Here is a story of a young lad who was wise but poor (13). His beginning is a bit of a mystery. Some believe he was in prison. Others believe he was born in poverty. Still, others believed both (14). The wise young man’s beginning was not important to his few followers. Yet this wise young lad was shunned because of his poverty. His wealth of knowledge was untapped by the masses.
The king reigning in the young man’s kingdom was old, foolish, and either no longer cared to take counsel and warnings, or he became too complacent and lacked concern for those in his kingdom to heed to advice (14). No matter what those who were living under his rule suffered and they knew it was the king to blame.
The king has a son, also a young lad. He was like his father, his grandfather, and the long line of his ancestors who reigned before him. The horde of people in the kingdom lived without fear or love of God. They lived under the sun like their aged king. They followed the king’s son who would be his successor (15,16). The lad’s generation will not rejoice in the successor’s rule.
The moral of the story of the wise young lad is that a kingdom whose people live without God is chasing after the wind. They live in prejudice and same old, same old. They do not follow God. They do not seek his will and counsel. They live meaningless lives in misery and toil.
Solomon, who was old and turned to foreign idols when he wrote this must have seen that his son who would be king, Rehoboam was a fool who would not follow wise advice. He was following the Godless lifestyle of his aged father. Instead, of seeking the Lord, Rehoboam tried to rule the Israelites cruelly and in the process destroyed Israel. From his own life and rule, Solomon saw that living under the sun was meaningless, a chasing after the wind.