Bible Pathways Daily Bible Reading Devotional

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Bible Pathways 06/16/2002

June 16

Read Job 5 -- 8

In Today's Reading:

Eliphaz' rebuke of Job continued; Job's response; Job reproaches his friends; Bildad's theory of Job's affliction.

Verses for Today:

Oh that my grief were throughly weighed (understood), and my calamity laid in the balances together! For now it would be heavier than (all) the sand of the sea. . . .To him that is afflicted pity should be shewed from his friend (6:2-3,14).

After one full week of silent contemplation concerning Job's suffering, Eliphaz, the eldest of his friends, was the first to speak (Job 2:13). He attempted to convince Job that he should confess his secret sin, saying: Happy is the man whom God [corrects]: therefore [do] not despise the chastening of the Almighty (5:17). Eliphaz then went on to elaborate on the blessings that could be expected if Job would only confess his sin, and he confidently concluded: Lord . . . we have searched it (out), so it is (true); hear it, and know it for [your] good (5:27).

In addition to Job's physical sufferings, his financial loss, the death of his children, and his wife's bitterness toward God, all three of his friends misjudged his integrity and continued to unmercifully harass him day after day. Job admitted that some of his remarks were rash -- such as saying he wished he had never been born (3:1-19). Yet, he had merely been expressing his "mental" anguish at a time when he was overwhelmed with pain and sorrow. Job felt the bitter sting of Eliphaz's condemnation; but, he ignored the insinuation that he was a hypocrite. Job appealed for a more compassionate and complete assessment of his character.

For reasons which Job did not understand, God had not come to his defense. Even worse, it seemed that he had been struck down by the arrows of the Almighty (6:4).

Once again, Job's sufferings bring to light a revelation of his spiritual insight: What is man, that Thou shouldest magnify him? and that Thou should set Thine heart upon him? And that Thou shouldest try him every moment? (7:17-18).

We need to recognize our insignificance in comparison to the eternal, Holy, sinless God Who created us from the dust of the earth. Furthermore, by nature we are defiled by sin and thus deserve eternal hell. Our earthly duration is short-lived compared to eternity; but, through the miraculous new birth, we will enjoy the privilege of being with our Creator for all eternity. However, all who reject Christ as personal Savior and Lord of their lives are destined to be eternally separated from God and cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death (Revelation 20:14).

It is not our Heavenly Father's will that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). But, God also tries (proves) us -- if not with afflictions, then with blessings; if not with pains, then with pleasures. Through it all, He is seeking to develop in us a genuine love for and total dependence upon Him.

Like Job, we often find ourselves making rash statements in the midst of unexpected trials. However, Christians today have far less "excuse" than Job because we have the complete revelation of God and the indwelling Holy Spirit to enlighten our understanding. All that God does and allows is for our good. Unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on Him, but also to suffer for His sake (Philippians 1:29).

Christ Revealed:

Through Job's sorrowful condition (Job 7:1-6). Christ was known as a Man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief. . . . (even) saying (on the cross) . . . My God, My God, why [have You] forsaken Me? (Isaiah 53:3; Mark 15:34).

Word Studies:

5:12 devices = plotting, enterprise = intentions; 5:13 froward = cunning; 5:18 maketh sore = inflicts pain; 6:3 swallowed up = without restraint; 7:21 sleep in the dust = dead in the grave; 8:5 seek . . . betimes = pray with earnestness; 8:11 flag = reed grass.

Prayer Needs:

Government Official: Gov. Lincoln Almond (RI) · Pray for your Sunday School teacher · Country: Israel (6 million) in the Middle East · Major languages: Hebrew and Arabic · Witnessing to Jews about Christ the Messiah is actively discouraged · 88% Jewish; 8% Muslim; 2% Christian · Prayer Suggestion: Pray that the will of God be done in every situation you face today (Matthew 6:10).

Optional Reading: Galatians 5

Memory Verse for the Week: 2 Timothy 3:17

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