23:7 Honest people can reason with him, so I would be forever acquitted by my Judge. Isn't it amazing that such a powerful God is so reasonable with His weak, frail, sinful creatures? I love how Job calls Him, "my Judge." I want a Judge like that!
23:8-9 I go east, but he is not there. I go west, but I cannot find him. I do not see him in the north, for he is hidden. I look to the south, but he is concealed. Haven't we all had those seasons of difficulties when God seems hidden? I sure have! Definitely desert and wilderness experiences. Thankfully, though He conceals Himself at times, He is closer than ever (you can always see this looking back)
23:10 But he knows where I am going. And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold. What a great reassurance.
23:14 So he will do to me whatever he has planned. He controls my destiny. I was just having this talk with someone yesterday. I REALLY believe this now. When I look back at my life, I see a trail of divine events that have brought me to where I am today. If even one of those steps along the way were removed, I would not be where I am today! This sounds like, "Duh!" but what I mean is that I'm living out a divine purpose in my life, and I see a trail that led me to this place. It has been all His doing all along. It has brought me so much comfort to know that I can't mess up God's plan for me ultimately. Even if it takes me a little longer to get there because of my disobedience, the outcome is WRITTEN.
24:10-12 The poor must go about naked, without any clothing. They harvest food for others while they themselves are starving. They press out olive oil without being allowed to taste it, and they tread in the winepress as they suffer from thirst. The groans of the dying rise from the city, and the wounded cry for help, yet God ignores their moaning. I have seen this exact scenario in India (moreso than Haiti where there just is no food)! It is the saddest thing. But I find it rather startling that only one or two thousand years into creation there was already such stark suffering and injustice. It really goes to show that "there is nothing new under the sun." The one consolation for me is that, though the suffering of many is intense, thank God He cut the years of man so short on this earth.
25:22-24 God, in his power, drags away the rich. They may rise high, but they have no assurance of life. They may be allowed to live in security, but God is always watching them. And though they are great now, in a moment they will be gone like all others, cut off like heads of grain. I find it fascinating that all this time, God has let the rich and powerful get away with their tricks. There for a second, I thought I was the only one who noticed it seemed like certain arrogant well-to-do people got off scott free.
26:4 Where have you gotten all these wise sayings? Whose spirit speaks through you? Seems like a worthy question!
26:6 The underworld is naked in God's presence. The place of destruction is uncovered. Again, this is just "Sheol" or "the grave," not some mystical underworld.
27:2 I vow by the living God, who has taken away my rights, by the Almighty who has embittered my soul... God does this for His "called out ones." He takes and often times asks them to give up their rights. But not to be disheartened. It is no less than He asked of His only Son, and it is only for a short time of making you worthy to take up these rights in a much more meaningful way later! It is marathon training-hard now, but payoff later. Here is one payoff that will happen as a result of living in this world without rights (think Millennial Kingdom):
27:16-17 Evil people may have piles of money and may store away mounds of clothing. But the righteous will wear that clothing, and the innocent will divide that money. Of course, it is more in principle, as we won't need money.
41:13 Bless the LORD, the God of Israel, who lives forever from eternal ages past. Amen and amen! Classic NLT. Oh boy. Eternal ages past?
Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, who lives from everlasting to everlasting. Amen and amen! NLT
Blessed [is] Jehovah, God of Israel, From the age -- and unto the age. Amen and Amen. YLT (this is the literal translation)
Remember that the Bible is not written about eternity. Nobody got eternity or even knew what it might be. Eternity is a relatively new concept. They thought about life in ages, which is how our story has unfolded and will continue to unfold—in ages. Enjoy learning the differences.
22:6 Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it. There is debate as to what is the right path. Unfortunately, we parents try to make it subjective. We decide what that right path "must" look like, and get busy raising our kids accordingly. BUT, there is an objectively right path, and like anything else, it is a hunt to find it. But it goes along with Deuteronomy's exhortation to teach our kids so thoroughly, that they are soaked through and through with God's Word and His ways. This is the proper path! It's fun reading about parents who get this and have incorporated all kinds of creative ways for getting the Word into their kids. I have written about some in One Million Arrows.