greatest. How is this different from a personal relationship with the Lord?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask the Lord to help you see the vanity of pleasure.
  • Ask God for the lasting joys that come only from Him.