17th June: Job 8-12

Job

8:1-9:19  –  Bildad speaks as a ‘know-it-all’. He sees what has happened to Job, and he thinks, ‘Job must have forgotten God’. If Bildad had not been blinded by his own ideas of how things must be, he would have noticed that Job had not forgotten God and he would have realized that bad things can and do happen to people who love God as well as people who don’t love Him. When things are going badly, don’t forget God’s long-term purpose. He is preparing us for ‘eternal life’ (Matthew 19:29). Sometimes, we wonder what’s going on in our lives. We must remember that ‘God’s ways are higher than our ways’ (Isaiah 55:8). We must learn to look beyond our sufferings. They are ‘slight and short-lived’. We must look ahead to the ‘eternal glory that is greater than anything we can imagine’ (2 Corinthians 4:17).

9:20-10:22  –  Job thinks that God is ‘against’ him. He thinks that he is condemned by God (10:2). Where do these negative thoughts come from? Do they come from God? No! God has a very positive view of Job – ‘My servant Job’ (1:8). Job is being attacked by Satan, ‘the accuser’ of God’s people (Revelation 12:10). Satan puts negative thoughts into Job’s mind. What are we to do when Satan attacks us in this way? Look to the Cross of Christ, rejoicing in God’s love for us (Romans 5:8). Take our stand in Jesus Christ – ‘There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus’ (Romans 8:1). Remind Satan of Christ’s victory – ‘the gates of hell shall not prevail against’ us. Resist Satan – ‘Get behind me, Satan!’ – , confident that ‘we are more than conquerors through Christ’ (Matthew 16:18,23; Romans 8:37).

11:1-12:25  –  Zophar had all the answers – so he thought! It was all so simple – according to Zophar. ‘He must have done something pretty awful to deserve this’ – That’s what Zophar thought of Job and his suffering (11:6). For Job, nothing was simple. He didn’t have any answers. He was very confused. He had been ‘a righteous and blameless man’ (12:4). Now, he was suffering. Was he being punished by God?  Job listened to Zophar. It didn’t ring true! Job didn’t fully understand what was going on. He did know this: Zophar didn’t know what he was talking about. He was shouting his mouth off about things he knew nothing about. Job was not taken in by Zophar’s pious words. He responded with this ‘understanding’ – ‘The spiritual man judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one’ (12:3; 1 Corinthians 2:15).

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