Job does seem long doesn’t it???? (I know .. understatement). Allow its length to serve as a great reminder that the “challenges” we face in this life are often long and have to be worked through step by step. Our “trials” are on God’s time table, not our own. Yet, when we stop and look back over our lives (as Job will do in the end) we can see how God uses/d each trial for our good. (See Romans 8:28)
As you read the Bible, whether you are reading in your favorite Bible, an on line version, listening to an audio version, KNOW if it is not making sense … look for another version. The version called “The Message” can often make it easier to read. I know I’ve mentioned www.biblegateway.com in the RESOURCES and if you are reading via the computer this is an AWESOME way to easily change versions to see if another one makes more sense to you. The purpose of this blog is help/encourage you to grow closer to God. GOD KNOWS YOU; HE knows EXACTLY what you need to gain understanding…. So don’t be afraid to use the resources out there. 🙂
I personally LOVE the book of Job because I can relate to him.Can anyone else?? I could feel his pain. He felt alone and felt as if he had nowhere to turn. I had some of his same questions and feelings. His TOTAL experience gave me peace. I love the REDEMPTION and great BLESSINGS in the end of Job … another great reminder of WHO God is and all he has done for us.
Job can be a challenge to read so DON’T STOP now. Or if you have just joined the reading, DON’T get discouraged. It is written in a poetic format. If it were not for comments in the Life Application Bible I use, the mentor I had last year in my daily reading, and the teachings of my Pastor, Dave Bowman it would be a challenge for me to discern the verses that are TRUE to God’s Character and the ones that are incorrectly describing His Character through all the “advice” Job is being given.
WHY do I say all of this?? Do you have friends that LOOK & SOUND like they know what they are talking about? They seem to be compassionate. However, I have discovered …. Everyone has an OPINION (including me… I know, I can see your shock faces). JUST KNOW ….. Whatever advice you are listening to (or giving) MUST be matched up against the Word of God, the TRUE character of the ONE TRUE GOD, and ALL from a WHOLE BIBLE perspective.
OK.. here we go …. Today’s reading is full of strong determined personalities, arrogance, sarcasm, feelings, and most important God’s Character!!
Chapter 10 – Job is crying out to God. He is painfully honest with God, which I God desires us to do. Our feelings are NO shock to God. He is NOT sitting on the throne wringing His hands. He likes us to humbly and honestly pour out our hearts to Him, after all HE is our Great Physician, the Great Healer, and our Counselor (and I could just go on and on). The challenge is that Job is falling into self-pity, which can happens to all of us. What we have to be careful of is to not allow it to go into self-righteousness where we begin to focus ONLY on why is this happening (and/or keep a score card of all the bad that has happened to us). Once we open up to God, the REAL challenge is asking Him to show us HOW we can learn and grow from this experience.
Even after all Job’s crying out, verses 8-12 STILL point to God as His Creator. He is still remaining faithful. This may sound like a southern thing and maybe it is, but when I say this I mean it in all sincerity … BLESS HIS HEART!!! Oh my!!!
Chapter 11 — Zophar is a friend that we all have somewhere in our life. I call him the “Zo-man”. In verse 5, he WISHES God WOULD speak and open HIS lips AGAINST Job!! He is SOME friend, right??? He is blunt, knows it all, appears to have NO compassion (maybe he was upset because he was speaking last of the three friends 🙂 ), has NO sensitivity, does not believe Job’s faithfulness, and in verse 6 tells Job he really deserves WORSE!!! In verse 11 the “Zo-man” becomes arrogant and basically says SURELY God has forgotten some of your sin.
Chapter 12 – Job begins with some sarcasm for the “Zo-man”. My personal version of what he is saying is: “Yep…. you da man Zo!! For sure when you die ALL wisdom will die with you!!” (zing!!!) Job continues to tell the “Zo-man” that he knows everything they know. He is no less than they are. BUT, Job is longing for a personal relationship with God. Job WANTS to ask God face to face what he has done to deserve such pain. Job once again, in his pain and frustration, STILL acknowledges God for who He is!!
Chapter 13 — verse 3 – Job expresses his true heartfelt request: “BUT I desire to speak to the ALMIGHTY and to argue my case with God.” Verse 4 – He continues speaking to his friends saying: “YOU, however, smear me with lies; you are worthless physicians, all of you.” (OH MY)!! Verse 5 – “If ONLY you would be altogether silent!! For YOU, that would be WISDOM.” (…. Zing again!). Once again Job requests his desire to speak to God in verses 20-23 which state:
“Only grant me these two things, God,
and then I will not hide from you:
21 Withdraw your hand far from me,
and stop frightening me with your terrors.
22 Then summon me and I will answer,
or let me speak, and you reply to me.
23 How many wrongs and sins have I committed?
Show me my offense and my sin.
The last verses of Chapter 13 are once again Job’s frustration coming out and are not God’s true character.
WE are SO blessed because of Jesus Christ!! WE CAN speak directly to our Counselor, our Creator, our Refuge; we DO have the HOLY Bible to read, learn, teach us; we have the Holy Spirit who lives within us and guides us; and we have some good Bible based churches who preach the true Word of God where we can go to be COMFORTED, and supported by our church family. THIS IS TRULY WHAT JESUS IS ALL ABOUT!! THIS is the purpose for this blog….that you may be drawn closer to HIM.
Can I get an AMEN??