Book of Job Archives Pg 2

Home | Autumn Creation | Harvest -Time of Thanksgiving | Autumn of Our Lives | Archives

eosnavg13.gif

God's Understanding of What We Go Through During Physical Trials (Job 6)
- Pat Gates - 



I love the book of Job for so many reasons and one is the comfort in knowing God understands what we go through in our trials. Perhaps this is one reason God has given us the in-depth conversation between Job and his friends, rather than just the story of Job. Perhaps He is telling us, I do know what you are going through; Job went through the same thing. No matter how much pain, injustice or conflict, the end of the matter is to fear God, trust His wisdom and care for His creation.

You Have Similar Experiences As Job


Those who are chronic sufferers, I believe, can understand Job's conversation better than those who have not suffered. Every sufferer has experienced at least one of the complaints below and many have suffered most.

Let's review chapter 6 and see how many things we can identity with Job in our own struggles and then we'll proceed into this month's lesson, chapter 7.

(Remember, these are words of a sufferer, not from an inspired man.)

6:1-2 Job wishes his grief and calamity could be weighed so others could understand his words were justified.

Have you ever wished others could understand what they can't see with their eyes?

6:8-9 Job can see no hope of getting well and longs for God to release him of his pain. Remember Eliphaz said if he'd just repent of his terrible sins, he would be blessed once again, but Job, knowing his sins did not equal such punishment, knew there was no hope, as he had not sinned in proportion to such suffering.

Do you, at times, feel hopeless in your situation?

6:11-14 Job wonders why his days are prolonged, when he loses strength daily.

Have you ever wondered why you keep living or why a loved one keeps living when you/they seem to have so little strength to live?

6:14-23 Job longs for kindness from his friends and states how disappointed he is that their kindness has been replaced with contempt for him. Job never asked anything from them, they could have least been kind.

Have you ever been disappointed in a friend's lack of understanding and kindness during your trials?

6:24 Job wants his friends to prove his trials are due to sin.

Have you ever been misjudged during your trials?

6:26 Job explains a sufferer doesn't always mean the desperate words he says as they are "as wind."

Have you ever said words that stemmed from suffering that you didn't really mean?

6:28 Job is saying, "Believe me!" "Trust what I say!"

Have you ever had others think they know more about your life and suffering than you do?

6:29 Trust me! Know I can discern whether my trials are from great sin or not.

Do you ever long for others to trust your discernment?

eoslapis_bar2.gif

JOB 7

7:1 Job speaks how hard man's life on earth is.

Do you think negative thoughts about life when you are suffering?

7:2-3 Job longs for rest from the labor of life.

Do you long for rest?

7:3 Job speaks of "months of futility." Not only does that tell us he had been suffering for months before his friend's came, but the months have seemed "futile."

Do you feel like your life is worthless? 

7:3-4 Job speaks of his wearisome and restless nights.

          Do you have difficulty sleeping and long for morning?

7:5 Job describes his flesh being caked with worms and dust and his skin is cracked and continually breaks out.

Job's desire for the night to be ended only ends up being the day filled with terrible suffering of painful, open sores, full of maggots and the pain and itching(?) of fresh pus-filled pustules.

Is your day filled with continual pain and suffering?

7:6 Although the nights seem to drag, Job speaks of how fast the days have gone by and how hopeless they are.

Are you surprised how fast the time goes, even though the days seem to drag? Does the time fly by and when you look back, it feels like nothing has been accomplished and you can see no hope for change?

7:7 Job says this life is a breath and he will never see good again.

Do you feel like you will never see good in your life again?

7:8-10 Job says he's dying.

          Do you believe you are dying and have no hope for better days? 

7:11 Job says he will not restrain himself, but "will speak in the anguish of my spirit and will complain in the bitterness of my soul."

Have you ever just let your thoughts go out of frustration and gave yourself license to spill out your anguish? Do you feel bitterness from the suffering and lack of comfort from others?

7:12 Can not trust his friends for help and answers, so he directs his thoughts to God.

Do you feel the same, at times?

7:12-14 Job can not understand what he thinks is God's opposition to him and how it is out of proportion with his importance.

Do you ever question if God has anything to do with your suffering and wonder why you suffer so?

7:13-14 Job hopes for comfort and peaceful sleep, but ends up having terrifying visions and dreams.

Do you seek peace in sleep only to be awaken from bad dreams the pain is giving you?

7:15 Job chooses death, if he had a choice (but notice, he does not choose suicide).

Can you identify with Job and wish death would come?

7:16 Job "loathes" his life and knows (he thinks he knows) he doesn't have long to live.

Do you hate your life?

7:17-21 Job wonders why? He knows he has sinned, as all men sin, but not to the extent his friends think. Why does God relentlessly pursue him, continually, to where he doesn't even have time to swallow? (Remember, Job does not know the background to his suffering.)

