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One generation passes away, another generation comes, but the earth forever stands unchanged.

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After the passing of many generations, their accomplishments have changed nothing; the basic realities of life are still the same.


1: “Stands unchanged”

Although Solomon had accomplished many amazing things, we have basically none of it left today; in fact, just a few hundred years after he died it was all in ruins. One can travel to Greece, Rome, Egypt and the Middle East and see the ruins of many ancient temples and other such sites. But that is the point, they are in ruins. The temple of Artemis in Ephesus is now nothing more than one column and a few random stones rising out of a swamp! The pyramids of Egypt are a notable exception when it comes to the longevity of ancient structures. Solomon was looking at the fact that everyone suffers, everyone dies, and nothing we accomplish can change those things. Nothing we do will change the basic realities of life; the rich and the poor are all subject to the same pressures and stresses. This seems depressing, but it is meant as a reality check.