Category Archives: Job

Job 40-42

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Good Morning Everyone!!  I apologize for being late with this post this morning (I KNOW some of you are EARLY risers and I want to honor that).  However, today is the 24th anniversary of the day I married God’s gift to me, my sweet husband.  By the grace of God we were able to celebrate all weekend by doing things we enjoy doing together, had a fabulous time, leaving me a little tired… thus late.  Please forgive my tardiness.

Here we are, at the END of Job.  WE have NOW completed our first book of the bible together!!  Doesn’t it feel great!!!  We started Job by saying the book asks a question we all desire the answer to which is “WHY do bad things happen to good, righteous, people?”  Does God ever answer this question for Job or for us … nnnnnnnnooooooooo …… at least not directly.

BUT… what does God say.  FIRST and foremost I think it is so important to note that GOD CAME TO JOB, demonstrating HIS love and care for him.  And for those of you who are “playing my game of seeing Jesus on each page”… ISN’T THIS THE VERY REASON THAT JESUS CAME????  So we can have a personal relationship with HIM???  We can speak to Him every day.  HE lives IN us!!  HALLELUJAH!!

The Bible does NOT tell us that life will be fair, easy, or without challenges.  It actually tells us that we will face challenges, trials, and tribulations, but when we have Jesus in our life we will NEVER be alone.  HE is always with us to guide us, comfort us, give us strength, and love, and SO much more.  I could not live without my personal relationship with HIM in my life.

Chapter 40 – God once again reminds him that HE has been listening to him.  HE is the Almighty God who has created EVERY thing, so NOW Job in verse 2, has the opportunity to answer God’s question: “Let him who accuses God answer him!!”   Again, this time that I am reading this I do not think God is angry with Job.  Yes, he is speaking to him during a storm and I am sure the awesomeness was totally overwhelming.  HE promises to use ALL things for our good.  However, he does want us to grow more into the image of Christ.  And think about this on a personal level…. Don’t our conversations often go back and forth with God just as God’s conversation with Job did??

Romans 8:28-29 (NIV) states:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

1 Peter 1:6-7(NIV) states:

In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trialsThese have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

I LOVE how Job answers God in verses 3-5 (The Message):

“I’m speechless, in awe—words fail me.
I should never have opened my mouth!
I’ve talked too much, way too much.
I’m ready to shut up and listen.”

It is obvious in these verses that Job decided the answer to his question wasn’t really that important, after all, GOD ALMIGHTY came to him and reminded him of HIS greatness.  God had revealed to Job that as a limited human being he did not have the ability or right to judge God.  God’s actions do not depend on ours.  HE will do what HE knows is best regardless of what we think or feel.

I also LOVE the way God uses animals to convey WHO HE is, HIS character.  HE uses the animals as PROOF of HIS greatness.  He discusses the behemoth in Chapter 40 and the leviathan in Chapter 41 (the ENTIRE CHAPTER IS ABOUT THIS CREATURE).  Some scholars believe the behemoth to be either an elephant or hippopotamus, and the leviathan to be a crocodile.  However, some scholars believe otherwise.  One of the participants in last year’s bible study shared the following Christian links.  These links are TOTALLY awesome … ESPECIALLY if you believe that the dinosaurs walked with humans AND if you believe in the mystery of an extinct sea creature (who played in the ocean and NO MAN could tame… not just a story for children J).  These animals and creatures that God gives us in these chapters are more than examples for us.  They should remind us that as powerful as these animals were/are … animals that men could not conquer… God could STOP their breath in a split second without any effort at all.  Do you see how AWESOME and POWERFUL HE is??

http://www.bibleinsong.com/Song_Pages/Job/Job40/Job40.htm

http://www.bibleinsong.com/Song_Pages/Job/Job41/Job41.htm#What

Chapter 42 —  IF YOU READ NOTHING ELSE IN THE SCRIPTURES TODAY…. READ THIS CHAPTER!!    It begins with Job realizing he was sinning because of his suffering not suffering because of sin.  He confesses his sin to God in verses 2-6:

NOTE that Job is not confessing a sin of an action he did.  He is confessing his sin of pride, his attitude toward God, his lack of conversation WITH God DURING his pain.  God was there the ENTIRE time.  If you get nothing more from this study …. GOD IS WITH YOU AND ME ALL THE TIME.  HE WANTS to speak to us … but we must CHOOSE to take time to read HIS WORD and LISTEN…. He DESIRES a one on one relationship with us.  Do you ask God: “WHY is “THIS” happening to me?”  OR do you ask God “Lord, what would you like me to learn from “THIS”, show me your way LORD?”  Job REPENTED.  He did a total “360” , a total “U-turn” and STOPPED thinking His old way and began NEW.  He began having conversations with God again.  What is God saying to you right this moment??

