Something New Under the Sun: Ancient Wisdom for Contemporary Living - 4. RAINBOWS, IF YOU SEE THEM

4. Rainbows, If You See Them


What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. Is there any­thing of which one can say, “Look! This is something new"? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time.

Ecclesiastes 1:9-10


Commentators on Ecclesiastes remark that this early portion of the book deals with the “round of life.” Derek Kidner points out that life is like a long journey to nowhere in particular. We get up, go to work, come home, eat supper, watch TV, and go to bed. Tomorrow we get up and repeat the routine. This is the story of life “under the sun.”

Solomon’s observation happens to be correct. Per­haps 99 percent of life is ordinary. In the words of the crusty curmudgeon Andy Rooney, “For most of life, nothing wonderful happens.” He goes on to say, in one of his commentaries on daily living, that if you can’t find happiness in things like having a cup of coffee with your wife or sitting down to a meal with family and friends, then you’re probably not going to be very happy. If you sit around dreaming about winning the big contract or wondering when the Yankees are going to make you their starting pitcher, you’re going to spend most of your days waiting for something that isn’t going to happen.

Meanwhile the sun will rise tomorrow and you won’t see it. A friend will say hello and it won’t matter, your children will giggle but you won’t smile, the roses will bloom, white snow will cover the front yard, your hus­band will offer to rub your back, the choir will sing your favorite hymn-and because it’s ordinary or you’ve seen it before or heard it before or done it before, and because you’re dreaming of the future, you’ll miss it altogether.

Here’s an old story from the comic strip “Peanuts.” Lucy is down on her knees, looking intently at something on the ground when Charlie Brown comes along. She says, “I’ve been watching these bugs, Charlie Brown. You see, this one bug here is about to leave home. He’s been saying good-bye to all his friends. Suddenly, this little girl bug comes running up and tries to persuade him not to leave.” Charlie Brown looks up with an amazed and puz­zled look on his face. Lucy concludes, “If you’re going to be a good bug-watcher, you have to have lots of imagina­tion.

Lucy is right, of course. What you see is what you want to see. Some people look at life and see nothing but bugs. Other people see a love story.

It’s true that there is “nothing new under the sun.” But that doesn’t mean life isn’t worth living. The world is filled with rainbows for those who have eyes to see them.


Father, I pray for eyes to see the rainbows all around me. Amen.



* How do you reconcile the parade of human progress with the truth that there is nothing new under the sun?


* Are you more likely to see bugs or a love story?


* How does Jesus Christ create something “new” in your life?



Read Jeremiah 31:31-34; 2 Corinthians 5:17; and Revelation 21:5.    
Want instant access to all 100 daily devotionals? Something New Under the Sun: Ancient Wisdom for Contemporary Living is available in ebook format for the Kindle, Nook, or Ipad. Purchase your copy here! 
The Anchor Project
Explaining the Gospel in “Walmart English”

Anchor is a “gospel book” that explains the Good News in a simple and persuasive manner. Read the latest on “The Anchor Project” and how you can be support our work.

Read More
Keep Believing China
Partnering with Chinese pastors and churches

We want to join together with pastors and Christian workers to equip the church in China, broadcasting translated sermons, providing ministry resources for Christians and pastors in China.

Read More

Weekly sermon email
Subscribe for free

Subscribe to the weekly sermon from Keep Believing Ministries. Sign up for our emails and use it to grow in your faith as well as to encourage others.


KBM Podcasts
Weekly audio sermons

Welcome to Keep Believing Ministries’ audio/podcast library. Listen to or download a digital audio version of one of these messages or receive them via our podcast and feed.

Read More

Ebook: Lord of Glory

The Bible contains many names of Christ. His names tell us who he is. His names tell us why he came. His names tell us how he can help us. His names tell us why we worship him. In this devotional series you'll learn of these varied and meaning behind the names, titles and descriptions of Christ.

“Equipping and encouraging people to keep believing in Jesus”

“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”