For much of my younger life you could probably best describe my spiritual walk as crisis management. Prayer was an exercise in checking off all the specific things I needed divine intervention for.Read More
Did you notice? Where Eliphaz, in the last chapter, had challenged Job on the basis of his theology, Job’s response is of a different order. He doesn’t even bother with Eliphaz’ theology. It is God himself that Job is seeking.
But God is nowhere to be found. Job is sure that if he could lay his case before him, God would pay attention to him, and acquit him.Read More honesty, suffering
Faced with all this, Job asks the question we have all asked at some time. Why doesn’t God do something? Why does he let injustice go on and on? Job’s list of crimes is perhaps a conventional one. We can come up with a contemporary list, and ours is more extensive. TV coverage makes us aware, night by night, of the immeasurable evil all over the world. To the sins of individuals in Job’s list we can add the wars taking place, government corruption, atrocities in countries like the Congo, terrorism, genocide . . .Read More evil, revelation
Job’s response to Bildad is pure scorn. 26:1-4 are to be read as sarcasm: “You have really been helpful to someone weak and weary” (CEV). Bildad is silenced and we don’t hear from him or his friends again.
It is tempting to read the verses that follow through 21st century Western eyes, especially 26:7, which seems to indicate that Job understood the earth, as we do, as suspended in space.Read More Ancient Near East, honesty, reason
In the midst of Job’s despair comes this “jewel” of a poem about wisdom.Stop and think for a moment about the most beautiful jewellery you have ever seen, perhaps in a museum. Think about how much these jewels are treasured. For centuries men have tunnelled underground to bring these things to light. Savour the description of vv 1-11.Read More suffering, wisdom
This whole chapter is one of nostalgia for the good times of the past. It is the first part of a train of thought that carries through to the end of chapter 31. The past is contrasted with the pain of the present (chapter 30) and a plea of innocence (chapter 31).Read More priorities, success, wisdom
David was a man after God’s own heart. He was a faithful follower of God. He was true to his calling. He held no contempt toward those who threatened his life, and yet we know that he was not perfect. He knew it too. He was, after all, human like us. He knew his weaknesses, his vulnerabilities and his sinful nature. He knew how easy it was to say something he shouldn’t. He especially knew the power of influence. Do you?Read More correction, safety, words