Under the Sun

“Why should I fear in the days of evil, when the depravity of my supplanters surrounds me?  Those who trust in their wealth and boast in the abundance of their riches: None of them can at all redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him (for the redemption of their soul is precious, and it comes to an end forever), that he might yet live forever and never see the pit.  For he sees wise men die; likewise the fool and the brutish ones perish, and leave their wealth to others.   Their inner thought is that their houses will last forever, and their dwelling places from generation to generation; they call their lands after their own names.  Nevertheless man, though precious, does not remain; he is like the animals that perish.  This way of theirs is their folly; yet those who follow delight in their sayings. Selah.  Like sheep they are appointed to the grave; death shall shepherd them, and the upright shall have the rule over them in the morning; their form is consumed; Sheol is their home.  But God will redeem my soul from the hand of Sheol; for He will carry me away. Selah.  Be not afraid when one becomes rich, when the glory of his house increases; for when he dies he shall carry nothing away; his glory shall not descend after him.   For in his life he blessed his own soul (indeed, they praise you when you do well for yourself).  But he shall go to the generation of his fathers; they shall never see light.  A man with honor, but lacking understanding, is like the animals that perish.”  Psalms 49:5-20



Yesterday I awoke with thoughts of mankind being under the sun, being on this earth, a Created being on a Created earth (Genesis 1), Created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27).  I thought of a loving God (John 3:16) who sent His only Son to die on the Cross for our sins and the true purpose of our life here on earth, serving Christ (Galatians 2:20), living for Christ, under the sun.



Yet mankind spends their life pursuing vanities, doing those things which are not pleasing to Him who Created them, who provided the means to save them from the wages of their sin (Romans 6:23) that they should no longer serve sin (Romans 6:6), but rather serve Christ (Colossians 3:17), in whom is the only Way (John 14:6) to our eternal Home (2 Corinthians 5:8).  (For those who die without Christ SEE: Ecclesiastes 12:5.)



“What then? Do we surpass them? Not at all. For we have previously charged both Jews and Greeks, that they are all under sin.  As it is written: There is none righteous, no, not one; there is none who understands; there is none who seeks after God.  They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one.  Their throat is an open tomb; with their tongues they have practiced deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips; whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.  Their feet are swift to shed blood; destruction and misery are in their ways; and the way of peace they have not known.  There is no fear of God before their eyes.  Now we know that whatever the Law says, it says to those who are under the Law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.  Therefore by the deeds of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for through the Law is the full true knowledge of sin.”  Romans 3:9-20



In the late morning yesterday, as I was cutting grass, I glanced up at the mostly clear sky over the Black Hills of South Dakota, the deep blue, and my thoughts again arose to this time that each man or woman has before God, under the sun, to forsake their ways and turn to Him (Ezekiel 33:10-20)



We do not know how long we individually have to do such a thing, to repent towards God and by faith believe into Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior (Acts 2:38; 20:21; 17:30-31; Luke 13:3).  Yet, under the sun, this is what we should be doing, living for Jesus, serving Him, doing His great work.  Yet looking around what do I see? 



I see those around whom perhaps have a thought or two, but there hearts are never soft enough to be able to repent and seek Him whom they have heard about.  I see a vast majority laboring under the sun, doing what they find to be pleasing, walking in darkness (Proverbs 4:19), unaware or ignoring the judgment that awaits them for all eternity (Psalms 9:17).  This is serious business!



There is yet another group and one that is perhaps larger than the first two, though they are not without witness, and these are those who are following the customs and religions of their regions, the ones who are born into a place where they grow up and become adults, perhaps from time to time looking and pondering the Truth, but for many, their traditions and culture dictate their destiny, for they too are under the sun and they, just as those who have heard some of the light of the Gospel, have an opportunity to avert eternal destruction, but most will pass into the afterlife unsaved. 



We know that God will be found by anyone who is seeking Him, no matter how far, how deep, how uncontacted or otherwise inaccessible by politics, borders, etc., oh no! –you- can be assured that God will send the Gospel message to someone who is seeking Him against all odds!



