Meant to Live For More

Luke Morrison • January 30, 2023


There is a song that speaks to much of what this section of Scripture is telling us.

This song is called “Meant to Live” by a group called Switchfoot.

Dreaming about Providence And whether mice or men have second tries

Maybe we’ve been livin’ with our eyes half open Maybe we’re bent and broken, broken

We were meant to live for so much more Have we lost ourselves?

Somewhere we live inside Somewhere we live inside

We were meant to live for so much more Have we lost ourselves?

Somewhere we live inside We want more than this world’s got to offer

We want more than this world’s got to offer

We want more than the wars of our fathers And everything inside screams for second life

Everything inside screams for a second life.

This is exactly what we do in this life.

We do this because we have a desire for more than this wicked and sinful world.

This world is evil, harsh, twisted, and corrupt.

I have been going through training with Nikki so we can adopt and in this training we have seen and learned about some very disturbing things.

We have seen many sexual deviant aspects of sinful humanity.

We have gone through the wickedness of human trafficking.

In this training we have seen the corruption of humanity on full display.

Not to mention the fact that there is adoption in this world period shows the depravity of the world.

Adoption occurs through death, abandonment, neglect, perversions committed, and just not wanting a child.

Every one of these are from sin and depravity.

So everything inside of us screams for a second life.

We all desire more than what this world offers.

This world offers us the dregs and too often too many take the dregs and are happy.

They are pleased with the dregs because the dregs give comfort for a time.

But, they do not satisfy forever. They can’t even satisfy for any length of time.

Nothing in this world can satisfy our desire for more.

There is only one thing that can and that is when we find our pleasure and joy in the almighty creator God.

He is our comfort and peace and He is who can and will give us second life and fulfill the cry of desire for so much more.

We see this in the text under study today. In Eccl. 3:1-22 we read,

1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: 2 a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; 3 a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6 a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7 a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace. 9 What gain has the worker from his toil? 10 I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. 12 I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; 13 also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God’s gift to man. 14 I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him. 15 That which is, already has been; that which is to be, already has been; and God seeks what has been driven away. 16 Moreover, I saw under the sun that in the place of justice, even there was wickedness, and in the place of righteousness, even there was wickedness. 17 I said in my heart, God will judge the righteous and the wicked, for there is a time for every matter and for every work. 18 I said in my heart with regard to the children of man that God is testing them that they may see that they themselves are but beasts. 19 For what happens to the children of man and what happens to the beasts is the same; as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts, for all is vanity. 20 All go to one place. All are from the dust, and to dust all return. 21 Who knows whether the spirit of man goes upward and the spirit of the beast goes down into the earth? 22 So I saw that there is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his work, for that is his lot. Who can bring him to see what will be after him?

Ecclesiastes 3:1–22 ESV

There is a lot in this but three things stand out the most

The cycles of life point us to more

The deep yearnings we have point to more

and The beastly nature of creation points us to more.

Let us look at the cycles now.

The Cycles of Life Point Us to More

The very first thing we see in examining the cycles of life is that there is a definite time for everything. In the phrase, “For everything there is a season, and a time for everything,” we see that everything that happens is set and does not occur randomly.

From this we understand that time is not a master but is under control of the ultimate master.

In this system we see the over-ruling providence of God. This means that in all these things that we see in these first ten verses are under the control of our almighty all-powerful creator God.

These cycles of life and time encompass everything from birth to death and every event that occurs within that time frame.

We all understand many of these cycles. Planting and plucking is simple enough you sew the wheat you harvest the wheat.

Tearing down and building up are normal for us. We do this regularly with buildings and fences and even vehicles.

Weeping and laughing mourning and celebrating, we all experience these things. Time to seek and to lose, to keep and cast away. We all gather things only to throw them away.

Tearing sewing, staying silent and speaking, embracing and not embracing, loving and hating.

Some seem a bit different though.

Time to kill and heal, cast away stones and gather stones, and war and peace.

But even in these odd ones, we see the cycle of life happening.

Bad people and evil wicked despots have caused many to kill who would never have thought of that. Those types have caused many wars and battles to be fought.

In OT times when a person was grieved they tore their robes and then later mended them.

Farmers know when plowing you remove stones from fields. Well the gathering them back is putting them back on the fields so they cannot be worked. This was a common practice in the ancient times.

But even the ones we understand we miss some things.

The main thing we miss in this section is that this may be what happens and that all these events are under the providence of God but that this describes what happens rather than what should happen.

Life would be far better if we never had to kill, go to war, grieve, or die.

But these all happen to all.

So what this tells us is that life is a wheel. It just rolls and rolls and what was comes again. We are trapped in this cycle and we run and run but always finish where we started.

We are like a hamster in a cage running on his wheel. We do a lot but get no where.

In all our work, toil, we can’t change times, circumstances, nor can we control events.

They happen and will continue to happen.

But the business we have here points us to the desire for this to change, and that desire points us to more than this world.

We have deep yearnings for more. We want there to be more. We want death and disease, war and evil, and pain and suffering gone.

We desire more and we know we were meant to live for more because…

The Deep Yearnings in Us Point to More

Verse 11 tells us s much about our desires for more.

We first see that God has created everything beautiful in its time.

Solomon sees that even in all the grief and anguish and heartache of this present world, that through God’s providential plan all are wonderful.

