This also is a grievous evil: just as he came, so shall he go, and what gain is there to him who toils for the wind? Moreover, all his days he eats in darkness in much vexation and sickness and anger. Ecclesiastes 5:16-17
“Eating in darkness” is a Hebrew expression for “living in sadness.” The phrase is derived from the way people look when they’re feeling sad. When people’s hearts are sad, their eyes almost look as though they are covered by a cloud. But when people’s hearts are happy, their faces light up and shine. Light represents happiness, and darkness represents sadness. For example, we read in the Psalms, “The Lord is my light and my salvation” (27:1), and “Look on me and answer, O Lord my God. Give light to my eyes” (13:3). To eat in darkness, therefore, means to lead a harsh life of sadness.
The only cases that come before judges are bad ones. A judge who is unwise will torture himself and wear himself out with worry because he doesn’t think he’s making any difference. But someone who is wise will say, “I plan and do everything that I can. But what I can’t change, I’ll accept. I have to endure it. In the meantime, I’ll commit everything to God. He alone knows how to make things better according to his will. He is the only one who can make my efforts succeed.
Therefore, just like a judge, our eyes and ears must get used to seeing and hearing bad things, even if this isn’t what we want. We shouldn’t think we’ll see and hear only good things that please us. That’s not what the world offers. So we should prepare ourselves for bad things, for we know that this is the way life goes. Those who don’t want to have any trouble will find more things that trouble them than others will.
Barnas Sears, D.D.
Controversial and visionary, Luther’s life is revealed in this rare presentation of his work as an educator and church leader. From his birth and childhood, to his religious education, and the events leading up to the Protestant Reformation, you will discover the views and experiences that led to his excommunication by the Pope in 1520. Correspondence and accounts shed further light on Luther’s defiant translation of the Bible from Latin to the language of the common man.
This unique biography is reproduced from an 1850 American Sunday School Union original, and in it you will be introduced to the pivotal life of this enigmatic man before, during, and after one of Christianity’s defining events.