The passages for today are Job 29-31 and Acts 12:1-24.
I am intending to look at these Chapters of Job under three headings….
(1) JOB’S LIFE BEFORE…
“I dwelt as a king among his troops” (29:25b). Job was recalling what his life was like before he was stricken. He was honoured, wealthy and treated with great respect. Job expected that life would go on for him in this way until he died of old age.
This is one of the most unsettling aspects of any tragedy – a death in a family, loss of employment, or serious sickness. At these times hopes are shattered and our notion of what the future holds falls into uncertainty. It is at times like this that a person needs to feel God’s supportive presence. It is no wonder that Job suffered anguish. Job had felt that he was being punished, and God had suddenly become both distant and unfair.
We can handle suffering if we are supported by a warm sense of God’s presence and His love. Without this, suffering becomes unbearable. Let’s keep our relationship fresh – “new every morning”. If we do that in the good times, life will be more bearable in the difficult times.
(2) JOB’S LIFE NOW…
“But now they mock me…” (30:1). Job not only found himself suffering now, but found that everyone’s attitude towards him had changed. Men mocked, rather than honoured him (30:1-15). God afflicted rather than blessed him (30:16-23). No-one helped or comforted as “the churning inside me never stops” (30:24-31). We know how that feels don’t we? How can we go on through this? Only with the loving support of others, and with the assurance that comes from knowing that God still loves us and values us. That is one of the reasons why church on Sundays and our small group are so important. We should be maintaining our contact, especially in good times, so that when the difficult times come and we don’t feel much like it, we will have the habit.
(3) THE EXAMPLE OF HOW JOB LIVED…
“If I have walked in falsehood…” (31:5). This chapter contains a number of “negative confessions”. Each “if” statement explains what Job did NOT do. Looking at them (do that now), we gain a clear picture of a virtuous life as lived by this Old Testament saint.
Studying this passage, we can learn how to “shun evil”. Job 28:28 calls that true and Godly wisdom. I cannot do that for you…it is up to you to prayerfully read through these verses and apply them to your life.
Have a great day,