A Cry For Justice

Awakening the Evangelical Church to Domestic Violence and Abuse in its Midst

Life in the Kingdom of Men — part 5 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell


Life in the Kingdom of Men
by Ps Sam Powell
Ecclesiastes 4 (NKJV)

And look! The tears of the oppressed,
But they have no comforter—
On the side of their oppressors there is power,
But they have no comforter.
2 Therefore I praised the dead who were already dead,
More than the living who are still alive.
3 Yet, better than both is he who has never existed,
Who has not seen the evil work that is done under the sun.

4 Again, I saw that for all toil and every skillful work a man is envied by his neighbor. This also is vanity and grasping for the wind.

5 The fool folds his hands
And consumes his own flesh.
6 Better a handful with quietness
Than both hands full, together with toil and grasping for the wind.

7 Then I returned, and I saw vanity under the sun:

8 There is one alone, without companion:
He has neither son nor brother.
Yet there is no end to all his labors,
Nor is his eye satisfied with riches.
But he never asks,
“For whom do I toil and deprive myself of good?”
This also is vanity and a grave misfortune.

9 Two are better than one,
Because they have a good reward for their labor.
10 For if they fall, one will lift up his companion.
But woe to him who is alone when he falls,
For he has no one to help him up.
11 Again, if two lie down together, they will keep warm;
But how can one be warm alone?
12 Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him.
And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.

13 Better a poor and wise youth
Than an old and foolish king who will be admonished no more.
14 For he comes out of prison to be king,
Although he was born poor in his kingdom.
15 I saw all the living who walk under the sun;
They were with the second youth who stands in his place.
16 There was no end of all the people over whom he was made king;
Yet those who come afterward will not rejoice in him.
Surely this also is vanity and grasping for the wind.

Listen to the sermon by clicking on the link above.

And here is a hymn about how Jesus comforts the oppressed. The first version is massed congregational singing with lyrics. The second is very sensitively played on the piano with the score and lyrics.





Posts in this sermon series

Part 1: Wrestling With the Darkness — part 1 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 2: Nothing New Under the Sun — pt 2 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 3: Where is the Good Life? — pt 3 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 4: The Relentless Flow of Time — pt 4 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 5: Is this post.

Part 6: The Sacrifice of Fools — part 6 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 7: A Peaceful Life — part 7 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 8: A Good Name — part 8 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 9: Hope In Oppression — part 9 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 10: The Schemes of Mankind — part 10 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 11: Wisdom in Wicked Times — part 11 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 12: The Pride of Life — part 12 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 13: Dead Flies, Dull Axes — part 13 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 14: Before the Evil Days Come — part 14 of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell

Part 15: The Conclusion of the Matter — final part of Ecclesiastes sermon series by Ps Sam Powell


  1. Anon.

    So, this is off-topic and all. It may not be appropriate. If so, please, by all means, disregard and don’t post. But it is Sunday and this website has become kind of like an online church of sorts for me……I don’t [know] if I am saying that right or not, but anyhow, here is my question for the pastor:

    Matthew 12:31-32 – The Unforgivable Sin

    What is that talking about and who commits such and do they know if they have committed it? I mean, it’s scary to read and I wonder if I haven’t committed such or if I will commit such eventually at some point in time. I guess I’ve come to find out in my life so far that if there is a way to fail or mess up, I am apparently very, very prone to do such. Maybe not, as pretty much all of the failures have been deliberately orchestrated by others, to ensure that I fail, that I have nothing going for me, that I am but a disabled, unemployable, homeless woman who resides in the streets, which is where they deem me to belong, as I am considered to be worth less than a dog and all.

    But what is the unforgivable sin? Is there an example or situation or illustration you could provide so I understand what it is as I surely do not ever want to be apart from God, nor do I wish to go to hell for all eternity.

    • UPDATE Sept 2021: I have come to believe that Jeff Crippen does not practise what he preaches. He vilely persecuted an abuse victim and spiritually abused many other people in the Tillamook congregation. Go here to read the evidence. Jeff has not gone to the people that he spiritually and emotionally abused. He has not apologised to them, let alone asked for their forgiveness.


      Hi Anon, your question is fine! And there is nothing wrong with seeing our website as a kind of online church of sorts. If the bricks and mortar churches were teaching the whole counsel of God, there would be little need for a site like ours. But so many churches are led by hired shepherds rather than true men of God, that many of us find it difficult to get sustenance and good fellowship in local churches.

      Pastor Jeff will reply to you, but in the meantime, here are our posts which touch on the unforgivable sin.

      John Piper’s Erroneous Teaching on the Unpardonable Sin

      A Story of Abuse and Shame: Setup by the Religion of the Pharisees and How Jesus Set Her Free!

      To pray for our abusers… or not? (we don’t need to pray for the sin that leads to death)

      (((hugs))) from Barb

    • Jeff Crippen

      Anon – The unpardonable sin is always committed by people who refuse to repent. They are people who (see Hebrews 6:4-6) have been so privileged as to be recipients of the Spirit’s ministry in showing them the reality of Christ, the truth of the gospel, etc that they KNOW it is good and true, BUT they harden their hearts and refuse to repent and believe. You see the thing in Judas for example. He intimately knew Christ, yet short of salvation. He became reprobate like Esau so that repentance and salvation became impossible for him. Such people may cry and shed big tears and complain woe is me, but in fact they never wanted Christ and still do not. Do they know they have committed the unpardonable sin? Probably not. These kind, like so many abusers, still believe they are entitled and that God owes them heaven. Both 2 Peter and Jude speak of these very kind who creep in among us in the church and who are destined for hell though they love to play Christian. Bottom line, nope, they aren’t worried at all. They are angry at God.

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