Gudsbild och verklighetsuppfattning i Predikaren
Sammanfattning: In this essay I aim to give an interpretation on the book of Ecclesiastes, focusing on how the author (here called Qohelet) regards God, and the relationship between God and man. I will also examine the way Qohelet views reality. A fairly common idea is that the book of Ecclesiastes is quite pessimistic and full of contradictions, and I argue that the book rather represents a realistic way of looking at life, than a pessimistic one. Regarding the view on God and God’s relationship with man, I compare the ideas of T. Kronholm and C. L. Seow, as their opinions differ in some areas. I also look at a selected text that can shed some light on how Qohelet saw God. I focus mainly on textual analysis when it comes to whether Qohelet represents a pessimistic or a realistic worldview, where I examine certain ideas that are typical to Qohelet. I deal with his contradictions, with the idea that the unborn child is lucky, who has not seen all the horrors of the world, and I also make an in-depth analysis of the word הֶבֶל (“vanity”), which is usually seen indicating something resigned and negative. I have come to the conclusion that while at first glance, God seems to be almost absent in the book of Ecclesiastes, he is actually quite active. There is however a distance between God and man, according to Qohelet. God works in mysterious ways, and man can never fully understand God. What he can do, is enjoy the good in life, when God gives it to him. There is a time for everything, and to be able to find that time, and make the most of it, is what everyone should strive for. I have discovered that if you take the time to read between the lines in the book of Ecclesiastes, and try to delve a little deeper, you will find that most statements that at first may appear pessimistic or negative, really can be said to be realistic. All Qohelet does is ascertain the way things really are, he makes no assessment on whether that is good or bad.
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