STOP and for just a moment. Job could potentially be the OLDEST piece of literature in existence today. Yet it reads as if it were written today. Just goes to show that GOD is the SAME .. YESTERDAY, TODAY, TOMORROW, AND FOR ALWAYS!!!. His WORD is as TRUE and RELEVANT TODAY as it was when it was written.
Chapter 21 – Job continues – He knows he is being mocked, or at least feels as if he is. The verses that really caught my attention start in verses 6 & 7. (NIV)
When I think about this, I am terrified;
trembling seizes my body.
7 Why do the wicked live on,
growing old and increasing in power?
I can FEEL verse 6. And, isn’t verse 7 how it often appears today, that the wicked prosper and will never pay or suffer for their sins?? BUT… is that what God’s Word says?? The Word tells us absolutely NOT (in MANY places). However, our timing is not God’s timing. YET there are times when we are in so much pain, or so numb from the pain that we do have questions. IF you are going through such a time and reading this is hard for you, REMEMBER you can go to www.biblegateway.com and LISTEN to the Word… let it bathe you (LOOK for a little symbol that looks like a burgundy speaker on some versions). The Word is the Word and God PROMISES that it will not return VOID. Isaiah 55:11 (KJV), the Lord says: ” So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: IT SHALL NOT RETURN TO ME VOID, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.”
In verse 22 Job says: “Can ANYONE teach knowledge to God since he judges even the highest?” Job is saying that God is ALL KNOWING!! Now THAT is faith!!!
And of course…. Job’s humanness shows through in verse 34 when he says: “ so how can YOU console me with your NONSENSE? NOTHING is left of your answers but falsehood.” (In my mind… he is ending this chapter with another “zing”, or could it be a touch of pride that he has to have the last word… I don’t know.. just sayin).
Chapter 22 – My bible titles this chapter as “THIRD round of discussion”. Heavens to Betsy!!! I don’t even watch wrestling but I can hear the “DING DING DING … ARE YOU READY TO RUMBLE” in my head!!! These guys are kind of like the energizer bunny… they just keep going and going and going…. 🙂
At least in Eliphaz’s first “speech” he commended Job’s good deeds and gently suggested Job might need to repent of some sin. However, Eliphaz (nor the other two) could shake PERSONAL BELIEF that for Job to be in his current situation he MUST have some hidden sin that he had not confessed to God. Don’t we often do this??? Our understanding is NOT God’s understanding and very often in this life “what we see is NOT what we get.” Have you ever had a good friend, you thought was the BEST.. looked good, smelled good, dressed well, said ALL the right things at the right time, was well liked by many …. And ONE day… your eyes were opened to their heart?? I don’t mean just an offense that would be settled with an apology. I mean… you saw their HEART. God allowed you to see a glimmer of the HEART He sees and suddenly you knew that person was not your friend at all. However, before God allowed us to see what the true person was … we THOUGHT we had a friend forever. My point in saying this is that ONLY God knows the hearts of men and before our eyes are opened there is often NO ONE who could have convinced us that our dear friend was not the BEST person in the world.
This is kind of where Job’s three friends are. They are blinded by their OWN assumptions, experiences, relationship (or lack of) with God, paradigms… so much so that they truly believed there is NO way Job has not committed some awful sin he has not confessed. When we speak to others – are we blinded and do we make assumptions and judgments in our attempts to “help”? I don’t think Job’s friends were evil men or that they were TRYING to lead him astray …. They simply could not fit what was happening into their thought processes; therefore, with each “round” of discussions they become more arrogant in their own assumptions. (OUCH.. OUCH .. OUCH).
Even with Eliphaz’s wrong assumptions, he makes a BEAUTIFUL summary of repentance in verses 21-30, although as beautifully expressed as his words are his assumption about Job is still incorrect.
I HAVE to share with you what my mentor said about these verses last year in her blog. I think you will get a kick from it and it will also make you think deeper. Here goes: “What did you think of Elipaz’s little speech in Chapter 22? Sounds like something you hear on TV today huh? Maybe at 2 am in the morning. 22:1 says “Submit to God and be at peace with him, in this way prosperity will come to you” (just dial 1-888…. and have your credit card ready!!!)”
Chapter 23 – Job replies — read verse 7 again… go ahead… read it again.. I’ll wait 🙂 Job STILL focuses on God and believes “he would be DELIVERED FOREVER …”. I also love what he says in verses 10-12 (NIV):
But he knows the way that I take;
when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.
11 My feet have closely followed his steps;
I have kept to his way without turning aside.
12 I have not departed from the commands of his lips;
I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.
In these verses do you think Job is saying he is sinless?? Or do you think he is declaring his confidence in his integrity and God’s justice? ALL have gone astray (except Jesus), see Isaiah 53:6 for one example. I think Job knew he was sinful which is why he wanted and had such a close relationship with God. I know I keep saying this but in Job 1 it says God saw him as “blameless and upright” (NOT sinless and perfect).
Come back tomorrow for another round of the WWE smack down when Mr. BilBAD has another chance….. Will Mr. BilBAD say anything new?? Will Job say anything to lead us closer to the Lord?? 🙂 Is there another person who has NOT spoken yet who is going to speak up??? STAY TUNED 🙂
If you have a moment to listen to two songs … I KNOW you will be blessed.
Here are two AWESOME songs that I LOVE and seem to go along with our reading of Job. The first one is “Even If” by Kutless . The second one is “Blessings” by Laura Story. BE BLESSED!!
Music can and often does speak to me in ways that mere words cannot. Something about music that takes the message deep into my Spirit and soul. Thank you God for YOUR music that brings me back to you!!
Sharing HIS love