“Seek Jehovah while He may be found; call upon Him while He is near.  Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return to Jehovah, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”  Isaiah 55:6-7



I have heard the stories of old of missionaries going to remote places, where the name of Jesus had never been uttered, yet men pondered, sought God and wanted to know the Truth.  God sent!



Right now, those who can hear this or read this are under the sun.  Go outside during the day, even a cloudy day, and look around.  See whatever it may be that is there.  Perhaps the waves of the ocean beating on the sand (Jeremiah 5:22), perhaps the hot sun baking everything in sight, with the earth nearly lifeless of vegetation, maybe a city street with horns beeping, people walking and going about their business, maybe the prairie, the blades of grass moving gently in the winds or a thunderstorm threatening off in the distance, maybe the grass growing, flowers with their beautiful display of colors (even the tiny ones mixed into the grass). 



Perhaps you labor under the sun?  A police officer responding to calls, construction workers of all sorts, outdoor vendors or maybe you are one who likes to get a tan for going to the beach?  Do you not understand that these days, your days, the days that your Creator, God Almighty, have given to you are not without number? 



“Man who is born of woman is of few days, and full of turmoil.  He comes forth like a flower and is cut off; he flees like a shadow and does not remain.  And do You open Your eyes on such a one, and bring me into judgment with Yourself?  Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? No one!  Since his days are determined, the number of his months is with You; You have appointed his limits, so that he cannot pass beyond it.”  Job 14:1-5



What will you do when your eyes close for the final time?  What will you do when you no longer have any part under the sun and you are awaiting the Great White Throne Judgment, to stand before Him who Created you, with no hope in sight, for your chance, your opportunity to accept the free gift that God has given all of mankind (Ephesians 2:8-9), including you, is now, while you are under the sun, not when that light can no longer be seen ever again.



“And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heavens fled away. And there was found no place for them.  And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God. And books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, out of the things which were written in the books.  And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one, according to their works.  And Death and Hades were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death.  And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire.”  Revelation 20:11-15


“Declare and approach; yea, let them take counsel together. Who has declared this from antiquity? Who has told it since then? Is it not I, Jehovah. And there is no other God besides Me; a just Mighty God and a Savior; there is no one besides Me.  Turn to Me, and be saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am the Mighty God, and there is no other.  I have sworn by Myself, the word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that to Me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.”  Isaiah 45:21-23



Those who have passed before you, those who did the same as you are doing, if they were able to once again be revived and be under the sun, could testify to those truths (Luke 16:19-31), but because they died in their sins (Romans 3:23; Psalms 51:5), because during their time under the sun they did not seek God and accept the free gift of Salvation, only thru Jesus Christ, those who do the same will join them, unable to rise again.



Consider what the Bible says about this vanity that is common to all of mankind, irregardless of the borders or your respective country that you reside in:



“The words of the preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem:  Vanity of vanities, says the preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.  What is the profit to a man in all his labor which he labors under the sun?  A generation passes away, and a generation comes; but the earth stands perpetually.  The sun also rises, and the sun goes down, panting in a hurry to its place where it rises again.  The wind goes toward the south, and it turns around to the north; it whirls around continually; and the wind returns according to its circuits.  All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; to the place from where the rivers come, there they return again.  All things are full of labor; man is not able to utter it. The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.  That which has been is that which shall be; and that which has been done is that which shall be done; and there is nothing new under the sun.  Is there a thing of which it may be said, See, this is new? It has already been in the days of antiquity, which were before us.  There is no remembrance of former things, and also no remembrance of following things of what will be; nor a remembrance of those things by those who follow afterwards.”  Ecclesiastes 1:1-11