Verse 7 states “AFTER … (again AFTER repeated for my emphasis)…. The LORD said these things to Job he said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “ I AM ANGRY WITH YOU AND YOUR TWO FRIENDS BECAUSE YOU HAVE NOT SPOKEN OF ME WHAT IS RIGHT, AS MY SERVANT JOB HAS.  Verse 8 states: “SO NOW…”   Did you notice the scripture states “I AM ANGRY WITH YOU” as God is speaking to the “friends.”  However, HE did NOT say this when speaking to Job!!  AHHHHHMAZING!!! (Light bulb moment for me 🙂 )

God has the three friends GO to Job and sacrifice a burnt offering “FOR YOURSELVES.”  God tells them EXACTLY how many animals to bring.

God also states in verse 8:  “MY servant Job will pray for you and I will accept his prayer and not deal with you according to your folly (because they had been judging Job.)”

Can you imagine the look on their faces?  I mean they thought they knew it ALL.  THEY had DONE NO WRONG… they were JUST there to give comfort.  Yet God knows our heart which is why it is SO important to FILL our hearts with the WORD of God.  I am CERTAINLY NOT pointing a finger at the friends because I KNOW that whenever I point a finger at someone else … there are 3 fingers pointing back at ME!!!  (OUCH).

And Job, do you wonder what he was thinking when God commanded him to pray for these three friends.  He may have been on auto pilot because he was so humbled from God’s speaking to him.  However, I think about myself and how HARD it is to pray for people who have hurt me (Luke 6:28 states: ” bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.”) …. Ummmmmmmm….with an ouch … AND part of his prayer ALSO showed forgiveness of their judgement.J  Just two scriptures (there are MANY) that you can check out about what God says about forgiveness are: Colossians 3:13 and Hebrews 8:12.  And Job was so obedient.  He obeyed God.

Verse 10 – “AFTER JOB PRAYED for his friends the Lord made him prosperous again and gave him twice as much as he had before.”    WE ARE TALKING RESTORATION FOLKS.  Restoration is not about money and things although it was so like God to bless Job in this manner.  However, EVEN if God did not give Job double for his trouble in earthly things …. The ending would have been the SAME in regards to Job’s restoration.. the restoration in his soul!!  This also reminds us that JESUS is written ALL over this reading because that is why HE came!!  LOOK at ALL the ALMIGHTY GOD gave back to Job…… I’m singing Hallelujah, tears running down my cheeks, and have the deep “peace that passETH understanding.”

Talk about DEVINE REVELATION!!  Job had a RELATIONSHIP with ALMIGHTY GOD!!  GOD spoke to him!!!  And, guess what…… God speaks to us TODAY.    When you read this Scripture today (or any scripture) did/do you “hear” a still small voice inside of you telling you something over and over???  WELL…. That is God!!  The Bible is the major way he communicates to us, after all it is HIS LIVING WORD.  Open your heart and listen to HIM.  This is not simply another history book with “good stories”.  IT IS THE LIVING WORD OF GOD … BREATHED BY GOD… JUST FOR YOU AND FOR ME!!!

One other note before closing, one of the GREAT things about reading in the KJV at times is that you will see many verbs with an added “ETH” at the end.  Above when I said I have a deep peace that PASSETH understanding, that “ETH” is VERY IMPORTANT.  WHY you ask?  It is because whenever you see this “ETH” it means that God does it OVER AND OVER AND OVER … TO INFINITY AND BEYOND OVER AGAIN FOR US.  Take a look at the KJV and SEE how AWESOME our  God is and to know HE REALLY is the God of second chances (and third, and forth… etc)!!  Check out Psalm 23 from the KJV:

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He makETH me to lie down in green pastures: he leadETH me beside the still waters.

He restorETH my soul: he leadETH me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runnETH over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

 

BE STRONG AND COURAGEOUS (Joshua 1:9) … (Thank you Dawn E for allowing God to use you and making this scripture come alive for me)!!  And make it a GREAT day … go on an adventure WITH God today … ASK HIM what HE would like you to know.  GOD is PERSONAL and desires a personal, daily, consistent relationship with HIM.  This is NOT about rules and regulations, rituals, formality, length of time we spend in prayer, where we pray, or timing… it is simply about making a commitment to HIM to be a part of our daily… moment by moment …lives.   HE is waiting with open arms 🙂

Sharng HIS love

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Job 38-39

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As I was reading today’s chapters I kept thinking of two songs.  The first one was “How Great is Our God” by Chris Tomlin.  You can listen to it at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKLQ1td3MbE

The second one was “10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord)” by Matt Redman and you can listen to that at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXDGE_lRI0E

God speaks to Job and opens up with 60 something rhetorical questions to let him and all readers simply KNOW how awesome HE is.  Most of HIS questions were:  “where  were you when…..”!!  Those questions certainly humbled me …. “ Ummmm…. Nope… I was not there Lord … and I have NO idea how you did what you did but thank YOU for reminding me of ALL you did.

