Reverence toward God in worship and word is considered first, followed by covetousness, and God’s gift of enjoyment.
Reverence in Speech
Some of Solomon’s advice parallels that of Jesus. Solomon advised readers to pray thoughtfully, without haste, and with brevity. Jesus warned of lengthy prayers to be seen by men (Matt 6:5, Mark 12:38-40). Jesus also rebuked meaningless repetition (Matt 6:7).
Solomon advised readers to pay their vows quickly. Jesus went further and advised hearers to avoid vows (Matt 5:34-35).
Ecclesiastes 5 Outline
Respect God in word
Sacrifice and prayer
Advice regarding vows to God
Greed: Motives and evils
Economic oppression from self-promotion
Desire for more money
Desire to hoard money
Gifts of God
Enjoyment in toil
Power to enjoy wealth and possessions
Pain of Greed
Two kinds of covetousness are discussed in this chapter: the desire to get more and the desire to keep without sharing.
Jesus said, “Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed: for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions.” (Luke 12:15, NASB)
The sleep of the godly laborer is sweet, while that of the ungodly rich man is not (Eccl 5:12). A greedy rich man may suffer from indigestion, anxiety, and insomnia. David wrote that God blessed his beloved even in sleep (Psalm 127:2).
Contentment cures greed (Lk 3:12-14, Ph 4:11, 1 Tim 6:6-8).
God Gives Enjoyment
Money, material possessions, and power can be obtained by both the righteous and unrighteous. Empowerment to truly enjoy wealth comes only from God.