Are your dealings with other people fair and upright? Do you rejoice when your enemy encounters misfortune? Even more than that, if we struggle with these things, do we then hide them because we fear what people will say more than we fear the Lord who sees all?
5 “If I have walked with falsehood
or my foot has hurried after deceit—
6 let God weigh me in honest scales
and he will know that I am blameless—
7 if my steps have turned from the path,
if my heart has been led by my eyes,
or if my hands have been defiled,
8 then may others eat what I have sown,
and may my crops be uprooted.
24 “If I have put my trust in gold
or said to pure gold, ‘You are my security,’
25 if I have rejoiced over my great wealth,
the fortune my hands had gained…
29 “If I have rejoiced at my enemy’s misfortune
or gloated over the trouble that came to him—
30 I have not allowed my mouth to sin
by invoking a curse against their life…
33 if I have concealed my sin as people do,
by hiding my guilt in my heart
34 because I so feared the crowd…
40 then let briers come up instead of wheat
and stinkweed instead of barley.”
Job 31:5-8, 24-25, 29-30, 33-34, 40
Job seeks to vindicate himself, and he is bold to say that if he has committed these sins, may others eat what he has sown, may his crops be uprooted, and may briers come up instead of wheat and stinkweed instead of barley in his fields…
Basically, if I have committed these things, may I bear the consequences.
Falsehood. Deceit. Dishonest scales. Are your dealings with other people fair and upright? Are you led down paths by your eyes or become defiled in your interaction with the world? Is your trust in gold and wealth over faith?
Job has a clean conscience when it comes to these matters. Can we always say the same thing? Someone just emailed me about a car I have for sale. Her question: what is wrong with it that will need to be fixed? I answered with a complete list of the issues. I don’t rely on her to not notice. Yet are all my dealings this pure?
Do you rejoice when your enemy encounters misfortune? Do you curse them for what they did to you? This is an easy trap to fall into, isn’t it? The high road, however, is to avoid these temptations, and it is hard to do in life. We think it’s hard now, yet Job was tempted with all these things in his day. Temptation is timeless…
And more than anything else, we often fall victim of the sin of vs. 33-34: we hid our sin because we fear the crowd. If we are guilty of these things, we hide them because we are more afraid of what people will say than we are of the Lord who sees all.
Job was confident here that he was not concealing sin. He was willing for God to look upon him. Oftentimes we conceal things and hope or think that God won’t find out. He knows.
These practical elements of our faith in practice matter to God and they matter to our example before the world today. Consider where you can turn back to God in these things…