The things that struck me deeply today were what I did not see in writing.  The first thing we are told is that “God answered Job out of the storm.”  Just a few nights ago we had winds of up to 60 mph in the area.  It was about midnight.  I was at my kitchen table listening to pine cones and other debris SLAM into my bay windows.  I really thought things were going to start coming through the glass.  I happened to be reading THIS chapter at the same time and began to imagine how Job must have felt.

Job is in the MIDST of a storm and hears GOD SPEAK!!  What I did NOT read following that Scripture was that Job was afraid, or that he hid from God.  There was no discussion of fear and trembling.  God simply began to speak.  MANY years ago when I did my first Job bible study, I thought for sure God was mad and spoke in an angry voice.  However, when I read it this time … NO WHERE does it say that God was angry.  It simply says GOD SPOKE.

THIS year when I read this I heard a loving Father, speak through HIS majesty, to HIS child.  God is firm.  HE is clear with HIS point.  He doesn’t answer Job’s question.  Yet, HE opens Job’s eyes to MORE of HIS character.  There is NO indication that Job is saying .. “but … but … God… that’s not what I asked”.  I can only imagine that Job is watching the storm, listening to the wind, and hearing HIS God remind him of all HE has done.  I am confident Job was humbled, speechless, and awestruck.

God makes it abundantly clear what is important and what needs to be focused on and guess what … if we are like Job and are focusing on our circumstances rather than on God…. We have our focus in the WRONG place (ouch.. ouch … and ouch again).  When life doesn’t make sense we have a choice to make and that is do we chose to dwell on our circumstances and/or fears or do we chose to shift focus onto God’s greatness, HIS awesomeness.  HOW do we do this?  Begin by looking at the stars on a clear night, listening to the roar of the ocean, watching a storm, or snow falling, witnessing the birth of a baby.  HE created it ALL.

Not ONLY did He create it ALL, but because of Jesus Christ, HE now LIVES IN US.  God is not some distant God who cannot relate, or who simply watches from up in the heavens.  God is right here with us, IN US in EVERY thing we do.  HE KNOWS what we are going through.  HE wants us to KNOW WHO HE is and how deeply HE loves us.

I have a deep love of animals and my guess is that Job understood animals well (he would have had to in order to own so many before the trials came.)  Did you notice how many questions God asked Job about animals?  I believe he did so to help Job understand how much HE understood him/us.  HIS questions were on a level Job could comprehend, picture, and relate to.  PLUS as much as Job knew about animals … God’s questions possibly made him see how little he really knew. 

Ultimately, God does not need to answer Job’s direct questions, because Job answered most of them himself.  Even in Job 7:17-19 (NIV), Job already began to answer his own question without really knowing it:

17 “What is mankind that you make so much of them,
that you give them so much attention,
18 that you examine them every morning
and test them every moment?
19 Will you never look away from me,
or let me alone even for an instant?

The answer to Job’s question is …. No!!!  HE won’t.  THANK GOD!!!

Sharing HIS love,

Job 35-37

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Chapter 35 – Do you see so much evil today seemingly being rewarded that you wonder if being faithful to your convictions to God does any good?  I know I have certainly had those thoughts (it pains me to admit it).  BUT did you notice they were thinking the same thing back in Job’s day?  Elihu’s conclusion was that God is still concerned with the good and the evil even though he doesn’t always intervene immediately.  However, HE WILL intervene.  Sometimes the scenarios simply have to play themselves out like with what Job was going through.   We witness that Job was not a perfect, sinless man, and his suffering brought out his pride.

Elihu brings out a very painful truth here in verses 9-13 (The Message)

“When times get bad, people cry out for help.
They cry for relief from being kicked around,
But never give God a thought when things go well,
when God puts spontaneous songs in their hearts,
When God sets out the entire creation as a science classroom,
using birds and beasts to teach wisdom.
People are arrogantly indifferent to God—
until, of course, they’re in trouble,
and then God is indifferent to them.

