Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might, for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going.
King Solomon is telling us that no matter what we do, do it to the best of our abilities.
This reminds me of something I was told by one of my contacts whom I worked with at a large customer. I dealt with him for a number of years. He was always honest and fair with me and I appreciated it very much. Unfortunately he passed away suddenly and I never had the chance to express my gratitude and enjoyment of working with him.
We were working together on setting up a large production line for his company. . This man understood doing the job right the first time, even though it might take longer than expected. He knew that in the long run the extra work up front, would save a ton of work and grief in the long run.
On this day some of his fellow workers were avoiding the manual and tedious labor that had to be done to make sure the setup was correct. Suddenly they had phone calls to make and emails that required their immediate response. It was just him and I doing the work and he turned to me and told me what his father use to tell him.
“Whether a job is large or small, do it right, or don’t do it at all.”
I have tried over the years to impart that wisdom on my children, just as Solomon is doing in this verse. Solomon is telling us no matter what you do, do it the best you can by utilizing the gifts and talents that God has given you. One day those abilities will be gone forever and what a waste and what a sin to have not used them.
When Solomon wrote these words, the common belief at that time was that all living things went to the same place after death, Sheol the abode of the dead. Sheol was believed to be in the lowest parts of the earth. It wasn’t until the later part of the Old Testament and the New Testament that the resurrection was revealed. That is when the idea of two places, heaven and hell, came into being.
I’m not sure what heaven and hell are. I don’t think they are a place, perhaps more like a state of being. But one thing is for sure, no matter who or what you do or don’t believe, you can’t avoid Sheol. Time on this earth for each and every one of us is going to run out.
Solomon advises us to make the best of the time we have. Whatever you do, do it with all your might and have no regrets when you make that passage to Sheol. For in Sheol none of this, life as you know it, exists.
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