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Introduction

\\INTRODUCTION TO ECCLESIASTES 5\\

This chapter contains some rules and directions concerning the worship
of God; how persons should behave when they go into the house of God;
concerning hearing the word, to which there should be a readiness, and
which should be preferred to the sacrifices of fools, \\#Ec 5:1\\.
Concerning prayer to God; which should not be uttered rashly and
hastily, and should be expressed in few words; which is urged from the
consideration of the majesty of God, and vileness of men; and the folly
of much speaking is exposed by the simile of a dream, \\#Ec 5:2,3\\.
Concerning vows, which should not be rashly made; when made, should be
kept; nor should excuses be afterwards framed for not performing them,
since this might bring the anger of God upon men, to the destruction of
the works of their hands, \\#Ec 5:4-6\\; and, as an antidote against those
vanities, which appear in the prayers and vows of some, and dreams of
others, the fear of God is proposed, \\#Ec 5:7\\; and, against any surprise
at the oppression of the poor, the majesty, power, and providence of
God, and his special regard to his people, are observed, \\#Ec 5:8\\. And
then the wise man enters into a discourse concerning riches; and
observes, that the fruits of the earth, and the culture of it, are
necessary to all men, and even to the king, \\#Ec 5:9\\; but dissuades from
covetousness, or an over love of riches; because they are unsatisfying,
are attended with much trouble, often injurious to the owners of them;
at length perish, and their possessors; who, at death, are stripped
quite naked of all, after they have spent their days in darkness and
distress, \\#Ec 5:10-17\\; and concludes, therefore, that it is best for a
man to enjoy, in a free manner, the good things of this life he is
possessed of, and consider them as the gifts of God, and be thankful
for them; by which means he will pass through the world more
comfortably, and escape the troubles that attend others, \\#Ec 5:18-20\\.