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“Dust in the Wind” and Ecclesiastes

The other day, Pandora was playing “Dust in the Wind,” the biggest hit by the rock band Kansas in 1977. Since I’m preaching from several passages from Ecclesiastes, it struck me that its haunting, melancholy tune and lyrics could have been taken from the Teacher’s words.

Ecclesiastes concludes that life is meaningless without God, “The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man” (Eccl 12:13). And the words of this song reflect this meaningless life, wisdom, work and pleasures among unbelievers.

Here are some of the lyrics compared with the Teacher’s inspired words:

Same old song.
“Is there a thing of which it is said, ‘See, this is new’? It has been already in the ages before us. There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remembrance of later things yet to be among those who come after” (Eccl 1:10-11).

Just a drop of water in an endless sea.
“I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him” (Eccl 3:14).

All we do crumbles to the ground, though we refuse to see.
“Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun” (Eccl 2:11).

Dust in the wind, all we are is dust in the wind.
“All go to one place. All are from the dust, and to dust all return” (Eccl 3:20).

Now don’t hang on. Nothin’ lasts forever but the earth and sky.
“What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun? A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever” (Eccl 1:3-4).

It slips away, and all your money won’t another minute buy.
“So I turned about and gave my heart up to despair over all the toil of my labors under the sun, because sometimes a person who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave everything to be enjoyed by someone who did not toil for it” (Eccl 2:20-21).

“For the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing, and they have no more reward, for the memory of them is forgotten” (Eccl 9:5).

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