What is that which hath been? already it is, and that which is to be hath already been, and God requireth that which is pursued.
Ecclesiastes 3:15 Additional TranslationsClarke's Commentary on the Bible
That which hath been is now - God governs the world now, as he has governed it from the beginning; and the revolutions and operations of nature are the same now, that they have been from the beginning. What we see now, is the same as has been seen by those before us.
And God requireth that which is past - i.e., That it may return again in its proper order. The heavens themselves, taking in their great revolutions, show the same phenomena. Even comets are supposed to have their revolutions, though some of them are hundreds of years in going round their orbits.
But in the economy of grace, does not God require that which is past? Whatever blessing or influence God gives to the soul of man, he intends shall remain and increase; and it will, if man be faithful. Reader, canst thou produce all the secret inspirations of his Spirit, all the drawings of his love, his pardoning mercy, his sanctifying grace, the heavenly-mindedness produced in thee, thy holy zeal, thy spirit of prayer, thy tender conscience, the witness of the Spirit, which thou didst once receive and enjoy? Where are they? God requireth that which is past.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Ecclesiastes 1:9,10 The thing that has been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done...
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