Much like Joseph in Genesis 50:20 “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.”

He sees that the cycle of life is not the completion for us. He sees that it does not complete us.

He sees that it is what is happening through these cycles that is what is completing us.

God is working in and through this fallen world to do some amazing things.

The fall did not hinder God’s plan for man. All it did was make everything more difficult for us because we decided we wanted to be like God.

We suffer through many things but that points us to a time of no suffering and makes us desire that.

We may see that there is much beauty in things here but even that leaves us empty because we know that the beauty will soon be marred by sin and death.

This makes us crave more. We desire so much more than what this life gives and shows. We do this because we were meant to live for so much more.

I know this and can say this with authority because the next sentence in verse 11 tells us, “he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.”

We desire eternity and that second life. We desire more because God created us for more.

He did not create us to be here and allow the world to rule over us.

No, He created us to be fruitful and multiply and have dominion over the world.

This is why Solomon says that it is right for us to enjoy all our toil and be joyful because those are gifts from God for us in this time here.

But he also says that there is nothing better than for us to do good as long as we live.

We can do this because we know God is in control. We know as Eccl. 3:14 says, “I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him.”

Without God, everything suffers in the futility of temporality. The pleasures and even the good works of this life are simply a means of marking time until its inevitable cessation, when everything will be snatched from our grasp. The Preacher highlights the permanence, completeness and security that are to be found in the realization that God has an eternal purpose in all that he does. This purpose is to engender fear into the heart of man! This fear may initially bring thoughts of dread and terror to the heart of man, but its intent is to give recognition of God’s awesome power and authority.

Unlike life ‘under the sun’ the believer experiences the enduring nature of God’s kingdom. This verse gives perspective to the cyclical, unchangeable events of man’s life and history. The treadmill of life and death that he previously described as ‘vanity’ has now, with the recognition of God’s sovereignty, become a secure environment in which he can gladly experience the hand of God at work. (Jim Winter, Opening Up Ecclesiastes).

When we see that everything that is happening is happening because God is working out His perfect plan in time, we can be joyful and rest in Him and go out and do good.

He desires us to do good rather than evil. He desires that we love the orphan and the widow. This is called pure and perfect religion in James 1:27.

We can rest in this ability to have joy and do good always when we know that these times these difficulties we experience are part of a far greater plan that we only see portions of.

Life is like a beautiful tapestry. But we only see the backside of that tapestry. There are the knots, and stitches, and weaves, and mistakes covered by crafty work but mistakes nonetheless. But on the side we cannot see is the beautiful piece of art work. This is what God sees while we only see the bumps and knots.

This is also why…

The Beastly Nature of Creation Points Us to More

We all know that our government system is corrupt. In it we see much wickedness in the justice system.

Again, this is from God because God has allowed mankind to follow the desires of their hearts. And the desires of mans heart is to do evil and be wicked.

But in this those who know the Lord as their savior know that He will judge this wickedness one day. There is a time coming that this present evil world will face severe judgment because they refused to bow to the Lord.

But until then, these times and seasons and God’s plan working we see that we are like the beasts of the field.

We devour and destroy so many things just as they do.

We behave as they do in so many ways it is unreal. And we are not much different from a worldly perspective from these beasts.

But we know that humanity is in the image of God. We are not like the beasts of the field. We know that this idea is wrong even when humanity acts like the beasts of the field.

We are savage like them. We die and go to dust like them.

Most humanity does not know what happens at death for animals or people. They just know that each dies and that that is the end of it. Even though they like us that have believed in Christ for our forever salvation, have eternity in their hearts.

But to those who believe this way, Solomon makes a statement in the last verse that questions this line of thinking.

We should rejoice in our work because we cannot see what will be after.

If we are to rejoice in our work, not beast like tendencies, then this means we can make moral choices.

No beast of the field can make a moral choice, this is only something that humanity can do.

Since only us humans can make this type of decision, then doesn’t that mean that we are more than just an animal?

Yes, it does. It shows that morality is ours to do. We make these types of decisions regularly and no other creature on this planet can do that, only us humans.

Therefore, the beastly nature of the creation points us, moral agents, to thinking again of that second life. Thinking of living for so much more than what is offered here.

We can’t see what will come after us but we can make some good guesses by what history has done. Remember the cycles in the first part of the chapter illustrate the wheel of life. What has been will be again there is nothing new under the sun.

People do not embrace the concept of eternity in their hearts and therefore they continue the same old cycles again and again.

God knows this and He is working all the bad to be good in His due time, not ours.

So, enjoy what the Lord has blessed you with here but know that this is not all there is we are not mice on a wheel, we are not animals of the field, we are image bearers of the Lord and we have an eternal desire on our hearts that only He can fill.


C.S. Lewis gave us the following insight: Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition, when infinite joy is offered to us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in the slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.

That is about it isn’t it.

We are far to easily pleased by the foolish pleasure of the creation rather than the desires of eternity in our hearts.

Today we will walk out the doors back into the same cycles we just read about.

We will walk out into the same evils we just read about.

We will walk out into the same situations we are always in.

The only way to face them with joy, and peace is to face them knowing that you have the God who placed eternity in your heart as your savior.

Jesus offers you salvation from all this evil because He took it all on Himself for you. It takes believing in Him for the salvation that only He offers to receive this amazing gift of that second life. He died so you can live with Him forever, do you believe that?