Reflection on Job 42:1-16

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Scripture

‘I had only heard about you before .Now I have seen you with my own eyes.”

Observation

After the Lord’s confrontation with Job, Job now replies.

Job recognises that he was wrong to question the Lord’s wisdom because he was so ignorant. Having seen the Lord, Job now repents of his pride.

The Lord then speaks to Job’s friends and orders them to offer some burnt offerings, asking Job to pray for them.

The Lord then restores Job’s fortunes- wealth, livestock, sons and daughters. He lives a long and full life, dying at an old age.

Application

It makes a difference when we experience the Lord for ourselves instead of relying on other people’s knowledge of the Lord.

Job was a righteous man before, but in his suffering he sees the Lord and talks with the Lord for the first time.

We were meant for relationship with God. If we don’t have that relationship we will try to fill it in all kinds of unhealthy ways.

Religion is the substitution of laws, rituals, sacrifices and other behaviour patterns for the relationship for which we were created. So Job offered sacrifice after sacrifice to keep himself and his family right with God. He knew no better because he had only heard about God; he didn’t know God.

We each need to have our own encounter with God. It may not be God audibly addressing us out of a whirlwind. It might be as simple as a deep conviction that we need a saviour and God has given that saviour to us in Jesus. It might be what John Wesley called a “Strange warming of the heart” as he heard Scripture being read. It might be a vision of the risen Christ.

When we have that encounter and decide to follow Jesus, handing everything over to Him, the Holy Spirit comes into our lives to empower us and equip us for the walk of faith. Then we are completely new, born again in Christ Jesus,

Prayer

Thank you Lord for saving me. Help me to live every day in the power of your love. Amen.

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Yesterday’s Sermon

The sermon for October 21st 2018 is now available on the New Life web-site.

In this sermon, a part of a Messy Church service, I talk about “Who Da Boss?”

Click here to listen in your browser, here to download the mp3

Reflection on Job 23:1-17

My God, my God

Why have you forsaken me?

Like Job sitting in the dirt

Scraping his skin

Seeking relief

From pain within

I look everywhere

You are gone

My friends say

You have sinned”

My theology of suffering

Looks very thin

I know you’re here God

I will not let you go

This is a test, and tests end

I will see your face again

Reflection on Job 2:1-10

Scripture
The Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one like him on all the earth, a blameless and upright man who fears God and turns away from evil. He persists in his integrity, although you incited me against him for no reason.”

Observation
After satan has been given permission to test Job by destroying all of Job’s property and killing his sons, Job still refuses to sin by cursing the Lord.

The Lord boasts about Job’s integrity to satan (which means the accuser). Satan retorts that people will give away everything to save their lives, but if Job’s body is afflicted he will soon curse the Lord.

So the Lord gives satan permission to afflict Job’s body. Satan inflicts painful sores all over Job. Even Job’s wife tells him to “Curse God and die.” But Job refuses to curse the Lord.

Application
The book of Job challenges all of our pragmatic and religious theories about suffering.

There was no physical reason for Job’s painful sores, nor for the loss of his property and sons. It all seems so random- a run of personal disasters.

A religious explanation of his suffering is that Job is being punished for some hidden sin. Yet the text says that Job was without sin.

In many ways, Job is a picture of Jesus who fulfilled all righteousness without any sin, yet suffered physically and spiritually for the sins of the world.

Bad things happen in our lives. When they do, we need to cling more tightly to the hope we have in Christ,

Prayer
Lord you have not promised to protect us from all evil, but you have promised to walk with us even in the toughest time. Please help me to trust you when my life makes no sense. Amen.