Everything Beautiful
Ecclesiastes 3:11
He has made every thing beautiful in his time: also he has set the world in their heart…

The Creator, when He formed the world, had the loveliness of things before Him as an end and object, as well as the usefulness of things. And so, wherever we walk, we see reflected the love of beauty in the Divine mind. And the more minutely we examine the works of God, the more exquisite is their beauty. How unlike the works of man! Take a finely polished needle, and place it under a powerful microscope, and it becomes a huge, rough bar of steel, with miniature caverns and ravines of black "clinker." Take again some common insect, a wasp, for instance; and under the same microscope it grows into a miracle of sheeny scales of semi-transparent gauze of gold, each scale geometrically perfect. Or take that buttercup and look down into its heart, and you will look into an enchanted fairy chamber of flashing lights that shames all the extravagances of the "Arabian Nights." God loves to have things beautiful: and it is wise for us to foster in ourselves the love of beauty. No doubt business rivalries are so intense and keen that men are obliged to consider chiefly utility. What can I make or get out of it? is the primary question. Bread, not beauty, is their principal concern. Trade is "sowing cities like shells along the shore": and the things of the mart and the street are in danger of crowding nature and God out of men's minds and freezing their hearts. But let us hope that the fight for the front places in all the callings which is the prevailing ambition at present will never become so severe as to absorb all thought and time, and destroy all. care for the cultivation of this joyous side of life. Indeed, the fiercer the struggle for life becomes, the greater the need for the sweet alleviations which admiration of nature brings. Nor can we doubt that when the Creator lavished, and still lavishes so much beauty in the natural world, He had and has in view the highest usefulness; for surely it is as serviceable a thing to give refreshment and tone and elevation to the soul, as to provide wheat for bread, or wool for clothing. Let us lift our thoughts from the loveliness of nature to Him, who is the Rose of Sharon all glowing with the wealth of heavenly love, and the Lily of the Valley, "holy, harmless, undefiled," and the True Vine laden with ripe clusters for the famishing souls of men — yes, to Him, who is unique in His splendour of "very" Godhead and perfect manhood. One of the most patent wants of our Churches to-day is that of spiritual beauty of character; beauty of spiritual character. Not the surface beauty of morality unvitalized by personal love to the Saviour. This is but the crystal, symmetrical, clean-cut in exactness of outline, cold as the snow, dead as the stone. Our want is the beauty of the living soul, of the holy life. Not any mimicry of it, however successful, however unconscious; not any simulation of its life; not painted blooms and waxen fruit. But actual conformity to the image of "the man Christ Jesus": a life of prayer and self-renouncing faith, of surrender to the yule of our King, and leal-hearted service. This is the beauty of holiness of which all fair things beneath the sun are faint pictures; and by which Christ is made manifest to men.

(R. C. Cowell)

Parallel Verses
KJV: He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.

WEB: He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in their hearts, yet so that man can't find out the work that God has done from the beginning even to the end.

Eternity in the Heart
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