Sunday, July 9, 2017

July 9 - Job 23

Today's reading in our daily plan is Job 23. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • In this chapter Job speaks again but not really addressing Eliphaz. Instead, Job almost seems to be thinking out loud.
  • The words of Job recorded in chapters 23 and 24 (especially 24) have presented problems to modern Bible scholars because they seem so separate from how the rest of the book is written. There are a few different ways theologians look at the text but it really doesn’t matter to us. This constant “debate” among scholars is healthy because questions lead to truth. 
  • In this chapter Job says he wished he knew where God lived so he could go personally and present his case before God. This is not something we should just pass over. This statement shows that Job really believed he was innocent. Job wasn’t simply being arrogant or blasphemous. 
  • Job’s words reveal his beliefs about God. He knew God loved him or he would never be so bold as to say he would stand before him. Job also clearly believed God cared enough about him personally that he would respond to Job. These are not small beliefs; they show how different Job’s understanding of God is from his companions.
  • Job also admits God can do whatever he pleases. Job also is surrendering to the fact that for reasons he doesn’t understand his sufferings are somehow within God’s plans for him. Job even admits his fear of coming to this understanding.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • Job wasn't afraid to express his doubts about God. Likewise, we shouldn't try to hide our feelings about God from God. God wants us to be honest with him about everything we are feeling.
  • When we go through difficult and painful situations, they are an opportunity for us to grow closer to God. We don't have to understand everything about how God works to trust that He loves us. 
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • Are you harboring pain or resentment or doubt that you haven't talked to God about? Are you trying to act like everything is fine even though you're hurting inside? Talk to God about how you're feeling. He loves you and wants you to talk to Him. It might hurt in this moment, but honesty in pain leads to healing and to a stronger relationship with God.