“I said in my heart, Come now, I will test you with mirth; therefore regard pleasure; and this was vanity.  I said of laughter, It is madness; and of mirth, What does it accomplish?  I sought in my heart to gratify my flesh with wine, while leading my heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, until I might find out what was good for the sons of men to do under the heavens all the days of their life.  I made my works great; I built houses for myself; I planted vineyards for myself.  I made gardens and orchards for myself, and I planted trees in them, of all kinds of fruit.  I made pools of water for myself, to water the forest springing up with trees.  I have bought slaves and maids, and had servants born in my house; I also had more livestock, herds and flocks, than all were before me in Jerusalem.  I also gathered silver and gold to myself, and the treasure of kings and of the provinces. I got men singers and women singers for myself, and the delights of the sons of men, wives and concubines.  I was great and increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem; also my wisdom remained with me.  And whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them; I did not withhold my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labor, and this was my share from all my labor.  Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done, and on the labor that I had labored to do; and, behold, all was vanity and striving of spirit; and there was no profit under the sun.  And I turned myself to consider wisdom and madness and folly; for what can the man do who comes after the king, when it has already been done?  Then I saw that wisdom excels folly, as far as light excels darkness.  The wise man’s eyes are in his head; but the fool walks in darkness; and I also considered that one event happens to them all.  Then I said in my heart, As it happens to the fool, so it happens even to me; and why was I then more wise? And I said in my heart that this also is vanity.  For there is no remembrance of the wise more than of the fool forever, since that which is now shall all be forgotten in the days to come. And how does the wise man die? Same as the fool!  Therefore I hated life; because the work that is done under the sun is evil to me; for all is vanity and striving of spirit.  Yes, I hated all my labor which I had done under the sun; because I must leave it to the man who shall come after me.  And who knows whether he will be wise or a fool? Yet he shall have rule over all my labor in which I have labored, and acted wisely under the sun. This also is vanity.  Therefore I turned my heart to despair over all the labor in which I had labored under the sun.  For there is a man whose labor is in wisdom, and in knowledge, and with success; yet he shall leave it as inheritance to a man who has not labored in it. This also is vanity and a great evil.  For what has man from all his labor, and from the striving of his heart, in which he has labored under the sun?  For all his days are sorrows, and his task grief; yea, his heart does not take rest in the night. This also is vanity.   Is it not good for a man to eat and drink and make his soul behold the good in his labor. This also, I saw, that it was from the hand of God.  For who can eat, or who can enjoy, apart from Me?  For God gives wisdom, and knowledge, and joy to a man who is good in His sight. But to the sinner He gives labor, to collect and gather, that he may give to him who is good before God. This also is vanity and striving of spirit.”  Ecclesiastes 2



Ultimately the job of Christians is to tell others through both our lifestyle, as well as through language about Jesus Christ, the Savior of mankind, while they are still under the sun.  For one day, even we who are Believers will no longer have any need for the sun:



“The sun shall no more be your light by day; nor the brightness of the moon give light to you; but Jehovah will be to you an everlasting light, and your God your glory.  Your sun shall not go down any more, nor shall your moon withdraw itself; for Jehovah will be your everlasting light, and the days of your mourning shall be ended.”  Isaiah 60:19-20



This ministry is not about me, nor any name that could be put behind it, really it is about following Christ, serving Him and doing His good bidding (Luke 12:43).  Warning every man (Colossians 1:28) to turn from their wicked ways and turn to God, who Created them.  Just how long can a servant of Christ warn the same group of people (Mark 6:11) before his Commander directs him to others who are waiting to hear the light of the Gospel, that they might be Saved? 



Dear reader (or listener), consider the end of the matter, for God in His Word has declared your future without Him.



“For all this I took to heart, in order to explain it: that the righteous and the wise and their works are in the hand of God. No man knows, whether by love or hatred, all that is before them.  All happens alike to everyone; there is one event to the righteous and to the wicked; to the good and to the clean, and to the unclean; to him who sacrifices, and to him who does not sacrifice. As is the good, so is the sinner. He who swears is as he who fears an oath.  This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event to all. Yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that they go to the dead.  For whoever is chosen, of all those living, there is confidence; for a living dog is better than a dead lion.  For the living know that they shall die; but the dead do not know anything, nor do they have any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.  Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, have now perished; nor do they ever any longer have a part in anything that is done under the sun.”  Ecclesiastes 9:1-6



“And as it is appointed for men to die once, and after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, without sin, unto salvation.”  Hebrews 9:27-28