It’s New Year’s Eve, time to let loose and party all night long, right? Indigestion, hangovers, and embarrassing memories are just part of New Year’s celebrations, after all.
The adage, “Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die,” is sometimes attributed to Shakespeare or some Greek philosopher, advising us that, since life is short and meaningless, we should indulge ourselves as much as we can before we die.
The quote is actually from the Bible, in the Old Testament Wisdom Literature book of Ecclesiastes, Chapter Eight, where, after listing the many imponderables in this life, Solomon says:
15 So I commended enjoyment, because a man has nothing better under the sun than to eat, drink, and be merry; for this will remain with him in his labor all the days of his life which God gives him under the sun.Ecclesiastes 8:15
As we see in the verses which follow this statement, rather than promoting a hedonistic lifestyle, Solomon is expanding on the mystery of God’s will, which will remain an enigma to us while on this earth.
When I tried to gain wisdomEcclesiastes 8:16-17 (NET)
and to observe the activity on earth—
17 then I discerned all that God has done:
No one really comprehends what happens on earth.
Despite all human] efforts to discover it, no one can ever grasp it…
When the New Year approaches, rather than making resolutions, I like to find a life verse to cling to throughout the coming year. This year I chose 1 Corinthians 10:31.
31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.1 Corinthians 10:31 (NKJV)
How exactly does one do everything to the glory of God? How can I glorify God with all my actions?
The dictionary defines glorifying as giving honor and praise. We know that we honor our parents or authorities by showing them respect and obedience. In the same way, we honor God with our obedience to His laws and respect for Him as the Creator. We praise Him in worship with thanksgiving for His merciful providence in our lives.
This may not be an easy task, but with the Lord’s help, I will try. New Year’s Resolutions seldom last into February, but once written on the heart, a Scripture verse can last a lifetime and bring you great joy.
The mystery and enigma of God’s love become more clear through obedience and worship.
15 So I recommend the enjoyment of lifeEccl. 8:15 (NET)
for there is nothing better on earth for a person to do except to eat, drink, and enjoy life.*
*[All to the glory of God.]
Happy New Year!