The Prayer and the Dream
Ecclesiastes 5:1-12
Keep your foot when you go to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools…

The prayer and the dream: — There is an analogy instituted between voluminous prayer and the voluminous dream. The dream arises out of the various transactions of business, and the fool's prayer springs from the variety of his vocabulary. Confusion is the characteristic of both. They are produced by external influences. The soul as a directing rational power is asleep. Dim memories of things mingle in a wild phantasmagoria before the closed portals of the sense of the dreamer. It is just so with the worshipping word-monger. The nature and character of God, the promises, Scripture language, are floating before the closed vision of the pietistic dreamer, and his prayers are a jumble of disjointed things. This will always be the case with him who gives himself up to the external influences. But as it is better to dream than to be dead, so is it always better to pray, even disjointedly and wildly, than to be without that breath of the spiritual life. The mere enthusiast, guided by no reason in his devotions, may be brought under its direction; but how shall mere reason become enthusiastic? We answer, by the action of the Spirit of God on the soul. What we need is this Spirit. We can prophesy to the dry bones, and clothe them with flesh; but the Spirit of God is needed that they may stand up and become an army of God. "Come, O breath, and breathe on those slain, that they may live," is to be our prayer. When we have got the answer to that petition, we shall be living, loving, active Christians.

(J. Bonnet.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.

WEB: Guard your steps when you go to God's house; for to draw near to listen is better than to give the sacrifice of fools, for they don't know that they do evil.

Reverence and Fidelity
Top of Page
Top of Page