Striving for Control
STEVE McKENZIE
Ecclesiastes 7:14-29
STRIVING FOR CONTROL

 

Confusing Wisdom

[7:15b] “There is a righteous man who perishes in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man who prolongs his life in his evil doing”

  • Karma and the Christian
  • The sovereignty of God and the believer

 

Wrong Responses

The passage this morning continues with 2 ways that people try to make sense of the world and control the outcome of their lives.
Self-Righteousness
[7:16] “Be not overly righteous, and do not make yourself too wise. Why should you destroy yourself?
Self-Indulgence
[7:17] Be not overly wicked, neither be a fool. Why should you die before your time?

Fear of God

[7:18] Warning

[7:21-22] Fear God vs Striving for People’s Approval

[7:23-24] Fear God vs Striving for Knowledge (control)

[7:25-26] Fear God vs Striving for Sex/Relationship

[7:27-29] Fear God

 

The Gospel Connection

  • 1 | CREATED IN THE IMAGE OF GOD
    [Gen. 1:27] “So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
  • 2 | DISOBEYED GOD
    [Romans 3:10-18] No one is righteous – not even one. No one is truly wise; no one is seeking God. All have turned away; all have become useless.No one does good, not a single one….They don’t know where to find peace. They have no fear of God at all.
  • 3 | SAVED FOR THE SAKE OF GOD’S NAME
    [Isaiah 48:9-11] “Yet for my own sake and for the honor of my name, I will hold back my anger and not wipe you out… I will rescue you for my sake – yes, for my own sake! I will not let my reputation be tarnished and I will not share my glory with idols.”
  • 4 | SAVED BY THE WORK OF JESUS
    [Ephesians 2:8-10] “God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.”

Question for Reflection

In the midst of your life circumstances…
          – are you striving for control
          – walking in the fear of the Lord?