Do you dwell on "why?" and wonder what you did to deserve such punishment?

As we see, God does understand what we go through. We need to talk to God about all our physical, emotional and spiritual suffering. Job was honest with himself; he saw his confusion and bitterness. As Job we need to examination ourselves and with respect for God, Almighty, and with dependence on our loving Father, we need to pray about all that is bothering us. God hears. God understands. God answers the humble prayers of His children.

eoslapis_bar2.gif

Job 7:20 If I have sinned, what do I unto thee, O thou watcher of men?

“THE WATCHER OF MEN”

(or the "preserver" of men KJV)

How does it make us feel when we consider Job’s term for Jehovah: The Watcher of Men? Do we feel fear? Comfort? Both of these feelings would be correct as our fear and respect for the Almighty God and Judge should help keep us humble and in line with His commands. The feeling of comfort should balance this fear knowing our Watcher sees our affliction and knows our needs.

Last month I listed some of the trials Job encountered in chapters 7 and 8. God revealed these to us and by this revelation we come to understand that God knows what man goes through on a daily basis when he is in the midst of suffering. What a comfort to know God is our watcher and our preserver!

Thy lovingkindness, O Jehovah, is in the heavens; Thy faithfulness reacheth unto the skies. Thy righteousness is like the mountains of God; Thy judgments are a great deep: O Jehovah, thou preservest man and beast. How precious is thy lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge under the shadow of thy wings.

(Psa 36:5-7)

There are still some who want Job to repent!

Not all rabbis agree, but some scholars of Orthodox Judaism maintain that Job was in fact one of three advisors that Pharaoh consulted, prior to taking action against the increasingly multiplying "Children of Israel" mentioned in the Book of Exodus during the time of Moses' birth. The episode is mentioned in the Talmud (Tractate Sotah): Balaam gives evil advice urging Pharaoh to kill the Hebrew male new-born babies; Jethro opposes Pharaoh and tells him not to harm the Hebrews at all, and Iyov (Job) keeps silent and does not reveal his mind even though he was personally opposed to Pharaoh's destructive plans. It is for his silence that God subsequently punishes him with his bitter afflictions. HaRav Soloveitchik answers that the reason why Job was silent was because he thought any protest which he may voice would not be listened to, and therefore not help. This may have been the case, but Job still had a responsibility to protest against this evil plan. Because he didn't, he was punished with suffering, as one who suffers cries out, even though he knows that the cries will not remove the suffering.

http://www.torah.org/learning/yomtov/pesach/5755/vol1no10.html

eoslapis_bar2.gif

Job 9

Chapter 9 is an important chapter:

smallbluebullet.gif smallbluebullet.gifsmallbluebullet.gifThe suffering will wear on Job to the degree he misjudges God's character and he will come to the conclusion that his innocence really doesn't matter, for God crushes the good and evil. (We must not excuse Job, for he, himself, comes to the realization he said things he shouldn't, and he repents.)


smallbluebullet.gif Job struggles with the thought of how he can approach God with his declaration of innocence, that he isn't such a sinner to deserve such punishment. He believes there is no use in contending with God's wisdom for man will always fail. 
 
 
smallbluebullet.gifIt is important to notice that while Job does say some shocking things about God, he never turns from the Lord
.  

smallbluebullet.gifSatan has not won the battle, nor will he.

Chapter 9 is a warning to all of us not to misjudge God and to blame Him for our problems. If such a righteous man as Job can fall into this trap, so can we, if we aren't watchful. When suffering is severe and when it's ongoing, we may begin to wonder why God doesn't stop it. It is during these times when Satan is ready to pounce and it is especially important to keep in mind God's character as revealed in His word. It's also important to remember Satan's character and please feel free to blame him all you want!

We can be assured:
God knows.
God hears our prayers.
God has the power, love, mercy and wisdom to answer our prayers.
We have a God who is near to us.
God never desired suffering for His creation, nor was it part of Adam and Eve's lives before they sinned.
Satan is the source of suffering in this world, and all our suffering is directly or indirectly related to him.
We have a mediator that Job longs for: our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

smallbluebullet.gif

THE LOW POINT IN JOB'S LIFE
His Charges Against God

Job 9

Job responds to Bildad with a speech on God's wisdom and power over the earth and heavens.
"God is wise in heart and mighty in strength."
"He does great things past finding out, yes, wonders without number."
"Who can say to Him, 'What are You doing?'"
"God will not withdraw His anger. The allies of the proud lie prostrate beneath Him."
Job understands God's greatness and power, but he is having problems understanding why God uses it as He does in his life. He doesn't know how to put his case before God, for:

"How can a man be righteous before God? If one wish to contend with Him, He could not answer Him one time out of a thousand."
"If He goes by me, I do not see Him; If He moves past, I do not perceive Him."
"How then can I answer Him, and choose my words to reason with Him?"
Job reaches a low point in His life for he is wrestling with the question of "Why?" Why is God using His power to "crush him?"
"If I called and He answered me, I would not believe that He was listening to my voice." (because)
"For He crushes me with a tempest, and multiplies my wounds without cause. He will not allow me to catch my breath, but fills me with bitterness."
"I am blameless, yet I do not know myself; I despise my life. It is all one thing; therefore I say, 'He destroys the blameless and the wicked. If the scourge slays suddenly, He laughs at the plight of the innocent. The earth is given into the hand of the wicked. He covers the faces of its judges. If it is not He, who else could it be?"
Job sees the earth as "given into the hand of the wicked" and God "covers the face of the judges" so they cannot discern between right and wrong. (vs 24)
Job wishes he could contend with God in a court of law, but even if he could, God would not pronounce him innocent:

"If one wished to contend with Him, He could not answer Him one time out of a thousand."
"How then can I answer Him, and choose my words to reason with Him? For though I were righteous, I could not answer Him; I would beg mercy of my Judge."
"I am blameless...therefore I say, He destroys the blameless and the wicked."
"I know that You will not hold me innocent."
"For He is not a man, as I am, that I may answer Him, and that we should go to court together."
"If I wash myself with snow water, and cleanse my hands with soap, yet You will plunge me into the pit, and my own clothes will abhor me."
Job longs for a mediator between himself and God who will judge impartially:

eoslapis_bar2.gif

JOB SPEAKS IN THE BITTERNESS OF HIS SOUL

Job 10

"My soul loathes my life." Job's soul is weary of living; of existing in such a terrible physical state, seeing no way out of his suffering and not understanding why God would do this to him, when he knew he was a righteous man (not sinless) and did not deserve such punishment.

"I will give free course to my complaint."
Job turns from his friends to God and directs this speech to Jehovah. He is not going to hold back, but will allow his thoughts to flow out of his mouth, without holding back.

"I will speak in the bitterness of my soul." Job hates his life, and in his bitterness, he gives himself license to spill out his confusion of God's justice (rather injustice) and Jehovah's mistreated of him.

"Does it seem good to You that You should oppress, that you should despise the work of Your hands, and shine on the counsel of the wicked?" As we read Job's complaint, we need to remember the terrible state he is in: Running, putrid, rotting, worm-filled flesh, not just in a specific area, but all over his body. Perhaps infection, fever, extreme loss of weight, dehydration (?), terrible pain, weakness, sleepless nights. On top of his living in grief of his great losses as well as the present loss of friends and respect.

The rest of the chapter is Job's conclusion that there is no moral government in the universe. God makes man man, only to hunt him down and destroy him. Job wants to be left alone, to die in peace and to go to the "land of darkness."

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Practical application next month:

This month I've just given an overview of chapter ten, but next month I'd like to talk more about Job's state of mind: His thoughts about God, his demand for answers from God, and the fact he was plagued with the question "why?"
s Should Job be excused of his accusations against God because he was in the midst of extreme suffering?
s Should our thoughts and actions be excused in our suffering?
s Why would Job think such terrible things against God, even to the degree of saying God is oppressing him, despising (rejecting) him (the work of God's hand, His creation) and that God looks, with favor, upon the wicked. How can a righteous man think such things? Why would he? Could we ever think such things?
s What do we do with the question, "Why?"

Job 10 contd.

These thoughts from last month continue in the 10th chapter. Chapter 9 and 10 are important chapters:

s The suffering will wear on Job to the degree he misjudges God's character and he will come to the conclusion that his innocence really doesn't matter, for God crushes the good and evil. (We must not excuse Job, for he, himself, comes to the realization he said things he shouldn't, and he repents.)

s Job struggles with the thought of how he can approach God with his declaration of innocence, that he isn't such a sinner to deserve such punishment. He believes there is no use in contending with God's wisdom for man will always fail.

s It is important to notice that while Job does say some shocking things about God, he never turns from the Lord. Satan has not won the battle, nor will he.

Chapters 9 and 10 are a warning to all of us not to misjudge God and to blame Him for our problems. If such a righteous man as Job can fall into this trap, so can we, if we aren't watchful. When suffering is severe and when it's ongoing, we may begin to wonder why God doesn't stop it. It is during these times when Satan is ready to pounce and it is especially important to keep in mind God's character as revealed in His word. It's also important to remember Satan's character and please feel free to blame him all you want!

What We Can Be Assured Of:

God knows.
God hears our prayers.
God has the power, love, mercy and wisdom to answer our prayers.
We have a God who is near to us.
God never desired suffering for His creation, nor was it part of Adam and Eve's lives before they sinned.
Satan is the source of suffering in this world, and all our suffering is directly or indirectly related to him.
We have a mediator that Job longs for: our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.




http://ourhopeonline.com

November 2017