These verses are so significant because we ALL tend to pray really hard when things are going wrong, but seem to forget to praise HIM and pray to HIM when things are good.  God WANTS to spend time with us … in good times and in bad times… whether we made bad choices which caused our consequences OR when there is an allowed event we must live through and pray through!!  God WANTS to hear our praise, our pleas, our thanksgiving, our crys of help, from ALL of us.  NOTHING you say is going to shock HIM.  We can learn from Job’s example to be sure we don’t begin to live in pride, self-righteousness, or even rebellion.

Keep in mind that God is the “perfect gentleman”.  He has given us FREE WILL, so we can make our own CHOICES.  God will allow us to make CHOICES that will destroy us because he honors the gift of FREE WILL that HE gave to us.  God will NOT barge through the door.   HE desires to be asked in and will wait for us to ask.  An example that comes to mind to further this idea of FREE WILL strictly from a human perspective is the entire concept of dating and marriage.  I have seen people date; one person falls in love while the other person openly admits NOT to have the same feelings.  I have seen the one in love do many things to compromise who they are to get the affection of the one they love, to get the commitment from the one they love.  “Surely he/she must love me because they want to be with me.”  If the one in love is a dominant personality, they will drive the other person kicking and screaming to the altar and SOON wonder WHY they got married.  THAT is not true love.. that is abuse of power… or a controlling, selfish person.  My point is that the person who went along with the marriage but did not feel the same made what I call a poor FORCED CHOICE.  God does not want us to make a FORCED CHOICE.  He wants us to come to HIM out of our heart’s desire, our own FREE WILL.

Deuteronomy 30:19 (NIV) says:

 This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. NOW CHOOSE LIFE, so that you and your children may live.

Although we have only read a little in Genesis before we went to Job we saw how grieved God becomes when we sin …. Because it separates us from HIM.  Yes, it separates us from HIM.  HE wants us to CHOOSE LIFE!!  He wants the best for us.  However, often our choices are not the choices God would like us to make.  God says HE knocks on the door and wants us to invite HIM in.  Revelation 3:20 says:

Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.” He has already chosen us (see Ephesians 1:4 “For he chose us in him BEFORE the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.

God wants us to CHOOSE HIM, to WANT HIM of our own volition.  Remember..  FREE WILL.  Denial is a CHOICE.  Forgiveness is a CHOICE.  LOVE is a CHOICE.  Asking Jesus to be our Lord and Savior is a CHOICE.  Sin is a CHOICE.  Obeying God is a CHOICE.  God is not looking for perfection, but obedience.  KNOW… there is NO SIN that God cannot forgive.  Three is NO sin he will not forgive, if we come to HIM with a willing heart.  Many of us have come to HIM because of the mess WE made and finally realized HE is the answer.  Is now your time to turn your life over to HIM?  It will be a decision you will not regret.

WHY do I discuss this here ???…. Because I see Elihu trying to express that our actions DO matter to God, regardless of everything else that is going on in the world, in our job, in politics, in our home, with our finances, with our marriage, with our health, etc.  He cares.  However, there ARE consequences for the choices we make.  God STILL LOVES us, He wants us to confess our sin and CHOOSE Him, but our actions still have consequences.

An example of consequences ~~~ IF we went to the top of a ski slope, made a large snow ball, took our energy to push this large snow ball down the slope .. the large snow ball would roll downhill, continue to get larger, gain speed and potentially harm other skiers on the slope.  Even if we repent of pushing this snowball down the slope as we watched it grow and begin knocking skiers down … God would forgive us because we ASKED for forgiveness.  However, He is not going to stop the snowball.  The potential consequences could be that the many people are physically harmed, the huge snowball crashes into the ski lodge, and even worse you could get sued for endangering the lives of people as well as property damage.

Chapter 36 – vs 26 “How great is God – beyond our understanding!!”

Chapter 37 – vs 5 “HE does great things beyond our understanding!!”

Elihu makes some great points in his presentation.  And he HAD to be getting the attention of Job and his friends because no one is even trying to say anything!!  HOWEVER, even with the many many truths that Elihu presented he was so close to helping Job but then went down the wrong path.  It is SIGNIFICANT that after Elihu stresses that God is in control …. God Himself breaks into the discussion to draw the right conclusions.

The wonderful news is that WE do live with a God who cares deeply.  Who is in control.  HE wants to have daily time with us.  WE have HIS Word to read to hear from Him.  We have the Holy Spirit in us to guide us and teach us through his still small voice, through situations, and through relationships.  KNOW that there are some circumstances you did not cause, your sin did not get you into the situation, but that God KNOWs where you/I need to be purified so we grow into more of HIS image and live more for Him.

So what do you guys think?  Any questions, comments, ways God is speaking to you?

Sharing HIS love,