“That which has been is what will be, that which is done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.” – Ecclesiastes 1:9
Solomon was granted great wisdom and accomplished many things throughout the pages of the Bible, but he also seemed to squander away what he had and found himself wondering what the meaning of life really was. The above verse is wrapping up the initial theme of the book of Ecclesiastes where Solomon looked at nature and the pursuits of man and concluded that, “there is nothing new under the sun.” Natural cycles (water cycle, seasons, etc.) do the same thing over and over again. Man pursues the same things (fame and fortune and everything that goes with it) regardless of what time period they live in and at the end of it all, time passes and these cycles start all over again.
Where we can really start to see this concept play out is in our current political environment. We are several days into a new presidency but much of the rhetoric that we are hearing is the same as it was with the previous presidency. The left and right wings are continuously throwing out facts, rebuttals and accusations and we are left to wonder if any of it really matters.
In the early 1970’s, "The Who" had a popular song titled, “Won’t be Fooled Again”, and in this song they share much of Solomon’s sentiment. There is a line in that song that resonates today, “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.” While those that voted for Trump are hoping that he will be drastically different from what we had for the past eight years, there are others that are worried he will ruin the country. In reality, our daily lives aren’t going to change much over the next few years regardless of which political party has control of our government. If this is where the observations end then life could become pretty depressing and seem pretty meaningless.
Thankfully, Christ changes everything! We read in the New Testament, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” (1 Corinthians 5:17) The old cycles are broken. A new beginning is offered. The Bible goes on to tell us that we are given new natures and can, “put on the new man” (Ephesians 4:24). Once our identity is in Christ, we are given a new mission, a new purpose, a new perspective.
We have to ask ourselves, “Is our identity in Christ?” If it isn’t, then this must be the first step to becoming a new creation. If it is, then we need to ask ourselves, “Am I looking at the world through Solomon’s perspective or Jesus’ perspective?” Solomon’s perspective reveals a world that we can’t change or impact. Jesus’ perspective shows us that the world desperately needs to be impacted by His love and that His love has the power to change everything.