“Vanity of vanities,
All is vanity.”
This book ends where it began. All is vanity. Qoheleth repeats the opening lines of this book. We have come full cycle. The life and death of humans is useless, vanity. Everything is useless. This is a kind of cynicism and depression. However, there still was the hope of the human spirit or breath returning to God. Other than that, all the rest was must plain vapor, vanity of vanities.
“King Ahab went home resentful and sullen because of what Naboth the Jezreelite had said to him. He had said. ‘I will not give you my ancestral inheritance.’ He lay down on his bed. He turned away his face. He would not eat. But his wife Jezebel came to him, and said. ‘Why are you so depressed that you will not eat?’ He said to her. ‘Because I spoke to Naboth the Jezreelite, and said to him. ‘Give me your vineyard for money. Or else, if you prefer, I will give you another vineyard for it.’ But he answered. ‘I will not give you my vineyard.’ His wife Jezebel said to him. ‘Do you now govern Israel? Get up. Eat some food. Be cheerful. I will give you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.’”
Ahab was once again sullen and resentful. Naboth would give him his ancestral vineyard. The king was depressed. Interesting this depression is like most depressions. He turned away his face and would not talk to people. He lay down in his bed. He would not eat. Jezebel his wife wanted to know what was wrong. He then told her the story about how Naboth would not give him his vineyard, even though he had offered him money or another vineyard. She told him not to worry. She would take care of it. He should eat some food and be cheerful. She told him he was the king of Israel, so that he should be happy. Let’s see how persuasive she can be.