Pursuing Faithfulness (Ecclesiastes 12:13–14) - Radical

Pursuing Faithfulness (Ecclesiastes 12:13–14)

“Now all that has been heard, here is the final conclusion. Fear God and obey his commandments for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil.”
– Ecclesiastes 12:13–14

Wow, what a summary of the Book of Ecclesiastes. “Now that all has been heard, here is the final conclusion.” After looking at all the pursuits and possessions and pleasures of this world, exploring it all and all the nature of those things apart from God, here is the final conclusion. Fear God and obey his commandments. This is the whole duty of man. This is the whole purpose of man. The author of Ecclesiastes says, “Fear God and obey his commandments.” That’s your whole duty today. That’s my whole duty today, to fear God and obey His commandments. Fear God and obey His commandments knowing Verse 14 says that God will bring every deed into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil.

Ecclesiastes 12:13–14 Reminds Us of Our Sin

Can you just imagine sitting in a large room with all the people you know, maybe even people you don’t know, and watching on a big screen in front of you every secret thing you’ve ever thought or desired or done? That could be a horrifying thought, I think, for most any of us, and yet God knows it all and God will bring every deed into judgment. Oh, doesn’t Ecclesiastes just drive us to Jesus? We need Jesus. We don’t obey His commandments, we don’t live in fear of God as we ought, and every deed we have done is not good. Oh we need Jesus to save us from our sins and to transform our lives that we might fear God and obey His commandments and that we might live in such a way. Oh, let’s turn it around.

Ecclesiastes 12:13–14 Encourages Us to Live Openly

Don’t you want to live in such a way that every secret thing is good? That what would be put on that screen would be so many different, good things that no one else knew that we thought or desired or did? That we did? And the words of Jesus and showing them out so many good things in secret alone?

Oh God, we pray that Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 would mark our lives. May we be marked by this duty, this delightful duty at that, to fear you, Oh God, and to obey your commandments. Help us today to fear You and obey Your commandments, to love you with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, revere You, worship You, trust You, and do what you have said. Live according to Your word knowing that this is where life is found. This is what we’re made for. God, help us to live for this.

This Verse Praises Jesus

And even as we pray that we know that we fall short of that in so many different ways, Jesus, we praise you for dying on the cross and rising from the grave that our sins might be covered. So God, we pray that you would remove the secret evils from our life and bring about secret. Good God. We pray that our lives would be pleasing and honoring to you and good for others. As we fear you and obey your commandments. Yes, God, please help us to live out Ecclesiastes 12:13–14. Help us to be faithful in this duty. By the power of Your spirit, the spirit of Jesus inside of us, we pray in his name. Amen.

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder of Radical.

David received his Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the author of Don’t Hold Back, Radical, Follow MeCounter CultureSomething Needs to ChangeBefore You Vote, as well as the multiple volumes of the Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary series.

Along with his wife and children, he lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area.


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