_ I’ve never been a big fan of fiction, and especially “mysteries,” but I’ll have to say that the book of Job is a powerful non-fiction “mystery” of sorts that will keep the seeker digging deeper for clues to why things happen the way they do. Sometimes things seem like a “mystery” in our own lives. (Leading to the “why God, why’s?)
Deuteronomy 29:29 says, "The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.”
So, we must be content to trust Him with the things that He decides to keep secret and be a diligent seeker of what He desires to reveal. Regardless, it’s all to lead us into a stronger faith relationship with our Lord.
Before we look at today’s chapters, let’s look again at the powerful truths found in the book of James about Job. James was writing to Christians who were going through varies trials and persecutions. In James 5:11 he tells them to look at the prophets (God’s chosen messengers) and use them as an example for yourselves of how to go through suffering and how to be patient. Then verse 11 says this, “Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.” Regardless of what we do not understand about Job, we can understand this: God is compassionate, and merciful, and has what is best for us if we will be patient and endure in faith.
A word of caution while reading the book of Job… If the only Scripture we had was the book of Job, we would have one more book than Job had and therefore would be blessed, but we are blessed with much more than that; we have 66 books of God’s Scripture! So, when we read Job, let’s remember all the truths that are contained in God’s New Covenant to us. Amongst so many other things, He has given us healing and protection in His Covenant. (I Peter 2:24, James 5:14-15, Psalm 91) That said, He has also promised us sufferings, and various trials, and persecution. (Philippians 1:29, I Timothy 3:12) So, we should be mentally prepared to confront various trials with patience and God’s peace, but we should NOT expect sickness or our immediate family being destroyed. Amen!
The next 2 days (6 chapters) are of Elihu’s speech; he brings some truth and is a forerunner for God Himself to speak to Job. Elihu patiently waited until Job’s three friends were done speaking because he was younger than them, but when they were done he can’t hold back from speaking any longer.
Job 32:1-3 So these three men ceased answering Job, because he was righteous in his own eyes. 2 Then the wrath of Elihu …was aroused against Job; his wrath was aroused because he justified himself rather than God. 3 Also against his three friends his wrath was aroused, because they had found no answer, and yet had condemned Job.
A better translation of the second part of verse 2 would be this: “his wrath was aroused because he (Job) justified himself more than God.”In other words, Job’s focus was on how what he was going through couldn’t be fair. Job’s focus on his own uprightness instead of God’s uprightness caused him to question what God was doing. Of course Job wasn’t a man who never sinned for: "There is none righteous, no, not one,” (Romans 3:10) but he was a man walking in righteousness before the LORD. Job 1:8 says, “Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?"
Although Job questions God and is confused, it was only Job’s three friends who spoke wrongly about God. Job 42:7 says, “… the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, "My wrath is aroused against you and your two friends, for you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has.” Elihu was angry with Job’s friends because, “they had found no answer, and yet had condemned Job” (Job 32:3b).
Job’s friends knew of no sin that Job committed yet assumed he must have done something wrong. We would do well to heed this warning and not make assumptions about other people.
Anytime you suffer in any trial remember that the LORD is very compassionate and merciful and has an intended end to bless you.
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Read through the Bible with us in 2012! The reading plan can be downloaded below; we are reading in chronological order. Check back often to read the blog posts on the Bible readings and discuss things in the "comments" section.
2012 Bible Plan