19th June: Job 18-20

Job

18:1-19:7  –  Job listens to Bildad’s harsh words. He answers with a question: ‘How long will you torment me, and break me in pieces with words?’ (19:2). Job couldn’t make much sense of what was going on in his life. He was sure of one thing. His ‘friends’ were missing the point of it all. They had it all wrong. They were not speaking the Word of the Lord. They were only making things worse for Job. We must be careful with our words: ‘The tongue is a fire…set on fire by hell…With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, this should not happen!’ (James 3:6,9-10). ‘Let your conversation be always full of grace’ (Colossians 4:6). May our words ‘bring a blessing to those who hear’ them (Ephesians 4:29).

19:8-29  –  Christ’s resurrection, Christ’s return, our redemption – All of this is brought to mind as we read Job’s great words of faith: ‘I know that my Redeemer lives…in the end He will stand upon the earth…in my flesh I will see God’ (25-26). Jesus Christ ‘has risen’ from the dead. He is ‘the living One’. He is ‘alive for evermore’ (Matthew 28:6; Revelation 1:18). Jesus Christ will return ‘with power and great glory’. ‘He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him’ (Matthew 24:30; Revelation 1:7). The Day of Christ’s return will be the Day of ‘our redemption’. ‘When He appears, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is’. ‘We shall always be with the Lord’ (Luke 21:27-28; 1 John 3:2; 1 Thessalonians 4:17). Don’t forget the word of warning, spoken by Job to his ‘friends’ – ‘There is a judgment’ (29)!

20:1-29  –  ‘Fools rush in where angels fear to tread’. This is what we have here. Zophar doesn’t stop to think. He’s ‘like a bull in a china shop’. Zophar gives a detailed description of ‘the wicked man’s portion from God, the heritage decreed for him by God’ (29). He does not stop to ask, ‘Does all of this apply to Job? Is Job a wicked man? Is Job being punished by God?’. Before we rush into passing judgment on other people, here are some things to think about: ‘There is one Lawgiver and Judge, He who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you that judge your neighbour?’. ‘Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Why do you despise your brother? We shall all stand before the judgment seat of God’. ‘Judge not that you be not judged’ (James 4:12; Romans 14:10; Matthew 7:1). Think before you speak!

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