Useful Bible Studies > Ecclesiastes Commentary > chapter 8

Wisdom is wonderful

Ecclesiastes 8:1

This verse praises the wise man. Or perhaps it would be better to say that it praises his wisdom. The wise man himself may not be attractive, but his wisdom makes him attractive. Wisdom changes a man in a wonderful manner.

In our Bibles, these words appear at the start of chapter 8. But perhaps they actually belong at the end of chapter 7. They seem to fit better as part of that passage. Chapter 7 astonishes us with its many wise thoughts and ideas. It seems right, now, to declare how wonderful that wisdom is.

There is another reason why this verse matches chapter 7 well. The author has just written about the idea that there could be a perfect man (Ecclesiastes 7:28). The only man whom the Bible considers completely good is Christ (Hebrews 7:24-26). In the Bible, the ideas of perfect wisdom and complete goodness are often the same thing. So it seems right to praise Christ and his wisdom here.

Even as a child, Christís wisdom astonished the men who taught Godís law (Luke 2:46-47). When Christ began to teach, his wisdom astonished all who heard him (Mark 1:21-22). Nobody taught him to be wise, but his wisdom impressed everyone (John 7:15).

Christís wisdom is for all Godís people. The Bible sometimes describes a face that shines. Mosesí face shone when he had spoken to God (Exodus 34:30). Christís face shone on one special occasion (Matthew 17:2). And when Godís people see God, their faces shine too (2 Corinthians 3:18). The meaning of that light includes the greatness of Godís perfect wisdom.

Next part: When you appeal to a king (Ecclesiastes 8:2-4)

 

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© 2014, Keith Simons.