Enduring Struggle and the Ways of God


In summary of Job’s story, we see that our endurance of struggle doesn’t always line up with our vision of God.  God is more concerned with our understanding of him, bringing glory to himself, and our reflection of him to our world than he is in our happiness…

7 After the Lord had said these things to Job, he said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “I am angry with you and your two friends, because you have not spoken the truth about me, as my servant Job has. 8 So now take seven bulls and seven rams and go to my servant Job and sacrifice a burnt offering for yourselves. My servant Job will pray for you, and I will accept his prayer and not deal with you according to your folly. You have not spoken the truth about me, as my servant Job has.” 9 So Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite did what the Lord told them; and the Lord accepted Job’s prayer.

10 After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before. 11 All his brothers and sisters and everyone who had known him before came and ate with him in his house. They comforted and consoled him over all the trouble the Lord had brought on him, and each one gave him a piece of silver and a gold ring.

12 The Lord blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the former part. He had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, a thousand yoke of oxen and a thousand donkeys. 13 And he also had seven sons and three daughters. 14 The first daughter he named Jemimah, the second Keziah and the third Keren-Happuch. 15 Nowhere in all the land were there found women as beautiful as Job’s daughters, and their father granted them an inheritance along with their brothers.

16 After this, Job lived a hundred and forty years; he saw his children and their children to the fourth generation. 17 And so Job died, an old man and full of years.
Job 42:7-17

After dealing with Job and bringing him to repentance in which Job fully turned toward God and away from his own ideas, God spoke to Job’s friends and confronted them for speaking falsely about the Lord. God cares about the things we say about him and he cares that we get it right when we tell others the ‘truth’ about him.

In other words, it’s a big deal to share with people about the character and ways of God. If you don’t know, dig into the Bible or ask for help. These guys were steering Job astray and they had to get Job to pray for them on their behalf.

Once his friends were dealt with, and Job had prayed for them, God restored Job’s fortunes. In fact, he blessed Job more in the latter part of Job’s life than he had in the former part.

The Lord lifted Job up again after he suffered and was humble before God. Yes, he suffered tremendous loss. Yes, we cannot understand why God allows many things in our lives. Our endurance of pain doesn’t line up with our visions of God.

God, however, is more concerned about our understanding of him, bringing glory to himself, and our reflection of him to our world than he is in our happiness.

At the same time, God can bless us more than we could ever dream if he so desires. And so, Job helps us to understand the complexity of God and that God’s ways are mysterious and must be viewed within the context of the spirit world and not only the physical world.

Does this change the way you view your struggle? Hopefully. Does it change the way you view God? Hopefully.

Amen.

Marc Kinna

 

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