Highlights In Today's Reading:
Notice the knowledge Job has of astronomy! Job realizes the need for a mediator between man and God. His friend Zophar speaks up and urges Job to repent.
Bildad, Job's second friend to speak, was noticeably less sympathetic than was Eliphaz. He critically attacked Job, saying: How long wilt thou speak these things? And how long shall the words of thy mouth be like a strong wind (8:2). Bildad agreed with Eliphaz that sin was the cause of Job's suffering.
Bildad was misled by the same false principle expressed by their companion Eliphaz, that severe sufferings were caused by gross sins. As is often the case, this legalistic religious comforter became a critic. He proceeded to reprove and denounce Job as a mere talker, a vain and lying boaster, and as a self-righteous pretender of perfection. In striking contrast, God said of His servant Job: That man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil (1:1). We are led to see that religious people who express unkind criticism of others do Satan's work. We are cautioned not to impose added suffering to saints who need comfort. Religious professors, who profoundly express divine opinion as God's authoritative judge on earth, often misunderstand God's method of dealing with His disciples.
Job confessed that God's dealings with him were beyond his ability to comprehend. When he said: Lo, He goeth by me, and I see Him not, Job was expressing assurance of God's presence, even though he could not visibly see Him. He is not a man, as I am, that I should answer Him, and we should come together in judgment (9:32).
Zophar went on to say: Oh that God would speak, and open His lips against thee (11:5). God did open His lips and speak, but it was against these critics when He emphatically said: My wrath is kindled against thee, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of Me the thing that is right, as My servant Job hath (42:7).This can only mean that the counsel and conclusions of this man and his friends was merely human self-righteous reasoning and not of God.
Christians can sense the presence of God — not only in our trials but also in our day-by-day activities. Although we cannot see Him, we know, through faith, that He is with us. God may never reveal a reason for our trials, but we should never question His actions.
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Thought for Today:
Through our trials, God's grace can be manifested in us as a witness to the world of God's power and grace.
Through the daysman (mediator) that Job longs for (Job 9:33). Christ is the only Mediator between God and (sinful) men (I Timothy 2:5).
9:9 chambers =constellations; 9:34 rod =b> chastisement; 10:11 fenced =b> knit; 11:6 exacteth =b> demands; 11:14 tabernacles =b> tents; 11:19 make suit unto thee =b> seek your favor; 12:19 spoiled =b> stripped and plundered.
Pray for International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts sponsored by Ann Lewis; Arabic International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts sponsored by Valerie Richardson • Staff: Mary Kay Wagner • Government Officials: Rep. Marcy Kaptur (OH) and Rep. John Murtha (PA) • Country: Swaziland (985,000) in southern Africa • Major languages: English and siSwati • Religious freedom • 67% Protestant; 19% animism, spirit-possession cults, and divination; 11% Roman Catholic; 3% Baha'i • Prayer Suggestion: Remember that it is by the blood of Christ that we have access to God in prayer (Hebrews 10:19).
Optional Reading: Galatians 6
Memory Verse for the Week: 2 Corinthians 1:9