March 26, 2015.
Daily Reading: Job 23-24.
Background: Job 22.
Concepts and Connections.
Where is God? It seems as time progresses, Job is growing bolder in his questioning and more and more frustrated at the vain talk of his friends, who have proven to be ‘miserable comforters’ (see Job 16:2). Now he turns his questioning to God, asking where He is and requesting to be in His presence to lay out His case. It should be noted that Job is not doing this out of rebellion or disrespect, as at the end of the chapter he explains how terrified he is to bring his case before the Almighty. Yet, there is a somewhat hidden sense of complete trust that Job exhibits here that though he is rightfully terrified to be in the presence of his Maker, he trusts that he will be acquitted by the One that he has served so faithfully because he trusts in His name. The problem Job is having, however, is he can’t find the Almighty. Job is looking all over, trying to gain an audience with Him to plead his case before Him. Yet even though he can’t find Him, Job knows that the Almighty knows his steps, and when he is tried, Job will come out as gold because he has held to the ways of the Lord. Many times in our own lives, especially when we are going through various trials and tough times, we ask this very question that Job did. ‘Where is God?’ This is an understandable reaction. What we can draw from this story though is the fact that God is indeed right there with us, even if we are going through tough times, so long as we are holding to His ways. Job was being tested because he was righteous, and because God knew that he would come out on top. In the end, this is exactly what Job did. If you are going through a rough patch, this story encourages us to hang in there and push through, ever clinging to the ways of the Lord.
“Yet God charges no one with wrong”: Likely prompted from his friend’s ideas about how the righteous prosper and the wicked perish, Job gives his rebuttal to this idea in this chapter. Job spends this chapter (not that he was speaking in chapters) basically relating to his friends how the world is unfair at times, even to the righteous. He cites his friends saying that bad things only happen to bad people, but he knows that this is not true- bad things actually happen to good people sometimes. The preacher makes a similar point in Ecclesiastes 9:11, saying that time and chance happen to all men, good or evil. Perhaps what is most interesting about Job’s argument here is in the end where he asks his friends to prove him wrong. Both sides are spouting out words and making arguments, but Job looks around and basically says, “you don’t have to look very far to see what I’m talking about. And if you think I’m wrong, show me! Show me how the wicked always suffer and the righteous are always vindicated.” He knew that this wasn’t the case. Indeed, just because we are righteous does not guarantee us peace and safety while on this earth. But what it does do for us is give us a relationship with the Almighty so that in the end, all things will be set right. Let us press on and ever praise Him.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Isaiah 62-66.
Grace and peace.